Nasdaq-listed Athens-based shipowner and operator Pyxis Tankers (PXS) has recently finalized an agreement to acquire a 2015 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT from an independent third party. The kamsarmax bulk carrier was constructed by Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding, is equipped with both a BWTS (ballast water treatment system) and a scrubber, and has been priced at $26.6 million. The specific details about the seller and the vessel itself were not disclosed by Valentios Valentis-led shipowner and operator Pyxis Tankers (PXS). Pyxis Tankers (PXS) plans to finance this acquisition through a combination of bank debt and cash. The completion of this purchase, which is contingent on standard closing conditions, is expected by Q1 2024. Previously focused solely on product tankers, Athens-based shipowner and operator Pyxis Tankers (PXS) expanded into the dry bulk sector in a joint venture with its chairman and chief executive, Valentios Valentis. This strategic shift occurred over the summer and marked a new direction for the Pyxis Tankers (PXS). Following this, Pyxis Tankers (PXS) procured a 2016 built ultramax bulk carrier 63K DWT, fitted with a scrubber, for approximately $28.5 million. In this joint venture, Pyxis Tankers (PXS) holds a majority stake of 60%, with Valentios Valentis owning the remaining 40%.
The capesize bulk carrier spot rates have recently reached an 18-month high, driven by sustained demand for transatlantic iron ore. However, this upward trend in spot rates is expected to be temporary as Brazil’s rainy season approaches, which typically impacts iron ore shipments and, consequently, the demand for capesize vessels. On Tuesday, the capesize bulker market experienced a significant surge, marking the fourth consecutive business day of increases. This rally resulted in the average spot rate for capesizes across five key routes climbing by 9.4%, reaching nearly $34,700 per day, as reported by the Baltic Exchange. Notably, this increase occurred despite a decrease in rates for fixtures in the Pacific market. The Baltic Exchange 5TC route basket, which is a benchmark for the industry, reflected this notable rise in rates. This surge underscores the dynamic nature of the shipping market, where various factors like regional demand, seasonal changes, and global economic conditions can have a significant impact on freight rates. The approaching rainy season in Brazil, a key exporter of iron ore, is anticipated to temper this rally as it usually affects mining operations and exports, leading to a potential decrease in the demand for capesize vessels.
Hong Kong Maritime Week is set to host one of its most anticipated social events at the Four Seasons Hotel, celebrating the annual cocktails of The Caravel Group. This year’s event is particularly special as it marks the tenth anniversary of the company, founded by Harry Banga, a renowned figure in Hong Kong’s shipping and commodities sector. Harry Banga, who previously worked alongside Richard Elman at Noble Group, ventured into his own business in late 2013, establishing Caravel Group initially as a commodities group. He also brought Fleet Management from Noble Group into his new venture. Now, a decade later, Harry Banga, at 73, leads a multi-billion dollar conglomerate, navigating through a global economy that has shifted dramatically from globalization to more protectionist tendencies in major economies. In a recent exclusive interview with Maritime CEO, a publication Banga supported from its inception, he acknowledged the challenges posed by these global economic shifts. Despite the geopolitical uncertainties, he remains optimistic about the economic growth and sustained demand for commodities in the coming year. This optimism is also shared for Fleet Management, the ship management arm of the group, which is set to celebrate its 30th anniversary under the leadership of Kishore Rajvanshy, a long-term colleague and friend of Banga. Adding to the list of achievements, Harry Banga’s son, Angad, was recently elected as the new chairman of the Hong Kong Shipowners Association (HKSOA). Harry Banga, a veteran in the shipping industry with a Master Mariner certification since 1976, remains steadfast in his belief in Hong Kong’s future as a significant maritime hub. He emphasizes the need for an adaptive approach in the maritime industry, especially in preparing seafarers for future challenges, acknowledging the inherent uncertainties and risks of the sector.
Over the weekend, an extensive search and rescue mission was initiated following the sinking of the MV Raptor, a Comoros-flagged cargo ship, amidst turbulent waters near Lesbos island, Greece. MV Raptor, carrying 14 crew members, went down 4.5 nautical miles southwest of Lesbos early Sunday. In response, a large-scale operation involving five cargo ships, three Greek coast guard vessels, along with air force and navy helicopters, and a navy frigate, was mobilized. Tragically, one crew member has been confirmed dead, twelve are missing, and one has been found alive. MV Raptor, a coaster bulk carrier built in 1984 and operated by Lebanon-based shipowner and operator Cedar Marine Services, encountered mechanical issues at 07:00 hrs local time. Shortly thereafter, a distress call was issued as the ship began to list and subsequently disappeared from radar. MV Raptor, which had left Egypt carrying a salt shipment bound for Istanbul, had a diverse crew from Egypt, Syria, and India. Meanwhile, many ships in various Greek regions were anchored due to strong winds reaching 9-10 on the Beaufort scale, equating to strong gale or storm force. The Hellenic National Meteorological Service escalated its weather alert from emergency to dangerous weather phenomena on Saturday, as Storm Oliver moved from the Adriatic Sea towards Greece.
This weekend, a protest group known as Rising Tide is planning to orchestrate the largest peaceful civil disobedience demonstration for climate action ever seen in Australia, taking place at the world’s largest coal port in Newcastle. Thousands of individuals are expected to unite to blockade ships for a duration of 30 hours. The group’s statement emphasizes their demand for governments to cease permitting new coal projects and instead impose a 75% tax on profits from fossil fuel exports. The revenue generated from this tax would be allocated to support community and industrial transitions and address the impacts of climate change. In related news, Australian authorities reported on Wednesday that 23 individuals had been arrested during an unauthorized pro-Palestine protest targeting the Israeli liner company ZIM at Port Botany.
Abu Dhabi Ports appears to be exploring a substantial acquisition worth $2 billion, involving the acquisition of PT Meratus Line, a shipowner and operator based in Surabaya. The expansion plan includes bolstering Abu Dhabi’s terminals and shipping capabilities. Reports suggest that Abu Dhabi Ports is currently engaged in significant takeover negotiations with PT Meratus Line, which operates bulk carriers and container ships. It’s been noted that Abu Dhabi Ports is the preferred buyer as the Menaro family, who owns PT Meratus Line, contemplates selling the company. Abu Dhabi Ports, a state-owned entity, operates both terminals and a fleet of ships, and it seems they are actively pursuing this deal as part of their expansion strategy in the maritime sector.
Marfin Management, headquartered in Monaco, is expanding its trial of fuel additives associated with Constantine Logothetis. These additives have demonstrated a significant reduction in fuel consumption during the trial phase, prompting plans to implement them across the entire fleet. Following the successful initial tests, Marfin Management will now conduct trials of fuel additives on an additional six bulk carriers in their fleet. The company had been experimenting with the SulNOxEco fuel conditioner, developed by the UK’s SulNOx Group, in which shipowner Constantine Logothetis holds a 23% stake. The initial trial, conducted on the 59,900-dwt vessel named Paolo Topic, which was built in 2016, resulted in fuel savings of up to 6.4%.
The panamax bulker market has reached a 13-month high, driven by a scarcity of available tonnage and an ongoing imbalance in the North Atlantic region. On Monday, the Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC, which represents spot-rate averages across five significant routes, surged by 2.2%, reaching $17,235 per day. This marks the first time the average spot rate for Panamax vessels has exceeded $17,000 per day since October 27, 2022.
MV Antoine, the world’s first newly built hydrogen-powered inland shipping vessel, has recently been launched into operation. This innovative vessel, ordered by Dutch shipowner Lenten Scheepvaart from Concordia Damen, successfully completed its sea trials and is now operational, awaiting the installation of a distribution panel to work alongside its installed hydrogen fuel cell. Designed as a dry cargo ship, MV Antoine will primarily transport salt for Nobian, a leading European producer of essential chemicals for various industries. Lenten Scheepvaart has a longstanding history of transporting salt from Delfzijl to Nobian’s plant in Botlek, where the salt is converted into chlor-alkali and other products, with hydrogen as a by-product. This hydrogen, once a waste product, will soon be repurposed as the clean fuel powering MV Antonie, exemplifying a circular approach to energy use. To facilitate this innovative use of hydrogen, a hydrogen bunker station has been established in Delfzijl, supported by subsidies. MV Antoine’s launch marks a pivotal moment in the Dutch maritime industry’s exploration of hydrogen as a sustainable fuel source.
The United States has imposed sanctions on three shipping companies based in Dubai, as well as three tankers, for their involvement in transporting Russian oil sold at prices exceeding the G7’s $60 per barrel cap. The UAE-based companies affected by these sanctions include Kazan Shipping, Progress Shipping, and Gallion Navigation. These firms are believed to have connections with Sovcomflot, which is Russia’s largest shipping line. The sanctions specifically target three Liberian-flagged aframax tankers: MT Kazan, MT Ligovsky Prospect, and MT NS Century. These tankers have been actively engaged in shipping Russian oil to India in recent months. This move by the US is part of a broader effort to enforce the price cap agreed upon by the G7 nations, aimed at limiting Russia’s oil revenue while mitigating global energy supply disruptions. The sanctions highlight the ongoing international efforts to respond to the economic dimensions of the geopolitical tensions involving Russia.
The panamax bulker market has hit a seven-month peak, driven by a combination of strong demand and a healthy volume of cargo. This uptrend was particularly notable on Thursday when panamax bulkers saw a significant increase of 6.3%, reaching an average spot rate of approximately $16,200 per day. This rate marks the highest point for the market since it was nearly $16,700 per day on April 11, 2023. This rise in rates is attributed to the favorable conditions of robust demand coupled with an adequate supply of vessels. The Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC index, a benchmark for the industry, has been on a steady upward trajectory over the past week, reflecting the positive momentum in the panamax bulker sector. This current trend indicates a strong recovery and buoyancy in this segment of the shipping market.
Ukraine has launched a substantial $100 million insurance initiative aimed at significantly reducing the costs linked to marine war risk insurance. This unique program, a collaboration between public and private sectors, is tailored to insure agricultural exports departing from Ukraine. Endorsed by a leading German bank, this state-supported ship insurance scheme was initially thought to have a broader scope. However, as clarified on November 14, 2023, its primary focus is on insuring Ukraine’s maritime exports. The package is divided into two separate $50 million segments, each catering to different aspects of maritime insurance: one for hull insurance and the other for liability insurance. This agreement, which was finalized with the London insurance market, highlights the Ukrainian government’s commitment to bolstering and safeguarding its crucial agricultural export industry, especially in the face of ongoing geopolitical and economic challenges.
Platts, a division of S&P Global Commodity Insights, has recently introduced a groundbreaking dry bulk composite index, the first of its kind in over thirty years, priced in dollars per day. This index offers a comprehensive reflection of the freight costs associated with transporting various commodities across 35 key routes. It encompasses the activities of different ship types including capesize, panamax, kamsarmax, ultramax, and supramax bulk carriers. The Platts Dry Index provides market participants and financial investors, who are sensitive to daily fluctuations in dry bulk shipping rates, an opportunity to engage in trading that covers a broad spectrum of vessel segments. This diversification is facilitated by a basket of routes included in the index. The methodology for weighting the individual indexes within the Platts Dry Index is based on the volume of ship movements – specifically capesize, kamsarmax, ultramax, and supramax bulk carriers – observed over the past three years in various trading regions. This data is sourced from Platts’ Commodities At Sea (CAS) trade flow system. The Platts Dry Index’s calculation is conducted in ton-miles. This is achieved by multiplying the volume of cargo moved (measured in metric tons) by the distance traveled (in miles). This innovative index offers a more nuanced and comprehensive view of the dry bulk shipping market, providing valuable insights for market participants.
The United States, through its Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OfAC), has sent letters to more than 30 shipowners and managers in the tanker industry. This action is interpreted by industry insiders as a move to exert pressure on the sector regarding the price cap on Russian oil. The companies targeted by these letters are predominantly Greek, involved in trades of crude and fuel oil which are directly affected by the price cap. This initiative by the US authorities is a clear indication of their commitment to enforcing western sanctions against Russia, particularly in the realm of energy trade. This development highlights the increasing role of governmental agencies in regulating international trade, especially in sectors that are crucial for global economic stability and security.
The shipping industry is currently grappling with macroeconomic uncertainty, a theme that has become increasingly prevalent in recent third-quarter earnings reports and conference calls. This uncertainty is largely influenced by US monetary policy and economic indicators from China, leading to varying reactions among industry players. While some in the shipping sector are apprehensive about the looming economic challenges, not everyone is equally concerned. Different segments of the industry are experiencing varying impacts. For certain sectors, the inefficiencies that have echoed through supply chains since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have actually been advantageous. These disruptions have led to longer tonne-miles, which can benefit shipowners in specific market segments. Thus, while the macroeconomic environment poses challenges, it also presents opportunities for some players in the shipping industry.
Varamar, a shipping company specializing in dry bulk and container shipping, led by Alexander Varvarenko, has entered into a strategic cooperation agreement with the Chinese state-owned giant, Cosco. Based in Belgium, Varamar will collaborate with Cosco’s ASL Shipping & Logistics in a commercial partnership designed to bolster the trading capabilities of both companies. Varamar, known for its operations as a liner and tramp carrier, is primarily focused on handling breakbulk, dry bulk, oversized, and containerized cargo. This partnership with Cosco represents a significant step for Varamar in expanding its global trade reach and enhancing its service offerings in these specialized shipping areas.
The Panama Canal, a crucial maritime route accounting for 3% of global maritime trade, is facing significant challenges due to severe drought conditions. This has led to a 13% increase in the number of ships waiting to transit the canal in just 24 hours, as the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) implements drastic measures, including reducing daily transit volumes and imposing draft restrictions. The Panama Canal, which typically requires 52 million gallons of freshwater per ship transit, has been experiencing its driest year on record. As a result, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced further significant transit cuts last week, planning to reduce the number of voyages to just 18 per day by February 2024, a sharp decrease from the usual maximum of 40. As of today, 112 ships were queued for transit. The situation was at its most critical in August 2023 of this drought-affected year, with over 160 ships waiting at one point. The constrained capacity has led many shippers and shipowners to opt for alternative routes. Panama Canal Authority’s (ACP) slot booking process, which tends to favor larger shipowners, potentially leading to inflationary pressures, especially in the Americas.
A Russian missile strike targeting a bulk carrier nearing the Ukrainian port of Yuzhny resulted in the death of a pilot, with injuries inflicted on three Filipino crew members and one dockworker. The missile, identified as a Soviet-style air-to-surface type, struck 2009 built post-panamax bulk carrier 91K DWT MV Kmax Ruler flagged under Liberia. MV Kmax Ruler is owned by Venus Mare of the Philippines, was set to transport a shipment of iron ore from Ukraine to China. The incident underscores the heightened risk for maritime operations in the region following Russia’s withdrawal from the Black Sea Grain Initiative, which was orchestrated by the United Nations in July 2023. The conflict has escalated tensions, with both Ukraine and Russia targeting each other’s ports, leading to soaring insurance premiums for vessels entering Ukrainian ports. The ongoing war, which has lasted 21 months, has seen various merchant vessels caught in the crossfire.
Astatine Investment Partners (AIP), a private equity firm based in Connecticut (USA), has acquired McKeil Marine, a shipping company located in Ontario (Canada), from TorQuest Partners, a Canadian investment firm. McKeil Marine’s long-term inflation-linked contracts offer significant protection against downside risks. McKeil Marine has the potential for expansion of the company’s services and fleet diversification. Astatine Investment Partners (AIP) is eager to collaborate with the management and skilled crew of McKeil Marine to enhance its leading position in the market and continue its historical growth trajectory.
McKeil Marine boasts a fleet comprising 13 vessels for dry and liquid bulk, along with the largest category-specific collection of tugs and barges on the Great Lakes.
The Far Eastern Shipping Company (FESCO), a prominent name in Russian container shipping, has changed hands. President Vladimir Putin directed the transfer of a 92% state-owned stake in Far Eastern Shipping Company (FESCO) to the state-controlled nuclear power giant Rosatom. This move comes after the government assumed control of Far Eastern Shipping Company (FESCO) following the arrest of its head, Ziyavudin Magomedov, who was sentenced to 19 years in prison December 2022 on corruption charges. Despite his incarceration, Ziyavudin Magomedov remains combative, initiating a massive $14 billion lawsuit at the High Court in London in July 2022. Far Eastern Shipping Company’s (FESCO) current fleet consists of 25 vessels, which includes nineteen (19) container ships, three (3) small bulk carriers, and three (3) heavy-lift ships. Additionally, Far Eastern Shipping Company (FESCO) has vested interests in port, rail, and logistics infrastructure.
Capesize bulk carriers have made a significant recovery with spot rates surpassing $20,000 per day, a level higher than initially predicted. This resurgence in rates is due to tighter supply conditions than anticipated. These capesize bulkers are currently operating in their strongest quarter, and their performance in the typically softer first quarter of the year will depend on natural factors like El Niño. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC basket has shown a 4.6% improvement, reaching just over $20,100 per day as of October 7, 2023. This marks the second time in less than two weeks that these rates have crossed the $20,000-per-day threshold.
Hellerup-based Union Bulk, a Danish dry bulk shipping and freight trading company primarily operating in the handysize and handymax segments, has expanded its operations to become a shipowner. Union Bulk recently acquired 2011 built handysize bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Hinase, marking its entry into shipownership. Established in March 2019 and founded by Anders Svarrer and Jens Boesen, Union Bulk initially operated as a dry bulk operator and freight trading firm, managing a fleet of approximately 25 handysize bulk carriers. However, Hellerup-based Union Bulk has now made its first move into shipowning with the purchase of the MV Hinase from Japase shipowner and operator Shinto Kisen. MV Hinasewas built by Imabari Shipbuilding. Notably, 2011 built handysize bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Hinase had previously been under charter with Union Bulk before its acquisition, marking an expansion of the company’s involvement in the maritime industry beyond ship operation and freight trading.
S&P (Sale and Purchase) shipbrokers have been closely monitoring the significant decline in capesize rates, which have dropped nearly 50% from their year-highs of $30,000 in just two weeks. S&P (Sale and Purchase) shipbrokers are keen to see if this sharp decrease will lead to a corresponding drop in prices for secondhand capesize bulk carriers. In this context, the attention was on the 2009 built capesize bulk carrier 180K DWT MV Ocean Corona, built at Koyo Shipbuilding in Japan, which recently invited offers for sale. The price for this 2009 built capesize bulk carrier 180K DWT MV Ocean Corona, the first sale of its kind in November, has now been disclosed, and it confirms that price levels are indeed sliding. 2009 built capesize bulk carrier 180K DWT MV Ocean Corona was sold for $20.8 million. Just a couple of weeks ago, when capesize rates were at their peak of about $30,000 per day, 2011 built capesize bulk carrier 177K DWT MV Cymona Iron, equipped with a scrubber and built at Shanghai Waigaoqiao, was sold for $27 million. Looking at demand growth from a tonne-day perspective, analysts at the freight platform have reported a declining trend in recent days. This downward trend has now reached its lowest growth rate since the end of week 39, and it appears that November will bring further downward pressure on capesize freight rates. The China Iron and Steel Association recently stated that domestic crude steel production may decrease in Q4 2023 due to mandatory production cuts and pollution control regulations during the winter months. Combined with ongoing concerns about China’s property market, this situation may keep iron ore demand subdued shortly.
Unity Maritime, a London-based shipowner, is embarking on a fleet expansion initiative through a crew management joint venture with Singapore-based Synergy Marine. The joint venture is operating under the name US Crewing Services and is based in Varna, Bulgaria. Danny Ungar’s Synergy Marine aims to manage up to 50 dry bulk carriers through this new venture. US Crewing Services, formed as a subsidiary of Unity Ship Management (USM) and in collaboration with Rajesh Unni’s ship-management company Synergy Marine, will initially focus on managing the existing ships within the Unity Maritime and Synergy Marine fleets. This partnership represents a step toward growth and expansion for Unity Maritime as it works with Synergy Marine to enhance its operations and services.
Shipowners and charterers facing challenges in navigating a drought-affected Panama Canal have driven transit slot auction prices to an unprecedented high. The bidding for a Panama Canal crossing reached an astounding $2.85 million. This figure surpasses the usual booking fee of approximately $900,000 and exceeds the previous record of $2.6 million set in November 2022. Typically, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) auctions one or two vacant crossing slots through the neo-panamax locks to the highest bidder each day. These auctions are typically won by LNG or LPG carriers. This year, it was anticipated that a new record fee would be established. The situation is expected to become even more challenging as the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has announced significant reductions in daily crossing numbers due to declining water levels. Normally, 36 ships cross the canal each day, but this number has already been reduced to 32. The reduction will continue, dropping to 25, then 24 in November, 22 in December, 20 in January, and eventually reaching just 18 in February 2024. VLGCs (Very Large Gas Carriers) could face increased pressure as a result of these changes. VLGC (Very Large Gas Carrier) fleet will face further strain as Panama Canal transit numbers are reduced, especially since waiting times typically peak in November.
After years of negotiations and a rigorous vetting process, Istanbul-based Turkish Classification Society Turk Loydu has officially become a member of the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS). This development marks a significant milestone for Turk Loydu, and the organization plans to expand its presence on the international stage. Turk Loydu’s membership in International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) was granted with immediate effect, as announced by IACS in a statement. The application process included thorough audits carried out in the previous year by the independent accredited certification body Dekra, with the involvement of International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) observers. This recognition and membership in International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) reflect Turk Loydu’s commitment to meeting international standards and contributing to the global maritime industry.
The capesize spot market is currently experiencing a significant decline, described as being “halfway down the mountain,” with India poised to increase its demand for coal. India has been keeping its coal plants operational for longer periods, leading to a need for replenishing its dwindling domestic coal supply. Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC index has fallen by 9.6% in the past two days, dropping to less than $16,800 per day as of Tuesday. This decline follows a sharp 37% drop within a week, from around $29,500 per day on 20 October 2023, as reported by the Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC index. It is anticipated that the capesize bulker market will gradually slow down its descent and stabilize in about two weeks, driven by India’s efforts to secure additional coal supplies.
Wind propulsion expert Norsepower has partnered with Japanese shipowner Iino Kaiun Kaisha and Mizuho Leasing to introduce a leasing program for Norsepower’s increasingly popular Rotor Sail technology. The primary goal of this initiative is to offer shipowners and operators leasing options for the Norsepower Rotor Sail, with a minimum lease term of five years and a fixed monthly fee. Rotor sails have already been successfully installed on two vessels owned by Japanese shipowner Iino Kaiun Kaisha. The adoption of established and commercially proven energy efficiency solutions like the Norsepower Rotor Sail is often impeded by the traditional requirement for upfront investment. This initial financial commitment can pose a significant obstacle for small to medium-sized shipowners and operators, despite the tangible benefits of reduced fuel consumption, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and other pollutants. Norsepower has highlighted this challenge in a recent statement. The Norsepower Rotor Sail represents a modernized version of the Flettner rotor. It utilizes a small portion of the ship’s electrical power to rotate cylinder-shaped rotors, generating powerful thrust that not only saves fuel but also reduces emissions.
Ships are set to resume their operations along the St. Lawrence Seaway today, marking the end of an eight-day strike. The strike was brought to a close after a deal was reached on Sunday with approximately 360 workers who are members of Unifor, Canada’s largest private-sector union. The dispute primarily revolved around wage issues with the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp. According to a statement from the union, the specifics of the tentative agreement will be shared with its members first and will be made public once the agreement is formally ratified. This strike had led to the closure of 13 locks on the St. Lawrence Seaway, affecting approximately 150 ships.
Methanol propulsion specialist Green Marine Copenhagen and Singapore-based Stamford Ship Management have joined forces to establish a joint venture in Singapore. Their mission is to develop and manage methanol dual fuel propulsion ships across various market segments, both from a commercial and technical standpoint. Morten Jacobsen, the founder of Green Marine, expressed that Singapore was chosen as the ideal location to establish their platform for methanol ship ownership and ship management. The partnership with Singapore-based Stamford Ship Management has already led to the initiation of several newbuilding projects, showcasing Green Marine Copenhagen’s commitment to diversifying its presence across the marine methanol sector. In recent times, methanol has emerged as the second most popular alternative fuel in global ship orders, following LNG. Several local companies in Singapore are investing in methanol bunkering ships, further emphasizing the region’s commitment to this environmentally friendly fuel.
The German shipmanagement sector is currently experiencing significant changes, including upcoming mergers and the emergence of a new brand. Bremen-based shipowner and operator Harren Group has recently introduced Harren Ship Management, a new entity that offers comprehensive shipmanagement services. These services encompass both technical and crew management and are available for a wide range of ship types, including heavylift and multipurpose ships, tankers, bulk carriers, container vessels, and offshore wind installations. Bremen-based shipowner and operator Harren Group emphasized the importance of providing customized and proactive management services for multi-million-dollar assets. Harren Group highlighted the need to continually adapt to various factors such as market cycles, charterer requirements, and asset strategies. Harren Group expressed the view that a shipowner’s success is closely tied to the ability of their management team to navigate and address these dynamic challenges effectively.
Capesize spot rates have experienced a significant drop of 37% in just one week, signaling a bear market for this segment. Weak demand has been cited as the primary factor behind this decline, leading to a sharp decrease in capesize spot rates. Specifically, the Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC index has fallen by 37.4% over the past seven days, reaching a rate of approximately $18,500 per day. This marks the lowest point for capesize spot rates since mid-May 2023. The decrease in capesize average spot rates has been observed in both the Atlantic and Pacific basins, with trading activity remaining sluggish in these regions. The oversupply of tonnage further exacerbates the challenges faced by the capesize bulker sector.
The traditional capesize cargo routes are undergoing transformation due to the steel industry’s efforts to reduce emissions. The evolving requirements of steel manufacturers in China, India, and Europe are influencing trade patterns. These changes in capesize trade routes are already underway and are expected to continue as steel producers worldwide seek to lower their carbon footprints. Interestingly, new areas of demand are emerging to counterbalance these shifts. Currently, approximately 75% of steel production relies heavily on coal-fired blast furnaces, which are significant sources of CO2 emissions. The International Energy Agency has set an ambitious goal for the global steel industry to achieve a minimum 50% reduction in emissions by the year 2050.
Italian shipowner and operator Manisa Bulk is embarking on a fleet expansion initiative through a shipbuilding contract with CSSC Guangxi yard, which involves the construction of up to eight (8) general cargo ships. This contract specifically encompasses six confirmed orders for 8.5K DWT gearless, open-hatch ships scheduled for delivery in 2025 and 2026. Additionally, there is an option for two (2) more general cargo ships to be added to the order. These general cargo ships are classified by RINA (Registro Italiano Navale), have been designed by Marine Design & Consulting of Norway. Importantly, Italian shipowner and operator Manisa Bulk’s new general cargo ships are expected to achieve a notable 40% reduction in bunker consumption compared to similar general cargo ships. Italian shipowner and operator Manisa Bulk’s order represents a significant milestone for Guangxi Shipbuilding’s Qinzhou shipyard, marking the largest export deal it has secured since it entered the shipbuilding business in 2020. Currently, Naples-based shipowner and operator Manisa Bulk has a fleet of 14 general cargo ships.
A labor union representing workers on the Canadian side of the St. Lawrence Seaway has issued a strike threat if an agreement is not reached by October 22, 2023. Should the strike proceed, it would result in the closure of locks that connect the Great Lakes to the Atlantic, affecting ships utilizing this St. Lawrence Seaway. Most of the 15 locks in question are under the management of Canada’s St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp. Unifor, the union representing the workers, issued a 72-hour strike notice on Wednesday and has expressed its willingness to continue negotiations even after the originally scheduled bargaining dates have passed. Lana Payne, the national president of Unifor, has emphasized the union’s commitment to reaching a collective agreement, urging the St. Lawrence Seaway to take the negotiations seriously. St. Lawrence Seaway Management, a nonprofit organization established by the Canadian government, has also expressed its commitment to the negotiation process. However, the St. Lawrence Seaway Managemen has raised concerns that the union’s wage demands, given its nonprofit status, could potentially lead to toll increases that may not be competitive and could result in higher prices for goods transported via the waterway. Any shutdown, even if brief, would have adverse effects on the Canadian side of the St. Lawrence Seaway , especially as it enters the busiest part of the navigation season.
