Eastern Mediterranean News

01 Sep 2019

100% Uptime for FLNG Hilli Episeyo

Pic courtesy: Golar LNG

Bermuda-registered liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipping company Golar LNG said that its floating LNG (FLNG) Hilli Episeyo continues to achieve 100% commercial uptime. The vessel recently exported its 25th cargo."Discussions continue with field operator Perenco with respect to increasing the vessel's utilization and potentially increasing the overall duration of the contract term," the NASDAQ-listed company said. The initial focus of these discussions remains on utilization of…

27 Aug 2019

FLNG Project Count Hits 20

(Photo:Shell)

Finance — or at least project economics based on long-term commodity prices — appear to be factors limiting a surge in investments in floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) a new study by U.S.-based numbers cruncher, World Energy Reports, revealed Monday.Among a growing count of floating producers in the planning stage, some are destined to become FLNG, increasingly the go-to solution discussed for producing stranded or remote gas. WER’s report writers detail the status of known…

13 Aug 2019

UNHCR Urges Europe to Allow Immigrants to Dock

Nearly 600 people have died or gone missing on the Central Mediterranean in 2019.  © UNHCR/Markel Redondo

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has sent an appeal to the European governments to allow 507 people recently rescued from the Mediterranean and now stranded at sea to leave the vessels.Many are reportedly survivors of appalling abuses in Libya and are from refugee-producing countries. They are in need of humanitarian assistance and some have already expressed an intention to seek international protection.“This is a race against time,” said Vincent Cochetel, UNHCR Special Envoy for the Central Mediterranean. “Storms are coming and conditions are only going to get worse.

08 Aug 2019

Saga Sells Sapphire Vessel to Turkish Firm

Image: Saga

Turkish-based tour operator Anex Tour is entering the cruise business with the acquisition of Saga Cruises' Saga Sapphire.Anex chairman Neset Kockar said the acquisition would allow the Turkish holiday giant to create a “unique eastern Mediterranean cruise experience”. “With changing habits of travelers, we must adopt our product offering accordingly,” said Kockar.The 800-passenger vessel will be transferred to ANEX Tour in mid-2020 and begin sailing cruises around the Eastern Mediterranean from her new homeport in Antalya…

18 Jun 2019

Turkey to Launch Second Cyprus Drill Ship

FAith (
© Tayfun Pehlivan / MarineTraffic.com)

Turkey will launch a second drilling vessel on Thursday that will begin natural gas operations near Cyprus at the beginning of July, Turkish Energy Minister Fatih Donmez was quoted as saying on Tuesday.Turkey and the internationally recognized Cypriot government have overlapping claims of jurisdiction for offshore oil and gas research in that part of the Mediterranean, an area thought to be rich in natural gas.Ankara already has a ship, called Fatih, in the region. Donmez was…

03 Jun 2019

Chinese VP Visits Hamburg Terminal

Photo: Hafen Hamburg Marketing e.V.

China’s Vice President Wang Qishan visited the HHLA Container Terminal Tollerort (CTT) at the Port of Hamburg.Wang was greeted by the Chairwoman of the Executive Board of Hamburger Hafen und Logistik AG (HHLA), Angela Titzrath, Hamburg’s First Mayor, Dr Peter Tschentscher, and representatives of the Chinese container shipping company Cosco Shipping Lines. Wang headed a 40-strong party of high-ranking Chinese government officials, and the terminal operator said the visit emphasizes…

28 Feb 2019

Turkey Launches Largest Naval Exercise

© Cristal Oscuro/AdobeStock

Turkey's military launched the largest naval exercise in its history on Thursday, February 28, carrying out drills with frigates, corvettes and submarines in the Black Sea, Aegean and eastern Mediterranean.The nine-day exercise is aimed at testing the readiness of command bases and operation centers throughout Turkey's territorial waters, the defense ministry said.On board the frigate TCG Barbaros, gunners fired live ammunition at mock targets floating on the waves. Nearby, helicopters lowered soldiers onto a ship's deck…

12 Feb 2019

Piraeus Port Signs MoU with Italian Ports

Image: Piraeus Port Authority S.A.

