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Friday, October 18, 2019

Un Court News

Pic: Hyundai Heavy Industries

US Fines HHI $47Mln Over Dirty Engines

US authorities announced that South Korea's top shipbuilding conglomerate Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) will pay a US$47 million fine for illegally importing and selling dirty diesel engines in violation of American environmental rules.US Justice Department and and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said that between 2012 and 2015, the company imported nearly 2,300 diesel-powered heavy construction vehicles with engines that did not meet US emissions standards.“Hyundai put profits above the public’s health and the requirements of the law…

AdobeStock / © Renaschild

German NGO Calls on Malta to Take in Migrants

A German non-governmental organisation filed on Friday a court request in Malta calling on the government there to accept 13 Tunisian migrants who it said had been saved from a sinking boat in Malta's search and rescue zone.The NGO Sea Eye, which operates the rescue ship Alan Kurdi, called on Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat to respect international law and order the immediate disembarkation of the migrants.It was not immediately clear when Malta would reply to the court filing.Sea Eye said the migrants were rescued by the Alan Kurdi on Aug.

Revolutionary Guards Seize Oil Tanker in Gulf

Iran has seized a foreign tanker smuggling fuel in the Gulf, state television quoted Iran's Revolutionary Guards as saying on Thursday."A foreign vessel smuggling one million litres of fuel in the Larak Island of the Persian Gulf has been seized," the station said, adding that the ship was seized on Sunday.The Revolutionary Guards said the impounded vessel - which Iranian authorities have not yet named - was the same one it towed after it sent a distress call."The vessel that Iran towed to its waters after receiving a distress call, was later seized with the order from the court as we found ou

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…

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…

Pic: NGO Shipbreaking Platform

India Fines Dutch Vessel Owner for Beaching Ship

Dutch ship owner Holland Maas Scheepvaart Beheer II BV has been fined 780.000 EUR and paid a settlement of 2.2 million EUR - totaling to a price tag of almost 3 million EUR - for having beached a ship for scrapping in India.According to a press release from NGO Shipbreaking Platform, in 2013, Holland Maas Scheepvaart Beheer II BV, a subsidiary of WEC Lines BV, sold the HMS Laurence to a cash buyer, a company specialised in the trade of end-of-life vessels to beaching yards.The vessel ended up in Alang…

File Image: a typical DP World facility (CREDIT: DP World)

Indian Court Refuses to Quash Antitrust Probe at Mumbai

An Indian court has declined to quash or stall an antitrust investigation into Dubai-based port operator DP World's alleged anti-competitive behaviour at the country's largest container port in Mumbai, three sources told Reuters on Wednesday.The Competition Commission of India (CCI) last month 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 probe followed a complaint by Singapore's PSA International Pte Ltd…

(File photo courtesy of OW Bunker)

Former OW Bunker Manager Gets 18 Months in Jail

A Danish court on Wednesday sentenced the former manager of OW Bunker's Singapore subsidiary to 18 months in prison after he was found guilty of granting credit outside his mandate, contributing to the bankruptcy of the marine fuel oil supplier.The 2014 bankruptcy of OW Bunker, then the world's leading supplier of marine fuel oil with a 7 percent market share, sent shockwaves through the global shipping industry and left investors and business partners scrambling to cover their losses.The city court of Aalborg said it found Lars Moller…

© Shaun Robertson / Adobe Stock

Kenyan Fishermen Win Millions for Loss of Rights to New Port

Activists hailed a Kenyan court for ordering that almost 5,000 fishermen at a 14th century World Heritage Site receive millions in compensation for the loss of traditional fishing rights due to the construction of a major port.The fishermen in Lamu, the oldest Swahili settlement in East Africa, won 1.76 billion shillings ($18 million) in compensation this week from a court in the nearby town of Malindi, which also said their rights to culture and information had been violated."We were happy with the judgment…

Appointment of Dorothy Thompson CBE as non-executive Chair of Tullow Oil plc Photo Tullow Oil

Thompson takes over from Founder Heavey, Tullow Oil

Tullow Oil plc (Tullow) announced the appointment of Dorothy Thompson as independent non-executive Director and Chair-designate of Tullow with effect from the conclusion of the Group’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 25 April 2018. It is anticipated Thompson will succeed Aidan Heavey, Tullow’s current Chairman and Founder, as Chair at the conclusion of the Board meeting scheduled for 20 July 2018. Aidan will retire from the Board at the same time. Thompson (57) brings extensive experience to Tullow having served for 12 years as CEO of Drax Group plc…