The strengthening capesize bulker market suggests that China may be considering replenishing its iron ore inventory. This surge in the capesize bulker market may be an indicator of China’s intent to restock its relatively low iron ore stockpiles. Over the past week, the Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC has increased by 6.9% to reach nearly $29,500 per day. Despite a slight pullback in the past two days, this indicates an improved situation compared to a week ago. It’s worth noting that Rio Tinto mines iron ore in Western Australia’s Pilbara region, and the dynamics of the iron ore market often have significant implications for China’s economic activities and global trade.
The fleet sale by Hong Kong-based Parakou Group is gaining momentum, capitalizing on the rising prices in the dry cargo market. According to S&P (Sale and Purchase) shipbrokers, Parakou Group has recently sold 2015 built ultramax bulk carrier 63K DWT MV CP Shanghai for around $23.5 million. Additionally, it’s worth noting that Parakou Group’s affiliate, Pretty Sea Ship Management, has also sold a second-handysize bulk carrier in the span of a few weeks. Pretty Sea Ship Management sold 2011 built handysize bulk carrier 35K DWT MV Red Sea for around $11 million. In September 2023, its sister ship, 35K DWT MV Purple Sea, was sold for less than $11 million. Parakou Group has a preference for ordering new ships, and over the past three decades, the company has placed orders for more than 100 vessels at shipyards in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and China. In May 2017, CC Liu, the esteemed founder and chairman of Parakou Shipping and the honorary consul for Norway in Hong Kong, has passed away. The Hong Kong Shipowners Association expressed their condolences and acknowledged CC Liu’s significant support for the Association and the Hong Kong Maritime community. Parakou Shipping CEO CC Liu was known for maintaining a low profile as a ship owner. CC Liu embarked on his entrepreneurial journey in the mid-1980s when he acquired a bankrupt company and established Parakou Shipping Ltd. Over the years, CC Liu successfully developed a substantial fleet specializing in dry bulk and tanker ships, although Parakou Shipping Ltd. faced financial challenges in recent times. Parakou Shipping CEO CC Liu had an extraordinary connection to the maritime world, with shipping in his very blood. Parakou Shipping CEO CC Liu commenced his career as a seaman with the newly formed Cosco Group in 1964. During his time at Cosco Group, CC Liu met Chik Sau Kam, who would later become his wife. In 1971, the couple immigrated to Hong Kong, where CC Liu initially worked for Ocean Tramping. After diligently saving funds, CC Liu took the courageous step of founding Parakou Shipping. Under his leadership, Parakou Shipping grew from its humble origins into a major player, owing much of its success to CC Liu’s adept leveraging of his mainland connections, particularly within Sinotrans. Remarkably, CC Liu remained actively involved in the day-to-day operations of Parakou Group until his passing, working alongside his two sons. Parakou Shipping CEO CC Liu’s legacy and contributions to the maritime industry and the transformation of Parakou Shipping from a small venture into a significant player will be remembered and respected.
The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) has surged past the 2,000-point mark, with average capesize spot rates surpassing $30,000 per day on 17 October 2023. This marks the first time the Baltic Dry Index has exceeded 2,000 points since July 2022. This remarkable uptick can be attributed to a significant enhancement in the assessment of average capesize spot rates. The Baltic Dry Index (BDI), serving as a comprehensive gauge of the strength of bulk shipping markets, excluding smaller bulk carriers, witnessed an impressive 86-point increase on 17 October 2023, reaching a level of 2,058 points. The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) has been on a consistent upward trajectory since the beginning of September 2023, benefiting from a renewed sense of optimism for the Q3 2023, which traditionally represents the most robust period of the year for capesize bulk carriers.
The Baltic Exchange has offered reassurance to freight futures participants who have been experiencing frustration, although challenges still persist. Some of the globe’s most prominent freight derivatives traders have reported progress in their efforts to compel the Baltic Exchange to address underlying concerns regarding the reliability of its indices. Recent interactions and discussions between the Baltic Exchange and leaders of the newly established Independent FFA Association have been described as a highly positive development by one trader. However, they emphasize that they will persist in advocating for enhancements and increased transparency in the future.
Ukrainian crew members are confronted with the possibility of being prohibited from serving on vessels entering Russian territorial waters due to a new law. This regulation, effective from Monday, mandates that Ukrainian nationals can only enter Russia through two designated checkpoints: Sheremetievo airport in Moscow and Ludonka at the Latvian border. For Ukrainian seafarers, the situation becomes more complex. As per P&I (Protection and Indemnity) correspondents in communication with InterManager, the international ship management association, every Ukrainian crew member will undergo an interview conducted by the Russian officials as part of the entry clearance process. This additional scrutiny could potentially lead to delayed vessel schedules. Furthermore, agents operating at Ust-Luga, a significant Russian Baltic seaport, have indicated that ships with Ukrainian crew members on board will be denied entry for cargo operations. This development poses serious operational challenges and uncertainties for shipping lines employing Ukrainian seafarers and requiring access to Russian ports.
Handysize bulker rates have reached a six-month peak, driven by increased optimism in the Americas. Shipbrokers report a surge in rates for trips originating from the US Gulf Coast (USG) and the Eastern Coasts of South America (ECSA). The average spot rates for handysize bulk carriers have soared to levels unseen since late March 2023, propelled by a buoyant spot market in the Americas. According to the Baltic Exchange, the handysize average spot rates escalated to approximately $12,400 per day on Friday, marking the first time they’ve achieved this level in half a year. This increase denotes a modest 1.8% rise over the past week, but it’s a substantial 14.1% uptick when viewed in broader terms, highlighting significant growth in the sector.
Hamburg-based shipowner and operator Neu Seeschiffahrt has plans to upgrade its entire fleet of eight bulk carriers with systems for optimizing propulsion by 2024. The fleet, comprising six (6) VLOCs (Very Large Ore Carriers) and two (2) newcastlemax bulk carriers, will be equipped with the FuelOpt system from Norway’s Yara Marine Technologies (YMT). This versatile system is suitable for all engine or propeller types and is prepared for the adoption of future fuels, as highlighted by Neu Seeschiffahrt. The primary goal is to decrease both fuel usage and emissions by having the system automatically adjust the ship’s propulsive force based on current environmental conditions. This approach maintains consistent power and speed, preventing expensive fluctuations, and does not require additional crew members. Hamburg-based shipowner and operator Neu Seeschiffahrt emphasized that the easiest way to ensure economical and sustainable operations for the future is by cutting fuel consumption without compromising efficiency. Recently, Neu Seeschiffahrt, which is owned by the American Neu family, expanded its fleet with the acquisition of two newcastlemax sister bulk carriers, the 2012 built MV Clear Horizon and 2012 built MV Blue Horizon from Taiwan’s Wisdom Marine. The partnership with Yara Marine Technologies (YMT) aligns with the new management at Neu Seeschiffahrt’s strategy to build a fleet that’s both fuel-efficient and competitive. The move towards more environmentally friendly practices within the shipping sector is advantageous for everyone involved.
October has seen a surge in bulk carrier sales, driven by strengthening capesize rates. Following the conclusion of the Golden Week in China, the dry bulk market anticipates more transaction announcements in the upcoming days. Recently, capesize spot earnings reached their peak for the year, nearing $30,000 per day. The subdued rainy season has positively impacted the maritime transport of iron ore. Coupled with the unexpected rise in China’s Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index and a constrained bulk carrier supply, these factors are driving the dry bulk shipping market’s strong upward trajectory. Over the past weekend, two sales captured significant attention, underscoring the premium consistently associated with Japanese-built capesize bulk carriers. 2010 built capesize bulk carrier 175K DWT MV Cape Star was reportedly sold for around $21 million. In contrast, 2011 built capesize bulk carrier 178K DWT MV AM Gijon sold for around $26 million.
Amid the escalating Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which has seen unprecedented levels of violence following an armed raid by Palestinians from Gaza resulting in thousands of deaths, shipowners operating in Israel and Lebanon are being advised to exercise extreme caution. A prominent shipowners’ association has raised its warning to “Security Level 3” for vessels navigating the region, indicating the highest level of security concern. The cruise industry has been particularly responsive, with many operators rerouting their ships away from Israeli ports, especially Ashdod, which is in close proximity to the Gaza Strip. Given Ashdod’s proximity to the Gaza Strip and the reported clashes in and around the town, there are significant safety concerns. Rockets launched by Hamas have reached areas even beyond Ashdod, including cities like Tel Aviv.
International merchant vessels are showing continued interest in Ukraine’s new shipping corridor, with 12 vessels preparing to enter and 10 set to leave, despite warnings from London about potential threats from Russia, including the laying of mines to deter ships from using the new trade lane. Russia withdrew from the Black Sea Grain Initiative, a United Nations-brokered shipping agreement, in mid-July 2023. Since then, Ukraine has been working on creating an alternative shipping route for its exports and has taken measures against Russian naval infrastructure to safeguard this new maritime corridor. The United Kingdom has raised concerns about Russia’s intentions in the Black Sea, suggesting that while Russia might avoid directly sinking civilian ships, it could attempt to falsely blame Ukraine for any attacks on civilian vessels in the region. The UK Foreign Office has also highlighted Russia’s increased aerial attacks on Ukrainian ports, which have resulted in significant damage to infrastructure and grain supplies. Ukraine’s grain exports have seen a 24% decline in the current July-June 2023 season due to blockages in major export routes. However, recent activity suggests a resurgence in exports from Ukrainian ports.
Japanese shipowner and operator Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) has made a significant reduction in its fleet. Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) recently divested its 2012 built panamax bulk carrier 74K DWT MV Sanko Fortune, for $21 million to unidentified Greek parties. This transaction leaves Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) with a solitary vessel in its fleet, the newly built 2021 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV Sanko Hawking bulk carrier. Established in 1934, Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) faced major financial setbacks, becoming the most significant shipping bankruptcy of the 1980s. Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) encountered financial turmoil again in 2012. Since then, Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) has been consistently reducing its fleet size.
Panama has experienced an unprecedented drought this year, which has led to the imposition of draft and transit restrictions across the canal to save water. Currently, the reservoir is 2.1 meters below the expected level for this period. The El Niño weather phenomenon has resulted in a 25.6% reduction in average accumulated rainfall in the Panama Canal’s watershed for 2023, compared to the 73-year average. The Panama Canal’s administrators have highlighted the importance of the upcoming 80 days of the rainy season to replenish water storage in preparation for the 2024 dry season. To address the water shortage, Panama Canal authorities are collaborating with lawmakers to amend a 2006 law, allowing the construction of a new reservoir, Rio Indio. This reservoir aims to maintain adequate water levels in the crucial Gatun Lake and supply drinking water to Panama’s growing population. Considering the potential for continued drought due to El Niño, the Panama Canal Authority has decided to further reduce daily transits starting November 2023. After already reducing the maximum draft at the larger neo-panamax locks by nearly 2 meters and cutting daily transits from 40 to 32, the total will be further reduced to 31 transits per day from 1 November 2023. Despite these challenges, the Panama Canal’s administrators have effectively reduced waiting times at both canal ends over the past six weeks. From a peak of over 160 ships in early to mid-August 2023, the number has decreased to 100 ships. Given the prolonged dry conditions associated with El Niño, it’s anticipated that Panama Canal draft and transit restrictions will remain in effect for the Q2 2024.
In a prolonged legal battle between Norway’s Parbulk II AS and Indonesia’s Humpuss Intermoda Transportasi, the South Jakarta District Court has ruled in favor of Parbulk II AS. The Norwegian company Parbulk II AS has been in a 14-year dispute with Humpuss Intermoda Transportasi, seeking payment based on a $27 million arbitration award. Humpuss Intermoda Transportasi tried to have the case dismissed using a legal procedure known as an absolute competency exemption. However, a panel of judges in Jakarta denied this attempt, allowing the case to proceed. This decision marks a significant step for Parbulk II AS in its quest to secure the arbitration award from the Indonesian shipowner.
Russia’s increasing use of non-ice class ships on the busy Northern Sea Route (NSR) poses a potential environmental disaster. Due to Western sanctions, Russia has shifted its focus towards deliveries to Asian markets, leading to a surge in ships taking the Arctic route via the Northern Sea Route (NSR) this year. The Northern Sea Route (NSR) offers a journey from the Barents Sea to Rizhao port in 35 days, a significant 10 days shorter than the southern route through the Suez Canal. This translates to considerable time and fuel savings. However, the unpredictable Arctic weather poses challenges, as seen in November 2021 when over 20 ships were trapped due to an early Arctic freeze. While Russia possesses several ice-class tankers, their numbers are insufficient to cater to both the Northern Sea Route (NSR) and the Baltic, which also demands reinforced tankers during winter. It seems Russian authorities are compromising safety by permitting non-ice-class ships on the Arctic journey. In June 2023, Russia announced a $21 billion investment in the Northern Sea Route (NSR) over the next 13 years. Freight traffic on the Northern Sea Route (NSR) has risen dramatically, from 4 million tonnes in 2014 to 34 million tonnes in 2022. Russia’s ambitious goal is to boost the Northern Sea Route (NSR) capacity to 100 million tonnes by 2026. Recently, the bulk carrier MV Gingo became the first capesize bulk carrier to navigate the Northern Sea Route (NSR) in 13 days. Another non-ice class aframax tanker also made news in September for its Northern Sea Route (NSR) journey to China. The swift growth of Arctic shipping, powered by fossil fuels and facilitating fossil fuel transport, amplifies the risk of oil spills, increases underwater noise pollution, and jeopardizes ice ecosystems. The decision to further risk the with non-ice-class tankers only exacerbates these environmental threats.
Chinese shipowners AVIC Leasing and Zhejiang Jinpu have placed new orders for dry bulk carriers at local shipyards. AVIC Leasing, the leasing subsidiary of the Aviation Industry Corporation of China, has placed an order for four additional 63K DWT ultramax bulk carrier newbuildings at New Dayang Shipbuilding. This brings AVIC Leasing and Zhejiang Jinpu total order count at this yard to six (6) bulk carriers. Shipbrokers have estimated the cost of each ultramax bulk carrier newbuilding at $32 million. These ultramax bulk carrier newbuildings are scheduled for delivery in 2026, supplementing AVIC Leasing’s existing fleet of over 50 vessels, primarily in the bulker and tanker categories. On the other hand, Zhejiang Jinpu Shipping has commissioned ten (10) bulk carrier newbuildings of 59K DWT each at Taizhou Haibin. The financial details of this order remain undisclosed. These ten (10) bulk carrier newbuildings are set to be delivered in phases between 2025 and 2026.
Delta Corp Holdings, a dry bulk carrier operator and logistics group, is nearing its goal of a public listing. Having announced its intention to go public last year, the Delta Corp Holdings is optimistic about being listed on Nasdaq by January 2024. The CEO of Delta Corp Holdings is Mudit Paliwal. The journey to a public listing for Delta Corp Holdings has faced delays, primarily due to extensive audits. Delta Corp Holdings initially revealed its plans in September 2022 to pursue a Nasdaq listing through a reverse merger with the Coffee Holding Co Inc. On Thursday, Delta Corp Holdings took a significant step forward by filing its F4 prospectus with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The capesize bulker market experienced fluctuations over the past week due to various influencing factors. After a steady rise during the initial part of the week, the capesize bulker market saw a decline towards the end. Analysts attribute these shifts to a combination of shipping market dynamics. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC, which provides spot-rate averages across five major routes, recorded a 23.7% increase from 22 September 2023, reaching close to $21,400 per day by Wednesday. However, this was followed by a 4% drop over the subsequent two days, bringing the rate down to slightly above $20,500 per day by Friday.
Capesize shipping rates have surged by 11% in a single day, reaching a four-month peak, driven by China’s strong demand for iron ore and coal. Baltic Exchange’s data indicates that China’s steel production in August 2023 increased by 3.2% compared to the previous year. The capesize bulker market experienced a significant rise on Tuesday, achieving its highest rate in the past four months. The robust demand from China for essential commodities like iron ore and coal has been a significant factor behind this surge. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC index, which provides an average of spot rates across five crucial routes, saw an 11.4% increase on Tuesday, reaching close to $19,900 per day. This rate is the highest since mid-June 2023. The primary iron ore routes to China contributed the most to this increase in the 5TC, as per the Baltic Exchange’s data.
Maritime insurance broker Miller has introduced a marine insurance solution for Ukrainian grain exports, with support from the Ukrain government. In response to Russia’s withdrawal from a United Nations-mediated grain shipping agreement in July 2023, Ukraine has adopted a new southern corridor. This route closely follows its coastline, enabling grain exports from three Black Sea ports. London-based maritime insurance Miller announced its collaboration with British maritime tech firm Clearwater Dynamics (CWD) to establish a war risks insurance facility. This facility will cover both cargo and hull insurance for grain shipments from three ports: Chornomorsk, Odesa, and Pivdennyi. Another insurance company, Marsh, is also in the process of crafting its own insurance solution for Ukrainian grain shipping, with more details anticipated soon.
Ukraine’s newly established shipping corridor is gaining momentum. After last week’s departure of two vessels from Black Sea ports, transporting grain to global markets, three more bulk carriers have now docked in Ukraine. These ships are set to load a total of 130,000 tons of grain and iron ore. Additional vessels are prepared to journey to the northwest region of the Black Sea. The dry bulk sector is keenly observing for indications of a new insurance plan to cover voyages to the conflict-affected country. Insurance company Marsh is anticipated to announce a new insurance scheme, supported by the Ukrainian government, possibly this week. This comes as the conflict with Russia approaches its 20th month, and there’s no indication of the revival of a United Nations-endorsed shipping agreement. Elaborating on the new shipping route, the law firm Campbell Johnston Clark (CJC) mentioned in a recent update: “On this new path, vessels navigate close to the coasts of Romania and Ukraine, passing Chornomorsk and rendezvousing with a Ukrainian pilot boat near Odesa.” Since August 2023, Ukrain has utilized this corridor to free five ships that were stranded in Ukraine at the onset of the war, which included one containership and four bulk carriers. After Russia withdrew from the UN-supported Black Sea Grain Initiative in mid-July 2023, Ukraine had to redirect a significant portion of its exports through the Danube, routing shipments through the heavily trafficked Romanian port of Constanta, which is now operating beyond its intended capacity.
Athens-based shipowner and operator Latsco Shipping Limited has placed an order for three 64K DWT ultramax bulk carriers at Oshima Shipbuilding, the most prominent shipyard in Japan in terms of the orderbook. Having initially ventured into the dry cargo sector in 2016 with the acquisition of four secondhand supramax bulk carriers, Latsco Shipping Limited’s diverse fleet now includes LNG, LPG, tankers, bulk carriers, and containers. The recent orders are notable as they mark Latsco Shipping Limited’s maiden order in Japan in its seven-decade history. Latsco Shipping Limited highlighted the quality, culture, and expertise of Oshima Shipbuilding as influential factors in their decision to place the order. Latsco Shipping Limited traces its origins to the 1940s, founded by Captain John S. Latsis. Latsco Shipping Limited initially engaged in passenger and commercial deep-sea shipping. With a legacy stretching over 70 years, Latsco Shipping Limited initially operated as “Petrola International S.A.” Over the years, the Group has managed an extensive fleet of more than 100 vessels, spanning from Ultra Large Crude Carriers (ULCCs) to dry bulk carriers. Presently operating under the name Latsco Shipping Limited, the company boasts a fleet of 41 vessels, including 16 product tankers, 9 gas carriers, 4 VLCC (Very Large Crude Carriers), 2 container ship, 2 LNG carriers, 2 supramax bulk carriers, 2 aframax tankers, and has a future order of 4 VLGC (Very Large Gas Carriers) slated for delivery in 2025 and 2026. Latsco Shipping Limited’s operations are globally coordinated with its headquarters in Monaco and additional offices in London, Athens, and Dubai.
The Court of King’s Bench in Saskatchewan has set a new precedent in the realm of digital communication and legal contracts. In what many might have seen as the legal system lagging behind today’s fast-paced technological advances, this landmark Canadian ruling signifies the opposite. The court decreed that a simple thumbs-up emoji, often used in casual text message exchanges, is adequate to validate a cargo contract. This decision raises concerns for the shipping industry, particularly regarding the weight given to seemingly informal digital communications in contractual matters. WFW legal experts have underscored the risks linked with such casual text exchanges, implying that what many consider as fleeting or informal gestures can now carry significant legal ramifications. As a result, businesses and individuals alike might need to exercise increased caution when conveying intentions through emojis or casual messages in professional contexts.
Nasdaq-listed Athens-based shipowner and operator Pyxis Tankers (PXS)
has set his sights on additional ship deals after concluding the Pyxis Tankers’ maiden bulker purchase. Valentios Valentis-led shipowner and operator Pyxis Tankers (PXS) is in a favorable position with a substantial cash reserve and is actively seeking opportunities to augment the fleet. Athens-based shipowner and operator Pyxis Tankers (PXS) is strategizing its expansion post its recent venture into the bulker market. Pyxis Tankers (PXS) acquired a 63K DWT ultramax bulk carrier constructed in Japan in 2016.
After several months of monotonous insights from global shipping experts, many shipbrokers now observe a surge in activity. For the first time in a long while, there’s a solidification of prices in the dry cargo sector across most categories. Multiple shipbrokers have confirmed the sale of Singapore-based Yong Sheng Shipping Pte Ltd controlled 2015 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 81K DWT MV Geneva Star. Singapore-based Yong Sheng Shipping Pte Ltd controlled kamsarmax bulk carrier 81K DWT MV Geneva Star has been reported that Chinese parties paid a substantial $26.9 million for this vessel. This sale significantly contrasts with the recent transactions of bulk carriers of a similar size, but slightly older in age, which were acquired for just a bit above $20 million. The rates for dry bulk are on the rise, especially in the mid-sized bulk carrier category, largely due to heightened grain activities in the Atlantic region. The bustling trade from the US Gulf during peak season and from South America is pushing rates for kamsarmax and ultramax bulk carriers to reach their annual highs.
Despite recent voyages to Chornomorsk, there has been no insurance coverage arranged for Ukraine grain shipments. Frederic Denefle, the president of the International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI), stated that a state-endorsed insurance system for these shipments is still in the works. This information comes to light as two vessels, with ties to Turkey, docked in the Ukrainian port of Chornomorsk. This marks Ukraine’s inaugural grain exports since the Black Sea Grain Initiative’s disbandment. The evolving situation underscores the complexities and challenges surrounding the protection of grain shipments in the region.
Brazil’s bountiful grain yield, coupled with impediments at the Panama Canal, have greatly invigorated midsize bulk carriers. Spot rates for both panamax and supramax bulk carriers have surged by nearly 60% since the waning days of July 2023, as per the Baltic Exchange’s data. The opulent grain produce of Brazil and the setbacks faced by the drought-afflicted Panama Canal have breathed new life into the midsize bulk carrier sector. Specifically, these circumstances are enhancing two prominent grain routes.
The Panama Canal Authority has issued a cautionary notice, suggesting that the frequency of daily passages may experience a further reduction if the prevailing drought endures. In the face of an unparalleled dry spell this year, exacerbated by the onset of the El Niño climatic anomaly, the Panama Canal’s overseers have judiciously curtailed daily passages by a fifth, allowing only 32 voyages. Furthermore, Panama Canal hs reduced nearly two meters from the optimal draft for the grand neopanamax gates. These prudent actions have inevitably led to notable maritime backlogs at both extremities of the Panama Canal. Given the simultaneous temperature spikes in both the Pacific and Atlantic waters, it’s anticipated that we might grapple with these repercussions well into the forthcoming year. In a recent decree, Panama Canal Authority hs opted to reserve two berths of the panamax gates, bypassing the customary auction. These berths shall abe allocated to vessels that have endured the most prolonged waiting periods. The Panama Canal Authority’s objective is to amend a 2006 statute, paving the way for the construction of a new reservoir, dubbed Rio Indio. This endeavor aims to sustain the pivotal water levels of Gatun Lake and simultaneously cater to the escalating water demands of the burgeoning Panamanian populace. Historical data from the preceding seven years indicates an average of approximately 90 vessels idling at both canal entries. However, this metric witnessed a dramatic surge recently, culminating in a staggering 163 vessels on the 9 August 2023. As of now, 132 vessels stand in abeyance.
The esteemed Norwegian fuel cell purveyor, TECO 2030, in tandem with its compatriot Pherousa Green Shipping, has ratified an agreement for the provision of hydrogen fuel cells to a maximum of six pristine zero-emission dry bulk carriers, each boasting a 63K DWT. Every ship will be adorned with 12MW fuel cells designated for primary propulsion. Each comprehensive package carries an approximate valuation $24.7 million for each ultramax bulk carrier. The sophisticated TECO system promises a resplendent 100% emission-free functionality, with the inaugural vessel slated for its debut in the early trimester of 2027. TECO 2030’s shipment encompasses an all-inclusive fuel cell system perched on a skid solution, supplemented with power and automation apparatuses. This shipment is projected to commence its journey to the shipyard at the dawn of 2026, culminating in a mid-2026 delivery. This avant-garde fuel cell system is set to embark upon its production phase as 2024 draws to a close. The fuel cell mechanism will be intricately amalgamated with an ammonia-to-hydrogen converter, a brainchild of Pherousa Green Technologies. The discerning choice of hydrogen fuel cells in conjunction with an ammonia converter provides maritime proprietors the latitude to initiate with ammonia and segue to hydrogen at their discretion, thereby curtailing investment vulnerabilities. In the preceding month, Pherousa Green Shipping etched a LOI (letter of intent) with OSM Thome, delineating the stewardship of the vessels. This comprehensive arrangement envelops the endorsement of designs, project maturation, and on-site oversight for the sextet of ultramax bulk carriers.
The dry bulk spot market experienced a significant uptick this week, buoyed by the heightened trade in bauxite and the surging grain exports from South America. Encouraging sentiments regarding China’s imminent economic stimulus further propelled spot rates, according to industry experts. Over the recent week, there was a marked rise in the dry bulk spot market due to China’s unprecedented bauxite imports and South America’s prolific grain exports. The Baltic Dry Index, an encompassing barometer of the spot market’s vitality, saw a remarkable surge of 16.4%.
A contentious quarrel has erupted amongst the nations of South America, centering on the revered “grain superhighway” – the Parana River. Argentina, asserting its dominion, has commenced the collection of levies along its segment of the river, inducing consternation amongst other principal benefactors of this crucial dry bulk conduit – notably, Paraguay, Brazil, Bolivia, and Uruguay. Such was Argentina’s audacity, they detained a vessel during the weekend, property of Paraguay’s esteemed Mercurio Group, citing non-payment of the mandated dues. Stretching a majestic 4,880 km and terminating at Buenos Aires, this watercourse stands as one of the globe’s paramount channels for grain export. It is the continent’s silver medalist in size, yielding only to the formidable Amazon. In response to this affront, Paraguay has declared its intention to approach the Mercosur trade bloc’s Permanent Review Court. After all, the river holds the mantle for a staggering 80% of the overseas commerce of this landlocked nation. This newly instituted transit fee, pegged at $1.47 per metric ton, was ushered in at the dawn of this year, coinciding with Argentina’s intensifying economic tribulations.
Fuzhou-based shipowner and operator Jiuzhou Shipping has successfully negotiated the sale of the 2011 built capesize bulk carrier 176K DWT MV Yuan Fu Star for a sum of $23 million. This transaction seemingly signifies Jiuzhou Shipping’s retreat from the realm of ship owning. The buyer remains cloaked in anonymity. MV Yuan Fu Star is the most recently built capesize bulk carrier that has been transacted this season. The capesize bulk carrier S&P (Sale and Purchase) market has seen sparse buyers of late, yet both Chinese entities and entities from the Middle East have been associated with acquisitions within this grand bulker domain. In light of the languishing freight rate climate, the market for capesize bulk carriers has astonishingly defied expectations. Records indicate over 60 capesize bulk carriers have been acquired this year, a figure that nearly doubles the transactions witnessed during the corresponding time frame the preceding year.
Antwerp-based shipowner and operator Compagnie Maritime Belge (CMB) CEO Alexander Saverys etches a historic moment with his monumental bulk carrier venture in China. These 210K DWT newcastlemax bulk carriers be will be equipped with ammonia-propelled engines. The Belgian firm, Compagnie Maritime Belge (CMB), has augmented its substantial order backlog for newcastlemax bulkers destined for construction in China. CEO Alexander Saverys validated the Compagnie Maritime Belge’s (CMB) commitment to two additional newcastlemax bulk carriers, characterizing the undertaking as “the most grandiose in our history.”
