AIDA Prima on Fire - Third Time!
AIDA Prima, a new ship for Carnival Corp.'s AIDA Cruises brand, was damaged by a fire early Sunday at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd.’s shipyard in Nagasaki, the Japan Times reports. The fire reportedly was quickly extinguished by workers, with no injuries. Citing police and firefighters, local media said a worker found cardboard and insulation materials burning. The fire, which is the third to strike at the shipyard in January, is reportedly being investigated as an arson. It follows an electrical fire near a theater space on January 11…
Australia Submarine Contract Award in Final Stage
The Australian government has begun its final evaluation of bids from Japan, Germany and France to choose the maker of its next-generation submarine and is expected to make its decision by the end of June, reports the Japan Times. The navy's new submarine fleet could reportedly cost taxpayers at least $5 billion less than expected, secret price estimates given to Defence by three international competitors show. The confidential bids lodged by Germany, France and Japan offer a much lower cost of building an eight-submarine fleet in Adelaide than was anticipated…
India May Add Japanese Soryu-Class Submarines to its Fleet
India is reportedly considering a project to incorporate six Japanese Soryu-class diesel-electric submarines into its fleet, says The Japan Times. The Defense Minister of India Manohar Parrikar has expressed his readiness to consider acquiring Soryu-class diesel-electric submarines used by the Maritime Self-Defense Force. The reports in Indian media say it is not a purchasing plan. The proposal was sent asking the Japanese Government to 'consider the possibility' of building the six stealth submarines in India.
Imabari Stands Strong
During the second half of the 20th century, the Japanese ruled commercial shipbuilding. Today, numerous competitive forces in the Far East, led by South Korea and China, have continued to throw massive resources into building and maintaining modern shipbuilding dominance, so much so that it may seem as though the days of Japanese shipbuilding have passed for good. “Any single shipbuilder in Japan cannot fulfill a large-scale order, for example, for 10 ships,” an industry official told the Japan Times last September. Imabari Shipbuilding disagrees.
Japan Delivers 2 Used Ships to Vietnam
Japan delivered on Tuesday two used ships to the Vietnamese Coast Guard to help the Southeast Asian country strengthen maritime security, reports the Japan Times. The two 600-ton vessels, provided in a ceremony in the city of Da Nang, will be refurbished into patrol boats in disputed waters of the South China Sea. The ships are the second delivery of a 2014 deal for Tokyo to provide Vietnam with six used fishing vessels that will be converted into patrol ships for Vietnam's coast guard and fisheries ministry.
Japan, China to Quick Launch Maritime Communication Mechanism
Japanese and Chinese defense ministers agreed that an early launch of a maritime communication mechanism and defense exchanges are important for the countries to prevent accidental clashes in their first such talks since June 2011, reports Japan Times. Japanese Defense Minister Gen Nakatani met with Chinese counterpart Chang Wanquan in Kuala Lumpur, the first meeting between the two nations' defense ministers in nearly four and a half years. However, they declined to say if they discussed China’s contentious moves in the disputed South China Sea.
Modi's Indian Ocean Outreach to Keep Chinese Submarines at Bay
As the Indian Ocean theatre becomes an increasing site of global contestation, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi heads to three small neighboring Indian Ocean nations Tuesday to deepen India’s maritime security. Modi is to visit Seychelles, Mauritius and Sri Lanka. Voice of America says that Modi seeks to ramp up New Delhi’s influence along a strategic maritime route where China’s presence has been growing. Japan Times reports that he wants to prevent China from establishing a military foothold in a region his nation has dominated for decades.
Dryad Maritime Welcomes Japanese Plans
Dryad Maritime, a U.K. commercial maritime intelligence company, welcomed the Japanese government’s plans to submit a bill to the National Diet which will permit the carriage of armed guards on Japanese-flagged vessels but advise that a number of other precautions must also be taken. The Japan Times last week reported on Japanese government plans to submit a bill to the National Diet that would permit armed guards to operate on Japanese ships given the view that their presence on other vessels in waters off Somalia has led to a sharp fall in piracy. Current Japanese law prohibits Japan-registered ships from carrying armed private citizens. If this proposed legislation is approved Japanese ships will be permitted to employ private security contractors to provide armed guards.
