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Saturday, April 4, 2020

United States News

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FMC Investigating COVID-19's Suply Chain Impacts

The Federal Maritime Commission issued an order authorizing Commissioner Rebecca Dye to identify operational solutions to cargo delivery system challenges related to Coronavirus-19.The Order notes that “Recent global events have only highlighted the economic urgency of responsive port and terminal operations to the effectiveness of the United States international freight delivery system. Given the Commission’s mandate to ensure an efficient and economic transportation system for ocean commerce…

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Coffee Importers Stockpiling on Fears over Coronavirus Lockdowns

Coffee importers in some of the largest consuming countries are stockpiling, bringing forward orders by up to a month to avoid shortages if supply chains are disrupted by coronavirus lockdowns.The global pandemic has prompted governments around the world to impose severe restrictions on movement in a bid to stem the spread of the virus. Supply chains are backing up as air freight capacity plunges and companies struggle to find enough truck drivers and shipping crews.In contrast to sharp price declines in many commodities…

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Laden LNG Tanker Bound for China is First from US Since March 2019

A liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker which loaded a cargo from the United States is currently heading to China, the first shipment since March 2019, according to shiptracking data from Refinitiv Eikon and Kpler on Monday.The tanker SK Resolute loaded the cargo from the Cameron LNG terminal on March 22 and was originally headed to Cristobal, Panama, according to shiptracking data from Refinitiv Eikon and data intelligence firm Kpler.It changed its destination to Tianjin in China on March 28 and is expected to arrive at the Chinese port on April 28…

(File photo: Novatek)

Yamal LNG Resumes Loading Operations in Norway

Yamal LNG, controlled by Russia's largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) producer Novatek, is resuming ship-to-ship transfers in Norway, Novatek said on Monday, after plans to shift the operations to Russia fell through due to coronavirus.Novatek suspended transfers in Norway in June last year due to what it termed "pressure from the West".According to Refinitiv Eikon data, the Arc7 tanker Vladimir Vize is due to arrive at the Norwegian Arctic port of Honningsvag on April 1, carrying a cargo from Yamal LNG.The data also showed that an empty Arc4 tanker…

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Fully Laden LNG Tankers Sit Idle Off Indian Ports after Force Majeure

At least five fully-laden liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers are idling offshore India, as yet unable to discharge their cargoes, after importers there declared force majeure earlier this week, according to an analyst and shipping sources.Gas demand is falling globally amid the fast-spreading coronavirus which has capped industrial output, forcing LNG tankers in several regions to remain at sea fully laden with no immediate destination, the sources said.At least three major buyers in India…

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Australia Orders Two Cruise Ships to Leave ... Now!

Australia ordered two cruise ships to leave its waters on Thursday, after a liner that docked in Sydney Harbor last week became the primary source of infection in the country's coronavirus outbreak.Although well below levels elsewhere in the world, the pace of Australia's infections is starting to pick up speed, reaching nearly 2,800 cases and 13 deaths.The government of West Australia state said nobody would be permitted to disembark from the German-operated MV Artania after seven of 800 foreign passengers on board tested positive for the virus…

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Intermodal Supply Chains Strain Under the Weight of Coronovirus Lockdowns

LONDON/MADRID/LOS ANGELES, March 23 - Freight carriers are struggling to deliver goods by land, sea or air as the coronavirus pandemic forces Western governments to impose lockdowns, threatening supplies of vital products including medicines into the most affected areas, such as Italy.While China's draconian steps to stop the spread of the virus are now allowing its economy slowly to come back online, supply chains are backing up in other parts of the world.Problems ranging from…

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Western Supply Chains Buckle as Coronavirus Lockdowns Spread

Freight carriers are struggling to deliver goods by land, sea or air as the coronavirus pandemic forces Western governments to impose lockdowns, threatening supplies of vital products including medicines into the most affected areas, such as Italy.While China's draconian steps to stop the spread of the virus are now allowing its economy slowly to come back online, supply chains are backing up in other parts of the world.Problems ranging from finding enough truck drivers to restrictions on seafarers and a lack of air freight are hitting the smooth flow of goods…

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COVID-19 and Supply Chain Implications for Ocean Shipping

Only 10 days ago, reports indicated that China cargoes were returning to pre-coronavirus levels, and there appeared to be light at the end of the tunnel. Today, however, a barrage of new headlines has underscored the impact on the rapidly changing global supply chain, including in the United States. In addition to the aggressive spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), new economic developments indicate a decreased trend in global manufacturing. Changes in local economies negatively impacting employees reflect corresponding changes in consumer buying patterns.