Honwin Shipping’s supramax vessel has been detained in Singapore. Following a tumultuous beginning under new shipownership, the bulker finds itself under the protective wing of the Singapore Sheriff’s Office a mere year later. The sole bulk carrier of the esteemed Hong Kong-based Honwin Shipping has found itself embroiled in controversy in Singapore. Honwin Shipping controlled 2009 built supramax bulk carrier 57K DWT MV Honwin (ex MV Thunder) was apprehended upon the behest of Marco Polo Shipping this past Saturday.
BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) anticipates a surge in tanker demand, even as container vessels grapple with overwhelming capacity and China’s actions dampen the enthusiasm for bulk carriers. Projections suggest that by the close of 2024, China will be responsible for over half of the global escalation in oil consumption. This sentiment is echoed by a shipowners’ consortium BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council). A burgeoning global appetite for oil propels the tanker market towards prosperity. Conversely, the container ship industry appears poised for a downturn owing to excess capacity, and the dry bulk sector faces potential turbulence from Chinese market ambiguities, as per a comprehensive maritime report.
The ITC Transport and Trading Joint Stock Company, in conjunction with Viet Thuan Transport, have both ventured into the realm of acquiring vintage panamax bulk carriers. A scant number of Vietnamese shipowners have procured bulk carriers this annum. Vietnam-based shipowner and operator ITC Transport and Trading Joint Stock Company has recently acquired a two-decade-old panamax bulk carrier MV Dolphin 75 from Athens-based shipowner and operator Adelfia Navigation for around $10 million. On a parallel note, Vietnam-based shipowner and operator Viet Thuan Transport has acquired panamax bulk carrier MV Viet Thuan 80-03 (ex MV Vitaspirit from Athens-based shipowner and operator Vita Management. While Vietnam-based shipowner and operator ITC Transport and Trading Joint Stock Company has its fingers dipped in both wet and dry tonnage, Viet Thuan Transport exclusively operates in the dry bulk sector.
After a notable hiatus since January, Pakistan gracefully reenters the ship recycling arena. Noted ship recyclers have reportedly acquired two bulk carriers, while three other negotiations loom on the horizon. The nation’s ship recycling sector heralds its resurgence by securing two bulkers, marking the most significant demolition transactions since the dawn of the year. Recent acquisitions include the 1996 built handysize bulk carrier 48K DWT MV Yong Ning by Yongning Shipping and the 1997 built panamax bulk carrier 75K DWT MV Sotiria by Larus SA of Greece, both destined for Pakistani recycling facilities in the preceding week.
Dry freight derivatives spearheaded the advancement into the Q3 2023, outpacing the languishing physical market. A nebulous yet profound hopefulness appears to have invigorated purchases within the dry freight derivatives sector this past Monday. The futures marketplace for large bulk carriers witnessed a notable surge, fueled by an overwhelming wave of confidence. However, one might be hard-pressed to pinpoint precise causations. The tangible spot market for capesize and panamax bulk carriers persisted in its tepid ascent, devoid of any marked boost in contractual commitments or pivotal shifts in the equilibrium of supply and demand.
On a serene Saturday, Gabon graciously lifted its border restrictions, merely three days post its abrupt sealing amidst a tumultuous military coup that witnessed President Ali Bongo being dethroned. By the dawn of Monday, maritime tracking systems portrayed vessels gracefully navigating towards and away from this opulent West African country Gabon, renowned for its oil reserves. At present, Gabon boasts an impressive daily oil production, touching approximately 210,000 barrels. The vast majority of this precious commodity finds its way to China, an insatiable consumer of Gabon’s oil. Gabon’s financial backbone heavily leans on the revenue generated from oil exports, among other commodities. Barring the imposition of unexpected sanctions, which seems a distant possibility, the nation’s export activities are anticipated to regain their regular rhythm.
China’s property market undeniably stands as a cardinal linchpin influencing the trajectory of seaborne iron ore commerce. The International Monetary Fund’s current prognostications peg the growth of the Chinese economy at a modest 4% spanning 2022 to 2027. The prevailing ambivalence surrounding China’s economic vigor and the rehabilitation of its property sector for the remaining annum signifies that any attenuation in its commodity in-take may be detrimental to the prospects of a sequential resurgence in dry bulk revenues. The pernicious specter of contagion looms ever larger within the malignant realm of China’s real estate sector, an instrumental pillar of the globe’s second most prodigious economy, representing a substantive portion, ranging from a fourth to a third, of China’s total GDP. Country Garden, a behemoth in the realty domain once esteemed for its financial resilience, recently divulged a staggering loss of nearly $7 billion in the first half, coupled with an ominous forewarning of potential debt default. Over the forthcoming quarter, Chinese property magnates confront imminent bond dues amounting to a colossal $38 billion. This comes in the backdrop of mounting apprehensions regarding liquidity and the looming shadow of potential insolvencies. China’s real estate tableau merely epitomizes a fragment of the broader economic challenges besieging the nation this year.
Maritime activities to and from Gabon have been indefinitely suspended in light of allegations regarding a coup. The esteemed security consultancy has divulged that all naval transit within the West African nation has come to a standstill, subsequent to a proclamation by the military brass in the wee hours of Wednesday. This faction made a dramatic appearance on state television, pronouncing their usurpation of power, following the controversial third-term election of President Ali Bongo. It is of utmost importance that all maritime vessels in proximity to the region maintain heightened vigilance and readiness. Operations at the Libreville port are at a complete impasse. In light of these events, the Libreville port administration has counseled a ship, scheduled for docking this morn, to hold position in the anchorage, awaiting further directives. Concurrently, another commercial vessel, preparing for departure, was denied egress authorization. Since this unsettling proclamation of the coup, not a single ship has either embarked or disembarked from the port. The Gabonese officials have pronounced the election results null and void, with a strict sealing of all national boundaries until an undetermined time.
The medium-sized bulker market remains buoyant as vessels circumvent the congested Panama Canal. Extended journeys are diminishing capacity within the midsize bulker realm, consequently sustaining elevated average spot rates. Vessels linger in the Pacific, awaiting passage through the Panama Canal. Insufficient rain in early August prompted authorities to curtail the transit count. The demand for medium-sized bulkers is sustained at a high, as ships bypass the beleaguered Panama Canal in favor of lengthier voyages to their terminus. The mean spot rate for panamax bulk carriers ascended to $13,400 per day on Tuesday, following a 2.8% surge in the Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC basket.
London-based shipbroker Affinity Shipping’s esteemed Managing Partner, Richard Fulford-Smith, garners a remuneration surpassing £1 million as the Affinity Shipping’s profits magnify threefold. Affinity Shipping’s Chief Executive Officer Richard Fulford-Smith witnesses his comprehensive compensation augmented by escalated revenues from tankers, bulk carriers, LNG, and sale-and-purchase departments. London-based shipbroker Affinity Shipping unveiled an impressive surge in its annual profit for 2022, thereby elevating the compensation structures for its affiliates. The year unfolded as tremendously prosperous, with the tanker, dry cargo, LNG, and sale-and-purchase sectors all reaping the rewards of robust markets coupled with a stalwart US dollar, enhancing earnings, as articulated by the partnership’s secretary, Christopher Chasty.
The venerable Panama Canal boasts man-made Miraflores and Gatun lakes, complemented by a three-lock, dual-lane mechanism—the panamax locks—that elevate and descend ships by 26 meters. This allows an 80-kilometer journey within eight to ten hours for vessels with a draft of up to 12.5 meters. The modern iteration of the Panama Canal, while part of the identical system, introduces a two-lock, single-lane mechanism—the neopanamax locks—catering to vessels with up to a 15.2-meter draft. Remarkably, both systems utilize freshwater, though only the contemporary system has the prowess to recycle some of the water expended for vessel transition. Presently, the Panama Canal faces dual constraints. Within the panamax locks, transits are predicted to decline to 22 daily, with a mere 14 available for advance booking. Within the initial ten months of its ongoing fiscal cycle, the Panama Canal accommodated 7,632 ships in the panamax locks, averaging slightly over 25 daily. This infers that around three smaller vessels daily may face transit denial. Regarding the neopanamax locks, only 10 daily bookings are permissible, juxtaposed with fiscal data indicating 3,019 transitions, averaging slightly below 10 daily. Absent service enhancements, transit numbers should remain unaffected. However, the maximum vessel draft has plunged from an intended 15.2 meters to 13.41 meters—a significant 1.79-meter decrement, profoundly impacting the cargo volume on neopanamax vessels. The container segment singularly contributes to 11.5% of panamax and 47.8% of neopanamax transitions, with precedence likely diverting dry bulk vessels, such as those carrying coal and grain, towards alternative paths. These constraints are anticipated to persist for a minimum of 10 months, extending beyond the imminent dry season and into the subsequent rainy season. Alas, there remains uncertainty about the potential extension of these restrictions. It’s worth noting that Panama also serves as a strategic hiatus for vessels amid assignments. Authentically, as of August 26, 124 vessels awaited transit, comprising 20 neopanamax and 104 panamax. Water scarcity is undeniably the crux of the dilemma. The Panama Canal acquires its freshwater from the expansive 2,982 square kilometer Panama Canal Water Shed. Notably, the canal isn’t the sole consumer of this water. Alas, the current rainfall deficit is unparalleled this century, but variability is nothing novel. The neopanamax locks were ceremonially launched in June 2016. However, even then, due to the 2015-16 El Nino event, there was a 0.3-meter water shortfall from the planned draft. This challenge, albeit not as pronounced as now, has been recognized for years. For the container sector, immediate concerns regarding transit capabilities might be unwarranted, courtesy of their premium tariffs. Yet, the economic feasibility of operating certain neopanamax routes via the Panama Canal could shift if cargo volumes are curtailed for the ensuing 10 months or more. Though the Suez Canal route extends by 1,800 nautical miles from Shanghai to New York. Given the availability of vessels, it’s plausible that we might soon observe liner services gravitating towards the slightly more languid, yet potentially more cost-effective Suez Canal route.
The global rice market is undergoing tumultuous shifts as floods decimate harvests in northern China, and leading exporters enforce de facto restrictions on shipments. India, the paramount rice exporting nation, has imposed prohibitions and levies on all rice variants, invoking concerns of food sovereignty. Concurrently, Myanmar, ranked seventh in global rice exports by the Global Trade Tracker, has recently announced a 45-day suspension on exports to curtail escalating food costs. In the shadow of the impending adversities of this year’s El Niño climatic pattern, the Thai government, presiding over the world’s second-largest rice exports, has advised cultivators to reduce their sowing expanse this year. Across the board, rice valuations have reached their zenith, the highest in the past twelve years. Exacerbating this scenario are the unparalleled, catastrophic inundations in China’s agrarian heartland, the Heilongjiang province in the country’s remote northeast, obliterating 40% of the region’s harvest this month. China’s rice consumption dwarfs all, surpassing the combined appetite of India and Bangladesh, who are respectively positioned second and third in the global rice consumption hierarchy curated by Statista. India seems predisposed to maintain these constraints, operating akin to a regulator, overseeing export fluxes.
The maritime sector has gracefully advanced towards the dawn of autonomous vessels, with the inauguration of an LNG-fueled capesize bulk carrier in South Korea, endowed with cutting-edge artificial intelligence (AI) machinery surveillance and safety protocols. The distinguished LNG-fueled capesize bulk carrier 180K DWT MV HL Nambu 2, masterfully constructed by Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries for its national counterpart, H-Line, proudly stands as the inaugural vessel to integrate the avant-garde AI professionals – HiCBM, an integrated ship status monitoring solution, and HiCAMS, an integrated safety control solution. The HiCBM diligently oversees primary engines, compressors, and pumps, employing artificial intelligence to ascertain and avert potential breakdowns preemptively. Concurrently, HiCAMS capitalizes on onboard CCTV streams, utilizing AI to pinpoint and dissect safety incidents as they transpire. This progressive milestone in HD Hyundai’s voyage towards autonomy reflects the cumulative efforts and groundbreaking accomplishments of its affiliates. Notably, the showcase of avant-garde technology by Avikus enabled the capacious 180K cubic meter LNG carrier MT Prism Courage, to navigate autonomously, albeit under vigilant supervision, for approximately half its trans-Pacific trajectory. In a pertinent development, Korea Line Corporation, the maritime branch of SM Group, unveiled that its offshoot, Korealine LNG, has achieved the esteemed green light for autonomous navigation from Panama for its LNG refueling vessel, incorporating the state-of-the-art Samsung Autonomous Ship (SAS) technology, a brainchild of Samsung Heavy Industries.
Prominent maritime organizations are implored to unify and disclose their voyage strategies, particularly at pivotal global maritime junctions. Authorities of the Panama Canal have recently cautioned that water conservation protocols will persist for an impending ten months, at the very least. In light of an unparalleled drought this annum, coupled with the manifestation of the El Niño climatic anomaly, the stewards of the Panama Canal have decremented the permissible draft for vessels navigating its expansive neopanamax locks by two meters. Concurrently, there has been a 20% reduction in daily traversals, limiting them to merely 32 ships. Such stringent policies have culminated in considerable ship accumulations at the canal’s dual extremities. The current official tally stands at 129 vessels, a slight decline from the zenith of 165 earlier, yet a substantial 43% above the norm. The Panama Canal’s esteemed deputy chief, Ilya Espino, conveyed to Reuters that such limitations are poised to endure for the imminent ten months, extending well into the subsequent year’s midsection. While container services and leisure cruise routes typically plan their canal journeys considerably ahead of time, bulk sectors tend to be more spontaneous and truncated in their scheduling. This spontaneous nature has been particularly affected this month, with some vessels unable to secure advanced reservations, thereby compelling them to join the ever-growing queue. For colossal container ships, these draft limitations signify that approximately 2,500 teu of space remains unexploited, yielding a peak headhaul efficiency of 84%. For ships exceeding 12,000 teu, an alternative passage via the Suez Canal becomes an increasingly attractive proposition, especially in light of Panama Canal’s unwavering stance on maintaining these restrictions. Conversely, for smaller container vessels capable of navigating whilst fully loaded, a return journey to Asia via the Suez Canal or Cape of Good Hope (COGH), albeit lengthier, emerges as a viable alternative. This route not only diminishes the demand on the Panama Canal but also capitalizes on the perceived dwindling fortune of containers in the forthcoming year. There has been a reported cancellation of a cruise ship’s winter voyage through Panama Canal. Such pivotal shifts in navigation routes by container carriers will undoubtedly capture the keen attention of other sectors, all vying for the coveted canal slots in the subsequent months. The prolonged status quo in Panama Canal amplifies the prospects of escalating freight rates, potentially diverting cargo back to the US western seaboard, utilizing railways for the concluding leg. Panama Canal won’t severely disrupt global supply chains, given the ongoing surplus in ship capacity.
Capesize bulk carrier S&P (Sale and Purchase) transactions gain momentum, spurred on by speculative acquisitions. Anticipation of a resurgence in the Chinese economy persistently enthralls maritime investors. Amidst the tumultuous landscape of the dry bulk domain, the trading of secondhand capesize bulk carriers remains vibrantly active.
Over 60 capesize bulk carriers have exchanged ownership this year, spanning various vintages, highlighting the capesize sector’s remarkable tenacity in both asset value retention and trading frequency.
The augmentation of tariffs on imported steel by Brazil might curtail the allure for ultramax bulk carriers. Such a fiscal maneuver could lead to diminished imports from nations such as China and South Korea. Shipbrokers opine that this surge in steel duties might adversely affect the demand for ultramax bulk carriers. The steel commerce emanating from Asia stands at risk following Brazil’s decision to escalate import charges. This elevated duty on foreign steel might dissuade China and South Korea from dispatching said material to Brazil.
Amidst a plethora of inaccurate narratives, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) wishes to elucidate the authentic congestion metrics on either terminus of the waterway. Contrary to recent insinuations positing a backlog of 200 vessels, the Panama Canal Authority’s (ACP) updated data reveals that, as of the present moment, 131 ships linger in waiting. This figure, while surpassing the norm by approximately 45%, is notably less than the 165 vessels documented earlier in the month. Furthermore, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) declared that the median hiatus for unreserved transits presently ranges from nine to eleven days—a dramatic 50% reduction from reports merely a fortnight prior. Notably, dry bulk carriers poised at the Panama Canal’s junctures have witnessed the most significant diminution in delay. Priding itself on transparency and incessant dialogue, the Panama Canal proactively disseminates information on potential alterations that could impact stakeholders’ undertakings, thereby facilitating informed business judgments that bolster global trade’s resilience and perpetuity. This was conveyed in the Panama Canal Authority’s (ACP) recent proclamation. Last month, in an endeavor to preserve freshwater following a year marked by unparalleled droughts in the Central American nation, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) curtailed daily transits by a fifth and truncated the maximum draft for its neo-panamax locks by roughly 2 meters. Despite the return of precipitation to Panama, it is improbable that the authorities will imminently augment drafts or transit counts, particularly given the looming impacts of this year’s El Niño—a meteorological event predisposed to induce arid conditions in the region later in the year. In acknowledgment of these environmental nuances, the canal’s governing body anticipates a potential decline in revenues, possibly amounting to a staggering $200 million in the upcoming fiscal year, should these circumstances endure.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has decreed a one-year prohibition on the Liberian-flagged China Minsheng Trust Co Ltd controlled MV MSXT Emily, from gracing Australian waters, consequent to discerning grave transgressions pertaining to wage misappropriation and maltreatment of seafarers aboard. Upon an illuminating revelation from the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) undertook a meticulous inspection of the ship whilst it was anchored at the esteemed Port of Hay Point. The scrutiny unveiled numerous infractions in alignment with the Maritime Labour Convention of 2006. It became manifest that the seafarers aboard the Liberian-flagged China Minsheng Trust Co Ltd controlled MV MSXT Emily were remunerated in stark contravention to their maritime employment accords. Four such accords bore seemingly counterfeit endorsements of the employees, and an additional five seafarers seemed to have been unduly pressured into endorsing newly drafted agreements bearing diminished remunerations. In a particularly egregious instance, a seafarer acquiesced to a new accord, notwithstanding the existence of a still-active contract, which was poised to endure for an ensuing four months, only to receive a wage reduced by a staggering 50%. The examination brought to light a staggering arrear of over $77,000 in wages, owed to the diligent seafarers of the Liberian-flagged China Minsheng Trust Co Ltd controlled MV MSXT Emily. In a desperate bid to reconcile this mounting debt, the ship’s governing entity, MSM Ship Management Pte Ltd China, endeavored to remit the owed sum, especially when confronted with the looming presence of Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) inspectors aboard.
Midsize bulk carriers are invigorated by the surge in South American grain outflows. Anticipations point to a bounteous grain yield in the Americas this forthcoming harvest. Midsize bulk carriers have been buoyed by the formidable grain shipments from South America, a trend poised to persist through the latter half of the annum. Since the 25th of July, the Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC index has soared by 72%, touching an almost $13,900 daily rate.
The esteemed Norway-based OSM Thome has inked a letter of intent (LOI) with its fellow Norwegian entity, Pherousa Green Shipping, concerning the stewardship of a fleet of 63K DWT zero-emission ultramax bulk carriers. With its headquarters nestled in the heart of Oslo and inception in 2023, Pherousa Green Shipping is on the cusp of commissioning an order for a series of contemporary, zero-emission ultramax bulk carriers, envisaged by Deltamarin. While the foundational design springs from a pre-existing Deltamarin ultramax prototype, it has undergone enhancements to integrate the pioneering ammonia cracking methodology formulated by Pherousa Green Technologies. This avant-garde technology leverages ammonia as a conduit for hydrogen, ushering in authentic zero-emission propulsion. Regarding the alliance between Pherousa Green Shipping and OSM Thome, it is slated to span the spectrum from blueprint approval and project genesis to on-site oversight for the sextet of bulkers. Additionally, the mantle of crew and technical oversight of these finished vessels will rest with OSM Thome. Six (6) 63K DWT zero-emission ultramax bulk carriers are tailored with a discerning eye towards catering to the global copper consortium. Considering copper’s linchpin status in global decarbonization initiatives, the copper sector has unfurled lofty emission diminution aspirations, encapsulating Scope 3 emissions that pertain to the conveyance to terminal consumers. Pherousa Green Shipping’s precocious accord with OSM Thome guarantees that Pherousa Green Shipping’s crew will be primed and adeptly trained well ahead of the zero-emission ultramax bulk carriers’ inauguration.
In a marked decline from the previous year, China’s procurement of soybeans from the United States plummeted by 62% in July. In stark contrast, purchases from Brazil, its principal provider, soared by 32% during the same period. This surge was catalyzed by an abundant harvest coupled with diminished rates in the South American nation. China, the globe’s predominant consumer of soybeans, procured a mere 142,129 metric tons from the United States in July, a significant reduction from the 377,192 tons procured the preceding year. Nonetheless, the United States preserved its position as China’s secondary soybean supplier, constituting 31.9% of China’s cumulative soybean procurements from January through July. During this seven-month interval, there was a 13.9% annual augmentation in soybean consignments from the U.S., totaling 19.85 million tons. Chinese acquisitions of Brazilian soybeans experienced a 32.4% escalation in July from the prior year, culminating in 9.23 million tons, as Chinese connoisseurs capitalized on the more favorable pricing. Between January and July, China’s importations from Brazil aggregated to 38.9 million metric tons, marking a 12.2% annual rise. Brazil’s contributions constituted a noteworthy 63.5% of China’s soybean procurements to date. As for maize, July saw a 15.2% annual surge in imports from the U.S. amounting to 1.74 million metric tons, whilst Ukraine, the secondary supplier, dispatched 1.1 million metric tons. July’s corn consignments from Bulgaria tallied at 393,655 metric tons, elevating the nation to the third-highest supplier. Brazilian maize shipments for July stood at 115,500 million metric tons, ranking fourth. In light of Ukraine’s market hiatus, Brazil’s maize exports via its southern ports witnessed a staggering 221% upsurge in the year’s initial half.
Capesize Market: As the week evolved, the Capesize market experienced an amalgamation of constancy, resilience, and alterations in mood across both Pacific and Atlantic terrains. The Pacific realm initiated the week maintaining a consistent, yet measured tempo. The participation of two out of the principal triad, supplemented by operator cargoes and a smattering of tender cargoes, conveyed a narrative of unwavering regularity. Nevertheless, the influx of available tonnage persisted, exerting downward force on rates. Notwithstanding the copious cargo volume, this tonnage surplus ensured that rates remained static in the week’s initial phase. By midweek, proprietors showcased some tenacity, leading to a fortuitous upturn, with C5 rates augmenting by an approximate 0.60 cents. However, this ephemeral surge was rapidly overshadowed by the expansive tonnage inventory, effectively curbing any further potential augmentation. The Atlantic domain commenced the week with an optimistic resonance that endured. Invigorating accounts of significant fixtures from South Brazil and West Africa to China invigorated owners’ assurance. This buoyant mood fostered elevated activity, culminating in a significant surge in rates. Still, anticipations for the market’s future turned circumspect, pivoting towards a strategic posture, wherein index dates began demanding a premium. A rising belief suggests that rates might experience a downturn as shipments abate and dates progress.
Panamax Market: The sector witnessed a favorable week, underpinned by robust demand from South America, juxtaposed with a tonnage paucity, thus escalating rates. In the North Atlantic, an 80K DWT secured delivery Gydnia via the Baltic to Turkey at $24,500. South America’s impetus led to an 81K DWT finalizing at $17,000 plus a $700,000 ballast bonus for a front haul redelivery from Singapore to Japan. In Asia, an augmented interest from Australia, coupled with continued NoPac demand, resulted in bolstered rates. An 85K DWT, open in Yeosu, settled an Australian circuit at $12,500. As the week neared its denouement, Asian sentiments turned somewhat wary with diminished Indonesian ventures. Nevertheless, spurred by South American demand, proprietors were averse to rate reductions. Considerable period coverage emerged, with an 82K DWT,in North China finalizing 9 to 11 months trading with global redelivery at $14,350.
Ultramax/Supramax Market: The sector celebrated an auspicious week, characterized by tonnage scarcity complemented by hearty demand in pivotal regions like the US Gulf and South America, resulting in enhanced rates. A 64K DWT in East Coast South America settled a trip redelivery from the US Gulf to the East Coast of Mexico between $18,000 ranges. From Asia, even with regional holidays, the ambiance remained propitious. With shrinking tonnage availability, charterers escalated their bids. A 61K DWT in Southeast Asia was reportedly settled for an Australian circuit close to $14,000. A 63K DWT in South China cemented a trip via Indonesia with redelivery to West Coast India at $12,000. Heightened inquiries from the Indian Ocean led to Ultramax bulk carriers finalizing above $15,000 plus a $150,000 ballast bonus for South Africa delivery and redelivery to China. The periodic demand remained stable, with a 63K DWT in China sealing a deal at $13,750 for a year’s global redelivery at the same rate.
Handysize Market: The handy sector reaped benefits this week. In the South Atlantic, reports indicated constrained tonnage availability, with a 37K DWT securing from Rio Grande to West Coast Central America (WCCA) at $19,500. Concurrently, a 35K DWT was decided upon, upon readiness, from Upriver Plate for an Eastern Mediterranean trip in the mid $13,000 range. The Black Sea resonated with activity; a 37K DWT settled a trip from Canakkale via the Black Sea to the Western Mediterranean at $7,400, while a 36K DWT mirrored a similar journey in the $7,000 range. In Southeast Asia, tonnage constraints influenced a 38K DWT finalizing from the Philippines via Australia to China at $12,500, and a 32K DWT in Kandla secured a route passing through Colombo via Australia to Indonesia with Alumina cargo at $8,750. The period market witnessed activity with a 38K DWT from Georgetown, Guyana, settling for 12 months at 105.5% of the Baltic Handysize Index (BHSI).
As tensions rise in the Black Sea, Russia intensifies its focus on maritime movements. The aftermath of Russia’s interception of a Turkish bulk carrier, coupled with the detonation of a mine and drone assaults on the Danube, has exacerbated the congestion. The accumulation of vessels awaiting entry near Ukraine’s Danube ports has swelled, a direct consequence of the Russian military’s recent maneuvers in the vicinity. AIS data indicates that approximately 70 vessels, predominantly general cargo ships, handysize bulk carriers, petite tankers, and feeder container vessels, languish at anchor near Musura Bay, on the gateway to the Danube.
The Panamax bulker market achieved a zenith unseen in the past trimester on Monday, as vessels languished in protracted queues to traverse the Panama Canal, consequent to limitations imposed by drought-induced draught constraints. Daily average rates for panamax bulk carriers have ascended by a notable sum exceeding $4,000 daily in the preceding three weeks. On Monday, the Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC surged 2%, culminating at an impressive near $12,300 daily, eclipsing the $12,200 threshold for the inaugural occasion.
Singapore-listed shipowner and operator Uni-Asia Group observed a 74% diminution in semi-annual earnings. The SGX-registered Japanese shipowner and operator Uni-Asia Group has also ushered in a forthcoming chief executive slated for assumption next annum. Japan’s esteemed maritime firm, Uni-Asia Group, divulged a disconcerting 74% nosedive in their semi-annual profit margins, as per the recent data disclosed. Uni-Asia Group amassed a mere $4.2 million during the H1 2023, in stark contrast to the preceding $16.5 million.
Maritime surveillance data indicates that the most severe bottleneck at the Panama Canal has momentarily subsided. However, it will necessitate several weeks to alleviate the accumulated queue of ships at both extremities of the Panama Canal. The Panama Canal Authorities fervently wish for increased precipitation to preclude any further navigational or passage limitations, which have precipitated significant gridlocks in the preceding weeks. Presently, approximately 150 vessels languish in anticipation of Panama Canal passage, a statistic that has been on an inexorable rise since the Panama Canal Authority curtailed daily passages by a fifth the previous month, aiming to preserve freshwater amidst an unparalleled drought in Panama. The duration of wait to traverse the Panama Canal peaked at 21 days the past week, inaugurating August 2023 with an already protracted 15-day wait. While the spotlight has predominantly fixated on the repercussions for the container shipping industry, other maritime sectors have equally borne the brunt. The Oceanbolt commodity monitoring service reveals that dry bulk congestion at the Panama Canal in August 2023 has been the most acute in the platform’s eight-year data archive. According to Vortexa insights, the assembly of tankers lingering on Panama Canal’s west coast for transit reached a notable peak in the past two years at July’s conclusion, sustaining historically elevated levels. Records from Sea indicate an ensemble of 64 tankers poised for Panama Canal navigation today. Statistics from maritime interface Sea reveal a present count of 76 bulk carriers in the Panama Canal sequence, a decrease from previous surges surpassing 80 earlier in August 2023. Panama Canalofficials remain reticent to elevate draft benchmarks or augment transit frequencies in the near future, cognizant of the impending ramifications of this annum’s El Niño climatic anomaly, which historically heralds arid conditions to the nation later in the year.
