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Monday, October 22, 2018

Curacao News

New Patrol Boats Delivered in Curacao

(Photo: Metal Shark)

Four new high-speed patrol boats commissioned on the island of Curacao are the first to be delivered to the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard (DCCG) under a 12-boat order announced last year.The welded aluminum 38 Defiant monohull patrol boats were designed and manufactured by Louisiana based shipbuilder Metal Shark as the result of a multi-year effort by the DCCG to procure a replacement for its fleet of open-cockpit rigid-hulled inflatable boats (RIB).The new enclosed-pilothouse vessels will serve as the DCCG’s main interceptors, patrolling the territorial waters of Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, St.

PDVSA Retrenches in Caribbean

© Darryl Brooks / Adobe Stock

Venezuela's PDVSA will let the 335,000 barrel-per-day refinery it leases in Curacao halt operations once crude inventories are exhausted as no new shipments are planned to the Caribbean following ConocoPhillips's legal actions, according to two sources.PDVSA is also changing its trade arrangements to start delivering all its oil for exports in Venezuelan waters, including the ship-to-ship transfers that have to be made for sending cargoes to Asian destinations.Conoco last week started several legal actions to satisfy a $2 billion arbitration award issued by the International Chamber of Commerc

Venezuela Dodges Oil Asset Seizures with Export Transfers at Sea

© Igor Groshev / Adobe Stock

Venezuela's state-run oil company PDVSA has limited the damage from an unprecedented slump in crude exports by transferring oil between tankers at sea and loading vessels in neighboring Cuba to avoid asset seizures.But the OPEC member nation is still fulfilling less than 60 percent of its obligations under supply deals with customers.Venezuela has been pumping oil this year at the lowest rate in three decades after years of underinvestment and a mass exodus of workers. The state…

U.S. Yards: Competing – and Winning – Here and Across the Big Pond

Chris Allard, CEO of Metal Shark

Louisiana-based Metal Shark powers into the second half of 2018 with a healthy backlog, multiple recent deliveries into foreign markets, and a portfolio of patrol craft that has attracted multiple clients – here and abroad. Key patrol boat contracts for this rapidly expanding builder include the U.S. Coast Guard Response Boat – Small (RB-S). Over 300 of these units are service since the award of the contract in 2012 and, says Metal Shark, new units are in production and shipping weekly. Separately, over 50 of the U.S.

Conoco Seized PDVSA Products from Isla Refinery

© Darryl Brooks / Adobe Stock

U.S. oil major ConocoPhillips has seized products belonging to Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA from the Isla refinery it runs on Curacao, an island official told Reuters on Sunday.Conoco has won court orders allowing it to seize PDVSA assets on Caribbean islands, including Curacao, in efforts to collect on a $2 billion arbitral award linked to the 2007 nationalization of Conoco assets under late leader Hugo Chavez.“PDVSA products from the installations of the Isla refinery have been confiscated.

A Royal Visit at Damen Shiprepair Curacao

Photo: Damen Shipyards

King of the Netherlands King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima have visited Damen Shiprepair Curaçao. The Royal couple arrived by boat together with Damen Shiprepair & Conversion Managing Director Durk-Jan Nederlof. Before disembarking, they viewed the yard’s two new floating docks that will be operational from September. These two docks, measuring 230x45 metres and 108x 23 metres respectively, represent a significant investment into the yard’s infrastructure that is expected to have a positive knock-on effect on the local economy.

Venezuela's Crude Sales to U.S. Fall in July

Venezuela's crude exports to the United States declined to 494,400 barrels per day (bpd) in July after rising the prior three months, showing the impact of asset seizures against state-run oil firm PDVSA, according to Thomson Reuters data.July was the first month crude exports fell below 500,000 bpd since the months of January through March.U.S. oil producer ConocoPhillips in May began seizing PDVSA's overseas assets in an attempt to collect on a $2 billion arbitration award.

Metal Shark is Competing - and Winning - Here and Oversees

(Photo: Metal Shark)

U.S. shipbuilder Metal Shark powers into the second half of 2018 with a healthy backlog, multiple recent deliveries into foreign markets, and a portfolio of patrol craft that has attracted multiple clients – here and abroad.At a time when more than a few workboat builders are feeling the pain of lingering offshore malaise and an oversupplied inland market that no longer needs large quantities of barges, Louisiana-based Metal Shark has found its groove in a suddenly active and highly competitive niche market.

