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Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Saudi Arabia News

Image: Saudi Aramco

Saudi Aramco, World’s Most Profitable Co, Again

Saudi Aramco announced that its net income was $46.9 billion for the first half 2019, compared to $53.0 billion for the same period last year. That easily outstripped corporate titans such as Apple Inc, Amazon.com Inc and other big oil producers, many of which suffered larger declines in profit as output and crude prices fell. Saudi Aramco President & CEO Amin H. Nasser, said: “Despite lower oil prices during the first half of 2019, we continued to deliver solid earnings and strong free cash flow underpinned by our consistent operational performance…

ICE, Magellan to Offer Dock Capacity to Houston Oil Futures Customers

Intercontinental Exchange Inc and Magellan Midstream Partners LP said on Wednesday they would auction dock capacity at Magellan's terminals in Galena Park and Seabrook, Texas, for holders of ICE's Permian West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures contracts.The monthly auction process will allow customers who purchase an ICE Permian WTI crude futures contract, deliverable at Magellan's East Houston terminal (MEH), the option to load crude directly onto a vessel at Galena Park and Seabrook dock facilities for export…

Photo: Jumbo

New Heavy Weight Record for Jumbo

Jumbo Kinetic recently lifted a giant 1,929 tonne Wash Tower, the heaviest cargo ever lifted by Jumbo.Samsung Engineering booked Jumbo to transport an ultra-heavy Wash Tower and 4 columns, including transport saddles, for the JUPC project in Saudi Arabia. The specialized Jumbo team handled the safe loading, sea fastening, and transportation of the 4 columns from Zhangjiagang, China and the Wash tower from Pyeongtaek, Korea to Jubail in Saudi Arabia.The Wash Tower weighs 1,929…

File Image: A Chinese Naval Frigate underway. CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Vanderwolf

China Mulls Hormuz Naval Escort Role

China might escort Chinese commercial vessels in Gulf waters under a U.S. proposal for a maritime coalition to secure oil shipping lanes following attacks on tankers, its envoy to the United Arab Emirates said on Tuesday."If there happens to be a very unsafe situation we will consider having our navy escort our commercial vessels," Ambassador Ni Jian told Reuters in Abu Dhabi."We are studying the U.S. proposal on Gulf escort arrangements," China's embassy later said in a text…

AdobeStock / © Kasto

Oil slumps 7% as More Tariffs Loom

Oil prices plummeted more than 7% on Thursday, with the U.S. benchmark posting its worst day in more than four years, after President Donald Trump said he would impose additional tariffs Chinese imports starting Sept. 1.The drop in Brent crude was the steepest in more than three years, undoing a fragile oil rally built on steady drawdowns in U.S. inventories even as global demand looked shaky due to the U.S.-China trade dispute.Trump's announcement of an additional 10% levy on…

Photo: Mawani

Maersk Gets Saudi Ports Licence

The Saudi Ports Authority (Mawani ) has issued a license to the local subsidiary of Maersk in order to operate in all ports across Saudi Arabia.According to the state news agency SPA, the step comes along with the authority’s strategy to improve the efficiency and quality of performance and services offered in Saudi ports.The new Maersk shipping license is the fourth of its kind to be issued to foreign investors in the Kingdom. Maersk joins other major lines of Barwil, Hapag-Lloyd and the Mediterranean Shipping Company…

File Image (CREDIT: Maersk)

SPA Nod for Maersk to Operate in All Saudi Ports

Saudi Ports Authority has issued a license to the local subsidiary of Maersk to operate in all ports in Saudi Arabia, state news agency SPA reported on Monday.Maersk currently has weekly containerised shipping services to the ports of Jeddah, King Abdullah, Dammam and Jubail, it says on its website. Reporting by Nafisa Eltahir

Photo: Bahri

Bahri Reports 1H Growth

The National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri) has posted revenues‏ ‏of SAR‏3.14 billion ($840million) for the first half of 2019, despite regional difficulties.The Riyadh-based transportation and logistics company reported revenue growth of six percent for the first half and income growth of three percent, to SAR 581.47 million.Net income reached SAR 224.9 million ‎during the first six months of 2019 in comparison to SAR 308.54 million‎ of the same period last year. Earnings…

File Image of the Stena Impero (CREDIT: MarineTraffic.com / © Erwin Willemse

Iran: British-flagged Tanker Seized in Gulf

Iran's Revolutionary Guards said on Friday they had captured a British-flagged oil tanker in the Gulf after Britain seized an Iranian vessel earlier this month, further raising tensions along a vital international oil shipping route.Britain said it was urgently seeking information about the Stena Impero after the tanker, which had been heading to a port in Saudi Arabia, suddenly changed course after passing through the Strait of Hormuz at the mouth of the Gulf.The Revolutionary…

USN File photo: flight operations underway on the USS Boxer, the warship credited this week with downing an Iranian drone.

