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Panama Canal Sets New Tonnage Record

Panama Canal Authority Administrator/CEO Jorge Luis Quijano.

The Panama Canal set a mark in its history as it reached a new tonnage record of 333.7 million Panama Canal tons (PC/UMS) during fiscal year 2012 which concluded on September 30.  This achievement highlights the value of Panama and its significance as a link in the chain of global trade.   "This milestone attests to the reliable and continuous service offered by the Canal, which is supported by a workforce of 10,000 men and women. The Panama Canal works tirelessly to provide its customers with first-rate service, including new products and services in response to their evolving shipping and maritime needs," said Panama Canal Authority Administrator/CEO Jorge Luis Quijano.   Preliminary figures showed that the Panama Canal closed fiscal year 2012 with 333.7 million Panama Canal tons (PC/UMS).  This figure represents an increase of 11.6 million Panama Canal tons or 3.6% compared to the 322.1 million tons registered last year, and also surpasses the previous 2007 record of 312.9 million tons.  (Under PC/UMS, a mathematical formula is applied to the vessel´s total volume or cargo carrying capacity).   PC/UMS tonnage during the most recent fiscal years of the Panama Canal:     FY PC/UMS (in millions):   2002 235.1 2003 242.7 2004 266.9 2005 279.3 2006 297.8 2007 312.9 2008 309.6 2009 299.1 2010 300.8

America’s First Marine Highway Comes Back to Life

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The New York State Canal System, once forgotten as a commercial shipping option, is on the rise again, after years of decline. The shorter, greener and smarter route(s) make increasingly good sense for high value cargoes. Commercial utilization of America’s original superhighway – the Erie Canal – is on the rise again in recent years after years of decline. The third generation of the famed Erie Canal – the “Barge Canal” was constructed between 1905 and 1918

ACP Charters Post-Panamax Ship for Pilot Training

The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) will charter a Post-Panamax vessel before the opening of the expanded Canal to be used for training purposes in the Third Set of Locks. The Executive Vice President of Operations Esteban Saenz reported that the Panama Canal will charter a Post-Panamax ship to train pilots and tugboat captains that will assist in transits through the new lane. Saenz said the vessel will be used several months before the opening of the expanded Canal to test the new locks

Panama Canal Board Approves New Port Plans

Photo: Panama Canal Authority

State-of-the-art facility in Corozal receives green light from canal’s board of directors   The Panama Canal board of directors this week formally approved the development and construction of a transshipment port in Panama’s Corozal region. Upon completion, the port will have the capacity to handle more than five million TEUs within a 120-hectare area at the canal’s entrance to the Pacific. The project is now awaiting the final step for approval from Panama’s

Egypt Bullish on New Suez Canal expansion

Pic by Suez Canal Authority

 The Egyptian government is pressing ahead with the first major expansion of the canal in almost 150 years, to allow ships to pass north and south concurrently, reports Telegraph.   The Suez Canal Area Development and the Second Suez Canal Projects are the most important drivers of economic recovery in Egypt and mark a turning point for a country that has been marred by continuing instability.   The project – which has been underwritten by Egyptians subscribing to

Egypt on a War Footing to Expand Suez Canal

Image by Suez Canal Authority

 The Suez Canal Authority is in a race to quickly expand the vital waterway for two-way traffic by August 2015, says an Associate Press report. Workers dig round the clock on Suez Canal expansion, hoping for surge in East-West trade.   President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi has made the project a point of nationalist glory, not to mention a cornerstone of plans to revive the economy.    But while shippers say more ships may be drawn by shorter waiting times

Panama Canal To Be Run As Business After Handover

The Panama Canal will be run as a competitive business for the benefit of the Panamanian people after it reverts to national control at year's end, the waterway's administrator said. "The Canal was run before on a break-even concept, like a public utility," Panama Canal Commission (PCC) administrator Alberto Aleman Zubieta told a lunch for members of the American Chamber of Commerce. "But it will be run on the corporate concept of profitability ... for the 2

Panamanians Vote Yes for Canal Expansion

The voting began on Sunday morning, where the enthusiasm and energy was apparent as each voter played their part in this historic event that determined the direction and future of the Canal and Panama. By law, expansion, or the “third set of locks project,” must be put to a vote in a popular referendum. The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) presented its formal proposal to the Panamanian government in April. In the end, 78 percent voted for expansion, as of 9:30 p.m. EDT.

200 Years of Erie Canal History

April 2011 marks the 200th anniversary of the key decisions for the construction of the Erie Canal, a monumental public works project that transformed the economy of New York State.   Two centuries ago, on April 8, 1811, the state Legislature approved a measure that set into motion the construction of the Erie Canal. This followed the delivery of a report on March 2, 2011 of a report by the original Commission.  