A Russian naval vessel unleashed cautionary salvos and seized a coaster size bulk carrier MV Sukru Okan in international waters, alleging MV Sukru Okan was en route to Ukraine via the Black Sea on Sunday, as per the declarations of Russia’s Defense Ministry. In a departure from a pact mediated by both the UN and Turkey in July 2023, Russia permitted Ukraine to transport its grain through the Black Sea, cautioning that ships bound for Ukraine might be considered weapon-laden. Conversely, Ukraine issued a parallel admonition to ships destined for Russian docks. Russia conveyed that the naval vessel unleashed cautionary salvos when the master of the Palau-flagged coaster size bulk carrier MV Sukru Okan remained unresponsive to a halt-and-inspect directive. The ministry asserted that the Palau-flagged coaster size bulk carrier MV Sukru Okan had charted a course for the Ukrainian harbor of Izmail. Preliminary data from several maritime repositories indicate the MV Sukru Okan’s ownership to be of Turkish origin. Subsequent to radio dialogues, the ship decelerated, allowing the boarding squadron to embark upon the MV Sukru Okan.
Bulk carriers profit as the Ukrainian conflict destabilizes coal commerce.
The European continent increasingly sources coal from distant locales, whilst China procures it from proximate origins. Throughout the initial semester of this annum, China and India steadfastly emerged as the paramount importers of coal. However, shifting cost dynamics intertwined with logistical impediments consistently assail the trajectory of bulk carrier trades. In the context of volume, Indonesia perpetually stands as China’s preeminent coal provide. Indonesia delivered an impressive 8.1 million tonnes in July 2023, fostering tonne-mile demands predominantly for panamax bulk carriers.
In the picturesque French Atlantic port of La Rochelle, a fierce inferno erupted at grain silos, paralyzing activities at one of the nation’s most eminent grain export hubs. Municipal officials disclosed that the conflagration, originating from a conveyor belt near dawn at approximately 08.00 local hours, rapidly consumed four grain silos under the purview of Sica Atlantique. A brigade of over 100 firefighters valiantly subdued the flames, preventing them from devastating compartments brimming with preserved grain. Personnel from the silo establishment, as well as adjacent enterprises within the terminal, were promptly evacuated, with fortuitously no casualties documented. France stands as the European Union’s paramount grain cultivator, with La Rochelle proudly occupying the silver podium in exportation, predominantly to regions like the Maghreb, the Middle East, and West Africa. In the year 2022, cereals and oilseeds constituted nearly 4 million tons, representing an impressive 42% of the port’s cumulative freight. This unfortunate event transpired merely days subsequent to a detonation in proximity to grain silos at the Turkish port of Derince, resulting in injuries to 12 individuals.
Diminishing freight rates have spurred Japanese shipowners to escalate their disposals of vintage capesize bulk carriers. Valuations for these vintage capesize bulk carriers have descended beneath the $19 million benchmark, an occurrence not seen since July 2021. The amalgamation of tepid rates and dwindling asset worth has galvanized a significant surge in capesize bulk carrier transactions by Japanese shipowners. Within the initial septet of months in 2023, a sum of 12 such vintage capesize bulk carriers has been exchanged, denoting an annual augmentation of 20%.
Naikai Zosen of Japan has once again ventured into the construction of bulk carriers. A surge in orders has steered Japanese shipyard Naikai Zosen back towards the fabrication of bulk carriers. Recent financial disclosures highlight the Japanese shipyard Naikai Zosen’s engagement in five ship contracts during the initial quarter of 2023. The esteemed Japanese shipbuilder, Naikai Zosen, has garnered a succession of commissions for handysize bulk carriers, slated for delivery commencing 2025. Japanese shipowners are believed to be the orchestrators of these agreements, signifying Naikai Zosen’s illustrious comeback to bulk carrier construction after a hiatus spanning nine years.
In the initial days of August 2023, ships experienced an average delay of 15 to 19 days at the Panama Canal. The diminished water levels in Gatun Lake limited the number of fully-loaded ships capable of transiting. Due to an exceptional drought the Canal Authority referred to as unprecedented, the maximum permissible draft for its Neopanamax Locks was reduced by approximately 2 meters. Furthermore, daily transits have been curtailed by 20%, permitting only 32 trips. Though rains have reappeared in Panama, it remains doubtful that the authorities will soon revise the drafts or transit numbers, especially given the looming effects of the El Niño weather pattern, which often results in drier seasons for the nation. Panama Canal’s governing body has admitted that should these circumstances continue, Panama Canal’ might face a revenue shortfall of up to $200 million next year. Ever Green controlled 17,312 TEU container ship MV Ever Max, despite its notable size and being the largest container ship to navigate the Neo-Panama Canal, having paid a staggering $1.5 million in tolls, MV Ever Max had to offload 1,400 teu at Balboa’s port to adhere to the current 13,345 TEU draft constraints. These containers were subsequently transported by rail to Colon and reloaded for their continued journey to Savannah. Given the escalating congestion in Panama Canal, shippers would be prudent to reassess their strategies and manage impending risks.
A drone assault launched by Russian forces on the inland port of Izmail, Ukraine, situated along the Danube River, has resulted in the destruction of a seafarers’ center that was previously overseen by the International Transport Workers’ Federation Seafarers’ Trust. In an official statement, the Seafarers’ Trust acknowledged that the building suffered substantial damage, but fortunately, there were no injuries or fatalities arising from the attack. This center was dedicated to extending humanitarian assistance to seafarers and their families, who had been uprooted by the ravages of war. This senseless act of destruction adds to the already immense devastation inflicted upon the maritime cities of Mariupol, Kherson, and, more recently, Odesa. The Danube had seen a significant surge in grain shipments, serving as an alternative export route for Ukraine’s grain since the outbreak of the war, making the port an attractive target for Russia. According to Ukrainian officials, the drone attack inflicted damage on the port’s infrastructure and grain silos.
Singapore-based shipowner and operator Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd. has recently augmented its fleet with new MR tanker newbuildings at Yangzijiang Shipbuilding’s joint-venture shipyard, Jiangsu Yangzi-Mitsui Shipbuilding (Yamic). Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd. now boasts a total of ten (10) new building orders at Jiangsu Yangzi-Mitsui Shipbuilding (Yamic). In a strategic move, Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd. has acquired two exquisitely product carriers at Jiangsu Yangzi-Mitsui Shipbuilding (Yamic). This marks another significant step in Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd.’s quest for maritime excellence and expansion. Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd. was founded in 2004 in Singapore, with a primary focus on ship chartering operations. Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd.’s services cater to the freight requirements and chartering operations of the company’s esteemed global clientele, particularly in the disponent ownership and COA (Contract of Affreightment) segments. With an impressive track record of 12 years in the ship chartering industry, Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd. has set new standards and benchmarks, revolutionizing ship chartering operations by offering end to end logistics solutions that perfectly align with the discerning demands of the charterers.
Hamburg-based shipowner and operator Vega Reederei has embarked on an exciting venture by securing a remarkable order for ten (10) eco-bulk coaster ships from China’s renowned Sinomach Group. These exquisitely designed coaster bulk carriers, each boasting a capacity of 3,900 DWT (deadweight tons), will mark German shipowner and operator Vega Reederei’s triumphant reentry into the European coaster sector. Displaying astute foresight and impeccable timing, German shipowner and operator Vega Reederei has made the prudent decision to commission the construction of these 3,800 DWT eco-coaster bulk carriers from the esteemed China National Machinery Industry (Sinomach). This strategic move reflects Vega Reederei’s commitment to not only environmental consciousness but also to enhancing their maritime fleet with ships of utmost elegance and efficiency. Currently, Hamburg-based shipowner and operator Vega Reederei has five (5) container ships, one handysize bulk carrier, and one tanker.
NASDAQ-listed Athens-based product tanker specialist Pyxis Tankers Inc. (PXS) is gracefully venturing into the dry bulk sector. Pyxis Tankers Inc. (PXS) announced that the company has sanctioned a $6.8 million equity investment in a newly established enterprise. This newly formed entity has artfully agreed to procure a 2016 built ultramax bulk carrier 63K DWT (deadweight tonnage) built in Japan for approximately $28.5 million from an unaffiliated third party. Within this joint venture, Valentios Valentis-led shipowner and operator Pyxis Tankers Inc. (PXS) shall retain a dominant 60% ownership, while the remaining 40% will be securely held by Valentios Valentis. The unnamed 2016 built ultramax bulk carrier is equipped with a BWTS (ballast water treatment system). with a total cost amounting to approximately $28.5 million. NASDAQ-listed Athens-based product tanker specialist Pyxis Tankers Inc. (PXS) is renowned for its operation of four modern eco MR tankers, anticipates financing the deal, slated for closure by late August 2023, through a five-year $19 million loan. The management of this 2016 built ultramax bulk carrier shall be entrusted to Valentios Valentis-affiliated Konkar Shipping Services.
Athens-based Evangelos Marinakis-led shipowner and operator Capital Product Partners has affirmed the company’s departure from the dry bulk sector, following the sale of Capital Product Partners’ solitary capesize bulk carrier. Nasdaq-listed Capital Product Partners reported that the company had divested 2010 built capesize bulk carrier 179K DWT MV Cape Agamemnon. In 2011, Capital Product Partners acquired MV Cape Agamemnon, which came with a 10-year time charter, for around $89 million from Cosco Shipping. The transaction led to a non-cash impairment charge of $8 million. Currently, Capital Product Partners control a fleet of 22 ships, consisting of containerships and LNG carriers.
The market for capesize bulk carriers surged to a four-week pinnacle as activity intensified in the Atlantic basin. On Wednesday, the average capesize bulk carrier spot rates experienced a remarkable surge of $2,500 in just one day, following a sluggish start earlier in the week. During the past week, fixture activity in the Atlantic basin gained momentum, propelling the Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC basket of spot-rate averages across five vital routes to a remarkable 27% increase since 21 July. As of Friday, the BCI 5TC (Baltic Capesize Index 5TC) rates reached an impressive almost $15,200 per day, marking the highest point since 28 June.
Keith Denholm departs from IMC Shipping Singapore and charts his course towards Europe. Yearning to be closer to his roots, the Scottish gentleman Keith Denholm expressed his sentiments after spending a combined span of 17 years immersed in the vibrant tapestry of Singapore’s allure. A seasoned expert in dry bulk affairs, Keith Denholm bid farewell to IMC Shipping in Singapore, where he served as the commercial director of IMC Shipping’s esteemed bulker division for a fruitful two years. In a heartfelt post, Keith Denholm revealed that his two-year tenure dedicated to establishing the asset-light facet of the dry bulk business has gracefully reached its conclusion.
China intends to promptly adjust and optimize property policies in response to significant shifts in the supply and demand dynamics within the property market, as emphasized in the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) meeting. The Chinese authorities are determined to elevate the consumption of automobiles, electronic products, and home furnishings, while also promoting the growth of services such as sports, leisure, and cultural tourism. According to analysts, the meeting’s outcome suggests that further policy support will be unveiled in the coming months. Nevertheless, the absence of major announcements pertaining to policy specifics implies either a lack of urgency or policymakers grappling to devise suitable measures to bolster growth. China’s economy witnessed slower-than-expected growth in the Q2, with youth unemployment reaching a record high. This has added to the growing sense of despondency among dry bulk owners, who have had little to celebrate in 2023 so far. During April-June, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) expanded by a mere 0.8% compared to the previous quarter. Previous stimulus measures, particularly those implemented after the global financial crisis, have been a significant boon for the global dry bulk community.
Panamax bulk carriers average spot rate is at a four-month low, according to market data. The panamax bulk carrier market must be in higher demand in the Atlantic basin if it is to reverse its steady downward trend. The Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC basket of spot-rate averages across five key routes has fallen 17.4%.
Ships are queuing along the western fringes of the Black Sea, at the entrance to the Danube and beyond Romania’s Constanta port, amidst grave uncertainty regarding the next steps for exporting goods from Ukraine after multiple Russian attacks on port locations. Furthermore, the recent decision to terminate the Black Sea Grain Initiative has added to the predicament. The tension surrounding Black Sea shipping has escalated due to both Ukraine and Russia stating their intent to treat commercial ships heading to enemy ports as potentially carrying military cargo. Insurers have warned that the previously available Black Sea war risk cover will no longer be provided as the situation continues to deteriorate. As part of Russia’s strategy to hit Ukraine’s grain export infrastructure, another Danube port, Izmail, has also faced attacks. Consequently, many ships along the river have opted to drop anchor while awaiting clarification on the best course of action. Before the war, the Black Sea represented 3.4% of total tanker loadings and 4% of total dry bulk loadings, these numbers have now declined to 2.3% and 2.8%, respectively. This conflict puts additional strain on the global fleet.
Dry bulk rates may currently be languishing, but their condition would have been far worse had it not been for the remarkable influx of coal China has been importing in recent times. China is now poised to import an astounding 400 million tonnes of coal this year, surpassing last year’s total by an impressive 100 million tonnes and even surpassing the record set back in 2013, which stood at 327 million tonnes. The ambitious target of 400 million tonnes for the entire year was disclosed by China’s National Coal Association. This surge in coal purchases is driven by more affordable international thermal coal prices. During the H1 2023, China’s total coal imports reached a staggering 221.93 million tonnes, twice the amount compared to the same period in 2022. Chinese seaborne coal imports have risen by an impressive 66% compared to the same period in 2022. Imports tend to surge when imported coal is more cost-effective than domestically produced coal. Indonesia continues to dominate as China’s primary coal supplier, accounting for 54% of the total supply this year.
Russia has issued a warning, stating that as of today, vessels en route to Ukraine’s Black Sea ports will be regarded as potential military targets. This comes as Ukraine announced its intention to establish a temporary shipping route in order to continue grain exports following Russia’s withdrawal from an agreement that allowed food shipments from Ukraine’s ports. According to Russia’s defense ministry, all ships heading towards Ukraine will be presumed to be carrying military cargo on behalf of Ukraine, and the flag countries of these vessels will be considered parties involved in the Ukrainian conflict. In response to the termination of the Black Sea Grain Initiative, Ukraine has declared the creation of a temporary shipping route via Romania. Vasyl Shkurakov, Ukraine’s acting minister for communities, territories, and infrastructure development, explained that the aim is to facilitate the unblocking of international shipping in the northwestern part of the Black Sea. This was conveyed in a letter to the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Furthermore, Ukraine mentioned in the letter to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) that it has established a mechanism to offer compensation guarantees for damage incurred by charterers, ship operators, and vessel owners due to the armed aggression of the Russian Federation. However, global insurers remain cautious about providing coverage for ships traveling to this hazardous region. While the loss of the Ukrainian grain trade represents only a small portion of the overall dry bulk demand picture, it is likely to be particularly felt in the Panamax segment. Nonetheless, with other exporters ramping up production, global corn and wheat exports are expected to increase next year, offsetting any potential loss from Ukraine. Depending on the development of logistics networks, Romania may be able to expand its handling of Ukrainian cargo, offering a deep-sea route to the market. Since the war began, Romania has been responsible for approximately one-third of Ukraine’s grain exports. Yesterday, Russia stated that the United Nations has a three-month deadline to implement the terms of a memorandum enabling Russian agricultural exports if they wish to resume discussions concerning the resumption of Ukrainian grain exports. In the past week, the Russian military has launched significant attacks on Odesa, Ukraine’s primary port, surpassing the scale seen during the initial stages of the conflict 17 months ago. The Ukrainian military reported damage to port facilities, including a grain terminal, a cooking oil terminal, storage tanks, and ship loading facilities.
Grain exports by ship from Ukraine are compelled to take a more meandering route inland following Russia’s decision yesterday to withdraw from the United Nations-backed Black Sea Grain Initiative. Russia’s choice to suspend its participation in the agreement that permitted Ukraine to transport grain through the Black Sea via three ports has delivered another blow to global leaders’ concerns about food security. Russia officially withdrew from the agreement on Monday, insisting that a separate arrangement to facilitate its shipments of food and fertilizer had not been fulfilled. Ukraine’s ports remained closed until the agreement was reached in July 2022, and it remains uncertain whether grain will be shipped from these locations following Russia’s withdrawal. The anticipated increase in war risk insurance premiums for entering the Black Sea region is expected, and shipowners may be hesitant to permit their vessels to enter a war zone without Russia’s authorization.
New shipbroker company Futureships emerges with a primary focus on the niche market of environmentally friendly vessels. Established by the skilled shipbroker and esteemed maritime executive, Ross Fothergill, this pioneering brokerage company Futureships is dedicated solely to the realm of low-carbon shipping. Ross Fothergill has successfully established registered offices in both Hong Kong and London, from which he extends chartering services for cutting-edge, high-performing vessels. This includes facilitating energy-efficient retrofits and promoting ships adorned with innovative designs.
Ship recycling companies are encountering difficulties in persuading prominent ship owners to dismantle their vessels as steel prices continue to decline gradually.
While larger ships remain unattainable due to the diminishing prices, there remains a consistent influx of smaller vessels. Ship recyclers in India and Bangladesh have witnessed a decline of approximately $5 to $6 per ldt in the offered prices for scrapping, and traders have advised shipbrokers to anticipate further decreases in the near future.
China’s economic growth in the Q2 fell below expectations, while youth unemployment reached a record high. This further contributes to the prevailing despair among dry bulk owners who have had little cause for celebration in 2023 thus far. Official data released on 17 July 2023 shows that the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) expanded by a modest 0.8% during the April-June period, compared to the previous quarter. Lackluster domestic and international demand played a role in these figures. The data indicates that China’s post-COVID boom has come to an end. Additionally, youth unemployment has reached unprecedented levels. It now appears increasingly challenging for China to achieve its GDP target of 5% for 2023, following a lackluster 3% growth in 2022. China experienced a decline in household wealth in 2022 for the first time in two decades, primarily due to the housing downturn and stock market slump witnessed during the pandemic. In the Q2 2023, there was a glimmer of hope for dry bulk shipowners in the figures released today, particularly in industrial production output, which measures activity in the manufacturing, mining, and utilities sectors. This metric exceeded analysts’ expectations, rising by 4.4% in June compared to the same month in 2022. However, the embattled real estate sector presented even more dismal numbers. Property investment in China continued to decelerate, with a 7.9% decline in the first half of the year, compared to a 7.2% drop in the first five months. China is the destination for over 70% of global seaborne iron ore and 26% of coal shipments. Coal imports have demonstrated remarkable strength this year, with total Chinese coal imports during the first half of 2023 reaching 221.93 million tonne, double the figure for the same period in 2022. Nevertheless, despite the solid performance in commodity imports during the first half, many analysts raise concerns about the sustainability of such robust buying.
Norwegian investment bank Cleaves Securities has witnessed a substantial surge in the worth of its shipping fund during its inaugural year. The Cleaves Shipping Fund, managed by the esteemed Cleaves Asset Management (CAM) division, achieved an impressive rate of return of 28.8%. Boss Carl Synvis, the head of fund management at Cleaves Securities, anticipates a promising start to a more lucrative winter season for crude and product carriers.
Russia has formally withdrawn from a United Nations-endorsed agreement permitting the export of Ukrainian grain across the Black Sea. The accord, negotiated by the United Nations (UN) and Turkey in the previous July, had undergone multiple extensions. However, Moscow has consistently expressed dissatisfaction, citing impediments to its grain and fertilizer exports and presenting a set of unfulfilled demands. Reports from Russian news sources indicate that Moscow has already notified Ukraine, Turkey, and the United Nations (UN) of its opposition to extending the grain agreement. Russia initially withdrew from the initiative in October last year following drone attacks on its naval fleet in Crimea. However, Russia re-engaged a few days later. The most recent bulk carrier to operate under the agreement, facilitating the export of nearly 33 million tonnes of food commodities, departed the war-torn country’s Black Sea port of Odesa bound for the Netherlands on Sunday. The initiative was last extended on 17 May 2023 for two months.
Chengxi Shipyard secures a new building contract for bulk carriers from Huaxia Financial Leasing. Chengxi Shipyard has reached an agreement with the domestic leasing company, Huaxia Financial Leasing, for the construction of two (2) 82K DWT kamsarmax bulk carriers. Two (2) kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings signifies Huaxia Financial’s foray into this particular segment.
Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha (Iino Lines) and J-Power have reached an agreement to incorporate Norsepower’s rotor sail onto the 2016 built coal carrier MV Yodohime. This marks the first-ever installation of a Norsepower rotor sail on a dedicated vessel for coal transportation. The Norsepower rotor sail installation is scheduled to occur in Q3 2024. The Norsepower rotor sail, an updated rendition of the Flettner rotor, utilizes the ship’s electric power to rotate the cylindrical sails on the deck. By harnessing the wind, these revolving sails generate substantial thrust, resulting in a noteworthy reduction of bunker consumption and CO2 emissions of around 6-10%, when combined with the navigation optimization system. For Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha (Iino Lines), this will be their second vessel to be equipped with the Norsepower sail, the first being a VLGC vessel. Tokyo-based shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha (Iino Lines) has expressed its commitment to actively promote clean marine transport initiatives as part of its journey towards carbon neutrality. J-Power, on the other hand, has now installed a wind propulsion auxiliary system on a dedicated coal carrier for the second time. The previous installation involved Seawing’s automated kite system on the coal carrier MV Corona Citrus, operated by K Line.
China maintains its dominant position in newbuilding endeavors, surpassing its rivals with a series of significant deals in June 2023. Leading shipping companies such as Maersk, CMA CGM, and KCC have chosen Chinese shipbuilders as their preferred partners in the previous month. Chinese shipyards continue to maintain a substantial lead in the newbuilding competition in 2023, surpassing all other contenders. 105 vessels were ordered in June 2023, with an additional 14 already scheduled for construction in July 2023. Chinese shipbuilders secured new contracts amounting to an impressive 2.2 million deadweight tonnage (DWT).
The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) has dipped below the 1,000-point mark, signifying a decline, as the steel market shows signs of weakening. Concurrently, there is an upsurge in the export of iron ore from Brazil and other nations, coinciding with a pullback in capesize bulk carrier futures. Notably, market analysts and shipbrokers attribute this drop in the Baltic Dry Index (BDI) to persistently lackluster iron ore demand from China, causing steel prices to remain subdued for the past month.
YZJ Shipping, the shipowning division of Yangzijiang Shipbuilding, has increased its investment in its fleet by acquiring 2020 built ultramax bulk carrier 61K DWT MV Great Spirit for around $28.9 million. MV Great Spirit was constructed at Dalian COSCO KHI shipyard. MV Great Spirit was sold through an online auction. MV Great Spirit is expected to be delivered by the end of 2023. The 2020 built ultramax bulk carrier 61K DWT MV Great Spirit was previously owned by Wah Kwong, a company controlled by Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings. Yangzijiang Shipbuilding ventured into shipowning in 2012 when it established Yangzijiang Shipping. This move allowed the Yangzijiang Shipbuilding to take over canceled orders for bulk carriers.
The commencement of the removal of the MV OS 35 bulker wreck has commenced with both sections of the hull being placed aboard the semi-submersible vessel MV Fjord. The extraction of MV OS 35 from Gibraltar waters occurs approximately 10 months subsequent to its collision with an LNG carrier in late August 2022. According to a statement by the Government of Gibraltar, the lifting of the two sections of MV OS 35 entirely out of the water has resulted in the anticipated release of residues, including substantial oil residues, into the protective boom that was deployed around the MV OS 35. Once the preliminary tasks of securing the hull sections and clearing the residues within the boom are accomplished, MV OS 35 will be relocated from its current position to a suitable anchorage berth. At the time of the incident, MV OS 35 was transporting 183 tonnes of HFO (heavy fuel oil) for consumption, along with 250 tonnes of diesel and 27 tonnes of lube oil. Although the captain of the wrecked MV OS 35 received only a four-month suspended sentence in June.
5 July 2023
Russia disregards entreaties regarding the alleviation of certain sanctions in order to salvage the Ukraine grain agreement. The Russian administration has dismissed reports suggesting that the European Union (EU) is contemplating the relaxation of certain financial penalties imposed on Russia, which could aid in preserving the Black Sea Grain Initiative (BSGI). Furthermore, they have reiterated that the United Nations-led endeavor is set to terminate on the 17th of July.
Argenmar-owned Argentina-flagged 2009 built handysize bulk carrier 29K DWT MV Argenmar Mistral and Japanese shipowner Toyo Kaiun-owned Panama-flagged 2011 built handysize bulk carrier 35K DWT MV ES Vanquish collided on Sunday night during their transit of the Paraná River in Argentina. The incident involved at kilometre 313 in the heart of the navigation channel in Ramallo. Argenmar-owned Argentina-flagged 2009 built handysize bulk carrier 29K DWT MV Argenmar Mistral was moving upstream on its journey from Bahía Blanca to San Lorenzo, transporting 7,500 tons of granular urea. On the other hand, Japanese shipowner Toyo Kaiun-owned Panama-flagged 2011 built handysize bulk carrier 35K DWT MV ES Vanquish was en route from San Lorenzo with 30,000 tons of corn destined for Peru. Fortunately, no injuries were reported, but both MV Argenmar Mistral and MV ES Vanquish are said to have sustained damage both above and below the waterline.
Methanol dual-fuel new building orders top those for LNG in June 2023. More newbuildings were ordered with methanol dual-fuelled propulsion systems in June 2023 than for ships that will be able to use LNG as fuel. According to the classification society Det Norske Veritas (DNV), 55 vessels with alternative-fuelled propulsion systems were contracted in June 2023. Of the total 55 vessels, 29 were for methanol dual-fuelled vessels with this figure including retrofits. The methanol tally also boasted the first tanker orders for this fuel type.
The European Union is considering modifying certain sanctions imposed on Russia in order to preserve a vital grain agreement under the auspices of the United Nations. With Russia indicating its potential withdrawal from the UN-led Black Sea corridor, Brussels is contemplating accommodating the Russian Agricultural Bank. To facilitate the renewal of a sea corridor for Ukrainian grain, set to expire on 17 July 2023, officials from the European Union are taking steps to fulfill one of Russia’s several conditions. European Union is contemplating the relaxation of financial sanctions to permit the Russian Agricultural Bank to handle payments associated with Russia’s own grain exports.
Bangladeshi ship recyclers are swiftly acquiring small bulk carriers while Chinese operators dispose of outdated vessels. Amidst the Bangladesh government’s primary focus on conserving foreign exchange, Bangladeshi ship recyclers face challenges in obtaining letters of credit (L/C). However, Chinese domestic bulker operators are stepping in to provide assistance.
Due to the unresolved credit issues in Bangladesh, these smaller bulk carriers are the preferred choice for most Bangladeshi ship recyclers. Their acquisition costs can be financed through internal resources rather than relying on bank loans, which are presently scarce.
The capesize dry bulk carrier segment experienced a reversal in the momentum of average spot rates, following the weakening of China’s manufacturing sector for the third consecutive month. On Friday, the Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC declined to $14,100 per day. This marked an 18.1% decrease from the previous week, offsetting the 36% surge in average spot rates achieved in the prior week. Due to the persistently subdued economic data from China since the Q1 2023, growth forecasts for 2023 have been revised downward.
Ukrainian authorities will closely monitor the water levels along the Danube River this summer, as it appears that an increased amount of grain exports will be redirected through Europe’s longest river due to the obstruction of Black Sea shipments by Russia. According to the director of the Ukraine Sea Ports Authority, the Danube River will become the primary channel for Ukrainian exports in light of Russia’s hindrance of Black Sea transportation. The Black Sea Grain Initiative, which was established in 2022 by Turkey, the UN (United Nations), Russia, and Ukraine, is set to be reviewed on 18 July 2023. There is widespread speculation that Russia will choose not to renew its participation. In recent weeks, Ukraine has encountered difficulties in moving numerous cargoes from its three designated Black Sea ports, attributing the challenges to Russian interference. Ukraine is eager to deepen the Bystre Canal on the Danube, enabling the passage of larger vessels.
