Mediterranean News

16 Jan 2020

Kalmar Delivers MCT 200th Straddle Carrier

Image: Kalmar

Kalmar, a provider of cargo-handling solutions and services to ports and terminals, and Italy's Medcenter Container Terminal (MCT), are celebrating the delivery of the terminal's 200th straddle carrier.Both companies participated in a joint event on 15 January in recognition of their long-standing partnership.Located in the southern Italian port of Gioia Tauro, MCT is a megaport able to handle the largest vessels deployed on Asia-Mediterranean routes. The terminal has handled more than 50 million TEUs since it opened in September 1995.Antonio Davide Testi…

06 Jan 2020

Tankers Flock to US as Freight Rates Surge

© DJ / MarineTraffic.com

A flotilla of oil tankers is sailing empty from Europe and the Mediterranean toward the U.S. Gulf Coast to take advantage of surging shipping rates, according to shipping sources and Refinitiv Eikon data on Monday.Eight tankers, an unusually high number, are in the Atlantic and steaming to the United States, with capacity of up to 5.6 million barrels of oil combined, the people said. Freight rates for Aframax vessels out of the U.S. Gulf coast hit record levels last month, drawing…

06 Jan 2020

Egypt Reopens Two Mediterranean Ports

© Lukasz Z / Adobe Stock

Egypt on Saturday reopened the harbors of two of its Mediterranean ports, Alexandria and Dekheila, which had been shut due to bad weather, the Alexandria Port Authority said.The harbors were shut on Friday due to high waves and wind speeds, preventing ships from entering or leaving the ports, though loading and unloading within the ports was continuing normally, the authority said in a statement.The port authorities on Saturday ordered moored ships to enter the harbors according to their mooring order, it added.(Reporting by Ahmed Salem in Alexandria, writing by Mahmoud Mourad; Editing by Toby

05 Jan 2020

Energean, DEPA Pact for EastMed Pipeline

Image: Energean

UK-based international oil and gas exploration and production company Energean Oil & Gas and the Public Gas Corporation of Greece (DEPA) have agreed to cooperate to further support the EastMed Pipeline Project.The have signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) for the potential sale and purchase of 2 BCM natural gas per annum from Energean’s gas fields offshore Israel, where Energean is investing $1.7 billion for the development of the Karish & Tanin fields through the FPSO “Energean Power”.DEPA…

03 Jan 2020

Egypt Shuts Two Med Ports Due to Bad Weather

© remipiotrowski / Adobe Stock

Egypt on Friday closed the harbors of two of its Mediterranean ports, Alexandria and Dekheila, due to bad weather, the Alexandria Port Authority said.The harbors were shut due to high waves and wind speeds, preventing ships from entering or leaving the ports, though loading and unloading within the ports was continuing normally, the authority said in a statement. (Reporting by Ahmed Salem in Alexandria Writing by Aidan Lewis; editing by David Evans)

03 Jan 2020

Costa Smeralda Floated Out

Image: Costa Cruises

Italian cruise line Costa Cruises said that Costa Smeralda is the first ship in the Costa fleet to be fueled by liquefied natural gas (LNG). "This is a step change for the cruise industry as a whole, guaranteeing a substantially reduced environmental impact," it said."Costa Smeralda is the first ship in the Costa fleet to be powered both in port and at sea by LNG, meaning improved air quality and protecting the environment with the virtual elimination of sulfur dioxide emissions (zero emissions) and particulate matter (95-100% reduction).

26 Dec 2019

Storm Beaches Merchant Ship in Israel

(Photo: Ashdod Municipality)

A cargo ship drifted onto a beach in southern Israel on Thursday after heavy winds and stormy weather forced the vessel away from its anchor point near the port of Ashdod.The 90 meter-long Zelek Star was carrying cement and other goods from Greece to Israel when it was swept away and approached Oranim Beach, officials said. The beach's sandy Mediterranean shoreline is popular with residents and tourists.Photos showed locals walking along the beach with the 14 meter-high vessel towering over them in the background…

24 Dec 2019

Ferry Stena Estrid Completes Sea Trials

Image Credit: STENA

Stena Line’s "next-generation" ferry Stena Estrid has arrived in Holyhead after completing sea trials and a five-week, 10,000 mile journey from China to the Irish Sea where she will begin service early next year on her inaugural route from Dublin to Holyhead.Designed by Deltamarin and constructed at the China Merchants Jinling Shipbuilding Weihai Shipyard in China, Stena Estrid is the first of Stena RoRo’s nine next-generation E-Flexer Ro-Pax vessels in a series which include five for Stena Line and several additional vessels that will be on long-term charter for other ferry operators.

