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West African

OT Africa Line Appoints a New Spanish Agent

OT Africa Line (OTAL), the specialist West African shipping line, has appointed a new Spanish agent, Isamar. Isamar, like OTAL, is part of the Bolloré Group. It shares common goals with OTAL and benefits from the added security of being part of a large, financially strong and well integrated transport organization. Founded in 1993, Isamar is a logistics company with a specific focus on maritime transport. It has offices in nine Spanish cities including, Alicante, Barcelona, Bilbao, Madrid, Las Palmas, Seville, Tenerife, Valencia and Vigo. Isamar also acts as agents for OTAL in Portugal where it has offices in Lisbon and Leixoes. The strengthening of OTAL's agency network in Spain is both a logistical and strategic move. Spain is an important export partner for many West African countries including: Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Mauritania and the Gambia. In addition, Spain's prime location in the Mediterranean, neighbouring both France and Portugal, makes it an important transport hub.

Asian Crude Demand Pushes Charter Rates

A typical VLCC uinderway (file image: EuroNav)

Robust Asian demand for West African crude is fueling a worldwide surge in shipping rates for the largest oil tankers that is being felt from Houston to Singapore. Chartering rates for Suezmaxes and very large crude carriers (VLCCs) have recovered rapidly in recent weeks after plunging to their lowest in more than year this summer. The spike in rates comes as Asian refiners return to the market after a seasonal turnaround period

Guinea To Pay Compensation In Shipping Dispute

A U.N. maritime court reportedly ordered the West African state of Guinea to pay St. Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean more than $2.1 million for firing at sailors on the oil tanker Saiga.

OTAL Upgrades West African Shipping Services

OT Africa Line (OTAL) has announced a number of developments to its West African Ro-Ro and container services designed to give customers access to a greater number of ports. The changes will also provide improved transit times and more frequent sailings to ensure even more extensive transport coverage of the trade to and from this region. OTAL continues to operate its established multipurpose Ro-Ro service but with the addition of a restructured improved all-round schedule called the

SAL Heavy Lift Completes Africa Move

Picture courtesy SAL

AL Heavy Lift's Frauke has completed a six-month project transporting oversize cargoes for a West African offshore development. Two empty carousels - each measuring 12 m high by 26 m wide and tipping the scales at 620 tonnes - were loaded onboard the heavy lift vessel in Netherlands and exported to the USA. Stateside, more than 2,000 tonnes of umbilicals were spooled onto the carousels. The carousels, now weighing 1,465 tonnes and 1,875 tonnes respectively

Pirated Tankship Found Off West Africa Coast

File photo

An oil tanker missing for a week off the coast of West Africa was attacked by pirates who stole its cargo, the company that managed the ship said on Thursday after speaking with its captain. The Liberia-flagged MT Fair Artemis had last made contact with its manager, Fairdeal Group SA, on June 4 when it was off the coast of Ghana. "The ship was boarded by a number of pirates who have stolen the cargo and other items on the vessel

Guinea Opens Box Port in UAE Bauxite Complex

Guinea opened a new container terminal on Wednesday, part of a bauxite complex being developed in the West African country by Abu Dhabi investment fund Mubadala. Mubadala signed a $5 billion agreement with Guinea in 2013 to develop a bauxite mine, alumina refinery and a port in Guinea to secure raw material for the United Arab Emirate's aluminium plants. The terminal in the new port of Kamsar will be used by the complex as well as by third parties as an alternative to container

First S. African Oil and Gas Shipyard Opens

South Africa's first shipyard to construct oil and gas production platforms was recently opened, according to a Reuters report. The shipyard will provide a foothold for the country to take advantage of a booming oil sector in Angola and other West African countries. South Africa is hoping the $30.4m plant, part of a $258.3m investment by Germany-based MAN Ferrostaal AG, will act as a service hub for Africa's burgeoning oil industry.

Chinese Petroleum Corp. Exercises VLCC Tender

Taiwan's state-owned Chinese Petroleum Corp (CPC) has bought two very large crude carriers (VLCC) of West African crudes via its September tender, a company official said on Thursday. The volumes were below CPC's usual purchase of three to four VLCCs per month. Each VLCC can load up to two million barrels each. "We have high inventories and not so much requirement," the CPC official said. The details of the tender, which closed on Monday, were still unclear.

