Far East News

20 May 2020

China to Europe Container Spot Rates in Rare Reversal -BIMCO

© urbans78 / Adobe Stock

Throughout April, container shipping spot freight rates on the back-haul trade from North Europe to China were higher than those on the front-haul trade from China to North Europe. This is a rare occurrence that has developed in the wake of the massive supply chain disruptions in the world’s top manufacturing hub due to the COVID-19 outbreak, causing aftershocks across the Far East.“A reversal of front-haul and back-haul spot freight rates is a rare event. Especially on a high-volume main trade route like the Far East to Europe…

14 May 2020

Tax Quirk Sees Russia Buy Diesel From China and S.Korea

Port of Nakhodka  © alexhitrov/ Adobe Stock

Rare cargoes of diesel from China and South Korea have started to arrive in Russia due to a quirk in Russia's tax system which is making fuel shipments from abroad more profitable, data from traders and Refinitiv Eikon showed on Thursday.Because of a local tax scheme, Russian oil firms are due to make higher payments to the government despite a slump in oil prices due to excess supplies and the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.That means the companies have little incentive to cut domestic retail prices for gasoline and diesel.But with prices lower on the global market…

13 May 2020

Russia's Zvezda Launches Its First Ever Newbuild

Aframax tanker Vladimir Monomakh is the first vessel to be built at Russia's new Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex (Photo: Rosneft)

Russia's Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex said it has launched its very first newbuild, a 114,000 dwt dual-fuel tanker for oil company Rosneft.The milestone vessel Vladimir Monomakh is the first Aframax ever to be built in Russia and is one of 12 currently on order at the yard, which is owned by a Rosneft-led consortium.The Vladimir Monomakh was launched using Zvezda's unique Vympel floating transfer dock, which enables the longitudinal launching of ships up to 300 metres in long and…

30 Apr 2020

LNG Carriers Build Up Around Virus-hit Europe

© Maciej Bledowski / Adobe Stock

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes are piling up off the shores of Europe as the coronavirus pandemic severely disrupts gas demand, leading to delays in tanker discharges and a rise in the number of vessels used as floating storage, analysts said.Lockdowns due to the virus have led to a slump in industrial gas consumption worldwide, reducing demand for LNG and causing cargo deferrals, delays and cancellations, initially reflected by a build up of floating cargoes in the Far East and India.Despite some vessels managing to unload as lockdowns ease…

24 Apr 2020

World's Largest Containership HMM Algeciras Launched

HMM Algeciras (Photo: HMM)

South Korean ocean carrier HMM held a naming ceremony for the newly constructed 24,000 TEU-class containership HMM Algeciras, the world’s largest containership, at the Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering’s (DMSE) Okpo shipyard in Geoje, Korea.The 399.9-meter HMM Algeciras is the first of a dozen 24,000 TEU-class vessels scheduled to be delivered this year, and takes the "world's largest" title from the 23,656 TEU Gülsün-Class ships owned by Mediterranean Shipping Co (MSC).In September 2018…

24 Apr 2020

Container Shipping Capacity Down 11% in April -eeSea

© Marek Slusarczyk / Adobe Stock

A total of 302 of 2,693 containership sailings, or 11%, have been canceled in May on all the main line trades, according to the latest data from maritime intelligence company eeSea, revealing the extent of the impact of COVID-19 on global shipping.In the first six months of 2020, a total of 1,675 sailings have been canceled, or 11%; which comes out at 13% for 2M, 17% for Ocean Alliance and 17% for THE Alliance, while only 8% of non-alliance sailings have been canceled.However, the number of sailings alone only tells part of the story.

14 Apr 2020

Record Oil Output Cuts Fail to Make Waves in Coronavirus-hit Market

© Emmanuel Campos / Adobe Stock

The minimal impact on oil prices from a global deal for record output cuts showed that oil producers have a mountain to climb if they are to restore market balance as the coronavirus shreds demand and sends stockpiles soaring, industry watchers said.After several days of discussions, oil producing and consuming countries aim to remove nearly 20 million barrels per day (bpd) or 20% of global supply from the market, Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said on Monday.The oil market has barely shrugged, however: Brent crude gained 1.5% on Monday, while U.S.

