Royal Caribbean cuts South Korean Ports from China Cruises
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd will remove visits to South Korean ports from its China cruises, the firm said in a statement, amid rising tension between the two countries over Seoul's deployment of a U.S. missile defence system. In a post on its Chinese website, the U.S. cruise operator, one of the world's biggest, said it had changed its China-based cruises to remove visits to popular South Korean resorts because of "recent developments regarding the situation in South Korea". The move makes Royal Caribbean one of the first major travel firms to publicly stop or restrict trips to South Korea after media reports last week that Beijing had given guidance to tour operators in China to stop selling trips to the country.
Nakilat Transitions LNG Mesaimeer to In-house Management
Nakilat has assumed full ship management and operations of Q-Flex LNG carrier Mesaimeer from STASCo (Shell Trading and Shipping Company Ltd.) with effect from March 23, 2017, as part of the planned and phased transition announced on October 19, 2016. With a cargo carrying capacity of 216,312 cubic meters, Mesaimeer is wholly-owned by Nakilat and chartered by Qatargas. The vessel built in South Korea by Hyundai Heavy Industries was delivered in March 2009 and has been in service ever since.
GTT to Equip Knutsen’s New LNG Carrier
GTT said it has received an order from Hyundai Heavy Industries to equip a new LNG carrier with its Mark III Flex containment system. Hyundai's shipyard based in Ulsan, South Korea will build the vessel of 180,000 m3 on behalf of the Norwegian shipping company NORSPAN LNG XI AS (Knutsen). Delivery is scheduled in 2019. Knutsen is a longstanding owner of LNG carriers equipped with membrane technology, with 10 vessels of this type. GTT records the first LNG carrier order of the year. With its Mark III Flex containment system, GTT said it provides efficient insulation solution able to reduce the daily guaranteed boil-off gas rate to 0.085 percent of tank volume. The Mark and NO ranges have been designed to meet all the transport and storage requirements of liquefied gases.
TEN Strengthens Vessel Base
Tsakos Energy Navigation (TEN)'s growth has continued unabated in 2017 with the delivery of one VLCC, the Hercules I, one aframax tanker the Marathon TS and the shuttle tanker Lisboa, currently all under long-term employment to solid counterparties. These came on the back of nine vessels that were delivered or acquired in 2016 and will be followed in 2017 by the last four, of nine, aframaxes that were built against long-term employment to a Norwegian oil major. With the delivery of these remaining high-end aframaxes…
SM Group Mulls More Takeovers
South Korea’s Samra Midas Group (SM Group) said that it is looking to acquire some overseas shippers, among other businesses in an effort to expand its foothold in the maritime sector, Yonhap News Agency cited one of the company’s officials. SM Group, which was picked as the preferred bidder for STX Corp., a general trading company, last week, also purchased the now-defunct Hanjin Shipping Co.'s U.S.-Asia route and other assets for 37 billion won (US$32 million) late last year. SM Group plans to pour 130 billion won ($115 million) into STX.
Daewoo Shipbuilding to Get Fresh $2.6 Bln Bailout
South Korean state banks are preparing a fresh $2.6 billion bailout for floundering Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co Ltd, which has built up huge losses from offshore projects and risks missing debt repayments. Daewoo, Hyundai Heavy Industries and Samsung Heavy Industries are South Korea's top shipbuilders - a massive economic force and a source of national pride. But they slipped into the red in 2015 amid a commodities downturn and bleak trade volumes, prompting cost cuts and asset sales. Of the three, Daewoo's situation is the most difficult.
SM Line Launches New Shipping Services
South Korea's new container carrier, SM Line, which is built mainly on the remains of collapsed Hanjin Shipping, plans to kick off operations with as many as nine routes this year. According to Yonhap, it will begin its services to Thailand, Vietnam, Japan and other regions with a fleet of 12 container ships. The carrier then wants to grow to 41 ships on 25 routes over the next five years. Late last year, SM Group, which owns South Korea's No. 2 bulk carrier Korea Line Corp., acquired now-defunct Hanjin Shipping Co.'s U.S.-Asia route and other assets for 37 billion won (US$32 million).
d’Amico Delays Delivery of LR1 Tankers
Tanker shipping company d’Amico Tankers agreed with Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co.Ltd. – South Korea to postpone the delivery of its first newbuilding LR1 (Long Range – 75,000 dwt)from April 2017 to October 2017. This agreement follows a specific request of an oil major and a key customer of the Company, which will take the vessel on a 18 month TC contract upon her delivery from Hyundai Vinashin Shipyard Co. Ltd. – Vietnam. At the same time, the estimated delivery dates of the remaining 5 LR1s under construction at Hyundai Vinashin Shipyard Co. Ltd.
