Far East News

16 Jan 2020

Port NOLA Sets New Box Record

Image: Port NOLA

Louisiana’s only international container port Port of New Orleans (Port NOLA) moved more containers in 2019 than at any time in its history, totaling 648,538 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), up 10% compared to one year ago.The multimodal gateway for global trade said in a press release that the record marks the sixth consecutive year the Port surpassed the half million TEU-mark at its Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal, which is operated by New Orleans Terminal and Ports America.“Port NOLA has now seen double-digit growth in total container volumes for two consecutive years…

16 Jan 2020

Baltic Index Flat

© Kovalenko I/ Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index stayed flat on Thursday, as rise in demand for panamaxes offset fall in capesize rates, with the capesize index dropping to near 9-month low.The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels ferrying dry bulk commodities, remained steady at 768.The capesize index dropped 94 points, or 10.7%, to 784 - its lowest since April 26.The index has fell for a 25th straight session."Far East iron ore and coal volumes are fair but not sufficient to change a nervous spot sentiment…

01 Jan 2020

Russia to Strengthen Northern Sea Route

Image: Rosatom

Russian state atomic energy agency Rosatom and compatriot private transportation and logistics company Delo Group will jointly develop international multi-modal shipments and transit shipments Asia-Europe-Asia via the Northern Sea Transit Corridor.Rosatom is the authorized infrastructure operator of the Northern Sea Route and owner of the world-only nuclear icebreaker fleet.Delo Group assets include six sea ports in the Baltic Sea, one sea port in the Azov-Black Sea region and one sea port in the Far East basin which are the key regions for foreign trade cargo flows.The companies signed docume

02 Jan 2020

Russia's Floating Power Plant Plugged In

Image: Rosatom

Russia’s state-owned nuclear company Rosatom said its floating nuclear power plant has been connected to the grid and has commenced electricity production for the first time in a remote region of Russia.The floating power unit (FPU) Akademik Lomonosov has been connected to the grid, generating electricity for the first time in the isolated Chaun-Bilibino network in Pevek, Chukotka, Russia’s Far East. This happened after the Russian regulator Rostekhnadzor issued an operations permit…

18 Dec 2019

BIMCO: Supply & Demand Trending Off-Balance

Source: BIMCO, Clarksons, IMF

One of the most worrying trends that has developed recently - which will affect shipping demand in the years to come - is the falling trade-to-GDP ratio. The falling ratio can be explained by slowing globaliztation as well as increasing protectionist measures being implemented around the world, spear headed by the US. The raised barriers to trade are here to stay as we enter a new decade, with the shipping industry stuck with the consequences.The trade war is the clearest example of these extra barriers to trade…

17 Dec 2019

Three More Vessels Join SAL Heavy Lift

Image: SAL Heavy Lift

SAL Heavy Lift, a carrier specializing in sea transport of heavy lift and project cargo,  announced that it will expand its fleet with three heavy lift vessels with 800t lifting capacity in early 2020.The three vessels - “MV Hanna”, “MV Klara” and “MV Lisa” - will come to serve breakbulk and heavy lift clients on world markets via SALs well known Semi-Liner Service, but will also potentially offer new service options.When the new year 2020 dawns, SAL will see its fleet expanding…

28 Nov 2019

Container Contract Rates Rise in November

Pic: Xeneta

The ongoing trend of downward pressure on long-term contracted ocean freight rates appears to have been broken, or at least temporarily derailed, with marginal increases seen across the board in November.According to the latest XSI Public Indices report from Xeneta, which provides unique business intelligence based on real-time crowd-sourced data from the world’s leading shippers, global rates climbed by 0.9% over the last month. This disrupts a long-term pattern of decline that…

28 Nov 2019

Container Volumes Growth Sluggish

Graph: BIMCO

With fleet growth of 3.7%, compared to global container shipping demand growth of only 1%, even blanked sailings have been unable to lift freight rates, says BIMCO.According to the largest international shipping association representing shipowners, container shipping has in the last few months felt the effects of the trade war digging in, as global container volumes continue to see very sluggish growth, now standing at 1% in the first nine months of the year.This brings the total volume of containers shipped this year to 126.3 million TEU…

