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Court Rules

Zim Line Debt Restructuring Plan to Proceed

Zim container ship in terminal: Photo Zim Line

Israel's Finance Ministry and Israel Corp have reached a compromise regarding the government's "golden share" in the country's biggest shipping company Zim, paving the way for a $3 billion debt restructuring plan to move ahead. The government last week appealed an Israeli court ruling regarding the golden share but the two sides said on Tuesday they have reached a compromise that is similar to the original court ruling. As a result, Israel Corp said in a statement, it has asked the district court to approve the restructuring arrangement it has reached with its shareholders. If the court approves, Israel Corp said it plans to carry out its part of the deal by the end of Tuesday. Conglomerate Israel Corp owns just under 100 percent of Zim, which like other shipping companies has been hit hard by a faltering global economy in recent years. Under the restructuring its stake in Zim will fall to 32 percent after a $1.4 billion debt-to-equity conversion agreement with creditors. The compromise will allow the government to keep its golden share, which gives it veto power over some major decisions and requires Zim to operate ships during times of emergency. At the same time, the compromise requires government authorisation for the sale of 35 percent or more of Zim, up from a current level of 24 percent.

Greek Court Sets New Deadline for Royal Olympic Cruise Lines

Royal Olympic Cruise Lines announced that the Greek court administering the section 45 proceeding regarding its subsidiaries has allowed the company an extension until Thursday, February 12, 2004, to reach agreement on a plan of restructuring with the holders of at least 51% of outstanding obligations. The company is in negotiations with its major creditor, Fortis Bank, which itself holds more than 51% of the total obligations.

Federal Court Delivers Ruling On Bayport

The Port of Houston Authority (PHA) welcomed U.S. District Court Judge Vanessa Gilmore's ruling on the motions for summary judgment that had been filed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, PHA, and the opponents of PHA's Bayport Container and Cruise Terminal project. The court ruling grants the Corps' and PHA's motions and denies the opponents' motion, thereby dismissing the challenge to the Bayport permit. According to the court's ruling

EPA May Inspect a Ship for PCB

The US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has authority under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to obtain and exercise an administrative warrant to inspect ships containing regulated chemical substances. In the instant case, the owner of an obsolete US Navy ship announced plans to have the ship towed to a foreign port for renovation and conversion. The EPA learned that the ship probably had polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) on board

Court Rules on Salvage v. Finds

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled that the law of salvage rather than the law of finds applies to the on-going work related to the wreck of the RMS TITANIC. The court also overturned the lower court’s actions regarding certain artifacts that had been retrieved and taken to France in 1987, ruling that the court had no in rem jurisdiction over those artifacts. The decision includes a lengthy comparison of the law of salvage and the law of finds

BP Denied $700M in Insurance from Gulf Spill

The Texas Supreme Court on Friday ruled that BP Plc cannot claim about $700 million in insurance that was carried by offshore driller Transocean Ltd to cover the blowout of BP's Macondo well in 2010, the biggest offshore spill in U.S. history. The state's highest court, upholding the views of lower courts, ruled BP was covered by Transocean's insurance for pollution on the water's surface, but not under it. BP operated the well

BP to Appeal Gulf Oil Spill Damages Ruling

us courts.jpg

BP Plc on Wednesday said it will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review a court ruling concerning the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, which forces the company to pay some businesses for economic damages without the businesses having to prove the spill caused their losses.   On Monday, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans refused to disturb a March ruling from a three-judge panel over how to compensate businesses.  

Stratos Wins Protest of Five-Year Contract

The U.S. Court of Federal Claims in Washington, D.C. has granted the Stratos protest of a five-year U.S. Navy SPAWAR (Space and Naval Warfare) Inmarsat lease contract award to Comsat. The court ruled the contract awarded this past June was legally invalid, and required the U.S. Navy to retender its request for proposal for the five-year $111.9 million contract. The Court directed the Navy to conclude the recompetition by January 28, 2000.

