Ports & Ships Maritime News

Jul 28, 2009
Author: Terry Hutson

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  • First View – MAERSK DUISBURG

  • Question marks arise over QE2’s move to Cape Town

  • Piracy – US Navy warns of increased Somali activity

  • Cape Town’s container terminal achieves several milestones

  • Trade news - Terex completes acquisition of Fantuzzi and Noell port equipment businesses

  • Beira silting caused the fuel shortage, not boycotts

  • Zuma to visit India to enhance bilateral relations

  • Pic of the day – DAEWOO FRONTIER


    First View – MAERSK DUISBURG

    Looking a little the worse for wear, the container ship MAERSK DUISBERG (50,644-gt, built 1995) was in Durban to work cargo at the recent weekend. Picture by Trevor Jones

    Question marks arise over QE2’s move to Cape Town

    Question marks about the suitability of bringing the passenger liner QUEEN ELIZABETH 2 to Cape Town as a floating hotel have begun surfacing as reaction sets in from other interests in the Mother City.

    One of the first adverse responses came from Cape Town Tourism, the city’s official tourism authority which raised doubts on the venture saying that Cape Town already has sufficient accommodation for the period of the 2010 Soccer World Cup next year and that any new venture needs to be responsible and sustainable and fair to all the market players – presumably meaning the other hotels and B&B providers.

    The tourism organisation says further study on the impact of the ship’s arrival and stopover for 18 months is required. Warning that it might not be in the best interests of the city, Cape Town Tourism says it nevertheless remains open to engagement with those responsible for bringing QE2 to Cape Town.

    The company contracted by FIFA to assist with the provision of accommodation requirements, Match Events Services says it has a policy that cruise ships will not be used as an accommodation solution for South Africa during the World Cup. This was after Sepp Blatter, FIFA president said on German television that cruise ships capable of accommodating 2,000 people each could be used as temporary hotel accommodation in South Africa.

    So far only one operator of cruise ships to South Africa for the Soccer World Cup has been announced – One Ocean Club which has chartered two Holland America cruise ships, the WESTERDAM and NOORDAM which will operate between Durban, Port Elizabeth and Cape Town from 11 June onwards with 2 to 5 day packages for soccer fans. See PORTS & SHIPS report HERE

    Part of Cape Town’s repair quay has been earmarked for use by these ships but in Durban initial approaches were made by Transnet to the Fresh Produce Terminal for the use of the T-Jetty, only for it to be pointed out that June and July is peak season for citrus exports, with the available berths usually heavily booked by reefer ships. It is now thought likely that the cruise ships will instead make use of either the Car Terminal berths on the opposite side of the T-Jetty (M berth) or the Point berths A and B which were originally earmarked for development as a cruise ship terminal area.

    Details of One Ocean Club and the South African Soccer World Cup programme can be found HERE

    Transnet has yet to make a decision on allowing the transfer of QE2 to Cape Town later this year.

    Piracy – US Navy warns of increased Somali activity

    The US Navy says an escalation in pirate activity off the coast of Somalia is now possible due to more conducive weather conditions at sea.

    With the approach of the end of the current monsoon season pirates will again be able to go further out to sea in small boats and ships will again become vulnerable, the navy warns.

    Shipping in the area is therefore advised to make use of a designated corridor while transiting the Gulf of Aden, which is patrolled by up to 30 warships and a number of aircraft from 16 nations.

    Cape Town’s container terminal achieves several milestones

    The Cape Town container terminal’s R4.2 billion expansion project has seen several milestones for the port in recent months, and progress is set to continue as the country’s second largest container terminal ramps up its capacity over the next five years, says Oscar Borchards, Transnet Port Terminals’ Business Unit Executive.

    Ongoing expansion works and procurement of state-of-the-art equipment will ensure the facility is better prepared when the global market picks up again in the near future, he says.

    “In May we took delivery of four rubber-tyred gantry cranes (RTGs) manufactured by Kalmar Industries. By the end of the expansion programme, 32 RTGs will be operational within the terminal, together with eight Liebherr ship-to-shore cranes, four of which have been delivered and assembled to date.”