26 Nov 2019

Boskalis Completes Horizon Acquisition

Image: Royal Boskalis Westminster

Dutch dredging and heavylift company Royal Boskalis Westminster has acquired the remaining 37.5% in the United Arab Emirates’s Horizon Group, a company specializing in the provision of marine geophysical surveys and geotechnical services.Earlier this year, Boskalis already acquired 62.5% of the shares. The 2019 revenue is expected to exceed USD 100 million and the activities will be consolidated as of 2020.Following this transaction, Boskalis will be able to optimize its successful…

25 Nov 2019

BIMCO: Tanker Shipping and Macroeconomics Outlook

Source: BIMCO, WTO

World growth and trade volumes under pressure, but still positive. A continued slowdown in global growth, as well as a lower trade multiplier will reduce overall demand for shipping for the rest of this year and through 2020.Expectations for global trade growth have also been lowered for 2020; this is now forecast at 2.7%, down from 3%. The WTO cautions that risks to these forecasts are weighted to the downside, with these risks including a potential deepening of trade tensions…

17 Nov 2019

Exceptional Growth in LNG Trade, Says Awilco

 Pic: Awilco LNG

The exceptional growth in LNG trade recorded in the first half of the 2019 continued in Q3, says Awilco LNG Group, the Norwegian based fully integrated pure play LNG transportation provider.According to Fearnleys LNG total LNG trade is up about 13 % in the first nine months of the year vs last year. In line with normal seasonal patterns gas prices inched upwards in Q3 but remained historically low due to increased production and muted demand in the Far East.Due to a relatively mild winter reducing gas demand for power generation and higher nuclear power generation in Japan and South Korea…

14 Nov 2019

Cosco Acquires Stake in Greek Intermodal Firm

Photo: Cosco Shipping Group

OceanRail Logistics, part of the Cosco Shipping Group, acquired 60% of the Greek railway company Piraeus Europe Asia Rail Logistics (PEARL) as part of its plan to develop its intermodal transport services network.OceanRail specializes in sea-rail intermodal transport with the Piraeus Port as the hub and related logistics business, while PEARL is a Greece-based company engaged in railway operations.The China-Europe Land-Sea Express Line, which starts from the Piraeus Port in Greece and expands to the hinterland of Central and Eastern Europe…

13 Nov 2019

Product Tanker Freight Rates Rebounds

Pic: TORM

Product tanker freight rates softened in the third quarter of 2019 but rebounded strongly at the start of the fourth quarter following an increase in crude tanker rates that began after the attacks on Saudi Arabian oil facilities and accelerated dramatically to multi-year high levels at the end of September when the US imposed sanctions on two subsidiaries of China's COSCO Shipping.Denmark-based TORM said that growth in global demand for oil products generally remained subdued…

05 Nov 2019

Maritime History & the Panama Canal

Grace Lines COLOMBIA transit of Panama Canal. Source: U.S.Merchant Marine Academy Maritime Museum.

The Panama Canal is a strategic crossroads for maritime traffic, and is arguably one of the most important maritime developments in the past century. Here we take a deeper dive into the history behind that famous strip of waterway.The present canal, which saw its first vessel transits in 1914, along with possible alternatives through Nicaragua and Mexico, had actually been on the minds of merchants, explorers and military/political strategists since the Age of Exploration in early 1500’s.

04 Nov 2019

SCF, NOVATEK Ink Icebreaker T/C Contract

SCF Group and VEB.RF Group, a Russian financial institution, signed an agreement for lease financing of the lead ship in a series of icebreaking LNG carriers expected to be built to serve the Arctic LNG 2 project.At the same time, SCF Group and NOVATEK Group signed a long-term time charter agreement for this tanker.The vessel will be constructed at Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex in the Russian Far East. She is designed for year-round operations in the challenging ice conditions of the Kara Sea and The Gulf of Ob and will be able to sail independently through ice over two meters thick.All the LNG carriers in the new series will be operated under the Russian flag. The Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RS) will provide technical supervision during the construction of the vessel series.