Over the past week, the Baltic Dry Index (BDI), serving as an indicator for the dry bulk spot market, experienced a substantial 15.2% increase, reaching its highest level in a month at 1,240 points on Friday. Among the different sectors, the capesize bulk carrier segment played a pivotal role in boosting the Baltic Dry Index (BDI). Capesize bulk carriers were engaged in transporting coal to China, facilitating the country’s electricity plants in meeting the escalated demand for air conditioning.
Frustration is intensifying concerning the impasse over the grain trade in the Black Sea region during the onset of the harvest season. The prospects for the United Nations’ delicate maritime route for Ukrainian grain are deteriorating rapidly. In another indication that the Ukrainian grain trade route is likely to collapse upon its expiration next month, Antonio Guterres, the head of the United Nations, expressed his exasperation with its underperformance. Additionally, certain ship managers have announced their decision to cease sending their vessels there. The United Nations-led initiative for food exports experienced a significant slowdown, reaching a mere 1.3 million tons.
The Panama Ship Registry (PSR) intends to purify its fleet in order to adhere to international regulatory standards. Panama is preparing to eliminate substandard vessels as part of its commitment to compliance. The Panama Ship Registry (PSR), the largest ship registry in the world, will take stringent action against ships with inadequate safety records or a questionable history.
The Panama Maritime Authority (PMA), responsible for the world’s largest flag, considers this matter of utmost significance. Approximately 14K inspections are conducted each year on the fleet, which presents a considerable challenge in maintaining compliance across various regions, as stated by the Panama Ship Registry (PSR). Currently, an integrated review is underway to ensure the verification and control of the extensive fleet of over 8,500 vessels listed under the Panama Ship Registry
New draft limitations imposed by the drought-plagued Panama Canal will necessitate a reduction in the Panama Canal’s water level by over 2 meters starting in July 2023. Panama Canal Authorities have cautioned that daily transits may need to be curtailed by up to 25% to conserve water. Panama has experienced one of the most severe dry periods in its history in 2023, prompting repeated announcements of draft restrictions on the Panama Canal. This situation is likely to worsen with the arrival of El Niño, a weather phenomenon that typically brings dry conditions to Central America. Currently, vessels passing through the newer Neo-Panama Canal, neopanamax locks, must adhere to a maximum draft of 13.41 meters. However, this limit will decrease to 13.26 meters next week and a mere 13.11 meters by July 19. Such a significant reduction from the previous maximum draft of 15.24 meters will result in the old panamax locks accommodating ships with drafts of just 11.73 meters by July 19. Meteorologists have issued warnings that Lake Gatun, situated at the heart of the Panama Canal, could reach historically low water depths by July. Consequently, additional restrictions may be imposed. The Panama Canal Authority has stated that it will diligently monitor the water level of Gatun Lake and promptly announce any future adjustments to the draft.
Dubai-based shipowner and operator Tristar Eships aspires to expand while minimizing the detrimental erosion of value. The newly appointed leader unveils his aspirations for the shipowning enterprise, which rests upon enduring investments supported by long-range agreements. Tim Coffin, a seasoned professional with a background in shipping investments and private equity, assumed the position previously held by Chris Peters, who departed the Dubai-based company to join Montfort Trading. The foremost priority was to establish a singular brand identity for Dubai-based shipowner and operator Tristar Eships that had hitherto operated under the dual monikers of Tristar Maritime and Eships in the market.
China’s coal imports have experienced a significant upsurge due to its economic recovery, as stated by shipbrokers. Presently, China, being the largest global coal importer, has witnessed a substantial increase in volumes. However, the question remains: will this growth be sustained? The surge in China’s coal imports this year is attributed to the country’s economic rebound following China’s stringent zero-Covid measures in the previous year. Over the course of the first five months in 2023, the total seaborne coal imports into China reached a staggering 138.8 million tonnes. This marks a remarkable 93.4% increase compared to 71.8 million tonnes in 2022, a 47% rise from 94.3 million tonnes in 2021, and an impressive 22.6% increase overall.
Abdulbar Kaddoura, the shipmaster of the wrecked bulk carrier MV OS 35, has been given a suspended sentence by the Supreme Court following the incident that took place in August 2022. Rather than being imprisoned, Abdulbar Kaddoura will not serve any time in custody for the grounding off Gibraltar. According to GBC’s report, the Syrian captain, aged 53, has received a four-month sentence that will be suspended for a year, as ruled by Gibraltar’s Supreme Court. The deliberate grounding of 1999 built handysize bulk carrier handysize 35K MV OS 35, occurred after a collision with the 165K-cbm gas carrier Adam LNG, constructed in 2014, which was anchored at the time.
A towering crane has collapsed onto MV Osprey S in a Turkish ship-repair yard, casting a shadow of distress. The incident involving the 2007 built handysize bulk carrier 31K DWT MV Osprey S, transpired on or before the 12th of June at the Cindemir shipyard in Tuzla, as reported by TurkishStraits. The crane descended upon the fore port side of the Liberia-flagged MV Osprey S following an issue with the buoyant dock. Nonetheless, the resulting harm was deemed negligible, and fortunately, no injuries were reported. Armador Shipping is the owner and manager of 2007 built handysize bulk carrier 31K DWT MV Osprey S, which enjoys insurance coverage provided by the distinguished UK P&I Club.
The 900-kilogram consignment of cocaine was discovered aboard the Monaco-based Shamrock Maritime controlled 2018 built supramax bulk carrier 58K DWT MV St Pinot at the Kwinana Bulk Terminal in Western Australia (WA). This substantial seizure, possessing an estimated street value of no less than $375 million, stands as one of the largest ever recorded within the nation. The operation was conducted through a collaborative investigation involving the Australian Federal Police (AFP), Australian Border Force, and WA Police. It is suspected that the cocaine originated from South America. Visual footage depicted officers being gently lowered into the hull of the St Pinot. As part of an ongoing endeavor, the Australian Federal Police (AFP), Australian Border Force, and WA Police Force are meticulously combing through Monaco-based Shamrock Maritime controlled 2018 built supramax bulk carrier 58K DWT MV St Pinot. Departing from the port of San Lorenzo in Argentina on the 16th of April, MV St. Pinot subsequently made two other stops within the same country. Following a five-week voyage, Monaco-based Shamrock Maritime controlled 2018 built supramax bulk carrier 58K DWT MV St Pinot arrived in Fremantle, Australia, before ultimately proceeding to Kwinana. No reports have surfaced regarding any arrests made after the seizure.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC increased 17.3% since 21 April 2023. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC reached to $19,100 per day on Friday which is the highest point since surpassing $21,000 per day in December 2022. Notwithstanding the downtrend in iron ore prices, the Capesize 5TC of the Baltic Exchange witnessed an increment. The capesize charter rates have reached their peak for the year 2023, despite the decreasing prices of steel and iron ore. The Atlantic and Pacific basins have observed a surge in capesize fixture activity over the past week, as China prepares for Labour Day. Although the prices for iron ore and Chinese steel have experienced a continuous decline, the capesize bulk carrier market concluded the week on a highly positive note.
The Ukrainian Navy has lodged an accusation against Russia for impeding the departure of four vessels loaded with grain from Ukrainian ports. Ukrainian officials have reported that representatives of the Russian side in the Joint Coordination Centre located in Istanbul have refused to authorize the movement of vessels to and from the seaports of Ukraine via the Maritime Humanitarian Corridor, which functions within the ambit of the Black Sea Initiative for the export of grain and related foodstuffs by the sea. In response to online reports, the Ukrainian Navy has denied any allegations of impeding ships from departing from the port of Odesa, which is one of the three Black Sea ports included in the grain initiative. These claims have surfaced amid a series of allegations and counter-allegations exchanged between Russia and Ukraine over the UN Black Sea Grain Initiative. Russia has claimed that Ukrainian ship inspectors have been demanding bribes to facilitate passage through the humanitarian corridor. Earlier in April, Ukraine held Russia responsible for the delays in ship inspections. The ongoing exchange of accusations has erupted during negotiations over the renewal of the Black Sea Grain Initiative agreement, which expires on May 18. Russia has issued a warning of terminating the agreement because it is dissatisfied with the hurdles created by sanctions on banking, shipping, and insurance for its fertilizer exports, which are included in the original agreement. In a bid to renew the agreement, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has sent a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin proposing a possible compromise.
The dry bulk shipping industry has faced significant challenges in the past few years, including the impact of the pandemic and the Ukraine conflict. These events have shown that the factors driving freight rates are more complex than just supply and demand. However, this volatile and complex environment can also serve as valuable training for the industry to better navigate new risks and trading patterns in the future. To gain insight into the industry’s future, one need only look at the world it operates in today. Overall, the dry bulk shipping sector is expected to face an increasingly complex and volatile commercial environment in the years ahead.
Pareto Bank experienced a $17 million reduction in its shipping book, with a corresponding decrease in customer and vessel numbers during the first quarter. Despite this, Pareto Bank foresees a gradual improvement over the entire year of 2023. The maritime portfolio of the prestigious Norwegian lender, Pareto Bank, experienced a downturn during Q1, resulting in a decrease of the shipping book to $152 million as of 31st March, 2023, as compared to $169 million during Q4 2022. Pareto Bank, an esteemed establishment listed in Oslo, concentrates on medium-sized shipowners, family offices, and the investment project market. Corporate loans constitute 39% of the overall exposure, while loans to investment projects make up the remainder.
Dubai-based shipowner and operator Emarat Maritime LLC four (4) ultramax bulk carrier new buildings at New Dayang Shipbuilding. Tanker and bulker shipowner Emarat Maritime LLC will take the delivery of four (4) ultramax bulk carrier new buildings in Q2 2025. The agreement also includes an option for four additional ships. Emarat Maritime LLC has not ordered any bulk carrier new buildings since 2008. Dubai-based shipowner and operator Emarat Maritime LLC is said to be paying around $32 million each for the ultramax ships, which will be constructed to the Energy Efficiency Design Index Phase 3 standards set by the International Maritime Organization and based on the New Dayang Shipbuildin’s updated Crown 63-Plus design.
Brazil and the US, which collectively account for 85% of the global soybean exports, are projected to commence their harvests during the latter half of this year. Due to copious rainfall in Brazil, the harvest season is expected to extend into the second half of 2023. Consequently, the confluence of the harvests of these two major exporters would prove to be a boon for panamax bulkers. Undoubtedly, having two major exporters harvesting soybeans concurrently would be more advantageous for panamax bulkers than just one. This is primarily because soybeans and grains are highly substitutable cargoes. Hence, this development is expected to greatly benefit panamax owners.
The United Nation’s Black Sea grain corridor was briefly halted due to an inspection dispute between Russian and Ukrainian inspectors in Istanbul on Tuesday. This caused a delay in the safe seaborne export of Ukrainian grain. The situation was expected to be resolved with routine inspections resuming on Wednesday after “intensive discussions” with UN and Turkish mediators in Istanbul. However, the initiative has been plagued with bad news, and Russian and Ukrainian officials required more time to reach an agreement on operational priorities, according to UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric.
Istanbul-based shipowner and operator Devbulk acquired 2015 built handysize bulk carrier 36K DWT MV Maestro Pearl for around $22.5 million from Switzerland-based shipowner and operator Maestro Shipping. Hakki Deval-led Devbulk is going to take the delivery of MV Maestro Pearl next month. Devbulk is a separate and independent company from two other companies owned by the Deval family, namely Deval Marine and Devmarin Shipping. Devbulk prefers geared handysize tonnage. Devbulk, a Turkish-based company specializing in geared handysize tonnage, has increased its fleet size to 10 vessels with the recent acquisition of MV Maestro Pearl from Maestro Shipping. This marks the second fleet expansion in three months for Devbulk. The terms of the MV Maestro Pearl deal were not disclosed.
Athens-based shipowner and operator Neda Maritime Agencies ordered two (2) kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings at Chengxi Shipyard. Neda Maritime Agency Co. Ltd. is ordering bulk carrier new buildings again after almost a decade. In 2014, Lykiardopoulo family-controlled Neda Maritime Agency Co. Ltd. ordered three (3) kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings at Namura Shipbuilding and Tsuneishi Group. Neda Maritime Agency Co. Ltd. was established in 1879 by Nicolaos D. Lykiardopulo. Neda Maritime Agencies is an autonomous maritime management entity that skillfully supervises and directs a contemporary, varied armada of voluminous tankers and bulk carriers engaged in global trade. Currently, Athens-based shipowner and operator Neda Maritime Agencies has a fleet of nine (9) kamsarmax bulk carriers, six (6) capesize bulk carriers, six (6) aframax tankers, and five (5) VLCCs (Very Large Crude Carriers).
Capesize bulk carrier values increased by 16.4% since the beginning of March 2023, from $53 million to $62 million, the highest levels since August 2022. China’s dumping of trade restrictions on Australian coal imports has increased 180K DWT capesize bulk carrier prices. Positive dry bulk market sentiment could lift capesize bulk carrier prices even higher.
Montreal-based shipowner and operator Canfornav controlled 2014 built handysize bulk carrier 36K DWT MV Smew’s fertilizer cargo had been seized in Kotka, Finland. Canfornav controlled 2014 built handysize bulk carrier 36K DWT MV Smew stopped from entering port due to fertilizer cargo on board with alleged links to a Russian oligarch. Canadian shipowner and operator Canfornav state fertilizer cargo is US-owned as bulker cleared to load in Finland. Finland Kotka Port Authority held the 20K metric tons of fertilizer cargo on MV Smew. Montreal-based shipowner and operator Canfornav expressed that the fertilizer cargo is owned by a United States company. Before fixing the fertilizer cargo on a voyage charter on MV Smew, due diligence was exercised by Canadian shipowner and operator Canfornav. Finland Kotka Port Authority has cleared the loading of Canfornav controlled 2014 built handysize bulk carrier 36K DWT MV Smew.
The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC (Average Spot-Rates Seven Key Routes) increased 10% over the week to $11,361 per day on Friday. The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC is at its highest point since late December 2022. The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC started an upward trend in mid-February 2023. Dry bulk shipping market positivity has resumed this week. The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC increased as a consequence of an abundance of fixture activity in the spot and period dry bulk markets. Likewise, average spot rates for other bulk carrier sizes increased but plunged on Friday.
China has fully lifted its Australian coal ban after enforcing the embargo in 2020 in response to Australia calling for an independent probe into Covid-19’s origin. China orders ports and customs offices to allow coal cargo from Australia, after Chinese authorities let four (4) main coal importers resume buying the coal in January 2023. China’s steelmakers and power plants import high-quality Australian coal which might reach 1 million tonnes in March.
Jiangsu Runchang Shipping Co Ltd managed 2010 built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV Loyalty Hong has lost power after suffering engine room flooding in New Zealand. The Panama-flagged 2010 built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV Loyalty Hong lost the power to run its engines following water ingress. MV Loyalty Hong is operating an emergency generator to power the bulk carrier’s systems. Limited power has also been restored on MV Loyalty Hong to close hatches, retract cranes and operate mooring winches. Currently, MV Loyalty Hong is kept in stable condition. MV Loyalty Hong’s crew members are safe. China-based Glory Loyalty Hong Ltd owned and Jiangsu Runchang Shipping Co Ltd managed 2010 built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV Loyalty Hong is secure alongside while awaiting parts for repair. Authorities started an investigation into the incident. Jiangsu Runchang Shipping Co Ltd managed 2010 built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV Loyalty Hong departed Albany in Australia in February and arrived at Lyttelton Port New Zealand on 5 March. New Zealand-based Lyttelton Port Company representative stated the authorities are cooperating with Jiangsu Runchang Shipping Co Ltd’s representative. MV Loyalty Hong is safely secured alongside the port and awaiting repair.
Houston-based Royal White Cement filed a lawsuit in the Eastern District of Louisiana seeking a maritime lien on KK Kyowa Sansho (Kyowa Sansho Co Ltd) owned 2022 built ultramax bulk carrier 61K DWT MV Weco Holli. Japanese shipowner KK Kyowa Sansho (Kyowa Sansho Co Ltd) owned MV Weco Holli is pursued by a Houston-based cement company Royal White Cement for cargo damage. Royal White Cement claims the company has about a $2 million lien on MV Weco Holli. Royal White Cement’s cargo was damaged during a voyage across the Gulf of Mexico on MV Weco Holli. Houston-based Royal White Cement alleges that the MV Weco Holli had cargo destined for New Orleans packed on top of cargo destined for Houston and that it was all unloaded once the ship arrived in Louisiana, at which point the cement cargo was damaged, either during cargo operations or during the trip to Texas.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC has soared 544% over the past 21 days to $14,500 per day on Friday. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC was $2,246 per day on 17 February 2023. Capesize bulk carriers’ average spot rates have increased by more than five times in the last three weeks due to China’s strong manufacturing, better weather in Brazil, and the Australian mine maintenance conclusion. Currently, Australia to China capesize bulk carrier iron ore rate is at $8.30 per metric ton.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC increased 11.3% on Monday to $11,026 per day to cross the $10,000 for the first time since mid-January 2023. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize C10 increased 14.9% on Monday. The dry bulk spot rates continue their acceleration on Monday after China announced a target GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growth of 5% for 2023.
Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd appointed Yusuke Otani as the new president of the company. In April 2023, Yusuke Otani will take over as president of Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd. Yusuke Otani will be replacing Hiromi Tosha. Yusuke Otani joined Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd in 1991. Yusuke Otani was selected as the general manager of Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd’s corporate planning in 2016. Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd communicated the appointment was made so that Yusuke Otani can lead Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd’s next management plan. Currently, Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd operates a mixed fleet of 94 chemical and crude tankers, bulkers, and gas carriers, including LNG carriers.
Athens-based Iason Hellenic Shipping Co Ltd managed 2013 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV Caravos Harmony’s two crew members were found dead on board. The investigation was initiated as two crew members were found dead on MV Caravos Harmony. Oleksiy Stavytskyy and Gutsu Denys were found in the bathrooms of their cabins on the Iason Hellenic Shipping Co Ltd managed MV Caravos Harmony off the coast of Macapa in Brazil on 21 February.
Luxembourg-headquartered BRS Shipbrokers appointed Gilbert Walter as the new CEO (Chief Executive Officer). Gilbert Walter will replace Francois Cadiou who remains chairman of holding company BRS International, as well as chartering solutions company AXSMarine. BRS Shipbrokers has been serving more than 150 years in the shipping market.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC declined 31.2% over the week to $4,443 per day. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC plunged to its lowest level since August 2022. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC plunged by a third over the past week as China observed the Chinese New Year holiday.
Hamburg-based shipowner and operator NSC Shipping GmbH & Cie. KG controlled 2012 built handysize bulk carrier 31K DWT MV GMB Eternity (ex MV Almirante Storni) was on fire off Gothenburg in 2021. The Swedish Accident Investigation Authority (SHK) probe has revealed a worn extension cable caused a devastating fire on board MV GMB Eternity (ex MV Almirante Storni). The fire broke out on the anchored MV GMB Eternity (ex MV Almirante Storni) on 4 December when a spark from the cable ignited timber on the deck. MV GMB Eternity (ex MV Almirante Storni) was required to be taken to a shipyard for repairs. No injuries were reported. The Swedish Accident Investigation Authority (SHK) report stated that an extension cable that had been plugged in during loading was left behind when the MV GMB Eternity (ex MV Almirante Storni) departed. The Swedish Accident Investigation Authority (SHK) report stated that the way the timber cargo was loaded pointed out that the fire quickly boosted in intensity and spread elsewhere. The blaze could not be extinguished without moving the MV GMB Eternity (ex MV Almirante Storni) into port and unloading some of the cargo. The Swedish Accident Investigation Authority (SHK) report stated that there are outstanding lessons to be learned from one of the most comprehensive salvage operations in Sweden’s modern history. The Swedish Accident Investigation Authority (SHK) report stated that guidelines for the handling of vessels in need of assistance should be strengthened. Sweden’s coast guard has been commissioned with evaluating its firefighting procedures.
According to a research report commissioned by the Baltic Exchange and authored by Urs Dur, increasing international demand for recycled steel could boost bulk carrier asset prices. Urs Dur states that the increasing appetite for recycled steel is probably to make investing in bulk carriers increasingly less risky if demand for the steel scrap continues to rise over the long term.
The Indian government is going to ban 25-year-old tankers and bulkers from its ports. Furthermore, the Indian government is also set to bar the secondhand purchase of ships of more than 20 years from registration with the Indian flag. This will increase charter costs and poses the question of vessel values. The Indian government’s new age limits for port calls and ship purchases are set to shake up shipping in India. Gas carriers, container ships, other offshore vessels, and tugs will be allowed to operate up to 30 years of age. If the draft is enacted, no foreign tanker or bulker shipowner can compete for Indian cargo with a ship older than 20 years. The Indian government aims to lower emissions and combat pollution, as well as increase the quality of the Indian flag.
Zhejiang-based shipowner and operator Zhejiang Xiehai Group ordered two (2) newcastlemax bulk carriers and two (2) kamsarmax bulk carriers for around $190 million. Zhejiang Xiehai Group ordered two (2) newcastlemax bulk carriers and two (2) kamsarmax bulk carriers at Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry Yangzhou Shipyard. Zhejiang Xiehai Group will take the delivery of the bulk carriers in 2024.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (Capesize Bulk Carriers Spot Rate Averages Across Five Key Routes) bounced 18.3% on Wednesday to nearly $23,200 per day, following an 8.2% leap on Tuesday. Capesize Bulk Carriers Spot Rates jumped for the second straight day on Wednesday, reaching their highest point in five months as China begins construction again. Capesize Bulk Carriers Fixtures have been more abundant over the past week.
BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) estimates the capacity of vessels being handed over in 2024 will decline to 23.8 million DWT (Deadweight Tonnage). BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) estimates that the bulk carrier new build order to accelerate in 2023. BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) is anticipating a return by bulk carrier owners to shipyards towards the end of 2023. BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) estimates lack of new building contracts in recent years will spur new orders.
BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) issued Carbon Clause.
BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) is aiming to give charterers the responsibility for the commercial effects of new Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) regulations. BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) Documentary Committee declared the release of its new model CII Time Charter. BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) Documentary Committee discussed eight months about the new model CII Time Charter. Carbon Clause was issued just six weeks before the new regulation comes into force. Shipowners and Charterers are represented in the drafting of the document. BIMCO (Baltic and International Maritime Council) CII Time Charter’s priority is on giving the paying customer responsibility, rather than the transport service provider.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (Capesize Bulk Carriers Spot Rate Averages Across Five Key Routes) plummeted 27.3% since 11 November 2022 to $9,305 per day on Friday. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize C5 iron-ore route from Western Australia to Qingdao, China plummeted 11.3%. The spot rate market for capesize bulk carriers plummeted last week due to China’s economic uncertainty continued, while that for the panamax, ultramax, and supramax bulk carrier spot rates stagnated due to light chartering activity.
Stema Shipping UK Ltd will charter Viridis Bulk Carriers’ ammonia-fuelled bulk carrier. Ammonia bulker start-up Viridis Bulk Carrier is a joint venture between Norwegian shipowner Mosvolds Rederi’s spin-off Amon Maritime and Navigare Logistics. Stema Shipping UK Ltd has become the eighth operator to join the Norwegian Flexbulk NH3 Power Project. Viridis Bulk Carriers will take the first delivery in 2023.
New York-listed dry bulk shipping companies’ stocks increased on Friday amid China’s optimism. The Breakwave Dry Bulk Shipping Exchange Traded Fund bounced 4.7% during the day to reach $7.72. Despite the New York-listed dry bulk shipping companies’ stocks increases, Breakwave Dry Bulk Shipping Exchange Traded Fund increased only a penny for the week after touching its lowest point of 2022. New York-listed dry bulk shipping companies’ investors took a liking to indications that China lockdown annoyances are poised to ease.
Japan-based shipowner Tamai Steamship Co Ltd (Tamai Shosen Co. Ltd.) ordered a supramax bulk carrier 58K DWT at Oshima Shipbuilding. The supramax bulk carrier will be owned through Tamai Steamship Co Ltd’s (Tamai Shosen Co. Ltd.) Liberian-based subsidiary T.S Central Shipping. Tamai Steamship Co Ltd (Tamai Shosen Co. Ltd.) will take the delivery of the supramax bulk carrier in Q1 2025. Tamai Steamship Co Ltd (Tamai Shosen Co. Ltd.) expressed the supramax bulk carrier had been ordered as replacement tonnage. Tamai Steamship Co Ltd (Tamai Shosen Co. Ltd.), affiliated with the Yamashita-Shinnihon Steamship Group, transports goods such as bauxite, aluminum, and gypsum. Tokyo-based Tamai Steamship Co Ltd (Tamai Shosen Co. Ltd.) primarily engaged in the marine transportation business and the real estate leasing business. Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed Tamai Steamship Co Ltd (Tamai Shosen Co. Ltd.) predominantly carry the bauxite and alumina cargoes for Nippon Light Metal Co. Ltd.
November Baltic Exchange Capesize Bulk Carriers FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) plunged 1.88% to $12,889 per day on 25 October 2022. On the other hand, December Baltic Exchange Capesize Bulk Carriers FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) plunged 1.48% to $11,829 per day on 25 October 2022. Bulk Carriers FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) indicate rough times ahead for dry bulk shipping as China encounters financial headwinds. Furthermore, November Baltic Exchange Panamax Bulk Carriers FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) plunged 3.68% on 25 October 2022. Any spike in Capesize and Panamax Bulk Carrier Spot Rates could be short-lived as China’s economy continues to struggle.
London-based SodaFlexx has announced it is retrofitting 1991 built post-panamax bulk carrier 96K DWT MV Yeoman Bridge with scrubbers that utilize baking soda to remove sulfur oxide emissions. Amsterdam-based Bontrup-controlled MV Yeoman Bridge was installed with a baking soda-operated exhaust gas cleaning system. London-based SodaFlexx accomplished three years of trials. Presently, the application for removing sulfur oxide is in the procedure of receiving a United States patent.
November Capesize Bulk Carriers FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) plunged nearly 12% on Monday. November Capesize Bulk Carriers FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) market for bulk carriers collapsed on Monday, while Capesize Bulk Carrier Spot Rates did not provide much excitement for dry bulk shipping. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (Spot Rate Averages Across Five Key Routes) tumbled on Monday due to low cargo volumes in the Atlantic basin.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has published an improved outlook for the economies of China and India. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) anticipates GDP growth for China to increase to 3.4% in 2023 from 2.2% in 2022. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) anticipates GDP growth for India to increase to 6.1% in 2023. However, some dry bulk shipowners and shipping professionals are not that optimistic about economic growth in 2023.
Bulk carriers hauling Russian coal were left stranded mid-voyage without insurance in June 2022 after the European Union modified its sanctions guidance. Uninsured bulk carriers were stranded after a European Union sanctions flip-flop and the troubles could reoccur as the European Union agrees on Russia’s oil price cap scheme. One bulk carrier was forced to shift to a safe port before reaching the ship’s scheduled destination to unload cargo to avoid falling foul of regulators. Shipowners and charterers suffered losses over a contract that will end up in the courts.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (Spot Rate Averages Across Five Key Routes) increased 13.8% on Wednesday to $21,175 per day. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC increased to its highest point since the end of July 2022. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC increased despite China’s celebration of Golden Week. Capesize bulk carriers have been somewhat limited this week due to the holidays in the Far East. The Forward Freight Agreement (FFA) market decline implies a more serious decline in future spot rates of capesize bulk carriers.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (Capesize Spot-Rate Average Rates Across Five Key Routes) increased 10% to $18,611 per day to mark its highest point since late July 2022. The Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC (Panamax Spot-Rate Average Rates Across Five Key Routes) increased to $18,987 per day. The Baltic Exchange’s Supramax 10TC (Supramax Spot-Rate Average Rates Across Ten Key Routes) increased to $18,351 per day. The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC (Handysize Spot-Rate Average Rates Across Seven Key Routes) increased to $18,313 per day. Dry bulk shipping’s spot rates are increasing regardless due to low supply. The low supply balance of bulk carriers will remain tight over the coming years due to more stringent regulatory burdens and a low bulk carrier new building order book in the Far East shipyards. Currently, the international fleet of bulk carriers is around 13,105. Today, 1,937 capesize bulk carriers, 3,008 panamax bulk carriers, 4,069 handysize bulk carriers are trading in the oceans.