    The RTG crane is the preferred container handling system at world class, high-tech terminals and will replace the terminal’s current straddle carrier operations. It lifts to 18.2 metres high and 26.5 metres wide, and is used to transfer containers from road vehicles into the stacking yard. The RTG can stack five containers high and spans a roadway of five rows of containers. It optimises terminal space by enabling denser stacking of containers in the stacking yard.

    Borchards says the equipment require skilled operators and a training programme has been put in place for this.

    “The terminal has to date trained 40 operators of lifting equipment, with 24 employees having completed theory, simulation and practical training on the ship-to-shore Liebherr cranes. This will ensure adequate operator resources to man the new cranes,” he says.

    To assist further with training, the terminal will take delivery of a R6.7 million MasterLift 4000 advanced training simulator. The technologically advanced software and hardware system, housed within a standard shipping container, is able to simulate weather conditions, environment and situations that cannot be safely replicated using traditional training methods. It offers identical controls to that of the RTG and ship-to-shore cranes used in the terminal, so that operators are able to hone their skills to achieve set productivity targets without interrupting normal operations or causing damage to equipment.

    In September this year the terminal will cross over from the COSMOS terminal operating system to the web-based SPARCS N4 operating system, which governs the movement of all container logistics and operations from gate to yard to vessel. It offers users improved customer support, lower operating costs and increased stacking yard capacity.

    All four berths together with the Ben Schoeman Basin are being deepened to 15.5m to accommodate larger new-generation vessels, which require deeper water and upgraded quay facilities. Work on the four berths is being staggered over the five-year programme to minimise disruption.

    Berth 601 will be the first of four to come on-stream and will be handed over once dredging, deepening and quay wall refurbishment are completed. It will serve its first vessels this month with four Liebherr cranes due to be commissioned during July and August. Berth 602 will be the next to be taken out of service for deepening and quay refurbishment.

    In its entirety the expansion programme will increase capacity from 740,000 twenty foot equivalent units to 1.4 million TEUs by the end of 2012. The key aspects of the project are:

  • Construction of a deeper terminal with new quay wall suitable for Super Post Panamax cranes
  • Replacement of the old ship to shore cranes with Super Post Panamax cranes with twin lift capability
  • Increasing stack capacity by moving from straddle carriers to a rubber tyred gantry crane (RTG) operation.

    The five-year construction programme is an element of parent company Transnet Ltd’s R28 billion investment into port-related projects, from an overall R78 billion planned for investment over the next five years. – source Cape Business News www.cbn.co.za

    Trade news - Terex completes acquisition of Fantuzzi and Noell port equipment businesses

    Noell RTGs being installed at Manila International Container Terminal earlier this year

    Westport, CT, 27 July 2009 – Terex Corporation today (Monday) announced that it has completed the acquisition of the port equipment businesses of Fantuzzi Industries S.a.r.l and Noell Crane for a net consideration of approximately €155 million. Financial arrangements were made with existing financial creditors of Fantuzzi to provide Terex with long-term financing on favourable terms for substantially all of the acquisition price.

    “We are quite pleased that Fantuzzi and Noell and their team members are now part of the Terex Cranes family,” said Rick Nichols, President, Terex Cranes. “Fantuzzi and Noell are unquestionably leaders in the design, manufacture and service of port equipment, and although the global economy is slow today, the longer term prospects for intermodal transportation remain very attractive and substantial in scope. This acquisition also helps diversify our Cranes business, and expands the product offering of Terex Cranes to the port industry beyond our current stacker product line.”

    The existing Terex reach stacker product line will be joined by the Fantuzzi product range that includes Noell branded straddle carriers, both Fantuzzi and Noell branded rail and rubber tired gantry cranes, mobile harbour cranes, ship-to-shore cranes, and reach stackers and forklift trucks designed to improve port productivity and throughput.

    * Terex Corporation is a diversified global manufacturer with 2008 net sales of US$9.9 billion. Terex operates in four business segments: Terex Aerial Work Platforms, Terex Construction, Terex Cranes, and Terex Materials Processing & Mining. Terex manufactures a broad range of equipment for use in various industries, including the construction, infrastructure, quarrying, surface mining, shipping, transportation, refining and utility industries. Terex offers a complete line of financial products and services to assist in the acquisition of Terex equipment through Terex Financial Services. More information on Terex can be found at www.terex.com.

