Marine Link
Monday, January 22, 2018

Sea Security News

Maritime Security: More Work to be Done

Global maritime anti-terror laws introduced last year have broadly enhanced sea security, but many challenges lie ahead, a principal architect of the measures said in an interview, according to a Reuters report posted on www.btimes.com. James F. Wall, until 2004 chair of the UN International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) security arm responsible for drawing up the law, said merchant ships were generally more secure than the ports which still need more security. The International Ship and Port Security (ISPS) code, drawn up in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks in the US, has been described as the toughest the industry has faced since World War II.

Ships Warned of Theft in Malacca, Singapore Straits

Photo: Indonesian Navy

Sea Security Group has warned commercial ships passing through the Malacca and Singapore straits to be alert for possible theft by local people and pirates while traversing Asia's busiest straits, says a report in Jakarta Post. Based on information from seafarers, the straits were vulnerable to theft by locals using pancung (small wooden boats). According to intelligence data, from January to February there were 17 reports of theft using pancung filed by commercial ships moored or sailing in the area, he said. The commander said the Navy was stepping up patrols to catch the pirates.

Singapore Holds Interagency Maritime Exercise

Four agencies have held the largest maritime exercise in Singapore. The aim was to guard against potential attacks along the Singapore Strait, and to secure the safe passage of vessels carrying vital cargo essential not just for Singapore but the world economy. It is up to agencies like the Singapore Armed Forces, Police Coast Guard, Maritime Port Authority and Immigration and Checkpoints Authority to keep the waters safe. Since 1993, the APEX exercise between these four agencies has enhanced their inter-agency operations. The events of September 11, 2001 gave even more motivation to protect not just sea lanes, but also ports, installations and maritime infrastructure.

Indonesian Parliament Okays Subs from Russia

Image: Russian Navy

Indonesia signaled its intent to purchase two submarines from Russia to bolster its current fleet, reports the Jakarta Post. The government's plan to purchase Kilo-class submarines from Russia has received support from the House of Representatives Commission I overseeing defence and foreign affairs. The Indonesian Military (TNI) had proposed a budget of Rp 37 trillion (S$3.6 billion) and an additional budget allocation of Rp 14.5 trillion for the Navy (TNI AL), larger than the budget allocations for the Army (TNI AD) and the Air Force (TNI AU) says  the commission's member Sukamta.

Ships Instructed to Avoid Piracy-prone Waters around S. Philippines

The Indonesian Navy has instructed all commercial vessels to avoid piracy-prone waters around the southern Philippines, a spokesman for the Indonesian military said on Thursday, following a spate of kidnappings and piracy in recent weeks. "The Indonesian Navy, through the Western Sea Security Cluster, is increasing the intensity of patrols up to the exclusive economic zone border with the Philippines and Malaysia to prevent acts of piracy and hijacking," Indonesian military spokesman Tatang Sulaiman told Reuters in a text message. The busy shipping route along Indonesia's maritime border with the Philippines carries $40 billion worth of cargo each year, notably fully laden supertankers from the Indian Ocean that cannot use the crowded Malacca Strait.

Singapore Navy Foils Pirate Attack

Republic of Singapore Navy. Photo: Government of Singapore

The Republic of Singapore Navy ( RSN) disrupted a sea robbery on a tugboat in the eastern approaches of the Singapore Strait, says Ministry of Defence (MINDEF). The sight of a warship from the RSN Maritime Security Task Force sent sea robbers who had boarded a tugboat in the Singapore Strait fleeing on Tuesday (Sep 1). The Malaysian-flagged tugboat Permata 1 was then escorted safely to Singapore waters by the RSS Resilience, a Fearless-class patrol vessel. The Ministry of Defence…

London Gateway Ups Security Measures

(Photo: DP World London Gateway)

Expanded use of converged security and information management platform will support physical and IT security program at DP World London Gateway. London Gateway, one of the U.K.’s major ports owned and operated by DP World, has implemented converged security and information management (CSIM) software port-wide to increase security and provide overall situational awareness capability. Situated on the north bank of the River Thames, the deep-sea container port is located next to Europe’s largest logistics park, providing shipping access to key U.K. consumer markets.

