Ports & Ships Maritime News

Jan 4, 2006
Author: P&S


  • New Djibouti port nears completion

  • CSCL resumes Durban – Mid and Far East service

  • 35 acts of piracy in ten months off Somalia

  • UN cuts back on African food aid

  • New bulk liquid terminal opens

  • Floods devastate Mozambique

  • Chinese to recover 12th Century cargo ship

  • For the record

  • Clipper Race Update

    EMAIL: jhughes@hugheship.com
    WEB SITE: www.hugheship.com

    New Djibouti port nears completion

    Djibouti is to unveil a new port at Dorale during January, some 7km from the existing port of Djibouti, it has been revealed. Initially the new port will handle petroleum products but a second phase will see a container terminal with a design capacity of 2 million TEU being constructed as part of a free trade zone.

    Construction of the new port began two years ago and has cost US0 million. When the free trade zone and the container terminal are inaugurated in 2008 the total investment for that phase will have amounted to US0 million.

    The entire project is designed to modernize the Djibouti port complex and provide efficient facilities. Djibouti currently has a capacity of 10 million tonnes of cargo and 500,000 TEUs annually.

    Dorale will be connected to the main road to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia some 910km away by a new road still to be completed.
    - source The Reporter (Addis Ababa)

    CSCL resumes Durban – Mid and Far East service

    China Shipping Container Line has announced that they will resume their Durban – Middle and Far East service from February 2006.

    CSCL (and its partners) will initially use six of the ten vessels on their SEAS service which calls from Brazil and Argentina to the Far East. A seventh vessel in this service will be included in the eastbound call at Durban from April 2006 with the other three vessels expected to join later making it a weekly service.

    The development follows closely on the heels of the introduction of CSCL’s own independent Far East – Durban – West Africa service which was announced in November 2005 (see PORTS & SHIPS News Bulletin for 22 November 2005). The first vessel on this service, CSCL Fuzhou, called at Durban just after Christmas and will be followed by the Paris ETA Durban 11 January 2006.

    Paul Scannel, a director of Seaclad Maritime, the Durban agents for CSCL, said today that these developments gave a clear indication of the commitment by CSCL, which is currently ranked as the 6th biggest container line, to the South African trade.

    “We at Seaclad Maritime are very enthusiastic about the future for CSCL in South Africa.”

    Meanwhile the SEAS service, which is operated jointly by CSCL, CMA CGM and Moruba has also added Itajai in Brazil as a direct call as from January 2006.

    35 acts of piracy in ten months off Somalia

    In its latest report the ICC Piracy Reporting Centre reports a possible attempted highjacking of a ship in the Gulf of Aden on 2 January 2006. Three speedboats with between three and four persons on board followed a tanker which was underway in the straits. The tanker’s master altered course and the boats moved away. Later another speedboat with three people on board followed the tanker for 30 minutes but once the alarm was raised the speedboat stopped following.

    The ICC reports that 35 incidents have been reported off Somalia’s north and eastern coast since 15 March 2005. It says that heavily armed pirates are now attacking ships further away from the coast and ships not making scheduled calls at Somali ports are advised to keep at least 200 nm from the Somali coast.

    The ICC Commercial Crime Services indicates that the following areas in West Africa are also prone to piracy: Abidjan, Conakry, Dakar, Douala, Freetown, Lagos, Tema and Warri.
    - source http://www.icc-ccs.org/prc/piracyreport.php

    UN cuts back on food aid

    The UN Food Agency World Food Programme (WFP) has been forced to reduce by half its supply of food aid to approximately 80,000 refugees in Zambia because of a lack of funds.

    The refugees who came to Zambia from Angola and the Congo have been reliant of receiving food aid parcels from WFP but with no donations having been received the agency faces running out of supplies by March this year.

    In 2004 the WFP was also forced to cut back on food aid for a similar reason.

    Meanwhile President Kibaki of Kenya has declared a large part of Kenya a national disaster area as famine spread across the region. Kibaki said about 2.5 million Kenyans – about 10% of the population - were at risk because of the drought conditions and famine relief would be required over the next six months.

    He said the crisis was a result of crop failure and depletion of livestock due to the prolonged drought. “Food is a basic right of every Kenyan and my government will spare no effort in ensuring that all Kenyans have access to this basic necessity,” he said.