The Baltic Exchange Capesize 5TC (Spot Rate Average Across Five Benchmark Routes) has improved 170% since 12 September 2022 to just over $16,900 per day. However, since 12 September 2022, November Capesize FFAs (Freight Forward Agreements) plunged from about $17,800 per day to about $15,100 per day. FFAs (Freight Forward Agreements) indicate a return to lower physical rates after the bulk carrier sector rebounded from September 2022 lows. FFAs (Freight Forward Agreements) is indicating a turn for the more alarming over the next several months.
Marfin Management controlled 2006 built supramax bulk carrier 52K DWT MV Jalma Topic was involved in a collision on the Mississippi River on 12 July 2021. The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has blamed defective electronics of Marfin Management controlled 2006 built supramax bulk carrier 52K DWT MV Jalma Topic for a 2021 collision on the Mississippi River that saw MV Jalma Topic collide into a barge. The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reported that Marfin Management controlled 2006 built supramax bulk carrier 52K DWT MV Jalma Topic lost steering after a relay on the bulk carrier’s servo control board failed, stopping the bulk carrier’s rudder from turning.
Suez Canal Authority (SCA) will increase the cost of transiting the Suez Canal as international trade expands. Suez Canal Authority (SCA) will increase Suez Canal Tolls by 15% in 2023. However, Suez Canal Tolls for bulk carriers and cruise ships will be increased by 10% in 2023.
Panamax Bulk Carrier Spot Rates shift downward for the first time since late August as FFA (Forward Freight Agreement) curve moves negatively. Panamax Bulk Carrier Spot Rates took their first plunge in more than two weeks on Thursday, ending a recovery that has seen the Panamax Bulk Carrier segment withstand a dry bulk slump. On Wednesday, the PanamaxFFA (Forward Freight Agreement) market turned the futures curve in a downward direction. The Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5T (spot earnings of panamax bulk carriers on five key benchmark routes), plunged 2.6%.
The Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC (Average Spot-Rate Across Five Key Routes) increased to $16,786 per day on 9-September-2022 due to port congestion and strong grain cargoes. The Baltic Exchange’s Panamax 5TC increased due to South American grain exports and port congestion. On the other hand, Capesize Bulk Carrier spot rates have declined. Panamax Bulk Carrier spot rates increased as the grain markets in both the East Coast South America (NOPAC) and NoPac (North Pacific) came busy.
The decreasing Atlantic market for Panamax Bulk Carriers is witnessing some hope in the Forward Freight Agreement (FFA) for higher spot rates. However, that does not necessarily mean that a floor for spot rates is on the way. The Average Panamax Spot Rate for the Baltic Exchange P7 Route (the US Gulf to Qingdao) has plunged 19.7% since 1 August to $52.44 per tonne. On the other hand, The Average Panamax Spot Rate for the Baltic Exchange P9 Route (Santos to Qingdao) plunged 27.9% to $39.63 per tonne.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (a spot-rate average across five benchmark routes) plunged 14.7% during the day to reach $5,636 per day. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC is at its lowest point in more than two years, when it came in at $6,177 per day on 4 June 2020. Capesize bulk carrier freight rates plunged to a two-year low as China’s faltering real estate sector forces steel cutbacks. China’s steel production has fallen 6.4% for H1 2022. On 24 August 2022. Capesize bulk carrier freight rates plunged further as China’s hurting real-estate industry continues to put the brakes on turning iron ore into steel for construction.
Capesize bulk carrier spot rates continue to plunge. However, China’s looming $1 trillion economic stimulus plan focused on infrastructure spending may boost the dry bulk shipping market. In Q4 2022, average capesize bulk carrier spot rates may reach $14,500 per day. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (spot-rate average across five key routes) plunged 46% over the past week to $3,413 per day. Currently, the Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC is at the lowest figure in about 27 months. Furthermore, capesize bulk carrier spot rates reached their lowest point since May 2020.
The average spot rate for handysize bulk carriers has plunged to its lowest level since February 2021. The average spot rate for handysize bulk carriers’ freight rates plunged 18-month low as the Atlantic market weakens. The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC (spot-rate average across seven key routes) dropped to $17,189 per day, marking the lowest level since it came in at $17,011 per day on 22 February 2021. The Baltic Exchange’s Handysize 7TC has been on a downward trend since mid-May when Handysize 7TC topped out at $30,004 per day on 16 May 2022.
The United States and Brazil’s grain exports to Europe have tripled amid the Ukraine conflict. Ukraine port blockade and summer heat may decrease grain exporting volumes. However, the Ukraine grain corridor may make up for any shortfalls. Grain exports from Brazil and the United States to the European Union have tripled since Russia’s de facto blockade of Ukraine’s ports in March 2022. Brazil’s year-over-year grain exports increased to 2.2 million tonnes for July 2022. On the other hand, the United States’ grain export volumes increased to 1.1 million tonnes.
The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC (Spot-rate average across five key routes) plummeted 20% during the day to reach 7,188 per day. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC plummeted below $8,000 per day for the first time since late January 2022. The Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC plummeted due to China’s demand for iron ore staying soft. At the core of 2022’s weak demand for capesize bulk carriers has been the decline in iron ore trades. The economic stimulus from the Chinese government may increase capesize bulk carriers rates.
Under UN World Food Programme (WFP), 1996 built handysize bulk carrier 23K DWT MV Brave Commander was loaded at Yuzhny Port in Ukraine. The first shipment of Ukrainian wheat grain for humanitarian operations was conducted by the UN World Food Programme (WFP). MV Brave Commander will unload a 23,000 metric tonne cargo of wheat grain at Djibouti. Under UN World Food Programme (WFP), 12 bulk carriers are authorized to carry WFP (World Food Programme) humanitarian grain shipments out of the ports of Odesa, Yuzhny, and Choronomork in the forthcoming weeks. Approximately 2 million tonnes per month of grain and other agricultural products will be exported from Ukraine. Ukrainian grain is back on international markets, UN World Food Programme (WFP) has an opportunity to control this international food crisis. UN World Food Programme (WFP) stated that the 1996 built handysize bulk carrier 23K DWT MV Brave Commander voyage symbolizes the commencement of the resumption of commercial and humanitarian shipments out of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports. A total of 16 bulk carriers have also been approved by the UN (United Nations) to sail from Ukraine after being trapped at Ukrainian ports since the war began in February 2022.
The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) fell to its lowest level in a half year as holidays and low demand weighed heavily on dry bulk shipping. The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) which functions as a barometer for dry bulk market performance, plunged 5.3% over the past week to 1,477 points on Friday. The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) fell under 1,500 points for the first time it came in at 1,422 points on 7 February 2022. Capesize bulk carrier market resumes dwelling in the doldrums.
Sophocles Zoullas-led Zenith Shipping Group made a $70 million profit from supramax bulk carrier asset plays. New York-based Zenith Shipping Group. Zenith Shipping Group sold the seventh supramax bulk carrier that Sophocles Zoullas-led Zenith Shipping Group had acquired at bottom prices during the dry bulk market recession. Zenith Shipping Group has completed yet another lucrative sale of a supramax bulk carrier. Zenith Shipping Group extends almost $110 million in revenues since 2021. had paid to acquire the supramax bulk carriers. In six years, Zenith Shipping Group made a profit of around $70 million. In 2015, remarkably rare shipowners were daring to buy bulk carriers when Baltic Exchange indexes were hitting multi-decade lows and bulk carriers were sent en masse to lay up.
UN (United Nations) has been trying to release bulk carriers that are trapped at Ukraine ports since the outbreak of hostilities with Russia in preparation for humanitarian shipments of grain. Frederick Kenney who is the Coordinator for the United Nations Black Sea Initiative expressed the stress is still on bringing bulk carriers out of Ukraine grain ports first. UN’s (United Nations) priority is to free up space so bulk carriers can berth and load cargo. UN (United Nations) concentrated on freeing up Ukraine’s port space for grain shipments. More bulk carriers are set to sail free after six months in Ukraine while many ship operators apply to be authorized in to load at Ukraine grain ports.
Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd reported a substantial boost in both sales and profits due to improved freight rates. In Q1 2022, Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd reported net sales of $2.5 billion. In Q1 2022, Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd reported a net profit of $383 million. In Q1 2022, Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd reported that tankers delivered a 14.6% increase in operating profit and bulk carriers an 8.9% improvement. In the tanker market, Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd expressed profitability had improved after Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd boosted the company’s exposure to the spot market to take advantage of rising rates. In the dry bulk market, Japanese shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd stated conditions resume to be favorable. Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd’s spot exposure in the tanker market is now 30%, and 47% in the dry bulk sector. Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd will boost the fleet in 2023 with the addition of a 40K DWT bulk carrier new building under a long-term charter agreement. In 2022, Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd will take delivery of three (3) bulk carrier new buildings including one kamsarmax and two handysize bulk carrier new buildings. Currently, Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed shipowner and operator Iino Kaiun Kaisha Ltd operates a mixed fleet of 94 vessels.
The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) increased to 2,284 points. The dry bulk markets revealed a little hope on Tuesday after plunging steadily for two weeks. Tuesday’s gain marked the first time that the Baltic Dry Index (BDI) enhanced after declining gradually from 2,633 points on 1 June 2022. Capesize 5TC reached over $19,000 per day. Capesize 5TC ascended back to the positive with support mostly from the Atlantic Basin. Capesize C3 route was at $31.18 per tonne on Tuesday. Capesize C5 route was at $12.41 per tonne on Tuesday. Rio Tinto capesize bulk carrier for 190,000 tonnes of iron ore from Dampier, to Qingdao at $12.40 per tonne. The Panamax 5TC route reached $23,657 per day on Tuesday. This small gain came after the Panamax 5TC slid steadily by 23% from $30,392 per day on 23 May 2022.
Tokyo-based shipowner and operator Inui Global Logistics has cooperated with data specialist Sustainable Lab to enhance the company’s greenhouse gas emissions. Japanese shipowner and operator Inui Global Logistics search for alternative methods to lower carbon emissions from the company’s fleet. Yasuyuki Inui-led Inui Global Logistics mainly owns and operates handysize bulk carriers. It is also more difficult to make a return on investment handysize bulk carriers. Inui Global Logistics Vessel Information Board (VIB) will be used jointly with Sustainable Lab’s artificial intelligence non-financial data system that was designed to assist organizations demonstrate the implementation of sustainability initiatives. Starting from 2023, the Carbon Intensity Indicator regulation agreed at the IMO (International Maritime Organization) will mandate shipowners to document to their Flag State on the ship operating efficiency. Under the new Carbon Intensity Indicator system, vessels will be rated between A and E based on their performance. Vessels which fall into categories D and E will have failed to fulfill the minimum international standard. Low rated vessels will have difficulty to find employment in the commercial shipping markets. Currently, Tokyo-based shipowner and operator Inui Global Logistics owns and operates 22 handysize bulk carriers.
Safeen Feeders is entering the dry bulk sector via a collaboration with Saif Powertec. Safeen Feeders will deliver eight (8) supramax bulk carriers which will be taken on bareboat and time charters to the jointly owned and operated bulk shipping services company. Eight (8) supramax bulk carriers will transport bulk cargoes from Fujairah to Chattogram and Mongla. Safeen Feeders and Saif Powertec venture will also manage cargo operations to the Indian subcontinent, South East Asia (SEA). Safeen Safeen Feeders was established in 2020 with the strategic partnership of UAE-based AD Ports and Singapore-based Bengal Tiger Line (BTL). UAE-based AD Ports CEO Captain Maktoum Al Houqani stated that the joint venture will furnish a swift, low-cost service for Safeen Feeders’ charterers in dry bulk shipping. Initially, Safeen Feeders and Saif Powertec venture will carry building materials between the UAE and Bangladesh, along with other dry cargo cargoes. Bangladeshi conglomerate port and logistic operator Saif Powertec is listed on the Dhaka Stock Exchange. AD Ports is a large conglomerate listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange that serves commercial ports in the UAE.
Baltic Exchange Handysize 7TC decreased to $26,075 per day. Average Spot Rates for Handysize Bulk Carriers reached the lowest levels for the second time in more than a month. On 28 March 2022, Baltic Exchange Handysize 7TC at $32,616 per day. In the Atlantic basin, according to Handysize Shipbrokers, more enquiries would be required for Handysize Bulk Carriers to witness more advancements moving forward. In the Pacific basin, according to Handysize Shipbrokers, Handysize Bulk Carriers suffered a setback as all three transpacific routes reported losses amid light chartering activity. Baltic Exchange Handysize HS6 roundtrip voyage between North China and North America Pacific Coast plunged to $25,750 per day. Handysize Shipbrokers has reported little chartering activity.
Amon Maritime CEO Andre Risholm stated that designing a ship from scratch is still the most reasonable idea. Decarbonization will inevitably affect both newbuildings and green retrofits of current ships. Amon Maritime is a Norwegian ammonia shipping start-up. Amon Maritime is supporting the new shipbuilding designs. According to Amon Maritime CEO Andre Risholm, retrofitting a ship is challenging. Supporters of ship retrofitting claim that it makes no sense in terms of fuel intensity and carbon emissions to build new ships to replace thousands of vintage ships. According to Amon Maritime CEO Andre Risholm, developing a new ship from scratch around a new power system will introduce more efficient ships. Large ships on long legs with heavy cargoes will take some time to replace. Shipowners of large bulk carriers ordered ammonia-ready ships for tomorrow. Amon Maritime is backed by Norwegian shipowner Mosvolds Rederi. Amon Maritime has been working on several new ammonia-fuelled vessel projects.
The capesize bulk carriers’ spot rates sloped on 24 March 2022 as capesize rates in the Atlantic basin fell while those in the Pacific basin increased. The capesize bulk carriers 5TC route (spot-rate average across five key routes) decreased to $16,333 per day. The capesize bulk carriers C8 route (Atlantic Brazil-Continent) decreased to $12,700 per day. The capesize bulk carriers C10 route (Pacific Australia-China Roundtrip) increased to $19,658 per day. The capesize bulk carriers’ spot rates in Atlantic and Pacific basins moving in opposite trends. The number of capesize bulk carriers increased in the Atlantic. On the other hand, the capesize bulk carriers’ spot rates in the Pacific basin increased. The capesize bulk carriers’ spot rates from Australia to China increased to around $11.70 per tonne. Furthermore, panamax and supramax capesize bulk carriers’ spot rates increased. The panamax bulk carriers 5TC route increased to $30,413 per day. The supramax bulk carriers 7TC route increased to $33,366 per day.
Australia has banned exports of alumina and aluminum ores including bauxite to Russia. Russia depends on Australia for about 20% of the country’s alumina requirements. Australia’s alumina ban is planned to limit Russia’s ability to make aluminum. Aluminum is a vital export for Russia. The Australian government will cooperate with exporters that will be impacted by the alumina ban and try to discover new and develop existing markets. Meanwhile, Anglo-Australian mining goliath Rio Tinto owns an 80% stake in Queensland Alumina Ltd (QAL) in a joint venture with Russia’s Rusal International PJSC. Rusal International PJSC is the world’s second-largest aluminum producer. Furthermore, Australia will donate approximately 70,000 tonnes of thermal coal to Ukraine. The freight cost of the coal to Ukraine will be met by the Australian Government.
Capesize spot-rate average weighted across five key routes (Capesize 5TC) plunged to $22,613 per day. Capesize spot rates plunged due to iron ore from Australia to China declining steadily. The average spot rate for the C10 transpacific roundtrip voyage, which covers the iron ore trade between China and Australia, plunged to $16,767 per day. Rio Tinto chartered seven capesize bulk carriers for iron ore shipment from Australia to China for around $9 per metric tonne. Australia entered cyclone season. Furthermore, average spot rates for the panamax, supramax, handysize plunged over the last week.
Viridis Bulk Carriers received $1.5 million in Norwegian state funding to develop ammonia-fuelled bulk carriers. Viridis Bulk Carriers received $1.5 million from the Pilot-E plan which is a partnership between the Norwegian Research Council, Innovation Norway, and Enova. Viridis Bulk Carriers was established up by Mosvolds Rederi and Navigare Logistics. Viridis Bulk Carriers committed to an environmentally-friendly bulk carrier project. In July 2021, Viridis Bulk Carriers signed collaboration deals with five cargo owners as the company aims to have its fleet operating from 2024. Furthermore, Viridis Bulk Carriers signed a deal with ammonia producer Yara International and Viken AT Market. Viridis Bulk Carriers signed a deal with charterers Elkem, Vestkorn, BioMar, Franzefoss Minerals and Saltimport.
Hong Kong-listed Qinfa Group sold 1998 built panamax bulk carrier 73K DWT MV QinFa 18. Qinfa Group exited from the shipowning business. Qinfa Group will be concentrating on the coal business. The coal business produces a significant portion of the company’s earnings in 2020. Hong Kong-listed shipowner and trader Qinfa Group believe that the disposal of 1998 built panamax bulk carrier 73K DWT MV QinFa 18 means a chance to dispose of the ship at an appropriate price. By selling the MV QinFa 18, Hong Kong-listed shipowner and trader Qinfa Group increased the company’s liquidity position and improved the Qinfa Group’s financial position. In March 2021, Hong Kong-listed shipowner and trader Qinfa Group sold 2011 built panamax bulk carrier 81K DWT MV Super Grace for around $15 million and 2011 built panamax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV Oriental Wise for around $17 million.
The capesize bulk carrier market resumed its upward trend today. The Baltic Exchange Capesize 5TC (Average Five Capesize Benchmark Spot Rates) climbed $43,030 per day. This situation is caused by weather delays and port congestions. Furthermore, there is respectable capesize cargo flow in the Atlantic and more capesize cargoes are predicted in near future. Capesize time charter rates in Q1 2022 are anticipated to be better than historical averages. China’s economic growth may support demand for iron ore. The average freight rate for the iron ore Western Australia-to-China route increased to $14.84 per metric tonne. Panamax, ultramax, and supramax bulk carriers saw more modest spot rate improvements over the last week.
Chinese trust and investment management company China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. (formerly known as China Tourism International Trust Investment Co., Ltd) looks to be exiting the shipping business. China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. has put its current fleet and newbuildings up for sale. Currently, China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. owns 20 bulk carriers and four (4) kamsarmax newbuilding bulk carriers at Chengxi Shipyard. Zhang Bo-led China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. is trading the fleet to increase cash for the company. Numerous businesses have filed lawsuits in court against China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. for failing to redeem private equity and trust wealth management products on time. Singapore-based Pacific Rim Shipmanagement is assumed to be acquiring the four (4) resale kamsarmax newbuilding bulk carriers from China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. In 2020, China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. ordered the four (4) kamsarmax newbuilding bulk carriers for around $27 million each. China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. ordered four (4) kamsarmax newbuilding bulk carriers against charter contracts from COFCO International. Besides acquiring China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd.’s four (4) kamsarmax newbuilding bulk carriers, Singapore-based Pacific Rim Shipmanagement is also planning to acquire some resale newbuildings from other Chinese leasing companies. China Minsheng Trust Co. Ltd. was established in 2013, is a subsidiary of Ocean Wide Holdings.
CEO Peter Whitcutt-led mining giant Anglo American strives all of its transportation ventures to be carbon-neutral by 2040. Anglo American set up a shipping desk in 2012. Today, mining giant Anglo American ships more than 70 million metric tonnes of dry bulk commodities per year. Anglo American yearns for a more sustainable shipping sector. Furthermore, Anglo American aims to decrease its Scope-3 emissions by 50% by 2040. Anglo American published Sustainable Mining Plan. Anglo American attempts to expedite the improvement of alternative low-carbon and zero-carbon fuels. Mining giant Anglo American is cooperating with Hydrogenious Maritime and Johannes Ostensjo to search for fuel on Anglo American’s chartered fleet the application of LOHC (Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carrier). London-based mining giant Anglo American endeavors to develop zero-carbon marine fuel. In March 2021, British mining giant Anglo American became a shipowner. Anglo American ordered LNG-fuelled capesize bulk carrier newbuildings. According to Anglo American, LNG-fuelled capesize bulk carrier newbuildings will incrementally decarbonise shipping.
Dry bulk charter rates have proceeded to slip on concerns about China’s reduced steel production. Furthermore, shares of the most significant New York-listed dry bulk shipowners are declining by over 20%. Iron ore futures traded back below $100 per metric ton due to decreasing steel production in China. In FFA Market, the capesize November contract dropped 18% at $25,250 per day. China’s weak iron ore trade retains the stress on ship charter rates. Furthermore, Australian and Brazilian iron ore shipments diminished. Shipping markets are observing significant corrections in the freight rates for spot chartering. China reducing down on acquisitions of coal and iron ore as well as other minor bulks. Therefore, dry bulk freight rates have been decreasing. Daily crude steel production in October dropped to the lowest since March 2020. China’s housing market, an essential source of steel and metals demand, is under pressure from rules directed at restraining leverage as well as a slowdown in the market. China’s diminished demand for iron ore has also affected the main dry bulk shipowners.
The spot-rate average capesize 5TC plunged to $51,463 per day, Last week, the spot-rate average capesize 5TC was $83,865 per day. The accelerated drop is a correction from a spot-rate pressure caused by charterers pushing for capesizes amid spiking iron-ore and coal prices. Commodity traders wanted to secure bulk carriers to catch the cancelling days. Otherwise, commodity traders are risking a notable loss on the trade. Commodity traders want to move the already acquired raw materials as the current raw material prices have now cooled down. Currently, the iron ore price is around $130 per tonne and the coal price is around $230 per tonne. It is challenging to guess where spot rates will go amid such volatility. Australia-China capesize route is around $14.264 per tonne. The FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) have been indicating a drop in capesize bulk carrier rates. The capesize freight rates increased too high too fast and now it is correcting to these levels.
The capesize spot-rate average weighted across five key routes (5TC) has reached $79,535 per day. The capesize charter rates have soared due to the high demand and port congestion. Dry bulk market experts believe that the capesize bulk carrier spot rates fall into correction territory. Capesize supply is unquestionably low amid pending environmental regulations and the commodity demand is inadequate to push capesize bulk carrier spot rates even further. The capesize spot market may fall over the next few weeks to a higher low. The capesize bulk carrier spot rates may fall 50% by December 2021 as commodity prices stay high and demand starts declining amid limited coal supplies and China’s plans to restrict steel output. It is not the overall supply of the global capesize bulk carrier fleet that is lagging behind demand. The bottlenecks across the supply chain are creating freight prices to spike. In other words, there are enough capesize bulk carriers around, however, these capesize bulk carriers are not in the right spots. China’s volatile construction market and plans to restrict steel output for environmental goals may also pull down capesize bulk carriers rates. High demand for coal in China and India may help capesize bulk carriers rates, however, Evergrande’s debt obstacles could indirectly offset any profits by cutting steel demand.
Shanghai-based leasing giant Bocomm Leasing (Bank of Communications Financial Leasing) has ordered eight (8) 64K DWT ultramax bulk carriers at Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry Zhoushan for around $256 million. Bocomm Leasing (Bank of Communications Financial Leasing) will get the delivery of ultramax bulk carriers in 2023. This is the second shipbuilding deal that Bocomm Leasing (Bank of Communications Financial Leasing) has signed in 2021. Bocomm Leasing (Bank of Communications Financial Leasing) new building ultramax bulk carriers are going to be built according to IMO’s (International Maritime Organization) Phase 3 standards of the Energy Efficiency Design Index. Bocomm Leasing (Bank of Communications Financial Leasing) and CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing) were the only two companies to have booked large numbers of the ultramax bulk carriers in 2021. In June 2021, Bocomm Leasing (Bank of Communications Financial Leasing) ordered eight (8) woodchip carriers for around $310 million.
Tokyo-based shipowner and ship financier ORIX Corporation sold six (6) supramax bulk carriers. ORIX Corporation took delivery of six (6) supramax bulk carriers as newbuildings. In summer 2021, shipowner and ship financier ORIX Corporation ordered ultramax bulk carriers at Tsuneishi Shipbuilding. ORIX Corporation had been trading six (6) supramax bulk carriers for several years. ORIX Corporation sold the supramax bulk carriers when the second-hand bulk carrier prices increased. Tokyo-based shipowner and ship financier ORIX Corporation started a secondhand ship leasing company in Japan in the 1960s. ORIX Corporation has a ship operating company Orix Maritime. Currently, ORIX Corporation owns 30 bulk carriers that are chartered-out first-class charterers (FCC).
Axel C Eitzen-led Eitzen Holding AS will remain the co-owner of the 2008 built supramax bulk carrier 53K DWT MV Sibulk Tradition. Axel C Eitzen acquired a 75% stake of MV Sibulk Tradition in 2015 for around $12 million. Axel C Eitzen put up MV Sibulk Tradition for sale in August 2021. Axel C Eitzen will remain as the co-owner of the MV Sibulk Tradition, however, Axel C Eitzen decreased his stake from 75% to 25%. Essentially, Axel C Eitzen is associated with chemical tankers through Christiania Shipping. In 2018, Axel C Eitzen acquired Herning Shipping from the investment fund Triton.
Athens-based Ivy Shipping sold 2011 built supramax bulk carrier K DWT MV Ivy Delta for around $20 million. Paris Kassidokostas-Latsis-led Ivy Shipping was established as an asset play company when dry bulk businesses were still in the doldrums in 2016. Lately, supramax bulk carrier prices have increased by the soaring dry bulk freight rates. Ivy Shipping had a fleet of four (4) supramax bulk carriers: MV Ivy Delta, MV Ivy Unicorn, MV Ivy Delta, and MV Ivy Blue.
The Baltic Exchange’s assessment of Capesize Bulk Carrier Average Spot Rates (5TC) increased to $52,908 on 12 September 2021. Capesize bulk carrier spot rates reached the highest level observed since May 2010. The most prominent one-day leap of the 5TC was observed on 12 September 2021. Baltic Capesize Index (BCI) influenced the capesize bulk carrier futures market on Monday, especially for front-month contracts. October 2021 capesize future contracts were asking about $47,000 per day. Bauxite exporter Guinea is experiencing a rainy season and last week’s military coup increase the risks. Gigantic aluminum producer Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) has a facility in Guinea. On the other hand, one of the biggest capesize charterers Vale is striving to obtain capesize bulk carriers to meet the demand. Vale chartered around 20 capesize bulk carriers for loading in October for voyages to China from Brazil, all at around $30.50 per metric tonne which is the most expensive level since November 2009. Iron ore prices are sinking, but fixtures for capesize taking ore voyages to China have achieved higher rates.
Francoisciner Cazor-led commodity data analyst Kpler acquired has agreed to acquire US-based competitor ClipperData. ClipperData specializes in global crude, grain, and refined product movements. The demand has been increasing for data on cargo flows, trades, and inventories globally. Currently, the United States is the most significant market for Kpler in terms of the number of clients and users. ClipperData had produced a novel data offering for the commodity markets, especially in petroleum liquids coverage in the United States. Kpler and ClipperData have made their reputations about high-quality exclusive data. Kpler projects to earn $100 million annually. US-based ClipperData was established by managers in the commodities and energy data analytics industry. ClipperData is backed by private equity firm Nassau Point Investors.
World’s largest ships registry the Panama Ship Registry has added 218 new building ships so far in 2021. Currently, Panama Ship Registry is the largest Flag State. Panama Ship Registry has a total of 2,725 ships of around 112 million GT (Gross Tonnage). Panama Ship Registry said it is the best option for shipowners due to the easy process, Panama’s legal security and professionalism. Panama Flag State is on the white lists of both the Paris and Tokyo MOU (Memoranda of Understanding) on PSC (Port State Control). Panama has also been part of the MACN (Maritime Anti-Corruption Network) since 2020. Panama has been the world’s largest Flag State since 1993.