01 Nov 2019

Xeneta Expects Further Disruption in Container Rates

Patrik Berglund, CEO & Co-founder. Photo: Xeneta

Further disruption in ocean freight rates expected despite best efforts from leading carriers, according to Xeneta Container Rates Alert.Long-term contracted ocean freight rates for carriers continued their downward trend through the month of October, it pointed out.The latest freight data from the XSI Public Indices report from Xeneta shows a continued drop in contracted freight rates as the industry heads into the key seasonal months.Rates on a number of key routes have continued a steady downward slide since early summer but have yet to fall below the levels seen one year ago…

01 Nov 2019

VLGC Orderbook Stands at 13% of Global Fleet

The Very Large Gas Carrier (VLGC) order-book stands at approximately 13% of the current global fleet during third quarter of 2019, said Dorian LPG, the owner and operator of VLGCs.An additional 36 VLGCs, equivalent to approximately 3.0 million cbm of carrying capacity, are expected to be added to the global fleet by calendar year-end 2021. The average age of the global fleet is now approximately 9.4 years old.A continuation of the favorable commodity price environment, the ongoing increase in secular demand for LPG as a more environmentally friendly alternative to other forms of energy and forecast high levels of U.S. exports as evidenced…

30 Oct 2019

OP/ED: Offshore Wind

Nicolette Nye, Vice President of Communications and Member Development of the National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) in Washington, DC.

Set to Soar, Taking Offshore Support Industry With it.Offshore energy development is opening a new front in the United States -- the Atlantic seaboard, with strong winds, a shallow continental shelf and a proximity to dense population centers is driving strong interest in offshore wind development. The offshore oil and gas supply chain stands to benefit in a big way from billions in coming investment. In fact, it is already playing a role. Companies in the Gulf of Mexico, which traditionally support the offshore oil and gas sector…

16 Oct 2019

BIMCO’s Sand to Offer Boxship Insight in Athens

Caption: Accumulated container volumes on the Far East – Europe trade lane are up 4.6% y-o-y. The CCFI has fallen to an index level of 987, down -9% from the same period last year. 2 (Chart: BIMCO)

BIMCO’s Chief Shipping Analyst, Peter Sand, will be speaking and providing the audience with unique insights on the container market at the European Shipping Seminar on November 27, 2019 in Athens, Greece.The European Shipping Seminar, hosted by S&P Global Platts, will discuss the various topics relating to the commercial shipping markets and take a deep dive into how the shipping industry will navigate its way through the uncertain environment of the IMO 2020 Sulphur Cap.Container shipping outlookBIMCO has persistently stressed that trade wars and protectionism are negative for shipping.

27 Sep 2019

Rosneft Starts Far East LSFO Bunkering

Image: Rosneft

RN Bunker, the bunkering subsidiary of Russia's Rosneft Oil Company, said it has begun to refuel ships with 0.5% sulfur limit marine fuel at the Far East region.The RMLS 40, a marine fuel that has advanced environmental properties, is in full compliance with the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL).The first 200 tons of the new fuel was supplied to a bulk carrier in Nakhodka waters. Low-sulfur fuel is also used by the ships operating in…

16 Sep 2019

BIMCO: Fleet Growth, Ship Size Up

Graph: Photo, CTS

Global growth in container volumes has picked up slightly in the second quarter of the year, with growth in the first seven months reaching 1.2%, compared to the just 0.8% in the first quarter.Global growth in container volumes has picked up slightly in the second quarter of the year, with growth in the first seven months reaching 1.2%, compared to the just 0.8% in the first quarter. Despite this rise, the growth figure remains substantially below what the industry has been used to…

08 Sep 2019

Vasiliy Golovnin to Supply India's Antarctica Station

Pic: FESCO

Russia's Far East Shipping Company (FESCO) and the National Center for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR) of the Ministry of Earth Sciences of India have extended the contract for supplying India’s research stations in Antarctica.“Vasiliy Golovnin” – an icebreaking cargo ship – will deliver general cargo, food products and fuel to Bharati and Maitri stations during Antarctica’s summer in 2019-2020.Scientists of the National Center for Polar and Ocean Research will also join the expedition for the research.

08 Sep 2019

Expansion for Far East and Trans-Siberian Railway

Pic: FESCO

FESCO Transportation Group, the largest intermodal transport operator in Russia, and Polish rail operator PCC Intermodal S.A. agreed on developing services of expedited cargo delivery from Japan, South Korea and China to European countries and vice versa through the Far East and Trans-Siberian Railway.The agreement of intent was signed during the Eastern Economic Forum.Using their experience and expertise, the companies are going to work on increasing the volumes of transit cargo shipped with Trans-Siberian Landbridge service launched this summer…

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