20 Dec 2019

MSC Re-Routes Cargos Due to French Strikes

Photo: Maersk

Swiss headquartered container shipping company MSC said on Friday it was implementing contingency plans to re-route container ships away from French ports when necessary due to strikes in the country."MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company is closely monitoring the situation in France where industrial action by labour unions is impacting maritime ports and overland transportation networks around the country," an MSC spokesman said.MSC said it would resume normal services to France as soon as possible. (Reporting by Jonathan Saul and Gus Trompiz; Writing by Maya Nikolaeva; Editing by David Clarke)

20 Dec 2019

Harvey CEO Acquires Harvey’s Interest in QLNG

Shane Guidry, CEO of Harvey Gulf International Marine

Shane Guidry, CEO of Harvey Gulf International Marine, has announced he has purchased Harvey’s 30 percent ownership in Quality Liquefied Natural Gas Transport (QLNG). The CEO previously owned 70 percent of QLNG with Harvey and now controls 100 percent.In connection with the announcement, Mr. Guidry commented: “QLNG didn’t quite fit into Harvey’s core business and future. At Harvey, we are focused on growing globally, which we’ve done over the last 12 months. Today, we have vessels working in Mexico, Trinidad, Peru, Guyana, Suriname, USA and Nigeria.

17 Dec 2019

Russia to Invest $500 mln in Syrian Port

© Alexey Lesik / Adobe Stock

Russia plans to invest $500 million in the Syrian port of Tartus and build a grain hub there to boost its presence on Middle East markets, Interfax news agency cited Deputy Prime Minister Yury Borisov as saying on Tuesday.Russia, the world's largest wheat exporter, has stepped up grain supplies to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in recent years since Moscow's 2015 military intervention on his behalf in Syria's civil war.Construction of the necessary infrastructure at the port…

17 Dec 2019

Turkey Launches Oil Exploration Drone

© jules / Adobe Stock

A Turkish drone meant to help seek hydrocarbons in the eastern Mediterranean landed at an airport on the divided island of Cyprus on Monday, a Turkish official said, in a move that could further stoke tensions between Turkey and Greece.The breakaway Turkish Cypriot cabinet on Friday designated the Gecitkale airport on the island as a base for both unarmed and armed unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) at the request of the Turkish government, the Demiroren news agency (DHA) said.Cyprus, an EU member, was divided in a Turkish invasion in 1974 triggered by a brief Greek-inspired coup.

12 Dec 2019

Vado Gateway Container Terminal Opened

Image: APM Terminals

The international container terminal operating company APM Terminals (APMT) said it has opened a new container terminal in Vado Ligure, on the Italian Riviera, which will be capable of handling 900,000 TEUs of containerized cargo.APMT has a 50.1% share in the “Vado Gateway,” while Cosco Shipping Ports has a 40% share and Qingdao Port International has a 9.9% share. APMT said the project is part of the “New Silk Road.” Chinese firms have invested in more than a dozen European ports…

08 Dec 2019

MSC Uses 30% Biofuel Bunker Blend

Image: MSC

Swiss-Italian international shipping line MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) announced that its vessels bunkering in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, will now bunker biofuel blends on a routine basis - the first  major shipping line to do so.Following successful trials with biofuel blends earlier this year, MSC has decided to continue bunkering responsibly sourced biofuel blends on a routine basis.The trials were completed with a minimal 10% blend fuel and following further trials…

08 Dec 2019

Offshore: OSV Market Report

Photo courtesy Ulstein Group/Marius Beck Dahle

The environment in oil patches onshore and offshore alike has been challenging throughout 2019; worries about an economic slowdown – whether cyclical or induced by a trade war – have weighed heavily on oil prices, even in the face of reduced production by the big producers. Though storm clouds persist, there appears a clearing on the horizon.The fate of Offshore Service Vessels (OSVs) is, naturally, closely tied to the price of oil. Seacor Marine’s John Gellert, in reviewing its Q2 results, said: “Activity levels in the U.S.