Temporary Suspension of 2nd Southbound Convoy

  Effective from today, the entry of the second southbound convoy into the Suez Canal has been suspended until completion of cleansing and dredging work in the new Canal area. All southbound vessels are able to transit the Canal within the limit time designated for the first southbound convoy. The first southbound convoy commences daily on at 0100 hours local time, with a limit time of arrival 1900 hours on the previous day.

Cadmatic Used for Alaska Ferry Design

The Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) has awarded the Alaska Class Ferry project to Vigor Alaska shipyard in Ketchikan, Alaska, where construction is currently underway. Providing production design for the ferry is Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering consultancy Glosten

Egypt to Complete East Port Said Side Channel in 2016

Egypt plans to complete a side channel in East Port Said, near the Suez Canal, that would speed up shipping and allow ships direct entry into the port by the end of June 2016, Mohab Memish, head of the Suez Canal Authority, said on Wednesday.

Suez Canal Pacts with SCCT-Maersk

Image by  Suez Canal Container Terminal

 Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority (SCA), Vice Admiral Mohab Mamish, signed a settlement agreement with the Suez Canal Container Terminal (SCCT-Maersk), says Daily News Egypt.    Egypt is also planing to complete a side channel in East Port Said, near the Suez Canal.  

Controversial Nicaragua Canal Project Postponed

Image: Hong Kong Nicaragua Development (HKND) Co

 China's Hong Kong Nicaragua Development (HKND) Co. said it is delaying the start of construction on a controversial $50 billion inter-ocean canal across Nicaragua until late 2016.   HKND has obtained approval for environmental studies of the canal earlier this month

Panama Canal Reports Record Tonnage

Photo: ACP

The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced a new tonnage record, welcoming 340.8 million Panama Canal tons (PC/UMS) through the canal for the 2015 fiscal year – a 4.3 percent increase year-on-year.   This year's record surpasses the previous record of 333

EIB Antes €165 Mln for Amsterdam Sea Lock

The current Noordersluis lock was built in 1929

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has agreed to provide EUR 165 million (187.5m) to support the construction of a new sea lock at IJmuiden, the principal access to the Dutch Port of Amsterdam. The current Noordersluis lock was built in 1929 and the new larger lock will ensure that the next

Solar-electric Workboat Completes Maiden Cargo Run

Photo: Torqeedo

Harnessing solar propulsion, the 39-foot vessel Solar Sal has recently completed the final leg of its maiden cargo run, carrying recycled cardboard along the Erie Canal without using a single drop of fossil fuel. Solar Sal traversed 72 locks and traveled a total of 650 miles across the state of

First LPG Carrier Order for MHI Shipbuilding

LPG carrier (Image: MHI)

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., a group company of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI), announced it has received an order from Astomos Energy Corporation for a very large liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) carrier.   

First LNG Containership Transits the Panama Canal

Isla Bella transiting the locks at Mira Flores (Photo courtesy of the Panama Canal Authority)

The world’s first LNG-powered container vessel, TOTE Maritime’s Isla Bella, transited the Panama Canal October 30, marking a milestone not only for the maritime industry, but also for the Canal as it nears the completion of its expansion scheduled to open in 2016

Singapore to Develop Maritime Ports in Egypt

Image: PSA Singapore

 The Maritime Sector of the Egyptian Ministry of Transportation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) as Singapore will operate and develop the Egyptian maritime ports, reports the Cairo Post.  

Vessel Backlog at Panama Canal

Photo by Panama Canal Authority

  The Panama Canal continues to experience high vessel backlog. This is attributed to several reasons, such as: * INCREASED ARRIVAL OF LARGE AND DEEP DRAFT VESSELS: These larger vessels and those with deeper drafts, besides having more restrictions than small, light draft vesse;s

New Drydock for FMT Shipyard and Repair

Photo: Gulf Island Marine Fabricators

Gulf Island Marine Fabricators has recently delivered a new drydock named the J.B. Barthelemy to FMT Shipyard and Repair.   The new drydock, which is 180 feet long and 73 feet wide with 63-foot clearance between the wingwalls, seven-foot deep pontoon with 18-foot high wing walls, has a 2

GAC Support for Tall Ship Tenacious

The tall ship Tenacious has left her home port in the UK for an epic voyage to Australia

  The tall ship Tenacious has left her home port in the UK for an epic voyage to Australia. Over the next eight months, she will sail more than 17,000 NM and call at 26 ports en route to her final destination, Sydney. And at every stop along the way

Panama Canal Delays Reduced to Four Days: ACP

File Image: a cruise liner passes through the Panama Canal.

The wait time to pass through the Panama Canal has shortened to four days, down from more than 10 days last month, the authority that runs the waterway said on Thursday. "We have reduced by 60 percent the wait time for vessels after measures applied amid an unusual demand and extreme

Panama Canal Takes Steps to Shrink Wait Times

Panama Canal Miraflores Locks (Photo: ACP)

Aiming to help accommodate unseasonably high demand, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced it has taken a number of steps to expedite traffic and decrease Canal Waters Time (CWT).   The ACP has postponed noncritical maintenance work

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