Ports & Ships Maritime News

Sep 11, 2007
Author: P&S

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  • AMUL remains afloat and under tow to SMIT AMANDLA

  • Durban tug jetty to be demolished

  • Uganda builds bonded car depot at Mombasa port

  • Coalition forces in hunt for pirate ship off Somalia

  • DEAT publishes Aquaculture Policy paper

  • National Ports Act overview

  • Pic of the day – AMUL

    AMUL remains afloat and under tow to SMIT AMANDLA

    The abandoned freighter AMUL off the Pondoland coast at the weekend. Picture taken by Captain Kevin Tate, the master of the salvage tug SMIT AMANDLA

    The Cape Town-based salvage tug SMIT AMANDLA was reported yesterday to be holding a position some 38 nautical miles off the Pondoland coast with the abandoned freighter AMUL in tow.

    The tug arrived on the scene on Saturday in time to take the stricken vessel in tow as the Amul drifted down towards the coast near Mazeppa Bay (see report in yesterday’s News Bulletin

    A spokesperson for SMIT Amandla said on Monday that a salvage team would go on board the Amul as soon as possible to undertake a survey of the ship’s condition. The spokesperson said that at present there was no significant change in the trim or list of the vessel. Swells in the area were of the order of 3 to 4 metres yesterday.

    Meanwhile information also received yesterday indicates that the Amul in difficulty off the coast is not the same ship that was reported to have been detained in Hartlepool, UK in August last year. That ship was the AMUL 2511, according to the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency. The ship now off the South African coast was never owned by Russia’s Transonega Shipping.

    Durban tug jetty to be demolished

    Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) said yesterday that the tug jetty situated at the Point next to the NSRI station will soon be demolished. This is part of the port entrance widening project and will involve slicing the jetty into approximately 30 pieces and each section the towed to a pre-selected dumping ground out at sea.

    It is expected that the operation of securing the tow and taking it through the channel will take about an hour each, and during these periods no movements will be permitted in the entrance channel. TNPA gave the assurance the activity will take place with the least amount of disruption to shipping.

    The first of the 30 pieces is scheduled to be moved on 20 September at 11 am.

    The sections dumped at sea are expected to form small artificial reefs.

    Uganda builds bonded car depot at Mombasa port

    A customs bonded car depot for vehicles being imported into Uganda is being built at Mombasa in a drive to eliminate some of the delays and frustrations of clearing vehicles from the Kenyan port.

    The new depot will have the capacity to store up to 3,000 motor vehicles and is strategically placed at the entrance to Mombasa Island and on the Trans-Africa Highway.

    The securely fenced facility will also have an office complex to accommodate representatives of the Kenya Ports Authority, the Kenya Revenue Authority as well as accommodating the internal container depot personnel.

    The intention is to extend the complex in phase 2 with a container depot.

    A spokesman for the developers said that in addition to reducing congestion at the port’s car terminal, the new depot would help reduce handling charges and provide a longer period for clearance of cargo for Ugandan importers. Uganda imports 40,000 motor vehicles annually.

    source – New Vision

    Coalition forces in hunt for pirate ship off Somalia

    A sea hunt was underway early last week for a pirate mother ship which is thought to be used to launch attacks on shipping passing the Somali coast.

    Armed with a description of the vessel, the search was being undertaken by ships of the US-led naval coalition force operating off the Somali coast, according to Lieut Vidaine Bojeau, deputy commander of the French naval ship FNS COMMANDANT BLAISON.

    Lt Bojeau said it was believed the vessel was the same that had been used to attack commercial vessels in recent months. She said a description of the vessel had been obtained from seafarers who had come under attack but managed to escape.

    A NATO task force comprising six ships and led by the USS NORMANDY, a Ticonderoga class guided missile cruiser is sailing along the East African coast and will conduct exercises opposite Somalia within the next week or ten days, having completed similar exercises off Cape Point with the South African Navy last week.

    One of the NATO ships, the Portuguese frigate ALVARES CABRAL was yesterday paying a visit to the port of Maputo in Mozambique. The Portuguese ship earlier paid a similar visit to Luanda in Angola. Both Angola and Mozambique are former Portuguese colonies and retain strong cultural and economic links with the former colonial power.

    sources – The Nation and Ports & Ships

    DEAT publishes Aquaculture Policy paper

    After a two-year intensive engagement process with stakeholders, South Africa’s Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEAT) on Friday (7 September 2007) published the Policy for the Development of a Sustainable Marine Aquaculture Sector in South Africa.

    The main purpose of the policy is to encourage acceleration of the development of the marine aquaculture industry but is also aimed at promoting the development of an economically sustainable and globally competitive industry with minimum negative impact on the environment, says DEAT.

    “Marine Aquaculture presents an opportunity to substantially increase the diversity of economic activity in coastal areas specifically where declining fish stocks and shifts in distribution of certain fish species have led to job losses and economic hardships for people who historically found employment in the fishing industry. The industry also has potential to create skills based employment and income for coastal communities.”

    Key objectives of the Policy are to:

  • create an enabling environment that will promote the growth of marine aquaculture in South Africa and enhance the industry's contribution to economic growth

  • promote transformation and broader participation in the aquaculture industry

  • support and develop regulatory and management mechanisms aimed at avoiding or minimising adverse environmental impacts; and

  • expand the resources base from a few species currently being farmed to a more diverse array of species.

    The policy will be complemented by a Marine Aquaculture Development Plan which will outline strategies for its practical implementation.

    Details of the policy are available on


    National Ports Act overview

    An overview of the recently published National Ports Act is available on the Transnet website at

    Pic of the day – AMUL

    Click on image to enlarge – with some browsers click twice

    Another view of the freighter AMUL, adrift but now under tow off the Eastern Cape coast of South Africa, after crew abandoned the ship in heavy seas fearing her to be in imminent danger of sinking. This picture was taken by Kevin Tate, master of the tug SMIT AMANDLA

    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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