Taiwan-based shipowner and operator Franbo Lines announced that five (5) geared bulk carriers will be modified to transport around 212 TEU containers on deck. Franbo Lines want to take advantage of fruitful container markets by loading boxes onto dry bulk carriers. Franbo Lines can take containers on deck and advantage of record container ship rates. Franbo Lines plans to transport containers from Asia to Europe and the US. Furthermore, Swire Bulk has been transferring a tiny number of containers on its vessels. Golden Ocean Group has been actively studying how its bulk carriers could be utilized to carry containers. The North P&I (Protection and Indemnity) Club has published an instructive note to shipowners considering switching into the container businesses. The current demand for container slots surpassing supply has led to an increase in inquiries for information from bulk carrier operators to analyze when deciding whether to load large quantities of containers on bulk carriers. Currently, Taiwan-based shipowner and operator Franbo Lines controls 18 bulk carriers.
Istanbul-based shipowner and operator Devbulk acquired 2013 built handysize bulk carrier 34K DWT MV Four Emerald for around $15 million from Italian shipowner and operator Premuda. Hakki Deval-led Devbulk has made its first fleet expansion move in many years. Devbulk is going to take the delivery of MV Four Emerald in November 2021. Devbulk is a self-governing and separate company from two other Deval family companies Deval Marine and Devmarin Shipping. Devbulk’s directors plan further scope for fleet expansion. Devbulk specializes in more modest handy bulk carriers and employs the fleet in short-haul Mediterranean businesses. Istanbul-based players other than Devbulk have also been busy expanding in that ship type. Currently, Devbulk has a fleet of seven (7) handysize bulk carriers.
Gia Shipping ordered two (2) 85K DWT kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings at Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co (DSIC) for around $62 million. Gia Shipping will take delivery of kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings in Q1 2023. Gia Shipping has been concentrated on the Chinese domestic businesses. Gia Shipping ordered two (2) kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings to extend the shipping business beyond China. Gia Shipping desires to be involved in the global shipping business. Gia Shipping’s kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings comply with Phase 2 of the IMO’s (International Maritime Organization) Energy Efficiency Design Index standards. Furthermore, Gia Shipping’s kamsarmax bulk carrier new buildings comply with Tier III rules on NOx emissions. Currently, Gia Shipping owns and operates two (2) handymax, one (1) supramax, and one (1) ultramax bulk carrier.
Taipei-based lessor and lender Chailease International Financial Services has taken the step from financial shipowning into operating its ships in-house. Chailease International Financial Services is in the S&P (Sale and Purchase) market for secondhand dry bulk carriers. Chailease International Financial Services recruited Robert Tsai as company advisor. Chailease International Financial Services established an S&P (Sale and Purchase) and chartering desk. Chailease International Financial Services took over the commercial operations of two (2) panamax bulk carriers. Chailease International Financial Services is expected to place its dry bulk fleet rather than seek new charterers for the bulk carriers or dispose of them in the secondhand market. Chailease International Financial Services’ self-operated fleet consists of 2004 built panamax bulk carrier 77K DWT MV Chailease Blossom (ex MV YM Rightness) and 2003 built panamax bulk carrier 76K DWT MV Chailease Glory (ex MV Medi Taipei). Taiwan Stock Exchange lessor and lender Chailease International Financial Services has funded some 90 vessels and has a $400 million shipping portfolio. Chailease International Financial Services has financed international shipowners including First Ship Lease Trust, Besiktas Group, Anglo International, Castor Maritime, and Global Ship Lease.
Singapore-based shipowner and operator IMC Shipping has been transforming from a conventional shipowner into an asset-light ship operator. IMC Shipping has been restructuring the group planned to perform better synergies between markets and economies of scale. IMC Shipping has a sister company IMC Pan Asia Alliance Group which controls ports, shipyards, and logistics in China, Indonesia, and Thailand. IMC Shipping will still be a shipowner but are unlikely to take a significant position in fixed assets. Previously, IMC Pan Asia’s shipping portfolio consisted of a loose collection of separate shipping companies and service entities under IMC Industrial Group. Furthermore, IMC Shipping has an affiliated company Pelita Samudera Shipping which operates in the Indonesian domestic coal trades. Each IMC Shipping sub-company is operated entirely independently from the other. IMC Shipping’s back-office duties and operating methods are being merged into one stage. IMC Shipping commands more than 40 traditional bulk carriers at any given time. Mostly, IMC Shipping trade in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific, although IMC Shipping’s market in the Atlantic is improving. As part of the transformation of IMC Shipping, its wholly-owned independent ship-management company MSI is being taken back into the fold and will be rebranded as IMC Ship Services. Furthermore, IMC Industrial Group is going to provide technical management and newbuilding supervision services to both IMC Shipping and third-party customers.
Freight rates for capesize bulk carriers are plummeting. China reduced the demand for iron ore, one of the two main cargoes for the capesize business. China’s iron ore imports fell to their lowest in 13 months in June 2021. Analysts expect China’s iron-ore consumption to fall during Q3 2021. China reduces its annual crude steel output to reach its emissions targets. In June 2021, China’s iron ore imports slipped to 89 million tonnes. Front-end capesize bulk carrier contracts took the greatest hit. Capesize bulk carrier contracts traded at $32,750 per day by mid-afternoon. On the physical side, chartering activity for capesize bulk carriers has been relatively steady but shipbrokers report that capesize bulk carrier freight rates have softened as charterers and shipowners look around for direction in the market. The Baltic Exchange’s capesize 5TC, a spot-rate average weighted across five (5) routes, plummeted to $30,272 per day. Furthermore, the China-Brazil capesize bulk carrier round voyage plummeted to $27,040 per day. Western Australia-China capesize bulk carrier route plummeted to $10.88 per tonne on Tuesday.
QC Shipping Investments, a joint venture established in 2015 by Swiss-based Quadra Commodities and Athens-based Erasmus Shipinvest, has sold its last ship 2002 built panamax bulk carrier 76K DWT MV QC Matilde (ex MV Fu May) for around $11 million. QC Shipping Investments may select to reinvest in bulk carriers in the future. QC Shipping Investments acquired MV QC Matilde (ex MV Fu May) in 2015 from Foremost Maritime. In 2017, QC Shipping Investments sold 2000 built panamax bulk carrier 72K DWT MV QC Athina (ex Lei Sheng 2). It is not clear whether QC Shipping Investments will remain to operate soon without any bulk carriers.
Shipping market players and commodity giants consider the price gains for raw minerals over the past year to be part of a pricing trend that leads towards the commencement of a supercycle. Governments are going to spend around $16 trillion for decarbonization infrastructure. Decarbonization will need two times the amount of steel currently produced, four times the amount of copper, as well as notable increases in the amount of cobalt, nickel, and manganese-all key components in lithium batteries. Pandemic played a robust role in the increase of commodities prices. Covid-19 pandemic has shown shipping players that global supply chains are astonishingly fragile. Furthermore, labor costs in China are no longer a vital advantage and China’s significant decarbonization efforts are also playing a role. Chinese metal trade was not affected by the Covid-19 pandemic; in fact, demand grew during 2020. There is a strong diversion of capital from the old economy to the new technology economy. Investment is considerably lower than in the last super-cycle, which is a fundamental point for a bullish cycle. Demand growth rates for minerals will be strong in 2021 and 2022. Iron ore prices would remain over $200 per tonne over the next few years.
Bergen-based shipowner and operator Westfal-Larsen’s bulker fleet increased by more than 66% to around $203 million in Q2 2021 due to the strong dry bulk market. In 2019, Westfal-Larsen’s parent holding company Skibsaktieselskapet Navigation carried a large write-down of its bulker fleet. Westfal-Larsen owns eight (8) chemical tankers in addition to its fleet of open-hatch bulk carriers. Open-hatch bulk carriers are operated through pool company Saga Welco, where NYK (Nippon Yusen Kabushiki) is the other partner. Till 2020, the open-hatch bulk carrier fleet was operated by Singapore-based subsidiary Masterbulk. Masterbulk was established in 1995 in reaction to the taxation of shipowners in Norway. In 2020, Masterbulk was moved to Bergen, Norway. Bergen-based shipowner and operator Westfal-Larsen was establied in 1905 and is controlled by Rolf Westfal-Larsen Jr and his family. Currently, Westfal-Larsen owns and operates 16 open-hatch bulk carriers.
Bulk carriers transporting grain cargoes have been waiting as long as four weeks to discharge at major ports in China. Currently, 3.5 million tonnes of cargo have been sitting on bulk carriers. In Q1 2021, China imported 51 million tonnes of grain cargoes. Chinese grain storage facilities have limited capacity to handle the large inbound volumes. China is running short of silo storages. Furthermore, coronavirus operation restrictions have also affected. Most of the Chinese grain terminals on average could have about 10 bulk carriers waiting at the anchorage for the congestion. Lately, at Guangzhou and Shenzhen ports, grain bulk carriers have to wait around 15 days before berthing alongside. China’s imports of grain have been strong and the US had a plethora of maize crops because of diminished biofuel demand. This situation has also increased the ton-mile. Chinese port congestions have almost halved since it hit a high of 70 bulk carriers on 27 May 2021.
Tokyo-based shipowner Inui Global Logistics wants to prevent a potential takeover bid from Alphaleo Holdings. Inui Global Logistics is requesting shareholders to vote for a revised corporate protection plan at its annual shareholders’ meeting. The largest shareholder Alphaleo Holdings controls 31.5% of the Inui Global Logistics’ voting rights. Alphaleo Holdings has filed litigation against Inui Global Logistics eight times. Inui Global Logistics has been asking for shareholders to vote for a revised plan that is aimed only at Alphaleo Holdings and its associated companies such as Makis Holdings and the Melco Group. Currently, Tokyo-based shipowner Inui Global Logistics owns 22 bulk carriers.
Athens-based Minerva Ship Management’s client sold 2008 built panamax bulk carrier 78K DWT MV Soroco for around $16 million. Ted Petropoulos-led Minerva Ship Management have circulated MV Soroco for sale since February 2021. Nevertheless, it took its time to close the deal.
Hong Kong-listed CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing) ordered eight (8) kamsarmax bulk carriers at Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry for $27 million each. CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing) informed shareholders that the company will finance the eight (8) kamsarmax bulk carriers through a combination of its funds and commercial bank loans. CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing) has been expanding its market share in the dry bulk shipping sector. Lately, Hong Kong-listed CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing) raised $1 billion via bond offering. In 2020, CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing) spent $400 million on eight (8) new-building bulk carriers. CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing) controls a fleet of 110 ships.
Spot rates for capesize bulk carriers have surpassed the $40,000 per day. Baltic Dry Index breaks 3,000 points in more than a decade. FFA (Forward Freight Agreements) capesize 5TC contracts for 2022 trade at levels of over $20,000 per day during trading on Friday. Positive sentiment has come to the capesize market on the back of Vale’s announcement that Vale will intend to produce 450 million tonnes of iron ore annually by the end of 2022. Capesize 5TC May contract was trading at levels of around $42,000 per day on Friday in London. Australian miners are striving to ship as much product as possible before the end of the fiscal year and while iron-ore prices remain high. Baltic Exchange Western Australia to China capesize route increased to $13.24 per tonne, its priciest level since mid-December 2013. Dry Bulk Shipping Analysts anticipate capesize rates to average $26,000 per day in 2021.
Bremen-based Harren Bulkers acquired 2011 built post-panamax bulk carrier 93K DWT MV Pablo (ex MV Topas) for around $18 million. Currently, MV Pablo (ex MV Topas) is the largest vessel in the Harren Bulkers fleet. Furthermore, Harren Bulkers took the technical management of two sisterships 2012 built post-panamax bulk carrier 93K DWT MV Constantin Oldendorff (ex MV Turmalin) and 2012 built post-panamax bulk carrier 93K DWT MV Clemens Oldendorff (ex MV Tuerkis). Martin Harren-led Harren Bulkers aims to acquire more vessels and expanding the fleet. Harren Bulkers was established in 2020 with the merger of Bremer Bereederungsgesellschaft (BBG) and Harren & Partner. Bremer Bereederungsgesellschaft (BBG) was operating large bulk carriers since 2010 and Harren & Partner was a family-owned business. Currently, Harren Bulkers manages 22 bulk carriers.
Athens-based shipowner and operator Nereus Shipping controlled 2010 built capesize bulk carrier 182K DWT MV Heroic has been quarantined in Crete after a seafarer was found dead. MV Heroic’s other ten (10) crew members were tested positive for coronavirus. Nereus Shipping is the sub-company of CM Lemos. MV Heroic steamed Port Said to Crete where the 59-year-old chief engineer was airlifted from the bulk carrier. Nereus Shipping controlled 2010 built capesize bulk carrier 182K DWT MV Heroic has 21 seafarers on board. Nereus Shipping has been cooperating closely with the Greek authorities to ensure the safety of the crew onboard MV Heroic. The shipping industry has to find a solution to provide vaccines to seafarers.
EGPN Bulk Carrier Co. Ltd (EGPN) ordered a kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT at Chengxi Shipyard. This kamsarmax would be EGPN Bulk Carrier’s first new-building bulk carrier order. Kamsarmax bulk carrier will be constructed according to IMO (International Maritime Organization) Tier III NOx rules. Currently, the new-building kamsarmax bulk carrier price tag is around $29 million. In 2014, EGPN Bulk Carrier Co. Ltd (EGPN) was established by nickel ore operator Eastern Ocean Transportation and grain importer Great Pacific Navigation. In 2017, EGPN Bulk Carrier Co. Ltd (EGPN) acquired 2014 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV Sirocco (ex MV Smooth Vitality) for around $15 million. In January 2021, EGPN Bulk Carrier Co. Ltd (EGPN) acquired a 2010 built capesize bulk carrier 180K DWT MV Eastern Freesia (ex MV Tiger Jiangsu) for around $15 million from Greathorse International Shipping. Currently, EGPN Bulk Carrier Co. Ltd (EGPN) owns and charters out five (5) bulk carriers.
Rizhao Steel’s shipping arm Cara Shipping chartered out 2010 built capesize bulk carrier 180K DWT MV Stella Alice for around $20,650 per day to Rio Tinto for the long-term. Currently, Singapore-based Cara Shipping owns and operates fourteen (14) large bulk carriers. Australia-based Rio Tinto has booked capesize bulk carriers for iron-ore voyages from Dampier Port to China. Capesize bulk carriers FFA (Forward Freight Agreement) rates surpassing $25,000 per day for Q2 and Q3 2021. Lately, Baltic Exchange’s 5TC capesize bulk carrier rates have increased to $22,468 per day. Capesize bulk carrier front-haul rates from the Continent to China increased to $45,000 per day. Other Australia-based mining giant BHP chartered in capesize bulk carriers for iron-ore voyages from Western Australia to China for around $10.30 per tonne. Recently, iron-ore prices approached $170 per tonne which increased the capesize freight rates.
Istanbul-based Iskenderun Ship Management acquired 2001 built supramax bulk carrier 50K DWT MV Bozburun-M (ex MV Bene) for around $5 million from Croatia-based shipowner and operator Jadroplov Ltd. In September 2020, Iskenderun Ship Management was appointed as the ship-manager of 2001 built supramax bulk carrier 52K DWT MV Ata-M (ex MV Harvest Plains). MV Ata-M (ex MV Harvest Plains) was acquired for around $5 million from Archer Daniels Midland. Iskenderun Ship Management is the ship-management arm of New York-based Med Brokerage & Management Corporation. Ibrahim Mazman-led Med Brokerage & Management Corporation was established in 1995. Furthermore, in July 2020, Iskenderun Ship Management was appointed as the ship-manager of 2009 built handysize bulk carrier 34K DWT MV Deniz-M (ex Baltic Wind). MV Deniz-M (ex Baltic Wind) was acquired for around $8 million from Genco Shipping & Trading. Currently, Iskenderun Ship Management controls a fleet of twelve (12) bulk carriers.
Holland-based heavy-lift shipowner Jumbo Maritime and Germany-based heavy-lift shipowner SAL Heavy Lift are plotting a JV (Joint Venture) that will run 30 heavy-lift ships. If Jumbo Maritime and SAL Heavy Lift merger is approved by regulators, this JV (Joint Venture) is going to build a heavy-lift market leader. Jumbo Maritime and SAL Heavy Lift applied for JV (Joint Venture) approval from competition authorities in Germany and Holland. Jumbo Maritime and SAL Heavy Lift joint venture’s main competitor is Spliethoff-controlled BigLift. Holland-based heavy-lift shipowner Spliethoff-controlled BigLift operates around 20 heavy-lift ships. In 2019, Spliethoff-controlled BigLift purchased 10 heavy-lift ships previously operated by Hansa Heavy Lift. Currently, the top three heavy-lift shipowners Spliethoff-controlled BigLift, Jumbo Maritime, and SAL Heavy Lift operate in a niche section of the shipping market for outsized cargoes. In July 2017, Japanese shipowner K Line sold SAL Heavy Lift to Germany-based Harren & Partner. In October 2020, SAL Heavy Lift obtained a predominant stake in the US-based MPP operator Intermarine.
Nicholas J. Goulandris company Hydroussa Navigation sold 2012 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV Magica G for around $16 million to a Greek shipowner and operator. In 2012, MV Magica G was constructed at STX Offshore & Shipbuilding. In June 2017, MV Magica G went through SS (Special Survey). Kamsarmax bulk carrier prices have been rising in S&P (Sale and Purchase) market. In 2019, Athens-based Hydroussa Navigation acquired 2012 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV Magica G from Greek shipowner and operator Byzantine Navigation for around $19 million. The price tag for the MV Magica G indicates the soaring prices for kamsarmax bulk carriers. Athens-based Hydroussa Navigation controls the bulk carriers in the London-based Nicholas J. Goulandris Group. Currently, Nicholas J. Goulandris Group’s tanker arm Andriaki Shipping controls nine (9) tankers. Currently, Hydroussa Navigation controls eleven (11) large bulk carriers.
Greek Petrakis-family controlled Iolcos Hellenic Maritime Enterprises sold 2007 built panamax bulk carrier 74K DWT MV Evangelia Petrakis for around $9 million. MV Evangelia Petrakis was one of the oldest bulk carrier in the fleet of Iolcos Hellenic Maritime Enterprises. Iolcos Hellenic Maritime Enterprises has been renewing its fleet. Greek shipowner and operator Iolcos Hellenic Maritime Enterprises first known bulk carrier sale since 2014. Currently, Iolcos Hellenic Maritime Enterprise has a fleet of seventeen (17) large bulk carriers.
Greek shipowner and operator Vergos Marine Management sold 2001 built panamax bulk carrier 73K DWT MV Very Maria for around 5.5 million. MV Very Maria was the last bulk carrier in the fleet of Vergos Marine Management. Nevertheless, Vergos Marine Management aims to stay in the shipping business by acquiring modern tonnage. Athens based shipowner and operator Vergos Marine Management last returned to the shipping business in 2014 after an absence of almost ten years from the shipping business.
Copenhagen-based shipowner and operator Celsius Shipping 2014 built ultramax bulk carrier 63K DWT MV GH Storm Cat for around $16 million. In 2016, Celsius Shipping acquired MV GH Storm Cat for around $12 million. MV GH Storm Cat was built at the Sainty Shipbuilding. In 2016, Jeppe Jensen-led shipowner and operator Celsius Shipping acquired twelve (12) ultramax bulk carriers. Danish shipowner and operator Celsius Shipping remains active in the S&P (Sale and Purchase) market. Recently, Celsius Shipping sold 2016 built ultramax bulk carrier 63K DWT MV GH Seabiscuit for around $17.5 million. In January, secondhand dry bulk carriers’ price tag increased 8%. Celsius Shipping concentrate on asset play deals. Copenhagen-based shipowner and operator Celsius Shipping was established in 2012. Currently, Celsius Shipping has a mixed fleet of 50 ships.
Athens-based shipowner and operator Nereus Shipping SA sold 2012 built supramax bulk carrier 58K DWT MV Asiatic and 2012 built supramax bulk carrier 58K DWT MV Laconic for around $11.5 million each. In 2008, CM Lemos subsidiary Nereus Shipping SA ordered MV Laconic and MV Asiatic at the top of the dry bulk boom at SPP Shipbuilding for around $50 million each. Nereus Shipping SA assumes that the moment is right to sell the supramax bulk carriers. MV Laconic and MV Asiatic was the first order of Nereus Shipping SA at a South Korean shipyard. Previously, Nereus Shipping SA favored Japanese shipyards. Since then, Athens-based shipowner and operator Nereus Shipping SA has continued its investment focus on the tanker sector.
Istanbul-based shipowner and operator Marinsa Shipping sold 2012 built supramax bulk carrier 57K DWT MV Densa Jaguar for around $10.5 million to Asian shipowner and operator.
Chinese shipowner and operator Jiuzhou Star Shipping sold eight (8) bulk carriers in 2020. Jiuzhou Star Shipping has left with 2011 built capesize bulk carrier 176K DWT MV Yuan Fu Star. Jiuzhou Star Shipping plans to sell MV Yuan Fu Star after discharging Australian coal in China. However, the Chinese government’s controversial import ban has made Jiuzhou Star Shipping careful of coal cargoes. Jiuzhou Star Shipping will focus on iron ore cargoes if Jiuzhou Star Shipping remains in capesize sector. Jiuzhou Star Shipping controlled MV Yuan Fu Star has been waiting in North China for six (6) months because it is loaded with Australian coal. Fortunately, MV Yuan Fu Star is not on voyage charter but on time charter to Pacific Bulk Shipping. Jiuzhou Star Shipping has traditionally favored operating bulk carriers near the scrapping age. Yu Dabin-led Jiuzhou Star Shipping started as a coal miner and trader but moved into the shipowning business. Recently, Jiuzhou Star Shipping sold 2012 built capesize bulk carrier 176K DWT MV Han Fu Star to Greece shipowner and operator Moundreas.
Hong Kong King Shan Group sold 2000 built capesize bulk carrier 170K DWT MV An Li (ex MV Alpha Era) for around $10 million to scrapyard. In June 2020, Hong Kong King Shan Group acquired MV An Li (ex MV Alpha Era) for around $7.5 million. However, in December 2020, MV An Li (ex MV Alpha Era) was allowed to discharge Australian coal cargo. When the MV An Li (ex MV Alpha Era) scrap value had risen by about $2 million, Alpha Bulkers tried to cancel the transaction and would refund the deposit. Hong Kong King Shan Group this unacceptable. Because MV An Li (ex MV Alpha Era) was conveniently in Chinese waters, Hong Kong King Shan Group arrested MV An Li (ex MV Alpha Era) through the Beihai Maritime Court and succeeded in forcing a sale. Lately, Hong Kong King Shan Group acquired 2003 built capesize bulk carrier 177K DWT MV Lin Jie for around $8.5 million from Zhong An Shipping. Jin Jingbiao-led Hong Kong King Shan Group acquires vintage bulk carriers and operates them intensively before scrapping them. Hong Kong King Shan Group scrapping decision arrived as an implied result of China’s ban on Australian coal imports.
The United States added the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) CEO Mohammad Reza Modarres Khiabani to its blacklist. Furthermore, the United States expanded sanctions on the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL). According to the United States State Department, the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) had shipped grain-oriented electrical steel to Hoopad Darya Shipping Agency, another Iranian firm previously sanctioned, prompting authorities to sanction the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) further. According to the United States State Department, companies that keep trading with the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL), its subsidiaries, and other Iranian shipping entities, risk sanctions. The other companies sanctioned were Iranian firms Zangan Distribution Transformer Co, Mobarakeh Steel Co, Sapid Shipping and Iran Transfo Co, China-based Jiangyin Mascot Special Steel Co, and UAE-based Accenture Building Materials. The United States sanctions on Iran have often had repercussions on shipping, with the United States blacklisting several Iranian companies and dozens of its ships and anyone who conducts business with them.
On 13 January 2021, Capesize bulk carriers weighted TCE (Time-Charter Equivalent) average rate reached to $26,489 per day. This is the highest point since October 2020 due to a stronger outlook for the capesize market. On 13 January 2021, the Baltic Exchange attributed the capesize physical rally to the paper market rising on 2021 optimism but remarked the capesize market viewed the paper spike as unsustainable. Capesize FFA (Freight-Forward Agreement) rates are still showing momentum and gained for February 2021 to $15,338 per day. On 6 January 2021, Capesize FFA (Freight-Forward Agreement) volumes increased to 6,251 lots from 2,310 lots. In FFA (Freight-Forward Agreement), a lot is equal to 1,000 metric tonnes of cargo or one day of charter hire.
Per the esteemed Oslo-based financial institution, Cleaves Securities, a plethora of public bulker proprietors have deftly bridged the disparity between their stock valuations and their NAV (Net Asset Value) during 2021. Cleaves Securities envisions a recalibration in the prevailing spot bulk carrier tariffs. Conventionally, there is a pre-Chinese New Year decline in dry bulk consignments to China, accompanied by a reduction in bulker conveyance fees, a phenomenon set to occur on 12th February this annum. The most recent Friday’s market evaluation for capesize bulkers recorded time-charter mean rates at a daily $23,989, marking a 2.1% decline from the preceding Monday, subsequent to an adjustment from the prior bullish week. Meanwhile, the rates for Panamax experienced a modest dip after a dominant ascendant trend throughout January. On the contrary, the tariffs for supramax bulk carriers have surged nearly 5% since the past Monday. With an extensive array of corporations’ equities trading at rates exceeding their NAV (Net Asset Value) at present, Cleaves Securities intimated the likelihood of witnessing NAV-accretive maritime transactions in exchange for stocks. Cleaves Securities, with its foundation in Oslo, ardently endorses dry bulk shares, particularly highlighting bulker magnates such as Genco Shipping, Golden Ocean Group, and 2020 Bulkers. The financial analysis from Cleaves indicates an 84% prospective elevation for Genco’s equity from its prevailing valuation of $8.20 on the New York Stock Exchange. Concurrently, the dual-listed Golden Ocean, residing on both the Nasdaq and Oslo exchanges, possesses the potential to augment by 73% from its standing rate of roughly $5.20 in New York. The dry bulk share index of Cleaves Securities, encapsulating publicly registered bulker proprietors, has burgeoned by 59% since early November. This index lingered subdued in spite of a mid-year surge in asset valuations, a repercussion of the detrimental aura engendered by the Covid-19 pandemic. Lastly, Cleaves Securities prognosticates a 65% elevation in its dry-bulk asset index by the conclusion of 2023.
Greek shipowner and operator Union Marine Enterprises SA acquired 2011 built capesize bulk carrier 175K DWT MV Cape Istanbul for around $19 million from Istanbul-based Eregli Shipping. MV Cape Istanbul will be the largest bulk carrier so far in the fleet of Union Marine Enterprises SA. Greek shipowner and operator Union Marine Enterprises SA is owned by the Varonis family of Chios. In 2020, Union Marine Enterprises SA acquired a 2010 built supramax bulk carrier 55K DWT MV Union Glory (ex MV Yutai Breeze) for around $9.5 million. Furthermore, in 2020, Union Marine Enterprises SA acquired a 2010 built supramax bulk carrier 53K DWT MV Union Victory (ex MV Vega Lea) for around $7 million. Low-profile Athens-based shipowner and operator Union Marine Enterprises SA is confident about the dry bulk market. Istanbul-based Eregli Shipping was established in 2004 by Akmar Shipping and Levent Karacelik which joined forces to acquire capesize bulk carriers. In 2011, Eregli Shipping took the delivery of MV Cape Istanbul from Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction Philippines. In 2011, MV Cape Istanbul was seized by US-based operator Probulk Shipping & Trading and Karacelik, which saw the Eregli Shipping emerged as victorious. Eregli Shipping has never expanded the fleet, even though individual shareholder Akmar Shipping expanded the fleet. Ultimately, Eregli Shipping shareholders might decide to dissolve the JV (Joint Venture).
