MSC Cruises Raises EUR 8million for UNICEF
MSC Cruises, the world’s largest privately owned cruise company and leading cruise line in Europe and South America, has announced today that to date it has raised more than €8 million for UNICEF thanks to the generous contributions of its guests. The funds raised are used to provide malnourished children with Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF) such as Plumpy’ Nut and to date more than 6.5 million sachets of RUTF have been delivered to children in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Somalia and Malawi.
Saudi-led Coalition to Reopen Hodeidah Port
The Saudi-led military coalition fighting against the Houthi movement in Yemen said on Wednesday it would allow aid access through the port of Hodeidah and United Nations flights to Sanaa airport. The coalition closed all air, land and sea access to Yemen earlier this month following the interception of a missile fired towards the Saudi capital. It said it had to stem the flow of arms to the Houthis from Iran, seen by Riyadh as the movement's main backers. Aid agencies warned the move would worsen the humanitarian crisis in Yemen where the war has left an estimated seven million people facing famine. "The port of Hodeidah will be reopened to receive food aid and humanitarian relief…
Last Port of Call for the U.S. Merchant Marine?
Part II in a two-part series, continued from the January 2017 edition of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News. Read Part I here. If reliance on the foreign commercial market is risky because of uncertain reliability, then what of U.S. Government ownership of a fleet of vessels? That has also been on the menu since the early 20th century. President Woodrow Wilson proposed in September 1914 that the U.S. Government acquire commercial cargo vessels. Congress disagreed, which delayed enactment of the President’s proposal until the Shipping Act, 1916. A compromise was struck to permit U.S. Government ownership as a war time measure – but all vessels so acquired had to be sold to private owners within five years of the end of the war.
Last Port of Call for the US Merchant Marine?
The privately owned U.S.-flag foreign trading fleet, which is an essential component of U.S. sealift capability, stands on the edge of a precipice. The fleet – roughly stable in terms of cargo carrying capacity from 2000 to 2012 – has declined from 106 vessels in 2012 to 78 vessels at October 30, 2016 primarily because of a substantial decline in available U.S. Government-reserved cargo. The size of the fleet has reached a point where the viability of the U.S.-flag industry involved in foreign trade – including its trained mariners…
Syria Makes Major Wheat Deal with Russia
Syria's state grain buying agency Hoboob struck a deal to purchase one million tonnes of Russian wheat from political ally Russia, covering the needs of government-controlled areas for a year. The Damascus government subsidises bread for the areas it controls ensuring the supply of flat loaves that are a staple for Syrian people. Syria often buys wheat from Russia but this was an unusually large amount for a cheap price. The source said it should cover the government's needs for this year until the next local wheat buying season in 2017. A Syrian government source close to the matter told Reuters Hoboob purchased the wheat at 150 euros ($168) a tonne, on a cost and freight basis, and shipment would be for a year after opening up the letter of credit.
U.N. Ship Brings Aid to Yemen
A ship carrying enough U.N. food aid to feed 180,000 people for a month docked at the Yemeni port of Aden on Tuesday, having waited for almost four weeks, a World Food Programme spokesman said. Aden and the other southern provinces of Yemen have been largely inaccessible to U.N. food aid, and around 13 million people - over half the population - are thought to be in a situation of "critical" or "emergency" food insecurity. "It's the first WFP chartered ship to berth in the port since the conflict erupted in late March," spokesman Peter Smerdon said. Last week WFP negotiated the entry of a convoy of food trucks into Aden province, but said docking a ship was impossible because of fighting raging around the port area.
Croatia Now Protecting World Food Program Vessel
After three months of operating with the European Union Naval Force, a maritime protection team from Serbia handed over its World Food Program (WFP) vessel protection duties to Croatia. The handover ceremony took place on December 28, 2014, in Djibouti. The Serbian team has spent the past three months embarked in WFP vessel, MV MSM Douro, providing protection at sea from pirate attacks along the Somali coast. Members of the Croatian Forces will be embarked in MV MSM Douro for up to four months. Since the EU Naval Force began protecting WFP vessels in 2009, none have been attacked or pirated.
Will Congress Pass Any Maritime Legislation in 2014?