08 Apr 2020

Coronavirus Disrupts Supply of Ships and Demand -BIMCO

© Carabay / Adobe Stock

The coronavirus outbreak has affected all aspects of the shipping industry, lowering, if not wiping out, demand growth prospects for the year across all segments. The outbreak has also affected fleet development, says shipping association BIMCO.Contracting activity has fallen, demolition activity, which had been high, is now being limited by restrictions around the world and deliveries of new vessels are delayed.“The coronavirus has certainty replaced the IMO 2020 sulphur regulation as the talking point of the year.

31 Mar 2020

Contracted Rates to Fall Long-term Due to Conoravirus -Xeneta

Patrik Berglund (Photo: Xeneta)

The container shipping segment appears to have caught coronavirus, with the industry suffering its first monthly fall in long-term contracted ocean freight rates since October 2019. According to the latest XSI Public Indices report from Xeneta, March 2020 saw a small dip of 0.5% in rates after a sustained period of growth. Although these symptoms look mild, the future is characterized by growing uncertainty, with widespread economic disruption and looming global recession likely…

20 Feb 2020

Baltic Index Gains for Fifth Session

© yaniv /Adobe Stock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index rose for the fifth straight session on Thursday, supported by an uptick in demand across all vessel segments.The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels that ferry dry bulk commodities, rose 15 points, or 3.2%, to 480.The capesize index gained for a third straight session, up 9 points but still at -232."The worst may just about be over for the big ships," ship broker Fearnleys said in a note on Wednesday."Average nominal daily earnings still admittedly unchanged w-o-w…

19 Feb 2020

Russian Exports to China Fall Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Russia's export volumes to China fell by more than a quarter in the first 1-1/2 months of 2020 as China grappled with the coronavirus epidemic, Russia's Izvestia newspaper cited the customs service as saying on Wednesday.Moscow has imposed various restrictions on travel to China, its biggest trade partner, to stop the spread of the virus and said on Tuesday it would not allow Chinese citizens to enter Russia from Feb. 20.Russian exports to China fell 27.6% year on year from Jan. 1 to Feb. 10, the Federal Customs Service in Russia's Far East was cited as saying. In the first 10 days of February, exports halved from 237,000 tonnes to 118…

16 Feb 2020

Vado Gateway Welcomes First Ship

Image: APM Terminals

APM Terminals said that its new deep-sea container terminal, Vado Gateway terminal, located in Vado Ligure, Italy, received its first commercial service on 11 February 2020.The ship, M/V Maersk Kota, was the first of seven ships from Maersk’s weekly ME2 service, connecting the Mediterranean with the Middle East and India.According to a company release, the call by M/V Maersk Kota marked the start of operations for the new deep-sea Vado Gateway container terminal in northern Italy.With a total investment of 450 million euros…

07 Feb 2020

Four More Icebreaking LNG Carriers for Smart LNG

Smart LNG LLC, a joint venture of Sovcomflot and Novatek, signed an agreement with VEB.RF Group for lease financing of four Arc7 icebreaking LNG carriers for the Arctic LNG 2 project. At the same time, SMART LNG signed long-term time charter agreements for these tankers with Arctic LNG 2 LLC.The vessels will be built at Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex in the Russian Far East. Earlier, in October 2019, SCF Group signed financing and long-term time charter agreements for the lead vessel in this series.The design of the series draws upon the experience of operating Christophe de Margerie, the world’s first icebreaking LNG carrier, introduced in 2017. This led to the integration of various advanced engineering solutions into the design.

05 Feb 2020

India to Buy Russian Crude Oil

Vladimir Putin Introduces the Largest Shipyard in Russia to Narendra Modi. Photo: Rosneft

Russian oil and gas giant Rosneft has signed a contract with India’s largest fuel retailer Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) for supply of 2 million tonne (MT) crude oil to India by end 2020.The Moscow-headquartered integrated energy company said in a press release that the oil will be shipped to the refiner via the port of Novorossiysk.The signing took place during the visit of the Chief Executive Officer of Rosneft Igor Sechin to New Delhi. During this visit, a working meeting was also held with Dharmendra Pradhan…

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…

Maritime Reporter E-News subscription

Maritime Reporter E-News is the maritime industry's largest circulation and most authoritative ENews Service, delivered to your Email five times per week

Subscribe for Maritime Reporter E-News