COSCO America leaving Pier J at the Port of Long Beach in February 2020. (Photo: Port of Long Beach)

Long Beach Terminals Remain Open

Marine terminals at at the United States’ second-busiest seaport have remained open and operating amid the unfolding coronavirus crisis, with regular vessel calls and scheduled work shifts continuing, the Port of Long Beach said.The port said its marine terminals are receiving vessel calls and workers are transferring cargo off and on ships under the health-protective directives established by the U.S. Coast Guard and Customs and Border Protection, with guidance from the U.S.

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Fed Funds Could Aid Battered Cruise Lines

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Sunday officials will have a better idea this week of the total cost of a coronavirus aid package, but predicted it will likely be "significant but not huge."Mnuchin told "Fox News Sunday" he also planned to talk to lawmakers about critical aid to airlines, as well as the hotel and cruise ship industries."It's hard to model some of these things because you don't know how many workers are going to be home. I want to be careful about throwing out numbers," he said.

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Trump Says Cruise Lines Suspend Departures for 30 Days

U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday said that major cruise lines would suspend cruises for 30 days, following a series of industry announcements that came after repeated transmission of coronavirus among passengers at sea.“At my request, effective midnight tonight, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, and MSC have all agreed to suspend outbound cruises for thirty days,” Trump said on Twitter.“It is a great and important industry – it will be kept that way!” he added.Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd said earlier on Friday it was suspending its cruises in the United States for 30 days…

Image: DNV GL

Anglo-Eastern Deploys Navigator

Hong Kong-based ship management company Anglo-Eastern Group has completed the successful roll-out of Navigator Port to its fleet of more than 600 vessels.DNV GL’s port clearance software is used daily onboard several thousand ships worldwide for management of port documentation, assisting seafarers in navigating the administrative and regulatory complexity of port clearance and passage through controlled waters.“One of the most time-consuming tasks onboard is preparing port documentation,” says Captain Pradeep Chawla, Managing Director, QHSE and Training at Anglo-Eastern.

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Booking Frenzy Sends Tanker Rates Soaring

The cost to transport oil on supertankers soared on Thursday as major producers scrambled to secure vessels to ship more crude in a bid to regain market share and buyers took advantage of plunging oil prices.Freight charges to ship oil in very large crude carriers (VLCCs) from the Middle East, which is home to the largest OPEC producers, to China, the world's top crude oil importer, nearly doubled overnight.VLCC tanker rates along the busy Middle East Gulf to China route jumped to about $160…

Image: Ribcraft

Ribcraft Wins $43m USN Contract

Ribcraft announced that the United States Navy (USN) has awarded a five-year indefinite quantity contract worth up to $43 million to build and deliver an estimated 48 of the 11-Meter Expeditionary Mine Counter Measure Boat. Ribcraft has also been providing the U.S. Navy with 7-Meter shipboard RIBs since 2014.The 11-Meter RIBs will serve to support explosive ordinance disposal mine counter measure platoons in both shallow and deep water operations. To achieve this, Ribcraft will build two configurations for mine counter measure operations…

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US to Warn Shipping Industry Against Storing Iranian Oil

The Trump administration will soon issue an advisory warning ports, tankers and shipping industry players against storing Iranian oil in violation of U.S. sanctions, a State Department official said on Monday.David Peyman, the deputy assistant secretary of state for counter threat finance and sanctions, said the United States will also encourage ship captains and others to take photos of anyone conducting ship-to-ship transfers in case those transfers involve sanctioned oil.