Gulf of Guinea Nations to Boost Maritime Surveillance

The AP reported that ministers from across Africa's oil-rich Gulf of Guinea agreed at a U.S.-sponsored meeting Wednesday to establish surveillance systems to try to stamp out illegal activity in their largely unpoliced waters. Representatives from 11 agreed in a statement to start using tools such as radar and locator transponders on ships to monitor activity off their coasts. The statement was issued during a three-day meeting in Cotonou, Benin, sponsored by U.S

Sea Trucks Secures Contract in Nigeria

Jascon 30 (Photo: Sea Trucks Group)

Sea Trucks Group said its principle Nigerian business, West African Ventures, has been awarded a contract for the provision of an accommodation vessel to a deepwater field, offshore Nigeria.  | The scope of work covers accommodation support services for 250 pax

Port of Antwerp Invests for First Time in West Africa

Photo: Port of Antwerp

 The port of Antwerp and the port of San Pedro in Côte d’Ivoire are to collaborate over the next few years to manage further expansion of this West African entrepot.    San Pedro, the leading cacao port in the world

Atlantic Hurricane Season to be Stronger than Expected

In its 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook Update, NOAAs National Weather Service indicates there is a 70 percent chance of 12 to 17 named storms. (NOAA)

 In its updated 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook, NOAA calls for a higher likelihood of a near-normal or above-normal season, and decreases the chance of a below-normal season to only 15 percent, from the initial outlook issued in May

Forecasters Predict Strong Atlantic Hurricane Season

Image: NOAA

Atlantic hurricane season expected to be strongest since 2012; forecasters now expect 70 percent chance of 12 to 17 named storms   In its updated 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)calls for a higher likelihood of a

Two more Cranes for APM Terminals Cotonou

APM Terminals new mobile harbor cranes photo APM

APM Terminals Cotonou, operating as Coman SA at Benin’s primary port, adds two new cranes, the largest mobile cranes in the Benin port. Cotonou, Benin- Coman SA, operated by APM Terminals Cotonou in Benin’s primary port, has commissioned two new Mobile Harbor Cranes (MHC) at a

Pipelay, Construction Work Completed for Chevron in Nigeria

(Photo: Sea Trucks Group)

A pipelay and construction campaign for the Sonam Field Development Project for Chevron Nigeria Ltd. has been successfully completed, announced Sea Trucks Group.   The contract for the project was awarded to West African Ventures Ltd, Sea Trucks’ principle Nigerian business in June

Offshore Oil Oscillations In West Africa

Graph: Clarksons Research

 Global excess oil supply still looks likely to average 0.5m bpd in 2016 – sufficient, it would seem, to stop oil prices rising much above $50/bbl and therefore to forestall a recovery in E&P activity and the offshore markets, Clarksons Research.  

Guinean Sailors Arrested after Clash with Sierra Leone Navy

Sierra Leone was holding 11 Guineans including military personnel in custody on Wednesday following a confrontation at sea involving the two West African neighbours' navies, Sierra Leonean officials said.   The incident occurred early on Monday morning off the coast of northern Sierra Leone

Nigeria: What are the Implications for Tanker Demand?

Source: Poten and Partners

 Nigeria’s crude oil production and exports have been hit by severe outages as a result of attacks on oil infrastructure by rebel fighters in the Niger River Delta.    Various sources report that Qua Iboe Terminal has shut down operations until further notice

Ten Terex TFC 45 H Reach Stackers Delivered to Benin

Reach Stackers Courtesy Terex Port Solutions

Terex Port Solutions (TPS) delivered ten Terex TFC 45 H reach stackers to Benin. The machines were put into operation in March 2016 by Société Béninoise des Manutentions Portuaires (SOBEMAP). With the robust reach stackers

CMA CGM Launches Baltic Levant Express Service

Image: CMA CGM

CMA CGM’s new Baltic Levant Express service offers direct connection between Saint Petersburg and the Eastern Mediterranean region   Starting May 9, container shipper CMA CGM has launched the new Baltic Levant Express service, offering a direct connection between Saint Petersburg and

Harkand North America Salvaged by MBO

Ethos Offshore Completes Harkand North America Management Buy Out   A team led by AJ Jain, Harkand North America Managing Director, has agreed to a management buyout (MBO) of Harkand’s North American and African business. The new company, to be named ETHOS OFFSHORE LIMITED

Asia Tankers-VLCCs Rates Ease as Tanker Jams Fade

file image: A VLCC transits the Suez Canal (Suez Canal Authority)

Port congestion eases at Basra and Chinese ports; tanker demand set to expand on lower oil prices. Freight rates for very large crude carriers (VLCCs), hurt by slower-than-usual release of cargo, could slip further next week as more tonnage becomes available with the easing of recent tanker

Gulf of Guinea Piracy a ‘Deep Concern’ -UN Security Council

Rising crime in Gulf of Guinea contrasted with declining East Coast pirates; Presidential statement condemns murders, kidnappings, hostage-taking, as UN Security Council expresses deep concern over piracy   The United Nations Security Council on Monday expressed its deep concern over piracy

Asia Tankers-VLCC Rates Face Pressure

Number of MidEast charter fixtures less than usual; Basra crude exports set to fall in May. Freight rates for very large crude carriers (VLCCs) will come under further pressure next week if the current sluggish chartering activity continues, ship brokers said on Friday.

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