    Beira silting caused the fuel shortage, not boycotts

    A shortage of petroleum in the central Mozambique city of Beira last week was caused by silting in the port approaches and not from any boycotts or industrial action.

    That was the word from Mozambique’s Energy Minister Salvador Namburete, speaking from Brazil where he is accompanying President Armando Guebuza on an official visit to the South American country.

    The minister said that a tanker that should have called at Beira several weeks ago to discharge petroleum products was prevented from entering the harbour by silting of the approach channel.

    It was only when dredging took place at Beira that the ship was able to enter the port last Thursday (23 July) and deliver the much needed fuel. He said there was now sufficient fuel in Beira to supply not only the local petrol stations but also those in the neighbouring region.

    His comments followed reports that the lack of fuel was a result of a boycott organised by the Association of Mozambican Fuel Companies which threatened to disrupt fuel supplies unless the government agreed to an increase in the price of fuel at the pumps. source AIM

    Zuma to visit India to enhance bilateral relations

    by Proffesor Ndawonde (BuaNews)

    Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma is to visit India early next year to further cement bilateral relations between the two countries.

    Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, said the President's visit would be aimed at strengthening current bilateral agreements and identifying more trade possibilities with the vision of enhancing the two countries' economies.

    “This visit will be followed by a Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) during which government-to-government interactions over a broad spectrum of issues will take place with a view to further deepen and expand bilateral relations,” she said.

    The minister was speaking at last week’s three-day Doing Business with India Conference in Johannesburg. The conference was expected to hammer out strategies to strengthen business and trade partnerships between the two countries.

    India remains South Africa's largest trading partner in the south Asian region and one of its top ten trading partners globally.

    According to Minister Nkoana-Mashabane, the total bilateral trade volumes between South Africa and India amounted to R37.4 billion in 2008 and bilateral trade continues to grow over an ever-increasing range of business sectors.

    “Bilateral trade between South Africa and India has continued to grow since the establishment of diplomatic relations following South Africa's democratisation. But there is still vast untapped potential and many opportunities exist for expanding this commercial relationship,” she said.

    The minister urged the local private sector to further explore export opportunities and increase market penetration for South African products into the Indian market.

    She said that India had a market of 1.1 billion people and an impressive ongoing economic growth which they could take advantage of.

    Pic of the day – DAEWOO FRONTIER

    The Ro-Ro car carrier/passenger ship DAEWOO FRONTIER (42,567-gt, built 1988) has been an unintended long-term visitor both in Durban harbour and in the outer anchorage, following the ship’s arrest. The ship is the former Grimaldi Lines’ REPUBBLICA DI GENOVA which spent six months capsized in Antwerp harbour during 2007 before being righted and sold to Independence Shipping.

    The capsizing took place quite gently, resulting in no injuries although a number of containers and motor vehicles were badly damaged. The ship had just completed taking bunkers and it was at first suspected that this resulted in stability problems, although there were subsequent reports also of pump and equipment failures.

    After her righting the ship was towed to South Korea behind the tug SALVALIANT – herself no stranger to drama on the South African coast – and a major repair was carried out before the Ro-Ro reentered service last year after having much of her machinery replaced or rebuilt. Daewoo Frontier arrived in Durban in April this year to deliver a number of motor vehicles, but was placed under arrest soon afterwards and went to anchor off Umhlanga where she remained until quite recently. During this time the ship lost two anchors including long lengths of chain, which have still to be recovered.

    The ship’s latest troubles, financial this time, are likely to come to a head this week following an application for her sale by judicial auction for which a ruling is expected.

    Other ships under arrest in South African ports include the SARA V which is at anchor outside the port of Richards Bay, the SERAM WIND at anchor outside Durban for which a rule nicae was recently issued, and the PINE TRADER under arrest in Cape Town harbour. Another vessel seemingly abandoned in Cape Town harbour and causing some congestion problems is the oil rig NEPTUNE FINDER which has been in the port for about two years. Picture Trevor Jones

    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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