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US Retailers Face $700 Mln Hit as Virus Disrupts Shipping

U.S. retailers face an estimated $700 million sales hit from the coronavirus and some shipping lines are sending vessels to retrieve empty cargo containers from Los Angeles to prevent further supply disruptions.The extended shutdown of factories in China caused by the virus, travel restrictions on workers and canceled sailings by shipping lines have thrown off the movement of containers, resulting in a surplus at the Port of Los Angeles and a shortage in Germany.U.S. retailers'…

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Trump: No Promises Regarding Steel, Aluminum Tariffs on Brazil

President Donald Trump praised the United States' relationship with Brazil under Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Saturday, but declined to say whether he would impose steel and aluminum tariffs on the South American country.Ahead of a dinner between the two men at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, Trump was asked if he would continue to hold off placing new tariffs on Brazilian steel and aluminum. Trump responded that the United States had helped Brazil, but said he…

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US Considers Discouraging Cruise Travel

The United States is considering ways to discourage U.S. travelers from taking cruises as part of a broader Trump administration effort to limit the spread of coronavirus, according to four officials familiar with the situation.The officials, who asked to remain anonymous, said no decision had been made. The discussions were taking place ahead of a meeting this weekend between Vice President Mike Pence, who is in charge of leading the U.S. response to the coronavirus, and the cruise industry.The administration could advise some or all U.S.

Image: APM Terminals

MCT Completes 1st Year of Operations

The container port in the Limón province of Costa Rica, Terminal de Contenedores de Moín or Moín Container Terminal (MCT), operated by APM Terminals, completed its first year of operations on February 28.A press release from the international container terminal operating company headquartered in The Hague said that during the year the terminal serviced more than 1,100 ships, around 1.2 million TEUs and achieved important improvements in productivity, sustainability and the training of 1…

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Container Shortages? Virus Exposes Germany's Vulnerabilities

Germany is heading for its longest recession since reunification in 1990 as the coronavirus exposes its vulnerability to disruptions in global trade, business association BDI said on Thursday.Industry in Europe’s largest economy had already contracted for six quarters in a row before the outbreak of the coronavirus early this year, weighed down by global trade conflicts and Brexit uncertainty.The coronavirus is adding another problem - a scarcity of containers in which businesses can export their goods due to a plunge in the number departing China in late January and early February…

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LISCR Expands Network in Untied States

The Liberian Registry is expanding its network of Regional Compliance Offices, located in the major ports of the United States. These offices, led by experienced Regional Compliance Managers, are located in Houston, New Orleans, Seattle, Jacksonville, and Virginia/Mid-Atlantic. Each Compliance Manager provides 24/7 support for vessels entering their respective region.Liberia’s Fleet PSC Performance staff based at its headquarters in the US, in conjunction with the specially trained exclusive auditors and regional compliance managers…

Photo courtesy of Virgin Voyages

Branson: Virgin Cruise Line Will Overcome Coronavirus Fears

British entrepreneur Richard Branson heralded his first cruise ship "Scarlet Lady" on Friday as targeting a younger generation of holidaymakers with a range of attractions that he believes will outweigh any fears around coronavirus.Despite the unfortunate timing, with passengers on one ship quarantined in Japan after hundreds caught the virus and another turned away by five countries over fears someone on board may be ill, Branson sees cruises as a growth area.In an event at Dover…

MV Argo Merchant was a Liberian-flagged oil tanker that ran aground and sank southeast of Nantucket Island, Mass., on Dec. 15, 1976, causing one of the largest marine oil spills in history. U.S. Coast Guard Archives

Anatomy of a Marine Casualty Investigation

Blank Rome’s maritime attorneys have represented clients in some of the largest maritime casualties in the last 20 years, including the Staten Island Ferry allision with a maintenance pier in New York, the blow out and eventual loss of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico, the sinking of the El Faro during Hurricane Joaquin, and the collision between the Navy Destroyer USS John S. McCain and the tanker ALNIC MC in the Singapore Strait. These casualties have resulted in the catastrophic loss of life…

Jennifer K. Waters (Photo: Maritime College)

Maritime College Names Waters Provost and VP

The State University of New York (SUNY) Maritime College announced that Jennifer K. Waters has been appointed Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs beginning July 1. Dr. Waters currently serves as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.Dr. Jennifer Waters, a native New Yorker, received her bachelor’s degree in Naval Architecture and marine engineering from the Webb Institute before earning a master’s and doctoral degree in ocean engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology.Dr.

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Business and Personnel Considerations in the Age of Autonomous Ships:

There is much talk among maritime professionals about how automation and autonomous vessels will make the industry safer. In truth, innovation will be driven by the bottom line and will take time before it is commonplace in the industry. Early examples are likely to be limited to smaller vessels and coastal waters. Autonomous ships are predicted to reduce human error, a major driver of accidents, but crews will still have an important role on board vessels for the foreseeable future.Recent TrialsIn December 2018…