The Greek port of Piraeus signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Italy’s port authorities from the cities of Venice and Chioggia.The agreement seeks to develop port services and promote increased trade flow between Europe, the Mediterranean and the Far East.The MoU was signed during a meeting between the chairman and CEO of Piraeus port Fu Chengqiu and the president of the Northern Adriatic Sea Port Authority (Venice and Chioggia) Pino Musolino.The MoU envisages cooperation in improving the exchange of best practices and knowhow in port management…

02 Jan 2019

First Shore-to-Ship Cold Ironing Connection In Eastern Med

Photo: Lloyd's Register

Eastern Mediterranean achieved reduced environmental footprint at the port of Killini, which on December 20th, 2018 held an inauguration event of the first pilot shore installation for the electrification of ships with an overwhelming ceremony that shed light to the endeavor that was accomplished by the EU co-funded Action ‘elemed’ and the shipping company Levante Ferries, who experienced the plug in of its passenger ro-ro ferry Fior Di Levante to the new electrification position on shore.The event was opened by Mr Nabil-Iosif Morant…

22 Dec 2018

Poseidon Med II Conducts Workshop

The European co-funded Poseidon Med II programme (PMII), organised a workshop at the Technological Educational Institute of Crete (TEI) in the context of its dissemination activities.The subject of the workshop, which took place on December 17th, 2018 was to present the appropriate framework for the adoption of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) as a marine fuel in the Eastern Mediterranean.The event was opened by the Rector,  N. Katsarakis, followed by a welcome note by the President and Managing Director of the port of Heraklion,  A. Philippis. The event was attended by Professors and students of the Technological Educational Institute of Crete…

10 Dec 2018

Egypt Okays BP, Mubadala Acquisition of Stake in Eni's Noor Concession

Image: ENI

Egypt’s petroleum ministry has signed an agreement for UK Petroleum giant British Petroleum (BP) and UAE investment fund Mubadala to buy a 45 percent stake in the country's Noor offshore natural gas concesion in the Mediterannean from Italy’s Eni.In the concession, which is in participation with Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS), Eni as operator through its subsidiary, IEOC, now holds a 40 percent interest. The other partners in the concession are BP with 25 percent…

27 Nov 2018

First Steel Cut for Karish and Tanin FPSO

(Image: Energean)

Energean Oil and Gas announced that first steel was cut on the Karish and Tanin floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel at the COSCO yard in Zhoushan, China, on Monday. The FPSO is scheduled to be delivered to the Karish field offshore Israel in late 2020, ahead of first production in the first quarter of 2021.The FPSO, which will be installed 90 kilometers offshore, will be the first FPSO to operate in the Eastern Mediterranean. It will have a gas treatment capacity of 800 MMscf/day (8 BCM/per annum) and liquids storage capacity of 800…

12 Nov 2018

Contship Expands Intermodal Service

Contship gateway terminal in La Spezia. Photo: Contship

Contship Italia Group has been pulling all the stops to increase its intermodal offering during the past months.Italy’s leading service provider for integrated global supply chains said that its Rail Hub Milano (RHM) and its gateway ports La Spezia and Ravenna serve as backbone of the Group’s growing intermodal network.La Spezia is geographically located within a range of 320 km from the key economic regions in Italy, accounting for over 47% of the total Italian GDP. RHM is located in Melzo, just outside the city of Milan at the heart of consumer and industrial regions.

21 Oct 2018

Arkas Bunkering, Sumitomo Corporation in LNG Bunkering Deal

Pic: Arkas Holding S.A.

Arkas Bunkering have signed a protocol with Japan-based Sumitomo Corporation for the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as bunker fuel in Turkish and nearby seas. As environmentally-friendly buildings, vessels and fuels have become more popular than ever, new applications acting as reminders for both states and civil initiatives of their environmental responsibilities continue to emerge. With International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) global sulphur cap set to enter into force in 2020, the maximum amount of sulphur allowed to be contained in bunker fuel will be reduced worldwide.

16 Oct 2018

Lloyd's Register Updates East Mediterranean Projects on Alternative Fuels

Pic: Poseidon Med II

Three European Commission co-funded initiatives – Poseidon Med II, CYnergy and Elemed – are driving forward the uptake of alternative fuels in the Eastern Mediterranean region.Poseidon Med II: Creating a comprehensive and sustainable supply chain for LNG bunkeringThe Poseidon Med II project is a practical roadmap that aims to promote wide adoption of LNG as a safe, environmentally efficient and viable alternative fuel for shipping and help the East Mediterranean marine transportation propel towards a low carbon future.The project…

30 Aug 2018

ZIM Upgrades India-Med Express Line (IMX)

File Photo: ZIM Integrated Shipping Services Ltd

ZIM Integrated Shipping Services (ZIM) has announced that starting September, ZIM India-Med Express Line (IMX) will have a new rotation, with significantly faster transit time, making the fastest on the trade.A press release from the company claimed that ZIM Customers will benefit from fast transit time and improved port rotationIt said: "In order to improve our service to customers and cater for market needs, ZIM will introduce changes to IMX service, as follows: the line will operate 5 vessels, and the round-trip will be shortened to 35 days.

