Ports & Ships Maritime News

Jul 22, 2009
Author: Terry Hutson

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  • First View – AMAR MUHIEDDINE

  • It’s confirmed – QE2 is coming to Cape Town

  • Committee calls for scrapping of Mombasa port levies

  • USS ARLEIGH BURKE sails for the Mascarenes today

  • Giant cruise ship CELEBRITY EQUINOX joins fleet

  • Piracy news – more ships arrive on anti-piracy station off Somalia

  • Ensure authentic sulphur content on BDR, says IBIA

  • Pic of the day – C DREAM and TEMPEST


    First View – AMAR MUHIEDDINE

    The bulk carrier AMAR MUHIEDDINE (14,927-gt, built 1984) arrived in Durban last week and was berthed at the City Terminal on the Point. The Sri Lankan-owned ship is managed by the Judi Group, a Syrian shipmanagement company. Picture by Terry Hutson

    It’s confirmed – QE2 is coming to Cape Town

    QE2 in Cape Town.  Picture by Ian Shiffman

    Nakheel, the Dubai-based owner of the ex-Cunard liner QUEEN ELIZABETH 2 has confirmed that the ship will be transferring to Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront, in which Nakheel/Dubai World hold a substantial share.

    The ship will arrive in Cape Town to be used initially as a floating hotel during the FIFA 2010 Soccer World Cup and will remain at an as yet unidentified berth for a minimum period of 18 months, during which time the ship will act as a floating hotel, restaurant and entertainment ship.

    Nakheel said it expects that the ship will sail under her own power to Cape Town but will not be carrying any passengers.

    See related articles HERE and HERE

    Committee calls for scrapping of Mombasa port levies

    A tea of specialists mandated to investigate the cost of shipping at the Kenyan port of Mombasa has recommended that six levies be withdrawn and that five charges made against imports be lowered, reports the East African.

    The levies recommended for scrapping are the terminal handling charges, which vary from US$90 to $135, delivery order fee ($60 - $65), container handling charges ($25), equipment management fee ($25 per document), and the 10% administration fee charged at $40 minimum.

    The committee is chaired by Kenyan Maritime Authority Commercial Manager John Omingo. It says that Mombasa levies 25 charges against importers and that most of these do not occur in other ports.

    According to shippers and others involved with the importing of cargo through Mombasa, logistics costs at the port amount to as much as 42% of the cost of insurance and freight, and almost 58% of the FOB value of goods.

    The committee pointed out that the Tanzanian port of Dar es Salaam lifted terminal handling charges several years ago. In Mombasa shipping lines charge shippers $90 to $135 for the 20ft and 40ft containers respectively, whilst the Kenya Ports Authority charges exactly the same amount on the same containers, meaning that shippers have to pay double for the same service.

    The committee suggests that container cleaning charges, currently set at between $10 and $25 depending on the shipping line, be reduced. It also recommends reductions on charges raised against making amendments to the Bill of Ladings (currently between $30 and $50), container demurrage charges and the manifest correction fee of $30.

    Shipping lines have requested a period of 30 days to look into the implications of these recommendations, says the East African, although the Kenya Shipping Agents Association has agreed that the costs should be reduced.

    Kenya’s new Merchant Shipping Act provides the Kenya Maritime Authority (KMA) with powers to deregister ships agents and other role players which it considers are guilty of not practicing fair trade. There are concerns however that the KMA may act without first seeking input from the role players.

    USS ARLEIGH BURKE sails for the Mascarenes today

    Picture courtesy US Navy

    The US Navy destroyer USS ARLEIGH BURKE (DDG-51) will sail from Simon’s Town this morning (Wednesday) on the return leg of its cruise to ports and navies on the African eastern seaboard.

    The ship has previously visited Djibouti, Mombasa in Kenya, Victoria in the Seychelles, Mauritius and Reunion in the Indian Ocean and Durban in South Africa en route to Simon’s Town. When she sails the guided missile destroyer will head back to Mauritius and the French naval base at La Reunion before returning to the African coast via a visit to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania.

