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Sunday, April 21, 2019

Reuters News

Petrobras Takes Two of Six Port Terminals in Brazil Auction

Brazil auctioned off six port terminals for liquid fuels in the northern state of Para to private operators on Friday, with subsidiaries of state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA winning two of the areas.The government raised nearly 450 million reais ($117 million) in the auction of the terminals — five in the Miramar port in the city of Belem and one in the Vila do Conde port in the city of Barcarena.The rights to operate the terminals are the latest in a slew of assets Brazil is selling as part of its drive to shore up public finances and reduce a gaping budget deficit.In an auction br

File Image: AdobeStock / © Nightman 1965

Customs Demands Bigger Bonds as Tariffs Bite

Stephen Wang is counting the costs of President Donald Trump's trade war. He had to put down 12 times more cash as a guarantee to U.S. customs that he would pay the bill for tariffs on the Chinese-made pumps, valves and motors he imports.The cost of the guarantee - a U.S. customs bond - has shot up, an additional hit to importers already facing steep customs bills adding up to tens of billions of dollars for tariffs imposed by the Trump administration on incoming Chinese goods…

Russia: New Port of Sabetta LNG Terminal

Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an allocation of budget funds in 2021-2022 for the construction of the Utrenny liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in the Russian port of Sabetta on the Northern Sea route, the Kremlin said on its website.The budget money will also be used to reconstruct a navigable channel in the Gulf of Ob in the Kara Sea.The Utrennee gas field is developed by Russian gas giant Novatek and serves as a resource base for the Arctic LNG-2 project. (Reuters, Reporting by Andrey Kuzmin Writing by Polina Nikolskaya Editing by Andrey Kuzmin and Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

Maltese Soldiers Recapture Tanker from Migrants

A small tanker that was hijacked by migrants off Libya docked in Malta's port of Valletta on Thursday after Maltese special forces took control of the vessel, a Reuters witness said.Cargo ship Elhiblu 1 had picked up 108 migrants stranded at sea, some of whom then hijacked the vessel when it became clear that it planned to take them back to Libya.Maltese police arrested four men and the remainder of the migrants were disembarked and boarded onto buses, the witness said.A Maltese military patrol boat stopped the ship from entering Maltese waters and a special operations team was then dispatched

PDVSA Oil Port Paralyzed by Another Blackout

Venezuela's main oil export port of Jose and the country's four crude upgraders have been unable to resume operations following a massive power blackout on Monday, according to industry workers and a union leader close to the facilities.The most recent oil shipment for export, on the carrier Dragon chartered by Russia's Rosneft, left Jose, which is owned by state-run PDVSA, on March 24, according to Refinitiv Eikon vessel-tracking data and PDVSA's trade documents."There is no electricity…

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Report: FBI Falls Short On Port Threat Assessment

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is not taking appropriate steps to review and assess potential maritime terrorism risks facing U.S. sea ports, the Justice Department's internal watchdog has found.The audit, released on Thursday by Inspector General Michael Horowitz, found that while top FBI officials believe the country faces a low maritime terrorism threat, that view is actually based on "incomplete and potentially inaccurate information."Moreover, the audit found that the FBI had not conducted its own formal assessment of the matter.In a letter to Horowitz dated Aug.

A typical DP world Terminal operation (CREDIT: DP World)

India Watchdog: DP World Trying to Halt Probe

India's antitrust regulator said in a court filing that a challenge by Dubai's DP World of a probe into its alleged anti-competitive practices at a Mumbai port is an effort to halt or delay possible adverse findings against the firm.The Competition Commission of India (CCI) told a Mumbai court that DP World's local unit had "prematurely" rushed to court to stall or delay the probe, according to a filing by the watchdog dated Jan. 30 and seen by Reuters.The CCI filing has not been previously reported…

File Image / CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Kasto

McQuilling ends tanker contracts with PDVSA

A second maritime firm has told Venezuela's state-run oil firm Petroleos de Venezuela it would end all charter contracts with the company as a result of U.S. sanctions, according to an internal document and a person familiar with the matter.U.S.-based McQuilling Partners Inc, which provided PDVSA with four contract tankers, joined German tanker operator Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) in withdrawing from providing oil-shipping services to Venezuela.The United States levied…

CMA CGM Forms Venture with MACCFA

France's CMA CGM has signed a letter of intent to form a joint venture with Ethiopian company MACCFA, as well as a letter of intent with ESLSE to manage Ethiopia's Modjo port, according to a document made available by the French President's office.Marseille-based CMA CGM, one of the world's largest container shipping lines, recently became the core shareholder in Ceva Logistics, with the company looking to expand in non-maritime freight services. (Reuters, Reporting by John Irish; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)