Following its usual summer break over August 2014, Congress came back from its five-week summer recess and spent a whopping eight days or so back in session before recessing once again, approximately a week early, to hit the campaign trail for the November elections. This essentially means that including the summer recess, Congress will have been in session for a total of about eight days between the end of July and the middle of November 2014. No wonder why Congress has not been able to accomplish much this year, to date.
NY-Area Seafarers to Join MM&P
New York Harbor Tug Boat Captains and Crews, Staten Island Ferry Workers, Circle Line and Other Tourist Boat Crews Vote to Join New Union. New York-area watermen who operate tugboats, dredges, tourist boats and ferries, members of Staten Island-based Local 333, have voted by an overwhelming margin to support a merger between Local 333 and the Maryland-based International Organization of Masters, Mates and Pilots. By a more than 2 to 1 margin, 1,300 New York and New Jersey mariners voted to affiliate with the larger national union of deck officers who serve on ocean-going ships…
MM&P Hopes to Pad Ranks with Brown Water Mariners
Uniting with the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots will bring added clout, resources and training to local mariners and open the door to opportunities beyond the East Coast, the union said. Ballots are arriving in the mail this week at the homes of 1,300 area mariners for an election to decide whether local watermen will join a large national union of deck officers who serve on ocean-going ships, and which also represents captains and crews on inland waterways beyond New York Harbor. Ballots will be tabulated and results announced in mid-November.
Demand for Coastal and Transoceanic ATBs Grows
Along the way, ATBs gain speed, efficiency, safety – and popularity. Operators of articulated tugs and barges, or ATBs, say they like the maneuverability, weather reliability, stability, speed of these units, and the manner in which the tug pushes the barge. As a marine transportation concept, they can also simply be described as versatile. ATBs move petroleum, chemicals, coal, grain, containerized cargo and rail cars for customers on the U.S. coasts, rivers, the Great Lakes and overseas. As a result, demand for articulated units expanded in the last two decades with new technology.
Foss Maritime Celebrates 125th Anniversary
Seattle's Foss Maritime, a company that has evolved from a single rowboat into one of the world's leading marine transportation and harbor services companies, informs that it celebrates its 125th anniversary this year. The company was founded in Tacoma, Washington by Thea Foss in 1889, and now serves customers around the world, operating over 130 vessels and employing 1,500 people. "We have great and strong traditions here at Foss, and the hard work and creative thinking of our employees has propelled us to where we are today," said Paul Stevens, Foss president and CEO.
Warship Helps Food Aid Reach Kismayo
On Wednesday, December 11, Spanish EU Naval Force (EU NAVFOR) ship ESPS Tornado completed a three-day escort of a World Food Program (WFP) chartered vessel. The WFP ship was escorted by ESPS Tornado from Mombasa to the port of Kismayo in Somalia. During the escort, members of the Spanish Navy crew remained on constant look-out, with the ship’s helicopter ready to launch at short notice to help deter any pirate attack. During the first day of the escort, ESPS Tornado’s Executive Officer and the Boarding Officer visited the WFP vessel to meet the ship’s captain and his crew.
UK 'Floating Warehouse' Still Active in Philippine Relief
The Royal Navy’s amphibious aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious arrived in the Philippines on 25 November, 2013, after a short stop in Singapore to load up 500 tonnes of humanitarian aid under the direction of the UK Department for International Development (DFID). Teams of personnel have been working 24-hours-a-day in her hangar to sort and pack the much needed supplies, ready for distribution ashore, and the flight deck has been operating constantly since the 23,000-tonne ship arrived.
China Warship Escorts Somali Food Aid Ship
'CNS Mianyang' takes over escort duties of a World Food Programme (WFP) aid ship from Italian warship 'ITS Zeffiro'. The Italian warship had been escorting the WFP vessel since she entered the pirate High Risk Area in the Western Indian Ocean a few days earlier. At an agreed location, CNS Mianyang took over the duty to escort through the Gulf of Aden to Djibouti. The WFP ship being due to arrive in the African port shortly. Speaking about the cooperation between the European Union and the Chinese Navy…
USA Maritime Applauds Continuation of 'Food for Peace' Program
USA Maritime praises the House of Representatives for rejecting the Royce-Engel amendment that would have dramatically altered the existing PL 480 Food for Peace Program. The action in the House, according to USA Maritime Chairman James Henry, “Demonstrates a clear recognition that this cornerstone of America’s foreign aid programs is not only the most successful in addressing world hunger but provides numerous important economic and national security benefits to the American people.