    During her current cruise the American ship entered into joint naval exercises with several host nation navies, including Kenya and South Africa. The ship also carried a group of Kenya Navy personnel on board the vessel as far as Durban to give the sailors the experience of blue water activity on a large ship. At Durban a small number of South African Navy personnel from the frigates SAS AMATOLA and SAS MENDI joined the USS Arleigh Burke for the exercises which took place off the KZN, Eastern Cape and Southern Cape coasts, while a similar group of US sailors transferred to the South African ships.

    Giant cruise ship CELEBRITY EQUINOX joins fleet

    CELEBRITY SOLSTICE - the first of five ships in the class

    The 122,000gt cruise ship CELEBRITY EQUINOX, the second of five ships of the Solstice class ordered from German shipyard Meyer Werft, was handed over to Celebrity Cruises last week ( 16 July 2009) in the Dutch port of Eemshaven.

    Although handed over to her owners the new ship will be named only at the end of this month – 29 July, following which the ship will enter service. The first cruise takes place among the Norwegian fjords from 31 July and will be followed by Celebrity Equinox’s maiden cruise to the Mediterranean where she will enter regular service.

    The 317m long ship can carry up to 2,852 passengers along with 1,271 crew members.

    Piracy update – more ships arrive on anti-piracy station off Somalia

    The Chinese Navy, which late last year deployed the first of a number of warships on anti piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden and off the Somali coast, has replaced the first vessels with a second flotilla – the guided missile frigates XUZHOU and ZHOUSHAN and the replenishment supply vessel QIANDAOHU. The three ships are part of China’s East China Sea Fleet which is based in Ningbo.

    The three ships carry several helicopters as well as a number of China’s special forces and consist of a total of 800 personnel. They replace the destroyer SHENZHEN, the frigate HUANGSHAN and the supply vessel WEISHANHU.

    Another Asian navy recycling its forces in the Somali area is South Korea which has sent a destroyer, DAE JO YOUNG as a replacement for the MUNMU THE GREAT which has been on station in the Gulf of Aden region since April. The South Korean ship will be joining the US-led Combined Task Force which was formed specially to combat piracy.

    South Korea has a fairly large number of ships operating in the area, many of them fishing vessels.

    Ensure authentic sulphur content on BDR, says IBIA

    Members of the International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA) have been warned of the risks of not placing authentic sulphur content results on bunker delivery receipts (BDR).

    “Clearly this is not in compliance with MARPOL requirements and may create a problem for shipowners in terms of the selection of correct feed rates and Total Base Numbers (TBN) of cylinder oil,” said IBIA Chief Executive Ian Adams.

    “Knowing the sulphur content of the fuel to be used is essential to engine efficiency and overall safety, and furthermore necessary to remain within the specific requirements applicable in Emissions Control Areas (ECAs). The sulphur content of the fuel should always be clearly stated on the BDR.”

    The IBIA says that the ship’s chief engineer should be vigilant in studying the BDR sulphur result and then using the appropriate cylinder oil feed rate and TBN oil.

    “Engine manufacturer information should be obtained on this, and followed carefully to avoid engine problems when using low-sulphur fuel,” says Adams.

    “Of course, in some ports, low-sulphur fuel is delivered even when it has not been specifically requested, because low-sulphur is the only type of fuel available in those places. Given the way in which fuel is traded, this can happen almost anywhere. For example, some ports in South America, West Africa and, in some instances, Canada, only have residual fuels with sulphur content of less than 1.0%m/m readily available.”

    He said it is worth noting that if a BDR has the sulphur reported as less than 4.5%m/m and yet the sulphur content is known to be less than 1.5%m/m, some administrations may still not consider this fuel compliant for ECA operations, so it is essential for ships to ensure that the actual sulphur content is reported on the BDR.” – source MGN

    Pic of the day – C DREAM and TEMPEST

    The Hong Kong-registered crude oil tanker C DREAM (159,397-gt [298,570-dwt] built 2000) completely overshadows the Dutch-flagged tug TEMPEST (1369-gt, built 1977) at berth in Cape Town harbour. The sheer size of the VLCC can better be judged by comparing her to the motor vehicle on the quayside. C.Dream was one of the first ships to be fitted with a ship security alert system that sends a covert alert to authorities ashore in the event of the vessel’s security having come under threat. Picture Aad Noorland

    Don’t forget to send us your news and press releases for inclusion in the News Bulletins. Shipping related pictures submitted by readers are always welcome – please email to info@ports.co.za

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