An idled PDVSA tanker (CREDIT: © MarineTraffic.com / Leslie Brug

Ven's Blackout Halts Oil Exports From Primary Port

Venezuela's state-run oil firm PDVSA has been unable to resume crude exports from its primary port since last week's massive power outage, essentially crippling the OPEC nation's principal industry, people familiar with the matter said on Monday.Power remained patchy in most of the country after a blackout on Thursday that the government of President Nicolas Maduro claimed was a U.S.-backed act of "sabotage" on the country's principal hydroelectric dam.His critics insist it is…

DP World Asks Court to Halt Antitrust Probe at Mumbai Port

Dubai's DP World has asked an Indian court to halt an investigation into alleged antitrust violations at the country's largest container port in Mumbai, saying the regulator was seeking excessive information, a court document seen by Reuters showed.The Competition Commission of India (CCI) last year said it suspected antitrust violations by DP World and Denmark's A.P. Moller-Maersk at the terminals they operate at state-owned Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT).The CCI's investigation followed a complaint by Singapore's PSA International Pte Ltd…

World Shares Higher on US-China Deal Hopes

Global shares rose on Monday amid growing optimism the United States and China will reach a trade agreement as soon as this month.U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping might seal a formal trade deal around March 27, given progress in talks between the two countries, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.The two nations have imposed tit-for-tat tariffs on billions of dollars worth of each others' goods, roiling financial markets, disrupting manufacturing supply chains and shrinking U.S.

File Image: AdobeStock / © Redindie

World Shares Higher on US-China Deal Hopes

Global shares rose on Monday amid growing optimism the United States and China will reach a trade agreement as soon as this month.U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping might seal a formal trade deal around March 27, given progress in talks between the two countries, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.The two nations have imposed tit-for-tat tariffs on billions of dollars worth of each others' goods, roiling financial markets, disrupting manufacturing supply chains and shrinking U.S.

Credit: AdobeStock / © Scanrail

Brent Hits 2019 High on U.S.-China trade Hopes

U.S. crude stocks rise to 454.5 mln barrels as crude exports from U.S. hit record 3.6 mln bpd.Oil prices rose on Friday, supported by OPEC's ongoing supply cuts and hopes that Washington and Beijing may soon end their trade dispute.International Brent crude futures hit a new 2019 high of $67.60 a barrel, up 53 cents from Thursday's close.Further gains were tempered by U.S. crude oil production hitting a record 12 million barrels per day (bpd) and a surge in exports from the country.By 1125 GMT, U.S.

Photo: Ceva Logistics

CMA CGM Aims for Ceva Logistics Breakeven in 2019

CMA CGM is aiming for Ceva Logistics to break even this year, its finance chief said on Tuesday, as the French shipping group opened a share offer to cement its control of the Swiss freight specialist.CMA CGM's public tender will offer other shareholders 30 Swiss francs ($29.75) per share, valuing Ceva at 1.67 billion francs, a price agreed after Ceva rejected a takeover bid in October from Danish freight firm DSV.Marseille-based CMA CGM, one of the world's largest container shipping lines, became Ceva's core shareholder when the Swiss company floated on the Zurich stock market last year, as p

File Image (CREDIT: CMA CGM)

CMA CGM in Effort to Buy rest of CEVA Logistics Shares

CMA CGM launches 30 Sfr/shr tender offer for CEVA shares; CEVA recommends shareholders decline the offer.ZURICH, Jan 28 (Reuters) - French shipping company CMA CGM on Monday formally launched a cash offer to buy out other shareholders of Ceva Logistics, valuing the Swiss freight forwarder at $1.67 billion as the companies pursue closer ties aimed at fueling growth and savings.CMA CGM, which already controls 50.6 percent of CEVA, and the Swiss company last year began developing a business plan to boost commercial cooperation and complementary services.At the time…

Image: AdobeStock © Nightman 1965

UK Shipping Lobby: 'Get a grip on Brexit'

British businesses implored politicians on Monday to stop quarrelling over Brexit and agree an orderly exit from the European Union, as some big firms set up emergency situations rooms to cope with the possible tumult of a no-deal divorce.With less than nine weeks until the United Kingdom is due by law to leave the European Union on March 29, there is no agreement yet in London on how and even whether to leave the world's biggest trading bloc.Parliament rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's Withdrawal Agreement…