06 May 2018

DP World Opens Limassol Passenger Terminal

Photo: DP World

The new cruise passenger terminal at DP World Limassol was inaugurated today by Cyprus President, His Excellency Mr. Nicos Anastasiades; Minister of Transport, Communications and Works, Mrs. Vassiliki Anastassiadou; the Mayor of Limassol, Nicos Nicolaides and DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem. The operational opening of the terminal was attended by almost 300 guests and will enable the largest cruise ships in the world to visit the country for the first time.

24 Mar 2018

Ardent, Vernicos, EPE Partner

Ardent, Vernicos, EPE have combined forces to form a partnership for future operations within Eastern Mediterranean and the adjacent waters Photo Ardent Global

Ardent, Vernicos Tugs and Salvage, a Greek-based tug & salvage service provider and Environmental Protection Engineering (EPE) a Greek-based Oil Spill Response provider, have formally partnered for future operations within Eastern Mediterranean and the adjacent waters. The three companies signed a cooperation agreement on 20th March 2018 to closely work together on future opportunities and at the same time retain their own corporate identities. Ardent, announces the formation of a partnership with Vernicos Tugs and Environmental Protection Engineering S.A. (EPE).

26 Feb 2018

Falling Rocks Closes Corinth Canal for Ships

© prescott09/Adobe Stock

Greece on Monday closed the Corinth canal after a rockfall that followed heavy rain, temporarily blocking a transit route used mainly by commercial ships and pleasure yachts. The 6.4-km canal serves about 11,000 ships a year, offering a short transit from southern Italy to the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea, saving mariners a 700-km (434-mile) journey around the Peloponnese Peninsula. But its 21.5-metre (64-foot) width means it is not a key waterway for ocean-going vessels.

23 Feb 2018

Cyprus Accuses Turkey of Blocking Drillship Again

Cyprus accused Turkey on Friday of threatening to use force against a drillship chartered by Italy's Eni, in a standoff over hydrocarbons rights in the eastern Mediterranean. There was no immediate reaction from Turkey, which has vowed to prevent Greek Cypriots from exploring for oil or gas around the ethnically-split island and says some areas of Cyprus's offshore maritime zone fall under its jurisdiction. On Feb. 9, the Turkish navy on manoeuvres in the Mediterranean stopped the Saipem 12000 vessel on its way to drill for gas in the waters off Cyprus, triggering a diplomatic standoff which has underscored tensions in the region over competing claims for offshore resources.

12 Feb 2018

EU Tells Turkey to Avoid Damaging Actions after Cyprus Ship Incident

The European Union on Monday called on Turkey to avoid threats and "refrain from any actions that might damage good neighbourly" ties after Cyprus, a member of the bloc, accused the Turkish military of obstructing a ship exploring for gas. Cyprus is one of several states, also including Israel and Lebanon, racing to tap gas deposits in the eastern Mediterranean. Greek Cypriots run Cyprus's internationally recognised government, while Turkish Cypriots have a breakaway state in the north - recognised only by Ankara - and say resources around the island belong to them too. Cyprus said on Sunday the Turkish military had obstructed a vessel contracted by Italian oil company Eni which was approaching an area to explore for natural gas.

04 Dec 2017

WFW Advises Italian Shipowners on Partnership with Gigilinis

Image: Gigilinis Shipping Group

International law firm Watson Farley & Williams (WFW) advised three leading Italian shipowners -Rimorchiatori Mediterranei, Gesmar and Fratelli Neri – on their partnership agreement with Thessaloniki-based Greek maritime operator Gigilinis Shipping Group. The deal closed on 29 November. The deal represents a strategic milestone in Italian ship owners’ expansion into the Greek and broader Eastern Mediterranean markets, most notably into the key port of Thessaloniki. Rimorchiatori Mediterranei is the leading player in the harbour towage sector in Italy…

14 Nov 2017

MV Kobi Ruegg Joins Fugro Survey Fleet

MV Kobi Ruegg (Photo: Fugro)

A 58-meter, multi-role survey vessel MV Kobi Ruegg has joined Fugro’s fleet and is set to begin her first project in the Egyptian sector of the Mediterranean Sea. Working on behalf of Saipem, Fugro will deploy its large diameter piston core system to collect soil samples in the Zohr gas field; geophysical surveys for Pico and Shell will follow. Having previously operated in the Gulf of Mexico for Fugro, the three-year-old vessel has recently been renamed in honor of a former member of Fugro’s management board who passed away in March 2017.

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