Marine Link
Thursday, January 18, 2018

Banking News

China Oil Spill Compensation Claims Face Iran Payment Snags

(Photo: China's Ministry of Transport)

The reluctance of foreign banks to deal with Iran could complicate any compensation payments resulting from the collision last week of an Iranian oil tanker and a Chinese cargo ship, sources say. The tanker Sanchi, carrying 136,000 tonnes of highly flammable condensate oil, collided with the Chinese dry cargo vessel CF Crystal on Saturday in the East China Sea, causing an oil spill and a blaze that is still raging four days later. Liability has yet to be established but lawyers…

Foss Names Sumner CFO

Bryceon Sumner (Photo: Foss)

Bryceon Sumner has joined Foss Maritime as chief financial officer, hired to oversee all aspects of the organization's financial function and performance. Sumner brings to the role years of experience gained at a number of organizations ranging from education technology and real estate, to architecture and financial services. Prior to joining Foss, Sumner served as COO and CFO for public and private companies, family offices and as a senior financial officer of a $60 billion government banking insurance fund.

Bahri Dry Bulk Secures Newbuild Finance

New vessels being built by Hyundai Mipo Dockyard will be used to cater to the growing demand for the import of essential grains into Saudi Arabia. Photo: Bahri Dry Bulk

Bahri Dry Bulk, a business unit of global transportation and logistics leader Bahri, has announced that it has secured a Sharia-compliant funding of SAR 360 million (USD 96mln) from Bank Albilad, one of the fast-growing banks in Saudi Arabia. The fund is to finance the purchase of four new bulk carriers as part of an agreement signed by the company‎ in 2017 with Hyundai Mipo Dockyard (HMD), a member of Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) Group, the world’s largest shipbuilding company based in South Korea.

Socgen Joins SEA\LNG

Photo: SEA\LNG

French multinational banking and financial services company Societe Generale (Socgen) has joined SEA\LNG, the industry coalition promoting the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel. The bank is the first financial institution to join SEA\LNG. Joining a growing band of industry leaders from across the LNG value chain, Societe Generale brings an essential financial perspective to the group which aims to accelerate the uptake of LNG as a marine fuel. Paul Taylor, Global Head of Shipping Finance…

Norway SWF Dumps 3 Shipping Firms

Photo: Studio Fasching, Chittagong, Bangladesh, 2017 -  NGO Shipbreaking Platform

The Norwegian Central Bank  has decided to exclude ship owners Evergreen Marine Corporation, Precious Shipping, Korea Line Corporation and Thorensen Thai Agencies from the Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG). The exclusion is based on the companies’ poor management of their end-of-life ships and the sale of these for dirty and dangerous shipbreaking on the beaches of Gadani, Pakistan and Chittagong, Bangladesh. The Norwegian Council on Ethics directs the Norwegian Central Bank…

JR Shipping Seals Refinancing Deal

MV Enforcer. Photo: JR Shipping BV

Dutch shipowner and manager JR Shipping has succeeded in involving a credit investment fund in London in the refinancing of JR Fleet Fund CV – a shipping fund which has financed eleven container feeders belonging to the shipping company’s fleet. Under the auspices of the shipping company, the British financier has taken over more than EURO 126 million (USD151 million) loan/debt from German HSH Nordbank. On 5 December 2017, the bank’s Executive Board gave its approval; the closing took place on 15 December.

Capital Product Partners Buys Aframax

Photo: Capital Product Partners L.P.

Capital Product Partners has announced that its Board of Directors has approved the acquisition of the eco-type crude tanker ‘Aristaios' (112,800 dwt, Ice Class 1C, built 2017, Daehan Shipbuilding, S. Korea) for a total consideration of $52.5 million from the Partnership's sponsor, Capital Maritime & Trading. The M/T ‘Aristaios' is currently employed under a time charter to Tesoro Far East Maritime Company (‘Tesoro') at a gross daily rate of $26,400. The Tesoro charter commenced in January 2017 with duration of five years +/- 45 days.

Navios Maritime Containers Acquires Boxship

File Image: Navios Maritime Containers

Navios Maritime Containers, a growth vehicle dedicated to the container sector, announced that it has acquired the Navios Felicitas, a 2010-built, 4,360 TEU containership for a purchase price of USD 11.45 million. The vessel was delivered to Navios Containers’ fleet in December 2017. Navios Containers financed the acquisition of the vessel with cash on its balance sheet and $6.0 million of bank debt under one of its existing credit facilities. Following this acquisition, Navios Containers controls 21 vessels, totaling 88,820 TEU.