Banned at Sea: Venezuela's Crude-stained Oil Tankers

File photo (© Jose Gil / Adobe Stock)

In the scorching heat of the Caribbean Sea, workers in scuba suits scrub crude oil by hand from the hull of the Caspian Galaxy, a tanker so filthy it can't set sail in international waters. The vessel is among many that are constantly contaminated at two major export terminals where they load crude from Venezuela's state-run oil company, PDVSA. The water here has an oily sheen from leaks in the rusty pipelines under the surface. That means the tankers have to be cleaned before traveling to many foreign ports…

Venezuelan Crude Sales to the US Down in March

Venezuelan crude oil sales to the United States declined in March for the third month in a row this year to 651,710 barrels per day due to falling exports of main grade Merey, according to Thomson Reuters trade flows data. Venezuela's crude output fell in 2016 to its lowest level in 23 years. Analysts expect another decline in 2017 due to lack of investment and to cash flow problems affecting state-run oil firm PDVSA, which controls more than 40 joint ventures for exploration and production. The volume of Venezuelan crude that PDVSA and its joint ventures exported in March was down by 2.3 percent from February and by 18 percent from a year earlier.

Oil Traders Brace for US Gulf Coast Storm

Oil traders from Texas to Louisiana braced on Tuesday for supply disruptions as Tropical Storm Cindy, formed in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, threatened to hit refining and production centers with wind and rain later this week. Cindy was located about 265 miles (430 km) south of Morgan City, Louisiana with maximum sustained winds of 45 miles (75 km) per hour. It is expected to approach the coast of southwest Louisiana late Wednesday or Wednesday night, and move inland over western Louisiana and eastern Texas on Thursday, the NHC said. The Louisiana Offshore Oil Port, the largest privately owned crude storage terminal in the United States…

Aumann Named CEO of Oman Drydock

Stephan Aumann (Photo: Oman Drydock Company)

Stephan Aumann has been appointed by ASYAD (formerly Oman Global Logistic Group) board of directors as the new CEO of the Oman Drydock Company S.A.O.C. in Duqm/Oman. Aumann assumed the role June 15 and replaced the former CEO Jin Han Lee (DSME), who advised at the end of 2016 that he would be stepping down. With a bachelor's degree in naval architecture and a master degree in industrial engineering from the University of Applied Sciences in Kiel/Germany, the 50-year-old German…

Oil Markets Brace for Possible US Sanctions on Venezuela

© Federico Rostagno / Adobe Stock

U.S. oil markets were readying for fallout from potential U.S. sanctions on Venezuela's vital oil sector on Monday after Sunday's election in the struggling country was deemed a "sham" by Washington. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Monday celebrated the election of a new legislative superbody that will have the power to dissolve state institutions such as the opposition-run Congress. Countries around the world denounced the vote. U.S. crude futures jumped above $50 a barrel for the first time in two months early in the session before retreating, after U.S.

Retail Gasoline Prices Surge in Harvey's Choppy Wake

File Image: The port of Corpus Christi and tanker berths (CREDIT: Port of Corpus Christi)

Nearly a quarter of U.S. refining capacity out; Motiva down for two weeks; Corpus Christi starts to reopen. Retail U.S. gasoline prices hit two-year highs and global shipping routes were scrambled as the nation's largest refiners remained shut on Friday, even as Harvey was losing strength. Major fuel pipelines feeding the U.S. Northeast and Midwest have been either closed or severely curtailed, prompting shortages in some areas and dramatic spikes in wholesale prices. The storm…

BP Receives its First Venezuelan Crude Cargo under Swap Deal

Britain's BP Plc this month received a Venezuelan crude cargo from state-run PDVSA, according to Thomson Reuters trade flows data, the first since the companies agreed on a swap arrangement to settle pending payments for U.S. oil shipments. BP and China Oil won a tender launched by PDVSA in March to be supplied with U.S. and African light oil during the second quarter of this year. The light oil is needed to dilute Venezuela's extra heavy output and for processing at Caribbean refineries. After cash-strapped PDVSA did not make payments on time, BP in May halted further discharges of cargoes of U.S. crude at the port of Curacao. Then a swap agreement was reached involving deliveries of Venezuelan oil to BP as payment for the U.S. crude, a source close to the talks said earlier in June.

