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Ports & Ships Maritime News

7 October 2014
Author: Terry Hutson

Bringing you shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa since 2002


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News continues below...

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Mediterranean Shipping Company’s 8,402-teu MSC TOMOKO (108,180-dwt, built 2006) outward bound from the Cape Town Container Terminal. MSC Tomoko is deployed on MSC’s Northern Europe-Sout Africa service. Picture: Aad Noorland

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USS James E Williams DDG95 renders honours to FN
USS Navy destroyer USS JAMES E WILLIAMS (DDG95) prepares to render honours to the French Navy frigate FNS NIVOSE, off Mauritius on 29 September 2014. Picture: US Navy 6th Fleet

The French patrol frigate FNS NIVOSE (F732), which had a disabling fire on 29 or 30 September, has been towed to the French naval base at Pointe de la Galets in Reunion.

In our news edition of 1 October we reported that the frigate was on fire at coordinates 17 14S 057 03E, which is 177 n.miles north of Mauritius. Earlier, our report said, the ship had been in Port Louis, Mauritius but other reports since then have suggested the ship was on her way there when the fire began.

However, as our picture above shows (courtesy US Navy 6th Fleet) Nivose was in Mauritius on 29 September.

There were no injuries and the fire was extinguished safely at sea but the ship was left without electrical power, propulsion or water and was unable to continue.

A second French patrol frigate of the same class, FNS FLOREAL was called to the scene and took the Nivose on tow back to Reunion.

Earlier this year FNS Nivose took part in counter piracy activities with other navies in the Gulf of Aden/Horn of Africa region. Along with several ships of her class, FNS Nivose is based at Reunion and conducts patrols among the various Indian Ocean French dependencies.

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Ladol shipyard at Lagos
Ladol shipyard in situated on an island at the entrance to Lagos harbour.

Ladol (Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics Base) is inaugurating a facility intended to boost direct foreign investment in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector and raise national output by giving foreign technology and service providers a secure base of operations in West Africa.

“This is a huge milestone in the history of Ladol,” said Amy Jadesimi, Ladol CEO, in an interview with Oil & Gas Technology. “We have been developing the facility for thirty years and the ground-breaking today is a real watershed moment.”

The new shipyard has been built by Ladol and Samsung Heavy Industries Nigeria and will be West Africa’s largest vessel fabrication and integration facility, creating 50,000 new jobs in Nigeria.

Ladol spent USD 500m to construct its Deep Offshore Logistics Base specialised industrial village near Lagos to provide maritime and oil and gas services. “Our focus and mission is to build infrastructure that will allow foreign companies to come and participate in Africa’s largest oil and gas market without having to compromise on efficiency and cost.”

“In other words they can come in here and bring their own staff or set up their own facilities, independently or jointly with us, and be able to operate in their own safe environment.”

The facility is strategically located on an island at the point of entry into Lagos harbour, directly opposite Apapa Port in the LADOL Free Zone.

“This is why the government has set up the Free Zones and supported us. They want this private investment and know that it needs a combination of indigenous investors building a place that foreign investors can come into and operate efficiently.”

The Ladol facility will be officially opened in a ground-breaking ceremony later today which will be attended by various Nigerian dignitaries, the managing director of Shell and the joint-venture representatives.

In 2010 Total signed an agreement with the Nigerian government that ensured a portion of construction for offshore projects will be performed in Nigeria. It is now possible for Total to now fulfil this promise using the Ladol shipyard, where it now plans to build at least one of its planned floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessels. “This is the ideal location for Total and the only 100 per cent indigenous facility.” Jadesimi believes that through this facility the domestic engineering and construction sectors will explode. “We have at least three major FPSO projects coming up that will cost us up to US$ 30bn, with Shell saying that Nigeria will soon be their highest spend area in the world, reckoning to invest US$ 40bn.

“We see the country becoming an even bigger oil and gas hub for the whole of West Africa because these large facilities can only be built and operated in Nigeria. We definitely could see a shift from Asian shipyards. If you have a look at the coastline of West Africa it is incredible how few facilities and infrastructure to support the oil and gas industry. Nigeria is a major producer of oil.

“We’re following the same model as Brazil. The trajectory we are on is predictable – it is certain – and once these facilities are built we can raise sustained output.” - Oil & Gas Technology News continues below...


