BAE Systems Begins Building UK’s Next Warship
BAE Systems said it has begun to build the first of the U.K. Royal Navy’s new Type 26 Global Combat Ships. Sir Michael Fallon MP, U.K. Secretary of State for Defense, visited the builder’s Glasgow shipyard to press the button to officially commence production on the new warship, and during his speech revealed the vessel’s name: Glasgow. This ceremonial event follows the U.K Government’s recent award of a contract worth approximately £3.7 billion for the first three ships to be built at BAE Systems’ sites in Glasgow.
UK Partners to Launch Autonomous Vessels Testing Service
The U.K.'s first maritime autonomous systems testing service is set to launch later this year. BAE Systems said it has been awarded £457,000 (approximately $594,700) in grant funding from the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to design and deliver the U.K.’s first dedicated autonomous systems testing service. Based around Portsmouth, Southampton and the South East of the Isle of Wight, BAE Systems will work with ASV Global (ASV), Blue Bear Systems Research (Blue Bear)…
UK Ship Register Modernization Begins
The UK’s Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA) is modernising the way the UK Ship Register operates and a number of new initiatives are in the works that could help the red ensign become more commercial and internationally competitive, says a report from UK Chamber of Shipping. The MCA is considering increasing the fee structure for the UK Ship Register to above 2016 levels, attendees heard at the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Maritime and Ports on Monday. The registry is working to improve the response time for enquiries to one working day…
Workshops Address Burning Issues in a Changing World
A series of one day NEXT GENERATION Workshops are being held 'back to back' at the Grand Harbor hotel and conference venue overlooking the historic port of Southampton, U.K., October 24-26, 2017. The NEXT GEN program combines a group of dynamic international presenters with panel discussions. Opening sessions for each workshop feature expertise from heads of U.K. Border Force and U.K. Ministry of Defense, along with the Design and Engineering team from U.K. search and rescue provider the RNLI.
New Saudi Arabia Shipyard to be ‘World’s Largest’
Developers of a new shipyard in Saudi Arabia say the facility will be the largest maritime yard in the world providing a range of services, including large shipbuilding, large ship repair, offshore rigs fabrication and offshore support vessel repair. The new facility, a joint venture between state oil giant Saudi Aramco, the National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia, Lamprell and Hyundai Heavy Industries, will be located in the eastern Saudi port of Ras Al-Khair, north of Jubail on the Persian Gulf. It is planned to be fully operational by 2021.
Norwegian Private Equity Firms Target North Sea
Cash-rich Norwegian private equity firms are eyeing up potential North Sea acquisitions, encouraged by proven management teams and reasonable market prices, claims a leading energy expert. Rosalie Chadwick, a partner in legal firm Pinsent Masons, believes the Scots-Nordic alliance will be strengthened in 2014, echoing a number of investments in recent months, but it won’t be one-way traffic. “There is an increased confidence by Norwegian investors in U.K. oil and gas assets,” explained Chadwick.
UK Chamber of Shipping Warns EU Ports on Brexit
The EU is ignoring the risk of Brexit to European ports, the UK Chamber of Shipping has said. Hard border controls will lead to increased bureaucracy and will threaten prosperity. The Chamber warns that the return of border controls would lead to increased bureaucracy, “guaranteed” lorry gridlock and threats to the prosperity of both EU member states and the UK. It also says that the dangers to major EU ports has been understated. Chief executive of the Chamber, Guy Platten said: “The EU sells £240bn of goods to the UK each year, most of which travels through ports.
James Troop Celebrates 150th Anniversary
Liverpool diesel-engine sales and maintenance specialists James Troop & Co is celebrating its landmark 150th anniversary with a surge in new business and export sales. The family-run company based in Runcorn is one of Liverpool’s longest-standing maritime and industrial businesses. It is reporting a 27pc sales hike on last year’s figures between January to June. Growth has steadily been recorded across the board with a notable increase in servicing work, spare parts sales and a massive surge in engine sales.
