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THE BIG FOUR

Banks Won't Fund Coal Port Expansion near Reef

Germany's largest bank, Deutsche Bank AG, has declared it will not finance a controversial coal port expansion in Australia near the Great Barrier Reef, responding to calls from environmental groups and tourism operators. HSBC, Europe's biggest bank, also signalled on Friday it would be unlikely to finance the project. Deutsche Bank's stand marks a win for those opposed to $26 billion worth of coal projects that plan to use the Abbot Point port, already facing delays due to weak coal prices. But one company involved said the bank's position made no difference. "This doesn't impact our proposed projects in any way," Indian firm GVK Hancock spokesman Josh Euler said. Green groups and marine operators fighting to protect the World Heritage-listed reef took their campaign to Europe this week, urging Deutsche Bank, Societe Generale and HSBC not to back the Queensland coal projects. They want to stop a government-approved expansion of Abbot Point that would involve dumping 3 million cubic metres of dredged soil about 25 kilometres (15 miles) from the Great Barrier Reef, an issue that is also of concern for UNESCO's World Heritage committee. Campaigners against the Abbot Point expansion failed to win support from Societe Generale on Tuesday, according to their web site, but were successful at Deutsche Bank's annual meeting on Thursday. (http://www.marketforces.org.au/europecoalfinance)


ABP Port of Southampton Welcomes its Latest Record-Breaker

Photo: ABP Port of Southampton

 The biggest container ship in the world, the MSC Maya, made its maiden call at Southampton on Tuesday 15 December.    The 395.4m vessel, which can carry a world-leading 19,224 containers, is just the latest giant container vessel to call at the port in recent weeks.   As well as being the biggest, the vessel, which is named after Maya Aponte the four-year-old daughter of MSC President and CEO Diego Aponte


First Phase Completed at Changxing Shipbuilding Base

The first phase of the Jiangnan Changxing Shipbuilding Base has been finished and is already in operation on Changxing Island, Shanghai. Built by the China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC), it has three production lines and four boatyards capable of holding 300,000-ton ships. Almost unparalleled in the world, it is the biggest shipbuilding project ever to be undertaken in China. Shanghai has the potential to be the world's largest shipbuilding base.


J. Ray McDermott’s Mid-East Lay Barge

Since 1960, J. Ray McDermott's Middle Eastern facility has fabricated and installed over 630 structures, 330,693ST of steel, and has installed over 2,610 miles of pipeline throughout the Arabian Gulf, Egypt, India, the Caspian, Africa and the North Sea. Recently they have upgraded one of the assets that make these remarkable numbers possible. The firm’s Derrick Lay Barge-27, owned by Hydro Marine Services but operated by McDermott, now has an impressive set of specifications


MacGREGOR Signs Offshore Orders

During November MacGREGOR won offshore equipment orders with a total value of over $73.5 million (50 million euros); the equipment will be delivered during 2009-2010 Offshore equipment orders recently signed by MacGREGOR’s Offshore division include the single biggest order in the history of the newly acquired Norwegian company Hydramarine AS. This is for two Hydramarine active heave compensated (AHC) cranes for an offshore vessel being delivered in 2010 to a Norwegian shipowner


Lloyd's Register Foundation Funds Big Data Study

Towards data-centric engineering

  The Lloyd’s Register Foundation today launched its Foresight review of big data and announced a conditional grant offer of £10 million to support research by the Alan Turing Institute on engineering applications of big data. The Foundation’s Foresight review of big data: towards data-centric engineering, looks forward at how developments in the area of big data might impact the safety and performance of the engineering assets and infrastructure on which modern


Petrobras Announces Four Oil Field Finds

Brazil's state oil giant Petrobras said on Thursday that it had made four "important" new oil finds that should boost its oil reserves by about 1.4 percent. Petrobras said the discoveries in Brazil's northeast region would eventually increase reserves by more than 130 million barrels, or 1.4 percent. Brazil's current reserves are 9.278 billion barrels. The finds were made in four mature fields where production was thought to be declining.


Cargill Dumps Shipping Arm

Cargill has announced a change in shipping strategy, following the sale of its last four remaining Panamax bulk-carriers, and from here on will charter in ships for all its cargo requirements. "The widespread trend towards consolidation and size within the ship owning segment implies one either gets bigger or scales back," said Vice President of Cargill International Tom Intrator in a statement. "And in our case we have chosen the latter."


Len celebrates 100th on the Ship Canal

Len Jones (2nd left) at QEII Dock with (l-r) former colleagues Jim Cordiner, David Ogilvie, Ray Howells and current Ship Canal general manager Dean Hammond.

Len Jones was born in 1911, the coronation year of King George V and the year the Titanic was launched at Harland & Woolf in Belfast. During his lifetime there have been four British monarchs, 19 Prime Ministers, two World Wars and the break up of the British Empire. Women have won the vote, man has landed on the Moon and the world has seen the invention of television, computers, the internet, mobile phones and SatNavs.


MSC Ships Get Bigger

MSC Divina. Photo courtesy of MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises, the 4th largest cruise line, confirmed the existing STX France options to build an additional two ships in the Meraviglia class.    The ships, valued by MSC at $1.7 billion, will be longer and bigger versions of the Meraviglia-class ship, which is scheduled to begin with the 167,600-gross-ton MSC Meraviglia in 2017.   MSC now has four firm orders on the books from STX France, plus another three ships at Fincantieri.    