London Gateway Ups Security Measures

(Photo: DP World London Gateway)

Expanded use of converged security and information management platform will support physical and IT security program at DP World London Gateway. London Gateway, one of the U.K.’s major ports owned and operated by DP World, has implemented converged security and information management (CSIM) software port-wide to increase security and provide overall situational awareness capability. Situated on the north bank of the River Thames, the deep-sea container port is located next to Europe’s largest logistics park, providing shipping access to key U.K. consumer markets.

Vitol Returns for $8 Bln Loan Refinancing

Geneva-headquartered energy and commodities trader Vitol has signed an US$8bn loan refinancing of credit facilities agreed in October 2016, the company announced on Wednesday. The revolving credit facility, which is used for working capital and general corporate purposes, comprises a three-year tranche and a 364-day tranche. The three-year tranche totals over US$7bn. ABN AMRO Bank, Commerzbank, Credit Agricole CIB, HSBC Bank and ING Bank were active bookrunners on the transaction. Bank of America Merrill Lynch, MUFG, BNP Paribas, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, DBS Bank, Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan, Lloyds Bank, Mizuho Bank, Natixis, Rabobank, Societe Generale, Standard Chartered Bank, SMBC and UniCredit Bank were mandated lead arrangers and bookrunners.

Study Assesses Hurricane Impacts Coral Reefs

The Department of the Interior’s Minerals Management Service (MMS) recently concluded a study that gives new insight into the effects Hurricane Rita had on the Gulf of Mexico’s important coral reefs and banks in and around the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. The $357,000 study, entitled Post-Hurricane Assessment of Sensitive Habitats of the Flower Garden Banks Vicinity, provided an understanding of hurricane impacts, characterized the condition of the banks, and created a baseline for future assessment. “Protecting marine resources is an important part of the MMS mission and it’s essential for MMS to identify and assess any damage to these valuable habitats,” said MMS Director Liz Birnbaum.

Bank of Ireland Winding Down Shipping Loans

Bank of Ireland said it is winding down its shipping business, joining other banks looking to cut non-core lending and exposure to an industry suffering its worst downturn. Many European banks are already bogged down by a sluggish economy and face tough capital demands from regulators which are eroding profitability, leaving many looking for ways to shore up their balance sheets. Parts of the shipping industry are suffering their deepest ever downturn as international trade slows. Around 90 percent of world trade is transported by sea. "As previously stated, Bank of Ireland no longer lends within the shipping finance sector and we have been winding down the portfolio," the bank, Ireland's largest by assets, told Reuters on Tuesday.

Hellenic Ship Finances Look Up

Photo Credit: Iolcos Hellenic Maritime Enterprises

The overall Greek loans of Hellenic maritime companies and ship owners (drawn and committed but undrawn) rose to $64.019 billion by the end of 2014, 4.1% higher than the $61.498 billion of 2013. Petrofin Research in its latest annual research says that drawn loans are up by 2.85% and Commitments by 18.11%, the latter prompted by the high Greek newbuilding orders. Of the 5 Greek banks active in the shipping finance market, National Bank of Greece shows an increase by 7.33% and Aegean Baltic by 11.99%. The rest show minor decreases.

Greek Banks Mull Cutting Shipping Portfolios

Greece's leading banks are considering offloading part of their portfolios of shipping debt worth billions of dollars in a bid to shore up their capital, according to banking and ship financing sources. Greece has secured an extension to its bailout from its European partners, but the danger of it unravelling and of Greece being pushed out of the euro zone still exists, raising the risk that Greek banks could face large deposit losses in the future to add to those they have already had. "There are several portfolios being shopped around at the moment, including shipping loans," one banking source said. The banker and a ship-finance source said such debt could be attractive for private equity players who have been scooping up distressed assets in shipping due to the sector downturn.

Cyprus Financial Crisis: Effect on Shipping Interests

Cypriot Transport Minister, Tasos Mitsopoulos, states the nation's shipping registry will not be affected by turmoil in banking sector. The Minister downplayed the impact of Cyprus's banking crisis on the local shipping industry, pointing out that none of the island's banks are active in ship financing, reports Tax-News. Despite Mitsopoulos's assurances, many shipping companies' bank deposits in Cyprus are expected to be heavily impacted by the banking sector developments, and could see losses topping 40% on amounts over EUR100,000, alongside the imposition of capital controls, which may restrict the companies' business activities. Source: Tax-News    

Minoan Lines To Sign Loan

Ferry operator Minoan Lines will sign a $253.5 million syndicated loan jointly arranged by Citibank and National Bank of Greece to finance four highspeed ferries under construction, according to officials. Participating in the syndicated loan are Bayerische Hypo und Vereinsbank, Commercial Bank of Greece, Deutsche Schiffsbank, Landesbank Schleswig-Holstein Girozentrale, Alpha Credit Bank, BNP, Commerzbank, Meespierson, Schiffhypothekenbank zu Luebeck, Nedship Bank, ABN AMRO Bank and Efibanca.