EU, South Korea Fail To Solve Shipbuilding Row
EU, South Korea Fail To Solve Shipbuilding Row Two-and-a-half days of talks between the European Union and South Korea failed to allay European concerns that South Korean shipyards are charging unfairly low prices, according to an EU official. The 15-nation EU has accused South Korea of using western subsidies to sell ships at below construction cost and of putting European rivals out of business. It said late last year it was considering taking action at the World Trade Organization (WTO). South Korea has denied the allegations. The EU has held three sessions of talks with South Korea aimed at reaching an solution. Negotiators plan to talk again by telephone March 23, the official said. This could be followed by ministerial-level talks.
Top LNG Buyers Form Alliance to Push for Flexible Contracts
The world's biggest liquefied natural gas (LNG) buyers are clubbing together to secure more flexible supply contracts in a move that further shifts power to buyers rather than producers. Japan, China and South Korea are the world's biggest LNG importers, accounting for about 55 percent of global purchases, according to data from energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie. The countries' biggest respective buyers are joining together to extract concessions from producers that would give them supply flexibility such as having the right to re-sell imports to third parties…
S.Korea Plans to Boost Iran Oil Imports
South Korea plans to boost imports of Iranian oil, especially condensate, this year to meet growing demand after sanctions on the Islamic nation were lifted in January. The world's fifth largest importer of crude is also a big buyer of condensate, a super light oil that can be processed into fuels and petrochemicals. Iran's return would help ease tight condensate supply in a market dominated by fellow OPEC producer Qatar. "We will increase oil and natural gas (liquids) imports from Iran, especially Iranian condensate," South Korea's trade and energy ministry said on Tuesday. Iran is exporting 100,000 barrels of oil a day to South Korea, one of its main crude customers, and hopes to double that figure by the end of 2016, Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh was quoted as saying on Monday.
ROK to Propose Survey on Oil Exploration with Japan
South Korea is to propose to Japan Friday to carry out a joint maritime survey on oil and gas on the continental shelf between them, South Korea's Yonhap News reported. The proposal will be made at Friday's meeting between Chung Sye-kyun, South Korea's Minister of Commerce, Industry and Energy, and Chung's Japanese counterpart Toshihiro Nikai in Tokyo, Yonhap quoted unnamed South Korean official as saying. South Korea suggests conducting the survey in an 82,557-square-km waters between South Korea's Jeju Island and northwest of Japan's Ryuku Island chain. The two neighbors set up the area in 1978 to explore gas and oil in the continental shelf. Enditem Source: China View
Fibria Inks $636 mln Ship Deal with Pan Ocean
Brazil's Fibria Celulose SA , the world's largest producer of eucalyptus pulp, signed a $636 million shipping deal with South Korea's Pan Ocean Co Ltd, according to a securities filing on Friday. The deal, approved by Fibria's board in November, involves a so-called "consecutive voyage contract" for five ships until 2035, with an option for the pulp maker to extend the deal by five or 10 years. Reporting by Brad Haynes
China, South Korea Maritime Talks
China’s Foreign Ministry has confirmed that China and South Korea will hold their first round of talks on maritime delimitation over the Yellow Sea in the South Korean capital of Seoul on December 22. The talks, led by South Korean Second Vice Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yul and Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin, will be held in Seoul next Tuesday, the South Korean ministry said in a release. Chinese President Xi Jinping and his South Korean counterpart Park Geun Hye agreed to launch negotiations during Xi's visit to South Korea in July last year, China News Service reports.
China Rebuffs S.Korea over Sinking of Coast Guard Vessel
China said on Wednesday South Korea's coast guard should not have been operating in part of the sea where one of Seoul's patrol boats sank last week during an operation to crack down on a group of Chinese fishing boats. South Korean coast guard vessels regularly chase Chinese boats for fishing illegally off its coast, at times resulting in violent confrontations. The disputes are an irritant in relations between China and U.S. ally South Korea, even as their economic relations grow close and they share concerns about North Korea's nuclear weapons and missile programmes. South Korea's Ministry of Public Safety and Security, which oversees the coast guard, said one of its patrol boats sank last week during an anti-illegal fishing operation off the Korean peninsula's west coast.