05 Dec 2019

Tankers Running on Fumes as Shipping Fuel Switch Causes Delays

© Suriyapong / Adobe Stock

Disruption to shipping from the long-anticipated switch to more environmentally friendly marine fuels has finally arrived, exacerbated by logistical problems as much as any shortage of the cleaner fuel.New International Maritime Organization (IMO) rules, referred to as IMO 2020, aim to stop ships from using fuels containing more than 0.5% sulphur unless they are equipped with exhaust-cleaning systems known as scrubbers.From the start of January ships must load very low sulphur…

04 Dec 2019

Total, MOL Charter LNG Bunker Vessel

Navire avitailleur GNL 3D LNG bunkering vessel (Photo: Total)

Total Marine Fuels Global Solutions (TMFGS) and , Ltd. (MOL) have signed a long-term charter contract for a second large LNG bunker vessel, to be delivered in 2021. She will be positioned in the Marseille-Fos area in France.This bunker vessel will be built by Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding in China. She will have a capacity of 18,600 m³ for a length of about 135 meters and will be fitted with the Mark III membrane containment system provided by French company GTT.This vessel has been specifically designed to supply LNG bunker in the Mediterranean area to a wide range of vessels…

04 Dec 2019

CMA CGM and Total to Develop LNG Ship Refueling in Marseille

© saiko3p / Adobe Stock

Container shipping firm CMA CGM will use the French Mediterranean port of Marseille for refueling some of its planned gas-powered vessels, backed by a supply partnership with energy group Total.Total will supply liquefied natural gas (LNG) and a refueling barge to enable CMA CGM to refuel LNG-powered vessels at the Marseille-Fos hub starting in 2021, the companies said in a joint statement on Wednesday.The initiative covers five vessels with a capacity of 15,000 twenty-foot equivalent…

03 Dec 2019

Unifeeder Acquires Feedertech

Jesper Kristensen. Image courtesy: Unifeeder A/S

Denmark’s Short-sea operator Unifeeder , part of the global port operator DP World, has acquired a 77% stake in The Feedertech Group, a Singapore-based feeder and shortsea operator.The Group’s Chairman, Ali Maghami, will retain the remaining 23% shareholding.Established in 2003, the Group operates two companies; Feedertech, which is a feedering service and Perma, a regional shortsea network. Both operate in the same market and connect the fast-growing trade route of Asia-Middle…

03 Dec 2019

CMA CGM Initiates Global Energy Coalition

Photo: CMA CGM

Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the French container transportation and shipping company CMA CGM Group recommended that French President Emmanuel Macron initiate an international coalition for the energy transition of the transportation sector whose priority will be to develop a more competitive and less carbon-intensive energy source.Rodolphe Saadé stressed the need to improve the cooperation of all those working on near-term solutions to replace fossil fuels in the transportation and logistics sectors.The French President accepted to actively support this initiative…

02 Dec 2019

Death Toll from Lampedusa Shipwreck Rises

The bodies of five migrants who died when a boat capsized in rough waters off the southern Lampedusa coast a week ago have been found, Italy's coast guard said on Sunday, bringing the overall death toll to 18.The boat, which survivors said had departed from Libya taking advantage of a respite in bad weather, was believed to carry some 170 people. The Lampedusa coast guard managed to bring safely onshore 147 migrants after the accident on Nov. 23.After the new bout of bad weather blocked search operations for several days, on Sunday six coast guard divers helped by a remotely-operated submarine found four bodies underwater and a fifth one floating."We can only listen to the silence of the dead…

02 Dec 2019

Stena Estrid Begins 10K Mile Journey from China Shipyard

Image: Stena Line

European ferry operator Stena Line announced that its newest ferry Stena Estrid has departed the AVIC Weihai Shipyard in north-western China, bound for its new home on the Irish Sea between Britain and Ireland.Manned by a much-reduced crew of 27, with no passengers on board, the ship will travel on a journey of well over 10,000 miles, taking just over one month and making a number of stops on the way.Stena Estrid is the first of five next generation Stena Line RoPax vessels to…

02 Dec 2019

AIDAmira Christened

Image: AIDA Cruises

American/British-owned German cruise line AIDA Cruises announced that model and TV host Franziska Knuppe christened  AIDAmira in Palma de Mallorca.AIDAmira is the fourth ship in the AIDA Selection program, sailing longer itineraries to exotic locales, similar to her function for Costa.After a debut cruise in the Mediterranean until December 4, 2019,  the cruise line will take the new Selection ship to Sète in the south of France, the Catalan metropolis of Barcelona, and back to…

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