KfW uses Eurofin to target Greek owners

Eurofin to act as its consultant. clients and identifying ship financing opportunities for the bank. Dr. clients. stronger than it has ever been. good banks such as KfW IPEX-Bank have to be selective. finance, and short-term trade finance. scale. refinancing at market rates at all times.

EX-IM Bank, Marad Agreement to Facilitate Shipping

The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) and the Maritime Administration (MARAD) signed a memorandum of understanding to establish a program to provide Ex-Im Bank-guaranteed working capital loans for shipping, logistics and other companies involved in ocean freight transportation. The agreement also updates certain shipping requirements for Ex-Im Bank transactions. Under the agreement, Ex-Im Bank can provide working capital loans to export service providers, enabling them to extend credit terms to their export clients. The Bank will also increase its working capital guarantee from 90 percent to 95 percent for U.S. companies that ship on U.S. flag vessels. Ex-Im Bank and MARAD also agreed to raise the minimum threshold for Ex-Im Bank-guaranteed U.S.

Wisdom Marine Takes Loan for Japanese Orders

Wisdom Marine Group signed a two-tranche syndicated loan agreement for $5.92 million (USD) and ¥11.88 billion ($119.43 million, USD) with six domestic banks to finance its orders with three Japanese shipbuilders, Taipei Times reported. The syndicated loan was co-led by First Commercial Bank and Bank of Taiwan, with participating loans from Taiwan Cooperative Bank, Hua Nan Commercial Bank, Bank SinoPac and Bank of Kaohsiung. Wisdom Marine and its subsidiaries placed orders with three Japanese shipbuilders Oshima Shipbuilding Co Ltd, Sasebo Heavy Industries Co Ltd and Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co Ltd to build six bulk vessels. Delivery is anticipated sometime between this year and 2015.

Merchant Bank Invests in New BWTS Project

Photo courtesy of Capital Corp Merchant Banking

Capital Corp Merchant Banking, a U.S.-based merchant banking group, say they have been working on an environmentally friendly ballast water treatment system (BWTS) project with a client and have entered into USD $41-million funding agreement with them. This patent-pending project makes better, more energy-efficient use of existing ballast water treatment technologies, resulting in a smaller energy footprint of the system and decreasing the ship's power-capacity needs. The funding structure Capital Corp Merchant Banking has devised consists of providing its client with $19M in common stock…

Indonesia Plans to Build 22 Ports

Image: PT. Pelabuhan Indonesia II

Indonesia Port Corporations (IPC) or PT Pelabuhan Indonesia (Pelindo) II, Indonesia’s state-owned port operator is to build 22 ports in the country in the next five years for an anticipated cost of around $3.5 billion. “We are targeting to build 22 ports from Belawan to Sorong within five years,” Pelindo II chief executive Richard Joost Lino said. The Indonesian port projects are to be financed by cash and loans and once completed each will have a capacity of 2.5 million TEUs.

ECB Reviews Shipping Loans

Image: European Central Bank

European Central Bank (ECB) kicked off a review into the risks of banks’ shipping exposure, Reuters reported. ECB is conducting an in-depth review of banks’ exposure in shipping amid rising provisions for bad debt in an industry still mired in crisis. The ECB’s banking supervisor sent an email at the end of last week asking a raft of European banks for details of their shipping loans and the status of their loan loss provisions as an “initial step” in a broader review of lending in the sector, one of the sources quoted the email as saying.

UASC Signs Credit Facility for Two Containership Newbuildings

Principals at signing ceremony: Image UASC

United Arab Shipping Company S.A.G. (UASC) informs it has concluded a bilateral facility worth USD 190 million with Burgan Bank’s Corporate Banking Group to finance the acquisition of two 14,000 TEU vessels from among UASC's new building order of 17 vessels comprised of eleven 14,000 TEU vessels and six 18,000 TEU vessels. UASC explains it has ordered these ultra large container ships from Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. Ltd. shipyard in South Korea. The giant box-ships, which are state of the art vessels capable of running on conventional fuel and liquefied natural gas…

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Dec 2017 - The Great Ships of 2017

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