India Ups Import Tax on Petcoke in Blow to US Refiners

India has raised the effective import duty on petroleum coke to 10 percent from 2.5 percent, according to a government order, days after the government told a court it was in favour of curbing the use of the dirty-burning fuel. The duty has gone up after the government ended an exemption to tax payable on importing the fuel that emits 11 percent more greenhouse gases than coal and also releases several times more sulphur dioxide, which causes lung diseases. The Supreme Court in October banned the use of petroleum coke…

File Image: a Hanjin Boxship underway (CREDIT: Hanjin)

Hanjin Shipping: No Cash to Pay Creditors

Hanjin Shipping Co., the South Korean shipping company that caused havoc when it filed for bankruptcy, is struggling to raise enough money to repay $10.5 billion in creditor claims, WSJ reported. Hanjin has raised only $220 million by selling ships, stakes in seaport terminals and other assets to repay its more than 180 creditors. A trustee charged with Hanjin Shipping’s Korean bankruptcy case in in Seoul said Hanjin has raised about $220 million since filing for bankruptcy nearly a year ago. At least 180 creditors were present for the court hearing on June 1, 2017.

DoJ looks back at 2016

The Department of Justice’s Environment and Natural Resources Division has announced  the publication of its accomplishments in 2016, documenting one of the most successful years in its history of over a century, including the highest recoveries in environmental enforcement, record-setting recoveries in natural resource damages, and the highest criminal penalties handed down in individual vessel pollution and Lacey Act trafficking cases. “I am extremely proud and grateful to have led the men and women of this division through a landmark year in its long history of protecting…

Christophe Sirugue (Photo: Gouvernement.fr)

France May Step in on Shipyard Sale

France may intervene in the sale of the Saint-Nazaire shipyard by bankrupt South Korean shipbuilder STX if the French government's conditions are not met, Industry Minister Christophe Sirugue said. "The government is fully mobilised and will not hesitate to use all of the levers at its disposal," Sirugue told French daily Les Echos in an interview published on Friday. The French state, which owns a third of STX France and its western Saint-Nazaire shipyard, has a right of refusal on the sale of STX Offshore & Shipbuilding's majority stake once a winning bid has been selected…

Turkish Ship Management Company, 2 Employees Plead Guilty

Ciner Gemi Acente Isletni Sanayi Ve Ticaret S.A., a ship management company in Turkey, pleaded guilty and was sentenced in federal court in Baltimore, Maryland, for violating the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (APPS), announced Assistant Attorney General John C. Cruden for the Department of Justice’s Environment and Natural Resources Division and U.S. Attorney Ron J. Rosenstein for the District of Maryland. Ciner operated the M/V Artvin, a 44,635 ton bulk carrier ship that transported cargo to and from ports around the world, including the Port of Baltimore.

Highest Officer in US Navy Bribe Scheme Sentenced to 46 Months

A federal judge in San Diego on Friday sentenced a U.S. Navy captain caught in a $30 million bribery scandal to 46 months in prison, bringing to a close the case against the highest-ranking officer in the fraud scheme. Captain Daniel Dusek, 49, pleaded guilty last year to a charge of conspiracy to commit bribery after admitting he accepted services from prostitutes, luxury hotel stays, alcohol and other gifts in exchange for giving classified information to the Singapore-based company Glenn Defense Marine Asia.

Photo: Primorsk International Shipping

Primorsk Shelves Restructuring Plans

Russian tanker player Primorsk International Shipping has dropped its restructuring plans in favour of pushing through asset sales, reports WSJ. This is what Primorsk's lawyers told a bankruptcy court in Manhattan on Friday. Creditors have until Wednesday to object to the motion. Primorsk took the decision as Nordea Bank and other lenders, who are owed around $263m, are pushing the Cyprus-registered line to sell ships as they feel its restructuring plan is unrealistic. Two deadlines written into a routine cash-spending motion fast-track the sale and could prove controversial with creditors.