Skills Shortages Could Scupper UK Energy Plans
Surging demand for energy, an aging workforce and a lack of new entrants to the industry is combining to threaten delivery of the energy strategies of countries worldwide. Addressing delegates at the ‘People: The Real Energy in Oil & Gas’ conference in London, John Westwood, MD of energy business analysts Douglas-Westwood, cited the UK as likely to have particular problems with delivery of its power station replacement and renewable energy plans. “We are seeing an unprecedented demand for energy, driven by China in particular, at the same time as production of oil & gas is reducing in non-OPEC areas such as the UK North Sea. The result is oil prices at record levels and a surge in exploration & production activity, particularly in the Middle East.
Nuclear Submarine Upgrade Avoids UK Job Losses
The £350m contract to refit and refuel HMS Vengeance was confirmed by Defence Secretary Philip Hammond during a visit to Devonport Dockyard in Plymouth. The contract will sustain more than 1,000 jobs at Babcock in Devonport, and a further 300 at other companies in Plymouth. Such is the scale of the refit that another 700 jobs in the industrial supply chain across the UK will also be sustained. HMS Vengeance is one of the UK's four Vanguard Class submarines, designed to carry the UK's Trident nuclear missiles.
Grand Bahama Shipyard Appoints UK Representative
Grand Bahama Shipyard and L&R Midland (UK) Ltd have signed an exclusive agency agreement covering the U.K. markets effective June 1, 2017. Caribbean shipyard Grand Bahama Shipyard (GBS) has engaged L&R Midland (UK) as its representative in the U.K. in what is expected to be an increasingly busy period due to approaching new International Maritime Organization (IMO) regulations that will require ballast water treatment systems (BWTS) and exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) retrofits.
Statoil and Statkraft Acquire Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm
Statoil and Statkraft have acquired the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm project through the acquisition of all shares in Dudgeon Offshore Wind Limited (DOW), a subsidiary of the UK energy company Warwick Energy Limited. Following a successful partnership in developing the Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm off the coast of North Norfolk, Statoil and Statkraft will now work together to develop the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm. The project could deliver many hundreds of jobs during the construction phase and, once in operation, will provide renewable energy to the UK market. Dudgeon has recently received an offshore consent that allows for up to 560 MW of installed generation capacity.
UK P&I Club Announces Increase for 2012
UK P&I Club announces 3 per cent general increase for 2012. The premium rating of all UK P&I Club Members will be increased by three per cent from 20th February 2012. This was agreed by the UK Club’s Directors at their meeting in Athens on 17th October. This decision was taken in response to continuing underlying claims inflation. Although the frequency of claims had reduced significantly in 2009, 2010 and 2011, the average cost per claim has continued to increase over this period.
CMR Group Awarded R&D Funding
CMR Group said it has won funding support from Innovate UK for a new electrical wiring harness being developed for industrial diesel and gas engines used in harsh environments. The firm, which specializes in marine control instrumentation and electrical engineering, is set to invest the five-figure cash sum in a major research and development program to design and develop a new generation of ‘people-centered’ harnesses. An electrical wiring harness is a piece of equipment that forms the backbone of an electronic engine…
Shock Mitigation MD to Swim 1.5 Miles for Heart Foundation
The managing director of Shock Mitigation is aiming to swim 1.5 miles at sea in the historic Pier to Pier event in Bournemouth, U.K. on Sunday, July 16. John Haynes said, “At the NEXT GENERATION Man Overboard Prevention & Recovery Workshop in April 2017 we made a clear statement to commercial and professional maritime organizations that injury prevention is important, but death by drowning or death by exposure to cold is still the prime risk at sea. This reminded me that swimming and self-rescue need to be part of the solution.