Private Maritime Security: SAMI Secretariat Update

Maritime Security Guard: Image courtesy of SAMI

"Initially the doors within the shipping industry had been closed to private maritime security companies, and there was a definite “them and us” divide. SAMI has joined the United Nations Contact Group on piracy, and this has allowed the maritime security industry a voice at the highest levels, and a conduit for information to be channelled. For a long time there was antipathy towards PMSCs – but now, it is able to communicate as respected, integrated and involved parts of the wider shipping community.

Damen Delivers Patrol Vessel to Nigeria

Guardian 4 (Photo: Damen)

Homeland Integrated Offshore Services Ltd (Homeland) of Lagos, Nigeria, has taken delivery of another Damen 3307 Patrol Vessel for operations in the offshore oil fields in the Gulf of Guinea. This takes the total delivered vessels/Guardians since the first arrived in early 2014 to four. Guardian 4 has joined its three sister ships in providing security services to the oil majors active in Nigeria’s territorial waters, together with additional support services including crew transfers and equipment deliveries.

China Says US Warship Violated its South China Sea Sovereignty

File photo: USS Hopper (DDG 70) in November 2017 (U.S. Navy photo by Daniel Pastor)

A U.S. Navy destroyer this week sailed near the Scarborough Shoal, a disputed lagoon claimed by China in the South China Sea, U.S. officials said on Saturday, and Beijing vowed to take “necessary measures” to protect what it said was its sovereignty. China’s foreign ministry said USS Hopper missile destroyer came within 12 nautical miles off Huangyan island, better known as the Scarborough Shoal and subject to a rival claim by the Philippines, a historic ally of the United States. It was the latest U.S.

Congressional, Maritime Leaders Support Jones Act on the Hill

Mark Buzby, U.S. Maritime Administrator

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation held a hearing Wednesday on “The State of the U.S. Flag Maritime Industry” during which congressional and maritime leaders stressed the importance of the Jones Act. RADM Mark H. Mr. Mr. The Committee and those testifying expressed bipartisan support for the Jones Act and enforcement of the law. “In order for us to maintain the way of life as we know it as a nation that is secure and is able to project power, be it Navy power or commercial power, the Jones Act is intrinsic to that.

China Warns US on 'Provocative Attacks'

U.S. Navy file photo of Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson.

China's naval commander told his U.S. counterpart that a minor incident could spark war in the South China Sea if the United States did not stop its "provocative acts" in the disputed waterway, the Chinese navy said on Friday. Admiral Wu Shengli made the comments to U.S. chief of naval operations Admiral John Richardson during a video teleconference on Thursday, according to a Chinese naval statement. The two officers held talks after a U.S. warship sailed within 12 nautical miles of one of Beijing's man-made islands in the contested Spratly archipelago on Tuesday.

Chembulk Tankers Issues USD 200mln Bond

Image: Chembulk Maritime World

Chembulk Tankers announced that one of its wholly owned subsidiaries, Chembulk Holding LLC, has priced USD 200 million in senior secured bonds which will carry a coupon of 8.00% and be due in February 2023. The net proceeds from the bond offering will be used for refinancing of existing bank debt and general corporate purposes. In addition, this bond offering contains a tap issuance feature, where Chembulk can expand the issue amount at a future date to a maximum of USD 250 million, subject to standard issuance tests.

USS Hopper Arrives in 7th Fleet

Official U.S. Navy file photo

The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Hopper (DDG 70) entered the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations Jan. Hopper will conduct evolutions involving theater security cooperation, building partner capacity and performing routine operations within the area. Hopper is a multi-mission ship with anti-air warfare, anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface warfare surface combatants capabilities; designed to operate independently or with a surface action group or strike group.

Capesize Rates Post Biggest Weekly Drop in 2 Years

File photo: © HHM / Dietmar Hasenpusch

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index fell on Friday and continued to linger around five month lows as the capesize segment recorded its biggest weekly percentage decline in two years. The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels that ferry dry bulk commodities, shed 14 points, or 1.23 percent, to 1,125 points, the lowest since Aug. 10, 2017. For the week, the index ended 12 percent lower. The capesize index fell 118 points, or 7.32 percent, to 1,493 points, its lowest since Aug.