    In Malawi the WFP is providing food aid for 2.4 million people during January and expects this number to increase in the coming months. Malawi has 4.9 million people needing food aid assistance through to April as a result of spiralling maize prices, the worst dry spell since 1994, chronic poverty and a high prevalence of HIV/AIDS. The WFP believes that Malawi suffers from long-term issues that will not disappear quickly.
    - source World Food Aid and others

    New bulk liquid terminal opens

    A new liquid bulk terminal consisting of 19 tanks for the distribution of mainly raw materials used in the manufacture of edible oils and chemicals was opened at the port of Mombasa at the end of December.

    The terminal is owned by a Uganda company, Gulf Stream Investment which is a subsidiary of the Mukwano Group of companies. The group already imports more than 13,500 tonnes of raw material through the port each month and the company intends making Mombasa its regional hub for liquid bulk storage.
    - source The Nation

    Floods devastate Mozambique

    Heavy rains have caused extensive flooding to several regions of Mozambique during the past week and by Tuesday the death toll had risen to 26 in the provinces of Sofala and Nampula. The area had been in the grip of a drought for some months.

    An alert has been issued to people living in low-lying areas to leave immediately but with poor communications it is not expected that the message will reach all those who may be affected. Roads have been cut isolating people and flooding is reported in the port city of Beira.

    The rains follow a period of drought that left more than a million people short of food. In 2000 the country was extensively ravaged by heavy rains and flooding that led eventually to an international relief operation that saved the lives of thousands of people caught in flooded areas.

    Chinese to recover 12th Century cargo ship

    The African connection is tenuous and the story several months old but we like it, and anyway these ships are known to have traded with Africa, so here goes.

    A 12th Century Chinese merchant ship loaded with exquisite porcelain sailed from a south China port to trade with foreign countries along what is now referred to as the ‘Marine Silk Road’. As with many ships of those (as well as these days), it never reached its destination and sank, possibly as a result of stormy weather. The wreck, which has been dated as early Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279) was covered by up to two metres of silt and has lain under the water for 800 years.

    Now Chinese archaeologists, using global positioning system technology have located the ship and intend salvaging her while still enclosed in the protective coating of silt. The method involves using a steel basket to scoop up the ship and silt and raise her gently to the surface. A special salvage vessel is being prepared to handle the project and a museum building, financed by the Guangdong Province to the amount of the equivalent of US.5 million, is also being built to house the ship from where archaeologists will begin uncovering her from the silt.

    The 25-metre vessel, now named Nanhai No.1 is lying under the ocean floor about 37 km off the south coast of Guangdong province, says the Beijing Morning Post.

    Chinese traders are known to have traded by sea with countries as far away as South East Asia, India and even Africa from as early as 2000 years ago and maybe longer. Favourite cargo was silk and cloth textiles and porcelain. Extensive trading took place with South East Asia but items of porcelain have been recovered in southern Africa that have been dated back prior to the European mariners arriving on the scene from the late 15th Century.

    Archaeologists believe that Nanhai No.1 has between 50,000 and 70,000 pieces of porcelain on board, consisting probably of green glazed porcelain plates, tin pots, shadowy blue porcelains and other rare antiquities.

    Archaeologists have so far identified more than 10 ship relic sites along the Marine Silk Road.
    - source source http://www.Chinaview.cn

    For the record

    Yesterday we reported on the grounding of the container ship APL Panama off the port of Ensenada in Mexico. This is not the same container ship named Panama that is a regular caller at South African ports.

    Clipper Race Update

    Tuesday 4 January 2006
    Day four of the latest leg between Fremantle and Singapore and only a few positional changes from yesterday, including that of Cardiff which has rejoined the race after completing repairs in Fremantle. All ten yachts are now on the water. Cardiff in fact had the best run over the last 12 hours to 17.00 today, completing 123 miles but Durban Clipper by managing the next best run of 118 miles has managed to close the gap with leader Westernaustralia.co, to just three miles. All competitors are now heading away from the coast and into deep ocean on a course that will take them between Sumatra and Java and into the Java Sea before turning for Singapore.

    Race position at 17.00 today (with distance to finish)
    Westernaustralia.com (1665 mls)
    Durban (1668)
    New York (1689)
    Qingdao (1694)
    Victoria (1696)
    Liverpool (1700)
    Singapore (1734)
    Jersey (1760)
    Glasgow (1845)
    Cardiff (2199)
    - source http://www.clipper-ventures.co.uk

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