Photo courtesy of Stena

Transport Firms Reviewing UK-registered Ships Ahead of Brexit

Sweden’s Stena and Bermuda-registered Stolt-Nielsen are reviewing their UK-registered ships ahead of Britain’s departure from the European Union, the two leading transport companies told Reuters separately on Wednesday."In the light of the Brexit process we are considering whether the UK flag can become a possible issue for us when it no longer will be an EU flag post the 29th March 2019, but we have taken no decisions and are reviewing different scenarios," said Ian Hampton, chief people & communications officer and Brexit spokesperson for Stena Line.A spokeswoman for Stolt-Nielsen…

Photo courtesy of Sri Lanka Port Authority

Sri Lanka Port Strike Ends

Sri Lankan customs officers on Tuesday called off a strike that left 6,000 containers stranded at the country's main port and put pressure on food prices, after the government agreed to reinstate their boss for three months.The strike by thousands of officials began a week ago in protest at the sacking of Director General P.S.M. Charles, who authorities blamed for a drop in customs revenue last year.It was not immediately clear how long the backlog of containers would take to clear after unions said late on Tuesday that the strike had ended.About 1…

file Image: CREDIT AdobseStock / © Igor Strukov

U.S. Soybean Inventories at Record Levels

U.S. soybean supplies as of Dec. 1 were the biggest on record as demand for the oilseed fizzled amid a trade war between the United States and China, the U.S. Agriculture Department said on Friday.USDA also trimmed its forecast of the U.S. soybean crop harvested last fall to 4.544 billion bushels from its previous estimate of 4.600 billion bushels.Soybean stocks as of Dec. 1 stood at 3.736 billion bushels. That compares with 3.161 billion bushels a year earlier, which had been the record.

© kalafoto / Adobe Stock

Libya Dreams of a Mega Port

A white foundation stone next to a deserted beach near the soporific Libyan port of Susah is all to show for a seven-year dream to build one of North Africa's biggest ports.Yet officials say Libya is now in final talks to award a U.S. firm a $1.5 billion deal to set up a "mega port" intended to transform the picturesque coast where families go for picnics into a vast container hub.Texas-based security firm Guidry Group confirmed to Reuters it planned to sign a 35-year deal to build and operate the project in a region once occupied by the ancient Greeks…

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Mnuchin: China Talks "So far, so good"

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said talks with China went well on Wednesday, as the world's two largest economies try to iron out an agreement to resolve their trade dispute."So far, so good," he said when asked by reporters on how the meetings in Beijing went. He did not say who he met.Mnuchin said earlier he hoped for "productive" trade meetings as the two countries seek to end a festering dispute that has seen both sides level tariffs at one other.U.S. tariffs on $200…

File Image: AdobeStock / © Lucasz Z

Dry Bulk Market Outlook Darkens After Vale Casualty

The prospects of dry bulk shippers carrying iron ore from mines to smelters have worsened due to the accident at Vale's Brumadinho dam in Brazil, Golden Ocean said on Tuesday as it presented forecast-beating quarterly earnings.The dam in the town of Brumadinho, which contained tailings, the mud-like byproducts of iron ore mining, burst on Jan. 25, killing at least 166 people and with almost 200 more still missing.Brazil's Vale, the world's largest iron ore mining company, has…

Vens Close Maritime Border with Dutch Antilles

Venezuelan authorities have closed the maritime border with the Dutch Antilles, a regional navy chief told Reuters on Tuesday, preventing boats and aircraft from arriving from the islands of Aruba, Curacao and Bonaire.Vice Admiral Quintero Martinez did not give a reason for the closure, though Venezuela's opposition have said they plan to bring humanitarian aid into the country from Curacao on Saturday, which President Nicolas Maduro's government has pledged to block.Reporting by Mircely Guanipa

File Image: CREDIT P&O

DP World buys back P&O Ferries for $421 mln

DP World has bought back British ferry and shipping freight operator P&O Ferries for 322 million pounds ($421 million), more than a decade after it sold it.DP World acquired the British shipping and logistics company in 2006 but soon sold off some assets, including P&O Ferries to its major shareholder, state holding company Dubai World.DP World announced on Wednesday it was buying the company, and a spokeswoman later told Reuters it had bought it back from Dubai World.Dubai World was at the heart of the emirate’s financial crisis at the turn of the decade and was forced to restructure around $

File Image: CREDIT Maersk

Maersk Shares Fall on Trade War Fears

The world's largest container shipping company, A.P. Moller-Maersk, warned trade headwinds would slow growth this year, sending its shares down 10 percent on Thursday.Maersk is also moving ahead with spinning off Maersk Drilling, announcing it expected its new listing in Copenhagen to begin trading on April 4.Maersk, a bellwether for global trade, warned that growth in the number of containers being moved around the world would deteriorate further this year.It expected global container growth of 1-3 percent in 2019…