Saab's KleinPort Contracted for Curacao Ports Authority

Photo courtesy of Curacao Ports Authority

Defence and security company Saab has been awarded a contract from the Curacao Ports Authority to install the latest version of Saab’s KleinPort for the Authority’s new Harbor Management System. Curacao Ports will be using KleinPort to manage its multi-harbor operations. System functionality includes the scheduling of vessel traffic and services, the dispatch of pilots and tugs, the recording of cargo data, full tariff billing and provision of comprehensive management reporting. “Curacao Ports required a new harbor management system that also met the needs of its tug subsidiary, KTK.

US Crude Oil Exports Plunge in June

U.S. crude oil exports plunged by more than 40 percent in June, foreign trade data from the U.S. Census Bureau showed on Friday, after Brent's premium to U.S. crude hovered in a tight band earlier this year. Total exports dropped to 383,000 barrels per day from May's record of 662,000 bpd, according to data compiled by Reuters. Exports to Canada were 280,000 bpd versus 308,000 bpd a month prior. Exports to United Kingdom were 37,000 bpd, nearly unchanged from May. Meanwhile, exports to Curacao were 17,000 bpd, a sharp drop from May's 67,000 bpd. The export declines were likely a result of Brent's May and June contracts having traded in such a tight band to U.S. crude earlier this year. At one point, Brent even briefly traded at a discount. Typically, a wide premium for Brent over U.S.

How the Marshall Islands became a top U.S. Crude Destination

Best known for diving, lagoons and the island that gave the world the name for the bikini swimsuit, the Marshall Islands is now gaining attention as a top-five destination for U.S. crude exports despite the lack of a refinery to process the oil. The shipments to the Marshall Islands, a tiny atoll nation in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, are a quirk of U.S. regulations, providing a vivid example of how traders carry out arbitrage opportunities and how fuel is supplied to some of the world's most remote regions. Since the removal of restrictions on exporting U.S. crude in December 2015, the oil has gone to a rising number of countries, with an average monthly volume of over 500,000 barrels per day (bpd), according to figures from the U.S.

Lifeboat Crew Exchange Hits Fifth Year

Photo: IMRF

For the fifth consecutive year, rescue volunteers from European nations are to participate next week in a seven day Lifeboat Crew Exchange Program organized by the International Maritime Rescue Federation (IMRF). The well-established program will include representatives from 13 countries and nine will host a full exchange seven days in their respective locations with each country able to send seven crew members each going to a different country. They will share experiences and…

Conoco Moves to Seize PDVSA's Caribbean Assets

File Image: A view of the local refinery on the island of Aruba. (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Hans)

U.S. oil firm ConocoPhillips has moved to take Caribbean assets of Venezuela's state-run PDVSA to enforce a $2 billion arbitration award over a decade-oil nationalization of its projects in the South American country, according to three sources familiar with its actions. The U.S. firm targeted facilities on the islands of Curacao, Bonaire and St. Eustatius that accounted for about a quarter of Venezuela's oil exports last year. The three play key roles in processing, storing and blending PDVSA's oil for export.

PDVSA Diverts Crude Tanker from Curacao

©  M.Alberts / MarineTraffic.com

Venezuela's state-run PDVSA ordered a tanker carrying Russian oil that was waiting to discharge at its Curacao terminal to divert to Venezuelan waters after ConocoPhillips introduced an order in a Caribbean court to seize its inventories and other assets in the island, according to a shipper and Reuters data on Tuesday.The Aframax tanker British Cygnet loaded crude at Russia's Primorsk terminal in April. It arrived in Curacao's Bullenbay terminal, operated by PDVSA, on Sunday…

Tightening Noose: Venezuela's Crisis Deepens

© Anatoly Menzhiliy / Adobe Stock

The news that Venezuela's PDVSA has diverted a crude tanker from Curacao after ConocoPhillips moves to satisfy a $2 billion arbitration award signals that worst may be yet to come. Reuters is reporting that Venezuela's state-run PDVSA ordered a tanker waiting to discharge at its Curacao terminal to divert to Venezuelan waters after ConocoPhillips introduced an order in a Caribbean court to seize its inventories and other assets in the island, according to a shipper and Reuters data on Tuesday.

PDVSA Halts Caribbean Storage, Shipping; Diverts Oil Cargo

© white_bcgrd / Adobe Stock

Venezuela's state-run PDVSA suspended oil storage and shipping from its Caribbean facilities following a move by ConocoPhillips to temporarily seize the firm's assets on four islands, according to a PDVSA source and Reuters data.PDVSA has begun concentrating most shipping in its main crude terminal of Jose on Venezuela's eastern coast and recalling tankers to Venezuelan waters to avoid seizures that would further cut its exports and worsen an economy on the verge of collapse.U.S.…

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