Dr. Shashi Kumar
We had the privilege to pick the brain of Dr. Shashi Kumar (right) a Master Mariner, Fulbright Senior Specialist Fellow and Professor Emeritus of International Business and Logistics, for his take on a wide range of maritime matters near and far. A market boom starting in 2014? The long-term effects of Sequestration? A ‘cap’ on the size of ships? He covers it all. This maritime economy has been bad for a number of years. Put in perspective the downturn now vs. traditional downturns. That’s a very good question.
Maersk Buys, Reflags, Container Ships for US Trade
Maersk Line has purchased & is reflagging 8 newer and larger containerships to upgrade services provided to its U.S. military, government and commercial customers. MLL's investment of approximately half a billion dollars in eight vessels will improve the quality of service to the Middle East and Mediterranean Sea from the U.S. East Coast. Since 2000, MLL has invested over $1.75 billion dollars to modernize its fleet in support of the U.S. government and military. The vessels are about 10 years younger than the outgoing ships, offering improved fuel efficiency and environmental performance.
Maersk Invests in Eight American Vessels
Maersk Line, Limited (MLL) purchased and is currently reflagging eight newer and larger containerships to upgrade the ocean transportation services provided to its U.S. military, government and commercial customers. MLL’s investment of approximately half a billion dollars in eight vessels will improve the quality of service to the Middle East and Mediterranean Sea from the U.S. East Coast. Since 2000, MLL has invested over $1.75 billion dollars to modernize its fleet in support of the U.S. government and military.
Proposed Changes to 'Food for Peace' Program Resisted
USA Maritime, a coalition of ship owning companies, maritime labor organizations & maritime trade associations states its position. USA Maritime Chairman James L. Henry corrects reports about the efficacy of the U.S. Merchant Marine in delivering U.S. food aid and to comment on the detrimental effects of proposed changes to the Food for Peace Program (PL 480) offered in the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2014 budget. “The United States is the largest provider of nutrition to the hungry and undernourished, contributing about 60 percent of the world’s food aid.
MEBE Calls for Protection of Food Peace Program Jobs
The Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association (M.E.B.A.) calls for continued funding of the Food for Peace (PL 480) & Food for Progress programs. MEBA stands with 21 U.S. Senators and its United States maritime industry partners in protecting thousands of U.S. maritime and agricultural jobs by calling for continued funding of the Food for Peace (PL 480) and Food for Progress programs. These programs, administered by the U.S. Agency for International Development, create necessary cargo for the U.S.-Flag shipping industry through the delivery of vital overseas food assistance. Recently, M.E.B.A. learned that the Obama Administration is considering major budgetary changes to these programs…
MEBA Calls for Food For Peace Funding
The Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association calls for the protection of U.S. maritime and agricultural jobs. The Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association (M.E.B.A.) stands with 21 U.S. Senators and its United States maritime industry partners in protecting thousands of U.S. maritime and agricultural jobs by calling for continued funding of the Food for Peace (PL 480) and Food for Progress programs. These programs, administered by the U.S. Agency for International Development, create necessary cargo for the U.S.-Flag shipping industry through the delivery of vital overseas food assistance. Recently, M.E.B.A. learned that the Obama Administration is considering major budgetary changes to these programs…
Cummings, Landry Lead Effort to Save American Maritime Jobs
SEAS Act to Repeal Section 100124 of Highway Bill. U.S. Representatives Elijah E. Cummings (D, MD-07) and Jeff Landry (R, LA-03) today introduced the Saving Essential American Sailors (SEAS) Act, H.R. 6170, which would ensure American food aid is transported by American workers. The bill repeals Section 100124 of the highway bill, MAP-21. Additional original co-sponsors include Congress members Nick Rahall (D, WV-03), Rick Larsen (D, WA-02), Bennie Thompson (D, MS-02), Colleen Hanabusa (D…