Kiel is First German Port of Call for Mein Schiff 5

Mein Schiff 5 (Port of Kiel)

The brand-new TUI Cruises newbuilding Mein Schiff 5 has arrived in Kiel – her first German port of call since being handed over in Turku, Finland, a few days ago.   The 99,500GT, 295-meter-long cruise ship sailed into the Kiel Fiord early this morning


US Oil Drillers Cut Rigs after 3 Weeks of Additions

 U.S. oil drillers cut rigs this week for a 20th week this year after three weeks of additions, according to a closely followed report on Friday, as crude prices pull back after a recent rally to an 11-month high over $51 a barrel.  


“Twiggy” Baker Wins BWT Puerto Escondido Challenge

Courtesy World Surf League

Grant “Twiggy” Baker (ZAF) claimed victory today at the Puerto Escondido Challenge, besting a field of 24 of the world’s best big wave surfers in towering 20-to-35 foot surf off the coast of Mainland Mexico’s Puerto Escondido.


Panama Opens Canal Extension Amid Risk, Cost Issues

File image: a Cruise Ship transits the Panama Canal.

Panama opened the long-delayed $5.4 billion expansion of its shipping canal amid cheering crowds on Sunday, despite looming economic uncertainty in the shipping industry and a heated battle over billions in cost overruns. At 7.50 a.m. (1250 GMT)


US Oil Drillers Add Rigs for Third Week in a Row

U.S. drillers this week added oil rigs for a third week in a row for the first time since August, according to a closely followed report on Friday, as producers seek more drilling permits after crude prices hit an 11-month high over $51 a barrel last week.  


Panama Canal: Expansion and Impact

Photo: Canal de Panamá

 Panama Canal expansion opens June 26 amid much fanfare and one of the worst shipping industry slumps ever.    WSJ says, while it won’t do anything to help the dire state of the industry near-term, the changes are critical to Western trade in the long run.  


Maersk Fights to Stay on top as Containership Downturn Deepens

Maersk Mc_Kinney Moller (Photo courtesy Maersk)

Denmark's Maersk Line is fighting to remain the world's no.1 container shipping carrier as a wave of mergers and acquisitions, particularly in Asia, creates new challengers trying to grab a bigger share of a depressed market. Maersk itself hasn't made a major acquisition for more than a decade


Suezmax Tanker Delivered to NAT

Nordic American Tankers Limited (NAT) has today taken delivery of Nordic Castor, the second of four secondhand Japanese-built Suezmax tankers acquired in May 2016. The first of the four vessels, Nordic Luna, was delivered June 1, and the third vessel is expected to be delivered near the end of


Maersk Line's Remote Control Management

Image: Maersk Line

 One of Maersk Line's  innovations turns the reefer container into a digitally connected device!   "At Maersk Line, we’re always looking for ways to improve cargo care on behalf of our customers. As the world’s biggest container shipping company


ECB Reviews Shipping Loans

Image: European Central Bank

European Central Bank (ECB) kicked off a review into the risks of banks’ shipping exposure, Reuters reported.   ECB is conducting an in-depth review of banks’ exposure in shipping amid rising provisions for bad debt in an industry still mired in crisis.  


Lenders Deny BHP Port Debt on Coal Worries

Australian mining giant BHP Billiton pulled a $500 million debt refinancing plan at one of Australia's biggest coal export terminals after banks were reluctant to lend to the sector, said three sources with knowledge of the process. The decision earlier this month sets back efforts to simplify


RBS Receives Bids for Greek Shipping Business

The Royal Bank of Scotland has received bids for its Greek ship finance business, banking and financial sources familiar with the matter said, following a leap in bad shipping debts at the lender over the past few months. They told Reuters that the operation was worth about $3 billion although


DCNS Predicts Turning Point for Tidal Power

A second turbine bound for EDF’s Paimpol-Bréhat tidal array was deployed by DCNS OpenHydro in May (Photo: DCNS)

Tidal power is moving beyond the prototype stage for state-backed French naval shipbuilder DCNS, which is targeting a billion euros in sales from the technology in the next decade.   DCNS, which is 35 percent owned by defence group Thales and 64 percent by the French state


Maersk's New CEO Appointment Raises Prospect of Break-up

Soren Skou (Photo: Maersk Line)

Danish shipping and oil group A. P. Moller-Maersk could split up into separate companies, its chairman said on Thursday after naming Soren Skou, the head of its container business, as chief executive.   Maersk shares rose more than 10 percent on the news with investors betting on a break-up


ST Marine Delivers 4th Patrol Vessel to Oman

A series of four patrol vessels designed and built by ST Marine for the Royal Navy of Oman, namely RNOV Al-Seeb, RNOV Shinas, RNOV Sadh and RNOV Khassab (Photo: ST Marine)

Singapore Technologies Marine Ltd (ST Marine), the marine arm of Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering), has held the Interim Acceptance ceremony for the Patrol Vessel (PV) RNOV Khasab.   This is the final, in a series of four vessels






 
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