Marine Mapping Agreement for Northern Ireland
OceanWise announced that it has been awarded a contract to provide the Government of Northern Ireland with marine mapping. The award reinforces OceanWise as the primary supplier of marine mapping to both the public and private sectors in the U.K. The agreement includes Marine Themes, Marine Themes DEM and Raster Charts XL (eXcluding Land) provided in the form of datasets and as OGC compliant web services. The data will be used to support desktop GIS and as input to web based applications.
New Survey Vessel Ordered for the Port of London
The Port of London Authority (PLA) has ordered a new purpose-built survey catamaran, a CTruk MPC19, due to enter service on the river Thames later this year. The vessel is will replace the PLA’s Yantlet vessel as she reaches the end of her service life, continuing the PLA Hydrography team’s survey work which facilitates safe navigation on the tidal Thames. As the U.K.’s busiest inland waterway, the river is a link for trade, travel and leisure and as home to the U.K.’s second largest port.
UK P&I Club Restructures to Increase Efficiency
The UK P&I Club has announced that it is reorganizing its structure to establish UK Europe as the sole provider of direct insurance to UK Club members. By reducing the number of separately regulated insurers from two to one, the UK Club aims to streamline governance, reduce compliance costs, and manage more efficiently the Club’s solvency capital requirements, while meeting the impending Solvency 2 regulations for insurers in the European Union. Under the new structure, the Bermuda-based UK Club will cease to write direct insurance business. Its existing direct business will transfer to UK Europe. UK Bermuda will become the reinsurer of UK Europe. It will continue to be the holding company controlled by the Club’s Members – i.e., those ship-owners whose vessels are insured by the Club.
UK Chamber: Nascent Recovery to UK Ship Register Welcome
Statistics show an increase in the UK registered trading fleet for the first time in four years, rising by 8%. However, the figures also show a fall of 18% in UK owned tonnage. UK Chamber CEO, Guy Platten has welcomed these signs of nascent recovery in the UK Ship Register, but has expressed concern over the stark decline in the UK owned fleet. The UK managed fleet fell by 1% to 53.4m dwt and parent owned fleet rose by 3% to 31.0m dwt. The annual Shipping Fleet Statistics are produced by the Department for Transport and reflect tonnages as at the end of December 2015.
Will Container Lines Skip UK Ports on Brexit?
British importers and exporters prefer direct mainline container services calling at their national ports and tend to dislike feeder services, says a Drewry report. Is there a risk that a politically isolated UK will no longer benefit from direct vessel calls, particularly as there is no longer any large British container carrier based in the UK to champion their cause? Drewry believes that the container lines will continue to call directly at UK ports. Even if the UK enters a small recession…
UK P&I Club Restructures
Move intended to increase efficiency under Solvency 2. The UK P&I Club has announced that it is reorganising its structure to establish UK Europe as the sole provider of direct insurance to UK Club members. By reducing the number of separately regulated insurers from two to one, the UK Club aims to streamline governance, reduce compliance costs and manage more efficiently the Club’s solvency capital requirements whilst meeting the impending Solvency 2 regulations for insurers in the European Union.
Moore Stephens Warns on VAT Changes
International accountant and shipping consultant Moore Stephens has highlighted an imminent change to VAT rules by the UK government which could have significant implications for the shipping industry. With effect from 1 December 2012, the UK government will remove the VAT registration threshold for non-UK-established businesses, bringing UK law into line with EU law. Businesses without a UK establishment which make taxable supplies of goods or services in the UK will no longer benefit from the UK VAT registration threshold…
Aker Solutions Get Shetlands LNG Contract
Aker Solutions wins three year Total E&P UK & J/V partner Dong E&P UK contract for work on Shetland, Scotland, LNG plants on & offshore. The agreement includes provision of operations, maintenance and services support personnel for Total E&P UK at the new gas plant, which will receive gas from the Laggan and Tormore fields, west of Shetland. The contract is valid for three and a half years with an optional two year extension. It will see the creation of up to 150 positions in support of the contract, both on-site at SGP and onshore in Aberdeen. Contract value is undisclosed.