Stakeholders Ignore U.S. Middle East Coalition Proposals

The United States is struggling to win its allies' support for an initiative to heighten surveillance of vital Middle East oil shipping lanes because of fears it will increase tension with Iran, six sources familiar with the matter said.Washington proposed on July 9 stepping up efforts to safeguard strategic waters off Iran and Yemen where it blames Iran and its proxies for tanker attacks. Iran denies the charges.But with Washington's allies reluctant to commit new weaponry or fighting forces…

file image of US Navy assets underway (CREDIT: USN)

US to Work "aggressively" for Free Gulf Passage

U.S. Central Command chief General Kenneth McKenzie said on Thursday it was talking to other countries about freedom of navigation in the Gulf and would work "aggressively" to find a solution to enable free passage.The United States has beefed up its military presence in the Middle East over a perceived Iranian threat and is asking allies to help protect strategic waters off Iran and Yemen, following attacks on oil tankers in Gulf waters in recent months."We are currently talking…

Eng. Abdullah Aldubaikhi, CEO. Photo: Bahri

Bahri Intros ‘ISupplier’ Platform

The Saudi Arabian logistics and transportation giant Bahri has announced the launch of its ‘iSupplier’ portal, as part of further strengthening its commitment to enhancing the quality of its services and deepening business relationship with key partners.The online platform will serve as a dedicated communication channel between Bahri’s Corporate Procurement and suppliers and contractors, it said.A fast and convenient platform, ‘iSupplier’ will enable Bahri to have easy access to a larger segment of suppliers and contractors in Saudi Arabia’s private sector.

Image:Hapag-Lloyd

Hapag-Lloyd Adds VRS

German container shipping company Hapag-Lloyd has decided to implement a global vessel risk surcharge (VRS) following recent maritime incidents in the Gulf of Oman.The container line said that operating costs for its services have increased in the Middle East Gulf region as a result of tanker attacks that took place in the Strait of Hormuz.Other major carriers including CMA CGM, X-Press Feeders, and NYK have already impose a war risk surcharge on cargo destined for the Arabian Gulf or Middle East region due to heightened tensions in the region.As of July 15…

File Image: Maersk

Maersk, Major Shippers Hike Gulf-bound Box Rates

A.P.

Image: Praxis Automation Technology

RVOS Retrofits Fleet for DP Ops

Saudi Arabia’s Rawabi Vallianz Offshore Services  (RVOS) has contracted Netherlands-based Praxis Automation Technology to deliver dynamic positioning systems for its fleet of offshore support vessels (OSVs) operating out of the country. RVOS, joint venture company between Rawabi Holding and Vallianz Holdings Limited of Singapore, said that the contract includes the retrofit of 14 ships with a Praxis Automation Class 2 Dynamic Positioning (DP) system, including the integration to the ship’s power distribution system and control systems.Jerome Lin…

Saudis Urge Global Effort to Safeguard Local Navigation

Saudi Arabia's cabinet urged the international community on Tuesday to take firm measures to ensure the safety of navigation in waterways across the region, the state news agency said, a week after two tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman.Reporting by Asma Alsharif

(Photo:  Islamic Republic News Agency)

Two Tankers Attacked in Gulf of Oman

Two oil tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, leaving one ablaze and both adrift, shipping firms said, driving oil prices as much as 4% higher over worries about Middle East supplies.The Front Altair, carrying petrochemical feedstock, was on fire in waters between Gulf Arab states and Iran after an explosion that a source blamed on a magnetic mine. The Norwegian owner said its crew were safe.A second Japanese-owned tanker was abandoned after being hit by a suspected torpedo, the firm that chartered the ship said.