Stolt-Nielsen Appeal Fails in Supreme Court

U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter on July 25 rejected an emergency appeal from Stolt-Nielsen SA to freeze the Justice Department's pursuit of antitrust charges against it. Stolt-Nielsen has challenged the power of government prosecutors to revoke an amnesty agreement shielding it from prosecution over an alleged plot to divvy up customers in the parcel shipping business, which involves the transport of bulk liquids such as chemicals. The company's emergency petition asked the U.S

OSHA Shares Jurisdiction with USCG over Uninspected Vessels

The U.S. Supreme Court has determined that, because the U.S. Coast Guard exercises minimal oversight of ‘uninspected vessels’ of the United States, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) of the Department of Labor shares jurisdiction over working conditions thereon. In the instant case, respondent was cited by OSHA for unsafe working conditions on its oil and gas exploration barge. Respondent challenged the citation

The Latest on Ballast Water Mismanagement

Dennis Bryant

On October 5, 2015, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued a 65-page decision holding that, for the most part, the 2013 Vessel General Permit (VGP) promulgated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), was arbitrary, capricious and not in accordance with the law

AWO Calls on Congress for Vessel Discharges Bill

A federal appeals court ruling handed down this week underscores the urgent need for Congress to pass the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA) and establish a uniform federal framework for the regulation of ballast water and other vessel discharges

World Court Hears Boliva-Chile Dispute Over Sea Access

The International Court of Justice said on Thursday it will continue to hear a case brought by Bolivia against Chile seeking to force its neighbour to enter negotiations to grant Bolivia unfettered access to the Pacific Ocean. Chile had asked the court, also known as the World Court

Iraqi Kurds Reassert Right to Export Oil to US Despite Court Ruling

Kurdistan reasserted its right to export oil independently to the United States and other countries on Tuesday despite a court ruling in favour of the Iraqi federal government, which has sought to block crude sales from the autonomous region.  

Where Arbitration Began: Maritime Arbitration in New York

In March 1656, Andrew Kilvert brought suit against Jan Geraerdy in the Court of Burgemeesters of the colony of New Netherland, demanding the release of his vessel, which had been arrested to obtain payment for the sale price of Kilvert’s ship

Maritime Tribunal Rejects Plea to Free Italy's Marines

An international maritime tribunal on Monday rejected Italy's request that India provisionally release two marines accused of killing two Indian fishermen, a setback for the Italian government after a three-year legal battle. However the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea in Hamburg

Bharati Shipyard Turns Sick, Files with BIFR

Pic: Bharati Shipyard Ltd

 Debt-laden Bharati Shipyard Ltd on Tuesday said it has filed a reference with the Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction (BIFR), since it has become a sick company after eroding its entire net worth.   "The Company's Net Worth as on March 31

Brazil Convicts First Engineering Exec in Petrobras Scandal

Three executives of Brazil's Camargo Correa group were convicted on money laundering, corruption and other charges on Monday, the first construction-industry executives to be sentenced in a giant price fixing and bribery scandal involving state-run oil company Petrobras.  

European Court Ups Standards for River Dredging

Photo: Port of Hamburg

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled on Wednesday that damage to water quality must be considered when authorities approve river dredging to expand ports, in a ruling which could hinder expansion at the German ports of Bremen and Hamburg.  

Ex-BP Engineer Deserves New Gulf Spill Trial -US Appeals Court

Photo: NOAA

A former BP Plc engineer deserves a new trial on an obstruction of justice charge related to the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, a federal appeals court ruled on Tuesday.   The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans agreed with a lower court judge's decision last June to throw out

BP Wins Right to Appeal Gulf Spill Damages Claims

BP Plc deserves the right to have a federal appeals court review some damage claims awarded under the settlement to compensate people and businesses harmed by the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, a U.S. appeals court ruled on Friday.   The 5th U.S

Face Off Maersk Tigris

Maersk Tigris. Pic by Maersk Line

 The Danish shipping giant Maersk Line is still trying to obtain details of the Iranian court ruling that resulted in seizing Maersk Tigris by the Iranian authorities over an alleged commercial dispute.   While the Iranian claimant in the Maersk Tigris case warns vessel could be put

Indian Sailors Return Home after Five Month

Image: Arab Shipbuilding and Repair Yard

 Fourteen Indian troopers, who have been stranded on board an oil tanker off the coast of Bahrain since December have lastly left for home, says a report in Gulf Daily news.   They were among the 16-member crew of Mongolian vessel MT Surya Kuber

Maersk Meets Iranian Officials over Seized Vessel

Maersk Line said on Monday it had met again with the Ports & Maritime Organization (PMO) in Iran regarding the seizure of the vessel Maersk Tigris but has yet to receive any official documents from Iranian authorities. The Maersk Tigris was seized last Tuesday by Iranian patrol boats in the

California Port Truckers End Strike

Ports of Los Angles and Long-Beach

Southern California port truckers seeking recognition as employees rather than contractors ended a strike of freight-hauling companies on Friday after four days of picketing that drew attention to their cause but did little to disrupt cargo shipments.

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