North Korea Fires Missiles in Show of Force
Missiles flew far enough to reach any part of S.Korea. North Korea fired three ballistic missiles on Tuesday which flew between 500 and 600 km (300-360 miles) into the sea off its east coast, South Korea's military said, the latest in a series of provocative moves by the isolated country. The U.S. military said it detected launches of what it believed were two Scud missiles and one Rodong, a home-grown missile based on Soviet-era Scud technology. North Korea has fired both types numerous times in recent years, an indication that unlike recent launches that were seen as efforts by the North to improve its missile capability, Tuesday's were meant as a show of force.
Shipbuilders Complain About S. Korean Shipbuilding Aid
European shipbuilders recently complained to the European Union over South Korean state aid to its shipbuilders, opening the way for a possible EU case against Seoul at the World Trade Organization (WTO), Reuters reported. The Committee of EU Shipbuilders' Associations (CESA) said it had filed a complaint with the European Commission under the EU's Trade Barriers Regulation over alleged trade distortions in global shipbuilding caused by South Korean aid to its industry. "We are complaining about the state aid that Korean companies are receiving," Reinhard Lueken, the head of CESA's Brussels office. He said there were a number of bankrupt shipyards in Korea still offering prices which did not cover their costs.
Vancouver Commends Canada-S. Korea Trade Agreement
Port Metro Vancouver issued an announcement welcoming news of the signing of the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement yesterday in Ottawa. The agreement will significantly boost Canada’s trade with South Korea, as well as provide strategic access for the Canadian import and export market to a key gateway to the wider Asia-Pacific region. “This is a historic agreement,” said Robin Silvester, President and CEO, Port Metro Vancouver. “South Korea is the port’s third-largest trading market, and an important trade partner for Canada in Asia. The agreement will benefit important sectors of Canada’s export economy, including metals and minerals, forestry products and agriculture products. South Korea is a key market for Canada’s resources, which come from provinces across the country.
EU, S. Korea Agree On Subsidies
The European Union and South Korea said last week that they had reached an agreement aimed at allaying European concerns that South Korean shipyards charged unfairly low prices. The EU and South Korea have held several rounds of talks in the last few months after the EU accused South Korea of using western subsidies to sell ships at below construction cost and of putting European rivals out of business. EU and South Korea said in a joint statement that they had reached an agreement which aims to promote "fair and competitive market conditions in the world market". The two sides pledged to work together to stabilize the market "and thereby help raise the level of ship prices to ones that are commercially sustainable".
Friendship to Green Ships
Korea and Denmark both have ambitious national plans for a transition to greener and more energy efficient economies. The Danish-South Korean Green Growth Alliance met for roundtable talks. The Minister for Business and Growth’s meeting with the South Korean Minister of Oceans and Fisheries is important for further developing the close co-operation. The Green Growth Alliance held its fifth meeting. This time it had the form of roundtable talks with a maritime focus at the premises of the Danish Maritime Authority.
S. Korea to Host Six-Nation Submarine Rescue Exercise this Month
South Korea will host a six-nation submarine exercise in its southern seas later in the month, Yonhap quoted the Navy as saying. The Pacific Reach 2016, involving the United States, Japan, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia and South Korea will kick off on May 25 for a 10-day run in the waters off South Korea's naval port city of Jinhae on the southeastern edge of the Korean Peninsula as well as around Jeju Island, the Navy said. Another 12 foreign countries, including China and Russia, will join as observers, the Navy said.
EU Investigates Unfair Trade Practices
The European Union is to investigate alleged unfair trade practices by South Korean shipbuilders, a move that could lead to a World Trade Organization (WTO) case, Reuters reported. The move follows a complaint in October by the European shipbuilding industry that accused South Korea of subsidizing its shipyards to unfairly undercut the market. "We have looked carefully at the complaint of our industry and believe there are clear grounds for us to launch this investigation," European Union Trade Commissioner Pascal Lamy said. "We are treating the concerns of EU shipbuilders with the utmost seriousness. If necessary we will take this all the way to the WTO," he said. The Commission -- the EU's executive branch -- will launch a five-month investigation under its Trade Barriers Regulation.
Danish-South Korean Co-operation Strengthened
The Danish-South Korean Green Growth Alliance met for roundtable talks yesterday. The Minister for Business and Growth's meeting with the South Korean Minister of Oceans and Fisheries is important for further developing the close co-operation. The Green Growth Alliance held its fifth meeting yesterday. This time it had the form of roundtable talks with a maritime focus at the premises of the Danish Maritime Authority. South Korea is the third-largest export market for Denmark in Asia and an important market for Danish shipping.