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Trucks queuing at the Kasumbalesa border crossing between the DRC and Zambia

Customs in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) decided to go hi-tech, but soon discovered that its telecom system resulted in 20-kilometre truck queues.

Worst hit is the Zambian border crossing, one of Africa's busiest land frontiers, that went hi-tech to improve efficiency and end corruption, said Reuters.

The result is a queue trucks stretching 20 kilometres into Zambia and rocketing prices in Lubumbashi, the DRC's second city, which lost its one proper road link to the outside.

"The trucks are moving 100 metres a day," said trucker Darius Chisanga, who spent more than a week idling at Kasumbalesa. "My papers expired while we were still in the queue."

While state inefficiency has long been tolerated in Africa, there has been a growing trend towards privatisation.

In one of the first public-private partnerships on African borders, Israel's Baran Trade and Investments won a 20-year concession in 2009 to build a "one-stop" customs post.

But Zambia cancelled the contract in late 2011 when President Rupiah Banda lost an election and his successor, Michael Sata, ordered investigations into state deals.

And the government took over again, saying that giving control of the border to an outside concessionaire was a threat to national security and that the reduction in waiting times was not as dramatic as the firm promised.

With Baran gone, the state-run border posts muddled through until September, when DRC upgraded its systems from Sydonia, a set-up widely used in the 1990s, to a web-based successor called Sydonia World.

Although the United Nations Commission for Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has advocated use of Sydonia World since 2002, the data burden was too much for DRC's computer networks, which crashed.

"The system is very good but if you don't have a decent Internet connection, it doesn't work," said South African logistics consultant and editor of online trade journal Freight Into Africa, Mike Fitzmaurice. - schednet

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Celebrating the launch of the Erongo Reading Programme were from left: Engelhardt Uirab (Inspector of Education, Erongo Region), Katrien Van Rooi (Senior Education Officer, Erongo Region), Mark Jacobs (Deputy Director PQA, Erongo Region), Hannes Uys (Chief Executive Officer, EBH Namibia), Lysius Uusiku (Acting Chief Education Officer, Rossing Foundation), Elia Manga (Deputy Director, Life Long Learning Erongo Region), Theo Whittaker (Managing Director, Educational Concepts) and Ursula Matzopoulus (Senior Education Officer, Rossing Foundation).

Ship repair company Elgin Brown & Hamer (EBH) Namibia has demonstrated again its commitment to a better life for all Namibians. In line with the government’s ‘Vision 2030’, the company has made a substantial donation towards a local reading programme in order to enhance the quality of teaching and introduce children to a world of learning through books.

The Erongo Region Ministry of Education, in launching its ‘Erongo Reading Programme’, aims to address poor levels of reading ability in the region by exposing learners to a wider range of books and developing the skills of teachers. This initiative reflects the philosophies at the heart of EBH Namibia, a company which places learning, skills development and training at the top of its own agenda.

“Developing people is at the core of our corporate culture, a philosophy which filters through our organisation and out into the community. As a business we have a responsibility and an obligation to exert a positive influence on our immediate social environment. One of the ways in which we can do this is to support educational initiatives such as the Reading Programme, and it is our honour to do so,” says Hannes Uys, Chief Executive Officer of EBH Namibia.

The company has also recently invested in an affordable housing project by developing a piece of land procured for the sole purpose of building some 220 houses for its employees. Taking into account the socio-economic needs of the Namibian people and working together to find solutions is what Vision 2030 is about, says Uys.

“The government has called on the private sector to partner with the public sector and other entities to help raise the quality of life and standard of living of the Namibian people. Housing and education are two fundamental areas in which EBH can make a difference in our region,” he says.

“Vision 2030 is everybody’s responsibility,” says John Awaseb, Director of the Erongo Region Ministry of Education. “Corporate sponsorship, such as from EBH Namibia, together with the Ministry of Education will strengthen Vision 2030 and make it a reality.” The premise behind the Reading Programme is the low levels of reading ability evident among learners in the region, and a vision of ensuring that every learner is taught to read effortlessly and fluently.

“There is no doubt that a learner who cannot read, cannot learn. It is our aim to turn the situation around by making books more accessible to learners, to provide the time and space for them to read, and most importantly, to build ‘reading stamina’ among our learners in a world with so many electronic distractions,” says Awaseb.

He continues: “We are immensely grateful to EBH Namibia for sharing our vision and making such a generous financial donation to the Reading Programme. One cannot overstate the importance of reading in education. EBH’s contribution will not only raise the standard of reading, but will also support the continuous professional development of our teachers. Quality teaching will yield quality results.”