Two narwhal (Monodon monoceros) surfacing to breathe in Admiralty Inlet, Lancaster Sound, Nunavut, Canada. Photo: WWF-Canada

WWF-Canada Brings Lawsuit Against Shell on Arctic

WWF-Canada, represented by Ecojustice lawyers, is taking legal action to quash Arctic oil and gas exploration permits that continue to obstruct conservation efforts in Lancaster Sound, Nunavut. The environmental group believes they “continue to obstruct conservation efforts” in Lancaster Sound, Nunavut, which is said to be one of the world’s richest areas for marine mammal and harbours one of the highest densities of polar bears in the Canadian Arctic. While the federal registrar has refused to delist the permits…

Photo: Robert Kunkel

STX Shipbuilding Likely to Enter Court-lead Restructuring

South Korean shipbuilder STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co Ltd will likely need to enter court-supervised receivership due to financial difficulties, the firm's lead creditor Korea Development Bank said on Wednesday. STX Offshore's creditors took control of the company in 2013 after the shipbuilder was hit by falling ship prices following the global financial crisis. A Korea Development Bank spokesman said the firm's creditors will decide on how to proceed with the court receivership process by the end of the month…

Photo: STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co.

Korean Shipbuilder Could Be Liquidated

South Korea's STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co. has filed for receivership, following massive losses that have mounted up over the past two years, says a report in the WSJ. According to multiple sources from the shipbuilding industry, creditors and STX Offshore & Shipbuilding have decided to put Goseong Offshore & Shipbuilding under court management early next month and have begun taking necessary steps. The decision has been made after judging that it would be difficult for the…

South China Sea Disputed Areas Map courtesy AFP

Vietnam Urges "Fair" Ruling from Court Handling S. China Sea Case

Vietnam has called for an international tribunal in The Hague to deliver a "fair and objective" ruling in an arbitration case lodged by the Philippines that challenges China's expansive claims in the South China Sea. In a carefully worded statement two days after the court announced July 12 as the verdict date, Vietnam's foreign ministry said it hoped the ruling would provide a basis for peacefully resolving rows. Vietnam is not a direct party to the case but stands to gain if the verdict favours Manila.

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BP Puts Tab for Gulf Disaster at $62 Bln

BP announced today that following significant progress in resolving outstanding claims arising from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon accident and oil spill, it can now reliably estimate all of its remaining material liabilities in connection with the incident. As a result, taking into account this estimate together with other positive tax adjustments, BP expects to take an after-tax non-operating charge of around $2.5 billion in its second quarter 2016 results. This charge is expected to include a pre-tax non-operating charge associated with the oil spill of around $5.2 billion.

Walter J. Brudzinski (Photo: Chuck Fazio)

Insights: USCG Can Suspend and Revoke Merchant Mariner Credentials

A primer for mariners: U.S. To promote safety at sea, Congress authorized the U.S. Coast Guard to suspend or revoke Merchant Mariner Credentials for acts of incompetence, misconduct, negligence, violations of law or regulation, and use of dangerous drugs. The Coast Guard initiates 400-600 suspension and revocation (S&R) cases each year. Full understanding of the suspension and revocation (S&R) process should therefore be more than a casual requirement for the working professional mariner.

Environment Group Wins Challenge Against Port Melville

An Australia court overturned on Saturday government approval of a A$130 million fuel depot and port at Port Melville, off the country's north coast, handing a major victory to environmental activists. The facility, being developed by a unit of Singapore-based AusGroup, includes a 30-million-litre oil depot on Melville Island, one of the Tiwi Islands, 120 km (75 miles) north of Darwin, the capital of Northern Territory. Justice Richard White ruled in favour of the Environment Centre Northern Territory…

Photo: Hapag-Lloyd

Slam Dunk in the Cargo Hold

Basketball? You can (sometimes) even play it on board a containership at Hapag-Lloyd. Some of the world’s best basketball players learned to dribble and shoot on the streets or in small “cages”, like the legendary West 4th Street Courts in New York’s Greenwich Village. The team on board the Bremen Express have now shown that a containership can also serve as a basketball court. To help pass the time while waiting for a place in the dry dock in Qingdao, China, the crew took advantage of the empty cargo holds to have a tournament – and no doubt to perform plenty of slam dunks.

Image: Standard Club

When is a Master Entitled to Refuse Damaged Cargo? A Reminder from the Standard Club

A master’s authority to clause bills of lading issued by or on his behalf can sometimes become the cause of disagreement between shippers, charterers and carriers. Under Article III Rule 3 of the Hague/Hague Visby Rules after receiving the cargo, and on the demand of the shipper, the master is obliged to issue a bill of lading evidencing the quantity and apparent order and condition of goods to be carried. The buyer of cargo, the consignee in an international trade, will want the subject bill of lading to be  accurate and contain unambiguous remarks as to the quantity…