Japanese Shipbuilders Discuss Business Integration
Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. and Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. began preliminary discussion on potential business integration, Japan Times reported. The two companies are expected to take multiple integration formats into consideration, including an outright merger. But sources told Japan Times that some wariness remains within the firms about any form of integration that could cause the talks to undergo several twists and turns. Integration would attempt to place the companies closer to their Asian rivals in terms of orders, an area many Japan shipbuilders have been lagging in during the industry’s hard times. “If the integration goes through…
Confident Korea Shipbuilder to Raise Price of Fuel-Savvy Ships
Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., the world’s biggest shipbuilder, plans to raise prices as demand for fuel-efficient vessels increases, reports the Japan News, citing Bloomberg, Singapore. Hyundai Heavy’s optimism helped drive up shares of South Korean shipbuilders Monday and contrasts with gloom over Chinese shipbuilders. A third of China’s yards may shut down in about five years as they struggle to win orders, an unamed industry group informed Japan Times. About 483 shipyards in China won $10.5 billion worth of orders in the first six months of this year, while 94 builders in South Korea got $18.5 billion, says the Japan Times citing Clarkson PLC.
Ships Collide off South Japan
At least three people were reported killed and rescue crews were searching for 13 crew members missing after a Hong Kong freighter and a Chinese fishing boat collided off southern , the Japan Times reported . The boats collided Friday night in the East China Sea, west of the southern , according to the reports. The reports said the fishing boat sank quickly after the collision and two of its crew were rescued. Source: M&C
Satellite to Monitor Arctic Shipping Lanes
The 10-kg cube-shaped satellite, jointly developed by Tokyo-based AXELSPACE Corp.and Weathernews, is scheduled to be launched from the Yasny Cosmodrome in Russia on Sept. 28. It will be the first attempt by a private company to use a satellite to monitor ice in the Arctic Ocean, reports the Japan Times. Weathernews plans to use the data to provide navigational information to commercial vessels plying the Arctic Ocean during the summer. The service will become available starting in summer 2013. Eleven vessels used the route in 2010 and 34 ships used it in 2011, spokesman Hitoki Ito told The Japan Times, adding the route does not remain navigable on a regular basis.
Japan Gains Edge in Australia Submarine Deal
Australia and Japan appear to be inching closer to an agreement on the sale the top-secret technology from Japan to build a fleet of new generation submarines. Size, technology and stealth are proving too great a draw for Canberra. Australia is considering buying top-secret technology from Japan to build a fleet of next-generation submarines, a move that would risk reigniting diplomatic tensions with China that have only recently died down, says a report in Japan Times. China and Japan are competing to build up their domestic arms industries, and for China, the export of Japanese military technology is particularly sensitive given their wartime history and territorial disputes.
Japan Shipbuilder Launches First Ship Following Tsunami Disaster
Yamanishi Corp, located in Tsumami disaster zone, Miyagi Prefecture, launches its first ship 20 months after the destruction. A 695-ton training ship built by Yamanishi Corp. has been officially launched at the firm's shipyard in Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture. The disasters cost the company around ¥12 billion. With only ¥1.5 billion in subsidies from the government, the company managed to stay afloat with cooperation from shipbuilders in other parts of Japan, including firms in Shizuoka, Hyogo and Hiroshima prefectures, reports The Japan Times. Yamanishi was able to draw up a rehabilitation plan in February, under the government-backed Enterprise Turnaround Initiative Corp. of Japan. The plan included a debt waiver of some ¥7.9 billion, covering 99 percent of the company's total debts.
Water-Treatment Companies Searched Over Bid-rigging
More than 10 major water-treatment plant makers, including Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., were searched Tuesday by the Fair Trade Commission on suspicion of repeatedly rigging bids for contracts from local governments, as reported by the Japan Times. Also raided were Sumitomo Heavy Industries Ltd., JFE Engineering Corp., Kubota Corp., Ebara Corp., Hitachi Zosen Corp., Takuma Co. and Ataka Construction and Engineering Co. Most of the companies confirmed they were being searched by the antimonopoly watchdog but declined comment on the reason. The firms are suspected of conspiring to select bid winners and fix bid prices for contracts for building water-treatment plants…
Deep-Sea Drilling Ship Delivered to Marine Agency
The deep-sea vessel Chikyu, which will be used to drill to the deepest depths ever to shed light on the mysteries beneath the planet's crust, was delivered to the marine science agency Friday, the Japan Times reported. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., which built the research vessel, held a delivery ceremony at its dockyard in Nagasaki. The 210-meter, 57,087-ton ship is theoretically capable of drilling 7,000 meters below the seabed. The Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology plans to open the vessel to the public in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, in September after fine-tuning its equipment in August. The ship, which is equipped with a 130-meter-high drilling platform, will depart for its first drilling mission off the Shimokita Peninsula in Aomori next summer.