Bahrain Designated “Home Port” for U.S. Ships

Friday, July 02, 2004
In a move that is likely to increase repairs of U.S.-flagged ships at Bahrain’s ASRY, the Bahraini Government has entered into an agreement with the U.S. Government to designate Bahrain as a ‘home port’ for U.S. ships. ASRY has been repairing U.S. Navy and MSC ships for a number of years, especially during the Kuwait and Iraq Wars. On the commercial side, ASRY has also been carrying out emergency repairs to U.S.-flagged ships. However, under this new agreement, U.S.-flagged commercial vessels can now repair in ASRY without paying the 50% levy to the U.S. Government by repairing overseas.

Bahrain is the only major Gulf shiprepair country to enter into this agreement with the U.S. Authorities. Meanwhile, on June 29, 2004, ASRY was awarded the ISPS Certificate by the Bahrain Security Committee. This follows an extensive security assessment, undertaken on behalf of ASRY by MXM Consultants. This entailed exhaustive plans and procedures being developed and put in place by a multitude of different organizations within the Yard, including Port Facility Security and Emergency Services. These included the development of access control measures, induction training, port/ship interfaces, security drills and exercises, to name but a few of the plans which were developed by the Yard to obtain this certificate.

Following these assessments a detailed Port facility security plan was submitted to the Government Authorities and after careful assessment passed. This Certificate puts ASRY in a class of selected yards who have now obtained this certification.

ASRY has also been busy improving its facilities and maintaining the civil structure of the yard. Spending some $2m on improvements and yard maintenance during this year, it has also seen the opening of a new $180,000, 400 m2 Superintendents office block, which contains 12 twin offices, and, in co-operation with the yard’s blasting and painting contractor, Nam Premator, opening a new $1.4m blasting chamber, which has a capacity of 200,000 m3 annually.

This year (2004) has been a busy year for ASRY – a total of 66 ships having been repaired compared with 50 for the same period last year (2003). During the period from Jan 1st to June 15th a total of 85 ships were booked, the additional 19 due within the next few weeks. These contracts came from some 209 specifications being received (a 27% success rate).

The largest contract, worth over $4.5m, involved the 154,970 dwt tanker Tromso Reliance, which is operated out of Cyprus by Unicom Management Services. The vessel arrived in ASRY on January 6th and left on March 8th, the main work including over 600 tonnes of steel renewal in the ballast tanks, 40,000 m2 of internal blasting and coating, 1,000 m2 of hull blasting a coating, 1,000 m2 of deck blasting and coating and various mechanical and general repairs.

The breakdown of ships contracted for repairs at ASRY during the first half of this year includes tankers (23), chemical tankers (7), lpg carriers (8), dredgers (9), bulk carriers (6), and dry cargo, containerships, reefers and ro/ro (15), Navy ships (4), offshore barges (4), offshore vessels (4), tugs and supply vessels (3) and livestock carriers (2). Out of the 23 tankers a total of 11 were VLCC/ULCCs, the largest being Sun Enterprises’ 309,344 dwt Christina.

Owners include: Vela (Saudi Arabia), Unicom (Cyprus), Dynacom (Greece), KOTC (Kuwait), Varun Shipping (India), Bergesen (Norway), World-Wide (Singapore), Kristen Navigation (Greece), Sun Enterprises (Greece), Mideast Shipmanagement (Dubai), Zodiac Maritime (UK), Odfjell (Norway), Maersk Line (Denmark) and Iolcos Hellenic (Greece).

During the first six months ASRY carried on with its increasing reputation for stainless steel repairs in the chemical and gas carrier markets. Chemical tankers came from Dannebrog (Denmark), Univan (Hong Kong), New Shipping Kaisha (Japan), Mideast Shipmanagement (Dubai), Zodiac Maritime (UK), and two ships from Odfjell (Norway). Meanwhile, lpg carriers came from KOTC (Kuwait), three from Bergesen (Norway), three from Varun Shipping (India), and Interunity Shipmanagement (Greece).

Vessels currently in the shipyard (all for general repairs) include Tanker Pacific’s 247,471 dwt VLCC Brilliant Jewel, Kuwait Livestock’s 39,266 dwt livestock carrier Al Kuwait, Zodiac Maritime’s 39,031 dwt chemical tanker Kenwood Park, Red Sea Maritime’s 88,723 dwt tanker Al Madinah, NPCC’s pipe-laying barge PLB 648 (in the yard for 34 days), Trustoil Tankers’ 36,522 dwt tanker Cavosotel, and Iolcos Hellenic’s 80,170 dwt bulk carrier Iolcos Triumph. Among ships due are Interunity’s 56,852 dwt tanker Gaz Suez, Bergesen’s 63,296 dwt lpg carrier Berge Racine and her sistership Berge Racine, Dynacom’s 238,898 dwt VLCC Progress, Odfjell’s 37,369 dwt chemical tanker Bow Flora, KOTC’s 35,643 dwt tanker Al Badiyah, Zodiac Maritime’s 46,650 dwt bulk carrier Highgate, and Tsakos’ 244,942 dwt VLCC El Greco.

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