“Reading and learning are fundamental building blocks to a prosperous future for Namibia and her people,” Uys adds. “A programme which aims to encourage learning and personal development is ‘music to our ears’ at EBH Namibia. We wish the Erongo Ministry of Education well in implementing this exciting initiative.”

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TranNamib freight train. Picture: Wikipedia Commons

A fuel train carrying a cargo of petroleum fuel loaded in Walvis bay has derailed approximately 45km out of Okahandja which is just to the north of the capital, Windhoek.

There were no injuries reported but all the fuel has been lost.

According to the Namibian the train, consisted of 28 wagons, of which 17 were damaged. The train was made up of fuel wagons and general freight.

A spokesman for TransNamib said an emergency breakdown team had been dispatched to the scene of the accident. The rail infrastructure was fortunately not damaged, he said and priority was being given to clearing the line so that other traffic can pass.

An examination of the damage to the environment would also take place.

The main line has meanwhile been closed to traffic until further notice, said the spokesman. The accident was under an investigation and an estimation of the cost of repairs still had to be determined.


Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA, Port of Durban is marking the October ‘Transport Month’ in a special way, by introducing learners to possible careers within the maritime industry.

The programme is taking place this week, between 6 – 9 October at the Port of Durban.

Owing to the large number of students that are visiting the port, they are being divided into groups enabling them to rotate from one place or event to another. The learners all come from the South Durban Basin area which includes the sprawling township of Umlazi.

200 students each day are being shown a simulator at work at the Academy, and will visit either a tugboat or one of the dredgers, the VTS which is otherwise known to us all as Port Control, and will be taken by boat around Durban Bay to see various aspects of the port which will give them a view of the places where they might work should they choose a maritime career.

According to TNPA spokesperson, Lesley van Duffelen, the concept is to introduce learners in grades 10 and 11 to career opportunities in the maritime industry and encourage these learners to focus on pure maths and science, as these are key subjects for this industry.


Turkishdelegation Sept2013 007 Dunile Cele on lef
Dumile Cele on left during a visit to the Chamber of a Turkish trade delegation. Andrew Layman is in the open neck shirt

Durban Chamber President, Akash Singh, has announced that Mrs Dumile Cele has been appointed as the CEO Designate to succeed Andrew Layman as Durban Chamber of Commerce & Industry (DCCI) in February 2015.

She is currently the Chamber’s Manager of Business Services, a position she has held since the beginning of 2013.

“We are delighted that Dumile has accepted this position,” Singh said. “She was the candidate of choice among several who were interviewed and we consider it to be a notable advantage that she has worked in the Chamber which will benefit from the period of hand-over during the next few months. Seamless continuity is an important factor in the Chamber’s strategy into 2015 and beyond.”

Dumile Cele was educated at St Anne’s in Hilton (KZN) and, having been awarded a bursary by Deloitte, obtained a B Soc Sc in Economics at the University of Cape Town. She also has a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Management (UKZN) and is currently finalising the requirements for an M Com in Maritime Studies.

Her career experience includes spells at a senior executive level in both Safmarine and Portnet (now Transnet NPA) where her particular responsibilities as she progressed related to business development at the Durban port, road transport, transformation and container operations. Later, and before she left the corporate world to focus on her four children’s requirements and offer executive coaching, she was the Senior Manager at TNPA’s Port Academy.

“We are confident we have found the right person to meet the Chamber’s future challenges and to build on what has been achieved in its 158-year history,” Singh said.


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Gateway port

Ports & Ships publishes regularly updated SHIP MOVEMENT reports including ETAs for ports extending from West Africa to South Africa to East Africa and including Port Louis in Mauritius.

In the case of South Africa’s container ports of Durban, Ngqura, Ports Elizabeth and Cape Town links to container Stack Dates are also available.

You can access this information, including the list of ports covered, by going HERE - remember to use your BACKSPACE to return to this page.



svendborg 470

Two red ships to end off this edition, both taken in either Table Bay or Cape Town harbour. The top picture shows the Norwegian-company Jo Tankers’ chemical & oil products tanker JO ACER (29,709-dwt, built 2004) within the harbour. The lower picture is of the German-owned general cargo ship SVENDBORG (3,666-dwt, built 1993) out in Table Bay. Both pictures: Ian Shiffman

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