Photo: Maersk

Maersk India Trade Report Q1 2019

India’s containerized exports with the world witnessed a stable growth of 6% in the first quarter of 2019 propelled by robust performances in refrigerated cargo, engineering and pharmaceuticals sectors, while imports declined slightly in the same quarter registering a market growth of -2.2% in Q1. The import demand was buoyed by pharmaceuticals, metal, appliances and kitchenware, paper, chemicals and fruit & nuts, mainly from Northern Europe, South Asia, China and Russia. Exports were driven largely by the East and West of India…

U.S. Deploys Troops to Middle East, Blames Iran for Tanker Attacks

The United States on Friday announced the deployment of 1,500 troops to the Middle East, describing it as an effort to bolster defenses against Iran as it accused the country's Revolutionary Guards of direct responsibility for this month's tanker attacks.President Donald Trump's administration also invoked the threat from Iran to declare a national security-related emergency that would clear the sale of billions of dollars' worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates…

A typical fleet oiler in support of U.S. Naval operations (CREDIT: USN)

London P&I clubs Widen Middle East Threat Zone

London's marine insurance market has extended the list of waters deemed high risk to include Oman, the United Arab Emirates and the Gulf after ship attacks off Fujairah, officials said on Friday, in a move that could push up premiums.The London insurance market's Joint War Committee said in a statement that the additions cover areas of perceived enhanced risk for marine insurers and reflected enhanced regional risk."The situation will be kept under close review," said the Joint War Committee…

Photo: Bahri

Bahri Expands Footprint in Asia-Pac

The National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri) has announced the expansion of its market presence in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region’s maritime industry.The stronger presence will help the company gain deeper insights into market trends as well as customer needs in chemicals and logistics sectors in Singapore and the wider APAC region, said a press release from the logistics and transportation company.The expansion will also enable Bahri Logistics and Bahri Chemicals, two of five business units of the company…

File Image: AdobeStock / © ricardo Arata

Companies Sue Valero for Bad Marine Fuel

Two companies filled lawsuits this week in federal courts in Texas alleging that ships they operated in 2018 were damaged by contaminated bunker fuel sold by a Valero Energy Co subsidiary Valero Marketing and Supply Co, according to court documents.A Valero spokeswoman did not reply to a request for comment.The National Shipping Co of Saudi Arabia said it paid out more than $1.1 million for repairs and replacement fuel for a ship that drifted at sea for two days before restarting and arriving at Alexandria…

U.S. Urges Response "short of war" to Tanker Attack

The U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia said Washington should take what he called "reasonable responses short of war" after it had determined who was behind attacks on oil tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.Iran was a prime suspect in the sabotage on Sunday although Washington had no conclusive proof, a U.S. official familiar with American intelligence said on Monday. Iran has denied involvement."We need to do a thorough investigation to understand what happened, why it happened…

Pic: Belfast Harbour Commissioners

Belfast Harbour Hits Record Cargo in 2018

The major maritime hub in Northern Ireland Belfast Harbour handled a record 24.6 million tonnes of cargo in 2018, up 3.8% on the previous year thanks to a major increase in the number of freight vehicles passing through the port, which rose to a high of 532,000, latest figures show."Growth was led by a strong increase in freight vehicle carryings on Stena Line’s services to Great Britain, rising by 3% to a record 532,000 freight vehicles and for the second consecutive year more than 1.5m passengers passed through the Port…

ULCC_AdobeStock_CREDIT Jose Gill

BIMCO: US Seaborne Crude Oil Exports Hit Record High

US exports of crude oil have, since August 2018, continued to rise every month, with a new record high in January of 9.6 million tonnes. Exports rose in January on the back of increased sales to Europe, which rose from 2.7 million tonnes in December to 4.8 million tonnes in January.A strong end to 2018 meant that volumes for the full year totalled 87.4 million tonnes, 96.7% higher than the 44.4 million tonnes exported in 2017. This is good news for the crude oil tanker sector…

The VLCC MJAD, reported by Reuters as one of the vessels attacked. CREDIT: MarineTraffic.com / © piet verspui

Saudi Tankers Among Those Hit off UAE Coast

Saudi Arabia said on Monday that two of its oil tankers were among those attacked off the coast of the United Arab Emirates and said it was an attempt to undermine the security of crude supplies amid tensions between the United States and Iran.The UAE said on Sunday that four commercial vessels were sabotaged near Fujairah emirate, one of the world's largest bunkering hubs lying just outside the Strait of Hormuz, but did not describe the nature of the attack or say who was behind it.The UAE had not given the nationalities or other details about the ownership of the four vessels.