Panama Says Sunken Iranian Tanker had Papers in Order

(Photo: China's Ministry of Transport)

The Iranian tanker that sank after a collision in the East China Sea, causing the worst oil ship disaster in years, had its paperwork in order, according an initial review by maritime authorities in Panama, whose flag it was sailing under. The large tanker Sanchi (IMO:9356608) sank on Sunday after crashing into the freighter CF Crystal (IMO:9497050) and drifting ablaze for days. The ship's crew of 30 Iranians and two Bangladeshis are believed to have been killed. Fernando Solorzano…

Australian Navy Seizes Drug Haul in Middle East

HMAS Warramunga's boarding team prepare to board a vessel of interest, subsequently finding narcotics onboard. Photo: Royal Australian Navy

The crew of the Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Warramunga have spent the Christmas season hard at work, spending nearly three days seizing almost eight tonnes of hashish and 69 kilograms of heroin from drug smugglers while conducting maritime security operations in the Arabian Sea. Warramunga intercepted and boarded three suspect vessels between 27 and 29 December 2017, in an operation planned and coordinated by the Combined Maritime Forces’ Combined Task Force 150 which is currently commanded by Australia—supported by a combined Australian-Canadian staff.

Baltic Index Drops to 5-month Low on Sinking Capesize Rates

© Aleksey Stemmer / Adobe STock

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, fell nearly 5 percent on Wednesday to its lowest in over five months due to tumbling capesize rates. The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, slid 57 points, or 4.7 percent, to close at 1,164 points, the lowest since Aug. 14. The capesize index fell 267 points, or 13.28 percent to 1,743 points, its lowest level since Aug. 9 last year.

Sea Marshals Showcases Management System in New Premises

Sea Marshals new headquarters

International private maritime security company Sea Marshals Ltd. has expanded into new premises to cope with its growing workload, particularly in the Gulfs of Guinea and Aden. Sea Marshals marked its expansion with an open evening held at its new 4,500 square feet center of excellence for maritime security, alongside the Millennium Stadium, boasting excellent transport links on its doorstep and Cardiff Bay only minutes away. The large operations center is manned 24/7 to support the 120+ personnel currently at sea protecting vessels…

Sea Marshals Signs up to Elaborate Services

Sea Marshals has appointed maritime communications specialist Elaborate Communications to manage its public relations and media handling. Sea Marshals Ltd supplies both armed and unarmed security teams for vessels transiting in pirate infested waters. The company is run by experienced security sector professionals who are also ship owners. They work closely with various Flag States, governments, P&I clubs and ship owners to provide a comprehensive security operation. Headquartered in Cardiff, UK, Sea Marshals Ltd is fully licensed in Djibouti, Sri Lanka, Oman and South Africa for the use of military grade weapons and embarkation and disembarkation of security teams.

Maritime Security Should be Part of Indian Curriculum

Pic credit: Indian Navy

Coastal and seaward security subjects should be incorporated in school and college curriculums, says Commodore G. Prakash, director of the Maritime Warfare Centre at the Southern Naval Command, India. The top naval official said that the security of the seas surrounding India has financial, diplomatic and geopolitical ramifications. Citizens must be made aware of the significance of maritime security and its link to the growth of the country and its ties with nations across the seas.

Bourbon, Bureau Veritas Partner on Digitalization

Bourbon Explorer 508 (Photo: Bourbon)

Under a new strategic partnership agreement, French offshore services firm Bourbon and testing, inspection and certification services provider Bureau Veritas will develop and deploy new digital technologies, including solutions for automation, real time fleet monitoring and mitigating cyber risks. For dynamic positioning systems in particular, the partnership will aim to deliver advanced automation of to enable real-time advisory tools for bridge operators and remote support for onshore teams…

Gulf of Guinea Piracy a ‘Deep Concern’ -UN Security Council

The United Nations Security Council on Monday expressed its deep concern over piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, and stressed the importance of a comprehensive approach — led by States of the region, with international support — to address the problem and its root causes. Issuing presidential statement S/PRST/2016/4, the Council strongly condemned acts of murder, kidnapping, hostage-taking and robbery by pirates in the Gulf, and underlined the importance of determining any links between piracy and armed robbery at sea, and terrorist groups in West Africa and the Sahel subregions. It encouraged regional organizations — including the African Union…

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Dec 2017 - The Great Ships of 2017

Maritime Reporter and Engineering News’ first edition was published in New York City in 1883 and became our flagship publication in 1939. It is the world’s largest audited circulation magazine serving the global maritime industry, delivering more insightful editorial and news to more industry decision makers than any other source.

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