HNA Group’s transportation arm HNA Technology acquired 2012 built capesize bulk carrier 175K DWT MV Bulk Harvest and 2012 built capesize bulk carrier 175K DWT MV Bulk Joyance for around $22 million each. HNA Technology had intentions to close its bulk carrier operations. In the 2010s, HNA Group’s transportation arm Grand China Logistics operated one of the world’s biggest bulk fleets. However, Grand China Logistics defaulted on charter payments during the shipping market downturn. Since 2017, HNA Group has merged its shipping and shipbuilding assets into the HNA Technology division. In 2018, HNA Technology projected to sell its entire fleet. However, the plan has never been materialized. MV Bulk Joyance and MV Bulk Harvest are both built Jinhai Intelligent Manufacturing Shipyard which belongs to HNA Group. MV Bulk Joyance and MV Bulk Harvest have been chartered to and operated by HNA Technology for years. MV Bulk Joyance and MV Bulk Harvest transaction might indicate HNA Technology’s renewed focus on the maritime division. In December 2020, HNA Technology sold Ingram Micro for around $7 billion to increase liquidity. HNA Group has since been deleveraging to decrease its debt burden. HNA Group’s arm Hainan Airlines experienced huge losses due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Athens-based Centrofin Management acquired 2017 built kamsarmax bulk carriers 81K DWT MV SBI Parapara, MV SBI Jive, MV SBI Swing, and MV SBI Mazurka from Nasdaq-listed shipowner and operator Scorpio Bulkers (SALT). Greek shipowner and operator Centrofin Management is led by Dimitris Procopiou. Dimitris Procopiou is the brother of George Procopiou, who controls Dynacom Tankers. Since the beginning of 2020, Scorpio Bulkers (SALT) has sold 19 bulkers. Greek shipowners and operators such as Titan Maritime, Alpha Bulkers, Globus Maritime, Blue Seas, Eastern Mediterranean, and Niovis Shipping have acquired as many as 12 bulk carriers from Scorpio Bulkers (SALT). Athens-based Centrofin Management has invested $125 million so far in 2020.
Decelerating dry bulk supply growth coupled with the latest Chinese stimulus package increased ship earnings. In 2008, the dry bulk new-building order-book was 80% of the total fleet when the Chinese government launched its stimulus package to counter the effects of the global financial crisis. In 2011, the dry bulk new-building order-book was 26% of the total fleet. In 2015, the dry bulk new-building order-book was 12% of the total fleet. In 2020, the dry bulk new-building order-book is 7% of the total fleet. In 2020, the total number of dry bulk newbuilding orders ordered so far is the second-lowest on record and is well below the annual average since 2000. Shortness of newbuilding financing, regulatory and technological ambiguities have dropped order-book. Since the beginning of 2020, only 10 capesize newbuilding orders have been placed. Since 2010, around 90 capesize newbuilding orders have been placed annually. Since the beginning of 2020, only 22 panamax newbuilding orders have been placed. Since 2010, around 155 panamax newbuilding orders have been placed annually. Since the beginning of 2020, only 20 handysize newbuilding orders have been placed. Since 2010, around 208 handysize newbuilding orders have been placed annually. Since the beginning of 2020, only 64 supramax newbuilding orders have been placed. Since 2010, around 155 supramax newbuilding orders have been placed annually. Unlike the past shipping cycles, increasing ship incomes are not awaited to trigger another series of aggressive new-building bulk carrier orders. Even if new-building orders accumulate in Q4 2020, this situation would not have a notable impact on fleet growth until 2022. In 2020, dry bulk market players anticipate dry bulk seaborne trade to shorten for the first time since 2009.
UBCI, officially known as United Bulk Carriers International, a prominent Italian bulker operator, has commenced pre-bankruptcy procedures in Genoa. Presently, UBCI is engaged in discussions with its creditors. Specializing in panamax and kamsarmax bulk carriers, UBCI has tendered a plea for a structured liquidation plan with its creditors to the Genoan court. As part of Italy’s distinguished concordat process, UBCI seeks court protection. UBCI’s esteemed chairman and primary shareholder, Gian Cristoforo Savasta, articulated that the concordat process endeavors to seamlessly dissolve the firm, ensuring minimal disruption with its creditors. As of January, UBCI had a commendable 18 vessels under its charter, all of which are currently in the process of redelivery. This change stems from either the natural conclusion of contracts or the rightful exercise by shipowners to retrieve ships pursuant to the bankruptcy clause embedded in their charter agreements. In addition to chartered vessels, UBCI’s fleet boasts of bulk carriers acquired from the spot market, serving COA (contracts of affreightment) cargoes. A lesser-known fact about UBCI is its ventures in the real estate sector. Gian Cristoforo Savasta holds an impressive 64% share in UBCI’s €1.18 million capital, followed by executive Giuseppe de Andre with 21%, and the remainder lies with their affiliated entity, UBCI Luxembourg. For the fiscal year 2019, UBCI reported a profit before tax of €223,508, marking a 25% surge from the preceding year. The prime factors contributing to UBCI’s dissolution are the current year’s underperforming panamax market and the plummet in bunker prices. Additionally, UBCI encountered a significant setback due to a botched deal with a sub-charterer in the latter part of 2018. With daily operational costs ranging from $10,000 to $11,000, the drop in spot rates rendered the business model unsustainable. In a noteworthy observation, UBCI pinpointed the average bulk carrier charter rates, which were $4,700 per day in February, and by May, it slightly reduced to approximately $4,500 per day. Moreover, UBCI grappled with severe repercussions from the nosedive in bunker pricing, witnessing a staggering 50% reduction in fuel value onboard its fleet. Another significant blow to UBCI was the bankruptcy of fellow bulker operators. One prominent debtor is Caledonia Maritime, conceived by Keith Denholm. Despite UBCI’s strategic move to fix a panamax to Caledonia Maritime in 2018 on a year’s charter, the vessel was prematurely returned in 2019, leaving a debt of around $500,000. This outstanding sum encompasses unpaid hires along with claims for bunkers procured by Caledonia Maritime, subsequently falling on UBCI’s shoulders. However, there’s a silver lining: UBCI’s impending liquidation in Genoa won’t disrupt its long-term charter with the kamsarmax bulk carrier owned by Germany’s Oldendorff Carriers. This agreement was inked by UBCI Luxembourg, an independent corporate entity owning 15% of the Genoa enterprise. Consequently, UBCI Luxembourg is slated to operate the 2019-built 81,600 DWT MV Knut Oldendorff. Also, UBCI’s liquidation will have no bearing on its freight-trading affiliate, Unibulk Trading, managed by Alessandro Massimilla, since it operates distinctly and merely serves as an agent for UBCI.
Baltic Capesize Index TCA (Weighted Time-Charter Average) increased to $18,749 per day on 23 October 2020. Baltic Capesize Index volatility has been relatively low this week. Capesize market players are optimistic for Q4 2020. Brazil iron-ore cargo supported the capesize spot rates. Capesize market exceeded to the downside late last week, due to negative sentiment rather than real cargo imbalance in the Atlantic. Abundant capesize tonnage supply in the Atlantic contributed remarkable pressure to capesize charter rates on the Brazil-China route and for trans-Atlantic voyages. However, mid-week, Brazil iron-ore cargoes reversed the situation and capesize spot rates increased. Brazil’s iron-ore giant Vale’s quarterly production report contributed positive sentiments for the capesize market. On the Pacific market, capesize bulk carrier supply reached something of an equilibrium with iron-ore cargo supply from Australia, which pointed to work in charterers’ favor. While the capesize bulk carriers experienced more favorable charter rates, supramax and handysize charter rates kept falling. Handysize TCE (Time Charter Equivalent) from the US Gulf to China decreased to $13,414 per day.
Piraeus-based Bulkseas Marine Management S.A. acquired 2009 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 83K DWT MV Vela Star (ex MV Ikan Bagang) for around $13 million from Japanese shipowners. Previously, MV Vela Star (ex MV Ikan Bagang) was operated by Pacific Carriers Ltd (PCL). Two months ago, Pacific Carriers Ltd (PCL) proposed Japanese shipowners either take back their bulk carriers or reduce charter rates. Stavros Meimetis-led Bulkseas Marine Management S.A. last ship purchase was in 2018. Bulkseas Marine Management S.A. is in a fleet renewal programme. In May 2020, Bulkseas Marine Management S.A sold 2002 built panamax bulk carrier 76K DWT MV Chang Yang Jin Sha (ex MV Lucky Star) for for around $6.5 million. Bulkseas Marine Management S.A. has an outstanding collaboration with Greek Alpha Bank which financed MV Vela Star (ex MV Ikan Bagang). Low-profile shipowner and operator Bulkseas Marine Management S.A. was established in 2011. Bulkseas Marine Management S.A. prefers second-hand Japanese built bulk carriers. Currently, Greek shipowner and operator Bulkseas Marine Management S.A. has a mixed fleet of 2 capesize, 5 panamax, 1 kamsarmax, and 1 supramax bulk carriers.
Capesize bulk carrier prices are increasing due to the high iron ore demand of China. Capesize bulk carrier prices are gradually recovering, after a fall in asset prices in Q2 2020 due to the coronavirus recession. However, small bulk carrier prices remain flat due to weaker demand for grain and coal. China increased iron ore imports in Q3 2020 and Brazil’s iron ore exports have led to a swift capesize bulk carriers rate recovery. Consequently, this situation has boldly moved capesize bulk carriers valuations. Capesize and panamax bulk carriers second-hand values have increased since May 2020, while values for supramax and handysize bulk carriers have remained flat. In Q3 2020, China’s coal imports plunged 30% due to prolonged custom clearance and port congestion in Q2 2020. Increased scrapping has further boosted capesize bulk carrier values. In Q3 2020, there have been almost no capesize newbuilding orders. Since Q1 2020, dry bulk shipping rates have reflected ship values. Bulk carrier prices and dry bulk shipping rates are intrinsically linked to market forces. on 6 October 2020, capesize bulk carrier TCE (Time Charter Equivalent) has more than doubled to $34,896 per day.
Hamburg-based ship-manager NSB Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft GmbH & Co. KG appointed Panneer Selvam to manage the company’s new Singapore office. NSB Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft GmbH & Co. KG endeavors to strengthen the company’s position in Singapore and expands the company’s services throughout the Far East. Panneer Selvam has been appointed as general manager of NSB Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft GmbH & Co. KG in the Singapore. Previously, Panneer Selvam was the technical general manager of PIL (Pacific International Lines) in Singapore. Panneer Selvam was a former Singapore naval officer and worked at the shipyards. Panneer Selvam will strengthen NSB Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft GmbH & Co. KG’s expertise Recently, German ship-manager NSB Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft GmbH & Co. KG has been expanding to the global market to decrease the dependency on the slumping German market. The decease of the KG model and the departure of liner ship operators to Chinese leasing companies presented a difficulty to conventional tonnage providers in Germany. NSB Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft GmbH & Co. KG is one of the most comprehensive ship-managers in Germany. Currently, NSB Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft GmbH & Co. KG manages a fleet of 82 vessels.
Courage Investment Group reported a net profit of $1.1 million in Q2 2020. Singapore and Hong Kong-listed Courage Investment Group reported a revenue of $3.5 million in Q2 2020. However, these profits were inadequate to mitigate the losses suffered by other non-shipping expenses. Courage Investment Group blames the slump in revenue to the reduction in freight earnings of its directly-owned ships due to the coronavirus recession. Furthermore, the decline in revenue was the declaration to scale back Courage Investment Group’s presence in the panamax sector in February 2020. Therefore, Courage Investment Group canceled the long-term charter of panamax bulk carrier that Courage had been operating since June 2018. According to Courage Investment Group, panamax market was not advantageous due to the trade conflicts between the United States and China. Consequently, Courage Investment Group is planning to come back to panamax market when market conditions improve. Courage Investment Group is aiming to acquire second-hand supramax bulk carriers. However, Courage Investment Group is careful for new investments due to coronavirus recession. Courage Investment Group is optimistic about the prospects of the shipping business in the long-term. Currently, Courage Investment Group owns and operates one (1) panamax and three (3) supramax bulk carriers.
Capesize rates continue soaring due to China’s continued demand for iron ore and tight capsize bulk carrier supply. On 25 September 2020, capesize bulk carriers average TCE (Time-Charter Equivalent) reached at $24,200 per day. Currently, capesize bulk carriers break even at around $15,000 per day. Capesize bulk carrier owners are appreciating China’s growing appetite for iron ore. Capesize rates also depend on Vale and China’s iron ore inventories. Currently, capesize bulk carriers supply is scarce amid weak order-books with an abundance of vintage capesize bulk carriers will be scrapped. Capesize rates will increase in Q4 2020 due to the strong market triggered by China’s steel production continues pretty high amid extremely low iron-ore inventories. Furthermore, Capesize rates will increase in Q4 2020 due to the increasing demand for coking coal. Coking coal spot prices have rocketed to their highest levels since March 2020. October 2020 Capesize FFA (Future Freight Agreements) increased to $21,000 per day. Capesize shipping market has been unpredictable despite directing into its best season, however China’s iron-ore demand should keep capesize bulk carrier rates stable through Q4 2020.
Shipping activity at the Russian Arctic waters of the Northern Sea Route (NSR) has been progressing. Furthermore, In winter 2021, Sovcomflot and Rosatom are planning to transit the Northern Sea Route (NSR). Russian Yamal LNG project developer Novatek has specified round-trip sailing days from the Yamal peninsulas to China at 38 days, compared with 65 days via the Suez Canal with specialized ice-breaking LNG carriers. Russia is attempting to open up the northerly passage for commercial shipments which cuts off more than a third of the sailing time to Asia over a similar voyage via the Suez Canal. In 2020, Russia’s Northern Sea Route Administration (NSRA) has reported around 1,000 petitions to transit Northern Sea Route (NSR). Some leading shipowners such as Cosco Shipping, Golden Ocean Group, Oldendorff Carriers, Nordic Bulk Carriers have applied Russia’s Northern Sea Route Administration (NSRA) to transit Northern Sea Route (NSR). In 2020, the Arctic has recorded its hottest summer on record. Russia inks hopeful projections for Northern Sea Route (NSR) navigation. On the other hand, The Clean Arctic Alliance has been lobbying for a prohibition on the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil by shipping in the Arctic. Starting from 2024, Russia endeavors the Northern Sea Route (NSR) opened to commercial shipping year-round. In September 2020, Russia delivered the world’s largest nuclear-powered ice breaker to be used in the Northern Sea Route (NSR)
Chinese shipowner and operator Fuzhou Xinjiahong Shipping sold 1996 built handymax bulk carrier 45K DWT MV Hong Kai to another Chinese shipowner and operator for around $2.5 million. After the sale of MV Hong Kai, Chinese shipowner and operator Fuzhou Xinjiahong Shipping has exited shipowning after three decades. Fuzhou Xinjiahong Shipping entered the shipping business in 1990. Fuzhou Xinjiahong Shipping has no further plans in shipping. Fuzhou Xinjiahong Shipping is led by Wang Zhihe. Wang Zhihe followed the Fuzhou local shipowning model which acquire vintage second-hand ships and operate them till the recycling market is up. Notwithstanding, at the end of 2010, Fuzhou Xinjiahong Shipping controlled 2001 built handymax bulk carrier 50K DWT MV Hong Wei sunk and 10 seafarers lost their lives. After this tragic incident, Fuzhou Xinjiahong Shipping decreased its fleet and steadily departed out of shipping.
Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has banned Taiwanese shipowner and operator Sincere Industrial from Australian ports for a year over unpaid crew wages. Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) discovered that crew members have been underpaid during the inspection 2008 built handysize bulk carrier 28K DWT MV AC Sedosa. Furthermore, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) announced that Taipei City-based shipowner and operator Sincere Industrial had strived to conceal from Australian authorities the fact that Sincere Industrial had underpaid the MV AC Sedosa’s crew members. According to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), Sincere Industrial produced a fabricated crew wage record which showed that crew members had been paid in full. Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) banned four (4) ships from Australian ports since the beginning of 2020. Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) will not permit such deliberate and dishonest mistreatment of crew members on vessels that call at Australian ports. Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has zero tolerance for the underpayment of seafarers. Previously, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) banned MV Unison Jasper, MV TW Hamburg, and MV Agia Sofia.
Indonesian shipowner and operator Samudera Shipping has been trying to acquire 2010 built supramax bulk carrier 56K DWT MV Christos Theo from Athens based Evripos Shipmanagement for around $8 million. Indonesian shipowner and operator Samudera Shipping has been renewing its fleet and low pricing levels for supramax bulk carriers are attractive. Many Indonesian shipowners enquire geared supramax bulk carriers for Indonesian domestic coal trades. Indonesian shipowners like Samudera Shipping are keen to refresh their aging bulk carriers with the modern bulk carriers.
Jurong Port expects to entice larger bulk carriers after spending $146 million investment in its facilities in Singapore till 2023. Jurong Port develop RMC (ready-mixed concrete) port-centric ecosystem which is going to increase to 6 million metric tonnes of aggregates discharged at the Jurong Port per year. Jurong Port expects this linear discharge capability, along with its current port infrastructure and deepwater berths, can entice large bulk carriers transporting aggregates. Currently, aggregates are unloaded in western Singapore, will progressively be discharged at the RMC ecosystem. Jurong Port has three (3) deepwater berths at its cement terminal that can handle up to supramax bulk carriers. RMC (ready-mixed concrete) ecosystem is part of a bigger organization ecosystem that incorporates cement and steel, both of which are currently discharged and handled at Jurong Port. Currently, cement and steel are Jurong Port’s most significant cargoes by volume.
Norwegian shipowner and operator Vincent Shipping has been endeavoring to accomplish attractive asset play deals. CEO Jan Lund led Vincent Shipping denies ultramax new-building orders in China. Oslo-based Vincent Shipping has been avoiding new-buildings and prefers second-hand bulk carriers. At the beginning of 2020, Norwegian shipowner and operator Vincent Shipping sold 2010 built supramax bulk carrier 56K DWT MV Vincent Gemma to Nanjing King Ship Management for around $10 million. Vincent Shipping was established in 2016 by Jan Lund, Klaus Kjaerulff, and Jan Bech Andersen.
Dry bulk shipping rates continue to decline due to the post-coronavirus recession and global economic uncertainty. Capesize bulk carrier TCE (Time-Charter Equivalent) declined to $15,482 per day. Panamax bulk carrier TCE (Time-Charter Equivalent) declined to $12,330 per day. Supramax bulk carrier TCE (Time-Charter Equivalent) declined to $10,238 per day. However, China’s demand for commodities should lead to a more vigorous dry bulk market in Q4 2020. China increase iron-ore and grain imports amid the Chinese government stimulus package. On the other hand, Brazil’s iron-ore giant Vale is developing iron-ore production and aims to meet its year-end targets. Shipbrokers hold optimism for Q4 2020. Dry bulk market players anticipate that Australian iron ore export volumes will recover towards Q4 2020 due to the Chinese robust steel demand. Furthermore, dry bulk market players anticipate a lot of grain shipments from the US Gulf and East Coast South Americas to the Far East in Q4 2020.
Bahamas-registered Monaco-based shipowner Liberty Maritime International sold two post-panamax bulk carriers 2010 built 93K DWT MV ASL Saturn (ex MV LM Victoria) and 2009 built 93K DWT MV Bonavia (ex MV LM Selene) for around $9 million each. Liberty Maritime International sold MV ASL Saturn (ex MV LM Victoria) to Agricore Ship Management. Liberty Maritime International sold MV Bonavia (ex MV LM Selene) to Dauelsberg Herm. After the sale of two post-panamax bulk carriers Monaco-based shipowner Liberty Maritime International has left with no ships.
An unknown shipowner registered and named his company as FC Bayern Shipping in the Marshall Islands. Furthermore, FC Bayern Shipping acquired 1994 built handysize bulk carrier 26K DWT MV Bayern S. FC Bayern Shipping acquired 2003 built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV Super Bayern (ex MV Almendro). German football club fan shipowner might be from the Middle East, where football is remarkably popular. Both bulk carriers are managed by Athens based ship-manager Sonar Ships Management Co. Besides, Sonar Ships Management Co. manages eleven (11) bulk carriers. FC Bayern Shipping might keep naming its bulk carriers after the German football club and its players.
Danilo Fumarola-led Gestion Maritime sold 2020 Japanese-built kamsarmax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV Giovanni Corrado for around $30 million to a Chinese shipowner. Monaco-based shipowner Gestion Maritime ordered MV Giovanni Corrado at the end of 2015 at Oshima Shipbuilding, Japan. Due to coronavirus recession reduced dry bulk carrier prices commenced to soar. Gestion Maritime has a fleet of seven (7) bulk carriers. In 2019, Gestion Maritime sold the last two (2) MR product carriers, and currently, Gestion Maritime is a pure bulker owner.
Turkish shipowner Derin Shipping (Derin Denizcilik – DD) sold 2012 built supramax bulk carrier sisterships 57K DWT MV DD Ege, MV DD Maramara, MV DD Karadeniz for $10 million each. There is a little-known relationship between Turkish shipowner Derin Shipping (Derin Denizcilik – DD) and Dutch Zealand Shipping. Till 2019, MV DD Ege, MV DD Maramara, MV DD Karadeniz were trading as MV Zealand Rotterdam, MV Zealand Amsterdam, MV Zealand Almere in the fleet of Zealand Shipping. In October 2019, Dutch Zealand Shipping sold trio to Turkish shipowner Derin Shipping (Derin Denizcilik – DD). Furthermore, these three (3) supramax bulk carriers changed their flag from the Dutch to Turkish. This might be an internal transaction and that Zealand Shipping and Derin Shipping are affiliated companies.
Handysize bulk carriers TCE (Weighted Time Charter Equivalent) increased to $8,846 per day on 14 August 2020 due to firm handysize bulk carrier fixture activity in European markets. BHSI (Baltic Handysise Index) increased to 491 points and reached 2020’s peak. Capesize bulk carrier spot rates dropped while handysize bulk carriers spot rates reached new highs. Handysize bulk carriers spot rates increased ex-United States Gulf. However, the Pacific handysize bulk carriers spot rates remained considerably flat. Handysize bulk carriers TCE (Weighted Time Charter Equivalent) for the South America-Skaw/Passero route increased to $11,388 per day on 14 August 2020. Panamax bulk carriers TCE (Weighted Time Charter Equivalent) increased to $16,415 per day on 14 August 2020 due to limited tonnage supply. Capesize bulk carriers TCE (Weighted Time Charter Equivalent) increased to $19,916 per day on 14 August 2020.
London-based Greek shipowner Seven Seas Maritime’s subsidiary Athens-based Alloceans Shipping has commenced renewing its fleet. Alloceans Shipping acquired 2015 built handysize bulk carrier 39K DWT MV Arcadia (ex MV Cielo di Cartagena) from D’Amico Shipping for around $13 million. In February 2020, Alloceans Shipping sold 2002 built supramax bulk carrier 50K DWT MV Luna II (ex MV Arcadia) for around $5 million to Al Shumookh Construction in UAE.
Greek handysize shipowners have been busy in the secondhand market.
Greek shipowners sold vintage handysize bulk carriers and acquired new tonnages in S&P (Sale and Purchase) market. Greek shipowner and operator Samios Shipping acquired 2010 built handysize bulk carrier sisterships 35K DWT MV Agios Nikolaos (ex MV Asian Pearl III) and MV Agia Dynami (ex MV Asian Pearl IV) for around $5 million each from Asia Maritime Pacific (AMP). Previously, Samios Shipping acquired panamax bulk carrier from Arpeni Pratama. Currently, Greek shipowner and operator Samios Shipping has a fleet of six (6) bulk carriers. Furthermore, Asia Maritime Pacific (AMP) has been trying to sell 2010 built handysize bulk carrier 35K DWT MV Asia Pearl V.
Greek shipowner and manager Lamda Maritime S.A. acquired 2013 built handysize bulk carrier 34K DWT MV Hydra Dawn (ex MV Swakop) for around $8 million from John T Essberger. Recently, Lamda Maritime S.A. sold 1997 built handysize bulk carrier 24K DWT MV Master to scrapyard in Pakistan for around $336 per ldt (Lightweight Displacement Tonnage). At the beginning of 2020, Lamda Maritime S.A. sold 1996 built handysize bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Refined (ex MV Happy Venture) for around $3.5 million to Chinese shipowners.
Athens-based shipowner and operator Pontos Marine acquired 2010 built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV SAM Eagle in an auction on behalf of lender Credit Suisse. MV SAM Eagle was controlled by SAM Shipping. Furthermore, Greek handysize shipowner and operator Pontos Marine acquired 2003 built handysize bulk carrier 29K DWT MV Lily Mumbai for around $3.7 million from Zeamarine Carrier. Currently, Pontos Marine has a fleet of four (4) bulk carriers.
Panamax bulk carrier’s TCE (Average Time Charter Equivalent) increased to $14,070 per day due to strong demands for American grain and Australian coal. Panamax bulk carrier’s rate for the benchmark US-China route improved to $43.25 per metric tonne this week. Panamax bulk carrier’s TCE (Average Time Charter Equivalent) for the Japan-South Korea transpacific roundtrip increased to $13,242 per day. Atlantic panamax market increased with strong grain demand from US Gulf as well as a coal shipping from the Baltic sea. On the other hand, capesize bulk carrier rates see more modest gains last week. Capesize bulk carrier’s TCE (Average Time Charter Equivalent) for the Brazil-China route increased over the week to $17,486 per day.Capesize bulk carrier’s rates for a voyage from Australia to China at $8.50 per metric tonne. Capesize bulk carrier’s TCE (Average Time Charter Equivalent) should stay around $19,000 to $21,000 per day for the rest of 2020.
Nagashiki Shipping controlled 2007 built bulk carrier 203K DWT MV Wakashio grounded of Mauritius last week has started to leak oil after heavy weather conditions caused the hull to tear. Nagashiki Shipping has been taking measures to control the oil spill. MV Wakashio was carrying around 4,000 tons of low sulphur fuel oil and diesel onboard. ITOPF (International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation) has been monitoring the oil spill and is advising the shipowner Nagashiki Shipping, salvage company Smit and the Mauritius government. Nagashiki Shipping and Japan P&I Club has stationed specialist oil response and salvage team. Japanese shipowner Nagashiki Shipping takes its environmental commitments very seriously and will attempt to preserve the marine environment and stop extra oil pollution.
Athens based shipowner and operator Soloi Inc sold 2010 built panamax bulk carrier 76K DWT MV Faye for around $13 million. Soloi Inc is proceeding to sell bulk carriers in a prediction that the dry bulk market recovery has been too little, too late for shipowners striving to cope with the downturn in 2020. In 2018, Soloi Inc acquired MV Faye for around $18 million. Previously, Soloi Inc proclaimed to be selling half of its dry bulk fleet. Greek shipowner and operator Soloi Inc was established in 2006 by Johnny Kalimeris and Stelios Joannou. Prosperous asset play with a panamax bulk carrier encouraged Soloi Inc to expand further into shipping. In 2008, Greek shipowner and operator Soloi Inc ordered four (4) supramax and one (1) kamsarmax bulk carrier new-buildings at Jinling Shipyard. However, Soloi Inc’s growth went into reverse in early 2020 due to falling freight rates. In February 2020, Greek shipowner and operator Soloi Inc sold 2010 built supramax bulk carriers sisterships MV Maria and MV Lietta for total $17.5 million which was a fraction of the new-building price. In May 2020, Soloi Inc sold 2017 kamsarmax bulk carrier 81K DWT MV Andromache. Currently, Soloi Inc has a fleet of two (2) supramax bulk carriers MV Ellie and MV Dimi.
Yangzijiang Shipping controlled 2012 built bulk carrier 93K DWT MV TW Hamburg was banned by The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) from entering an Australian port for a year after it was found that MV TW Hamburg’s crew had been underpaid. During the inspection in Gladstone, The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) was informed hat crew members are underpaid. Furthermore, The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) noticed that the quantity and quality of food provided by Yangzijiang Shipping controlled MV TW Hamburg is entirely below the standards. The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has forbidden 16 vessels from Australian ports since 2014 for underpaid crew members.
Over the past week, capesize bulk carrier rates improved insignificantly. TCE (Weighted Time Charter Equivalent) for capesize bulk carriers increased by 7.5% to $18,300 per day. The capesize bulk carrier rates increase simply represent a precursor to another move upwards. The capesize bulk carrier rates increase is driven predominantly by the Brazil and Australian round voyages on continued iron ore demand strength”, the Baltic said. The capesize bulk carrier rates for Brazil-to-China route gained increased to $17.47 per tonne. On the other hand, capesize bulk carrier rates for Australia-China route increased to $7.16 per tonne. Handysize bulk carrier rates continued to increase quietly. TCE (Weighted Time Charter Equivalent) for handysize bulk carriers rates increased to $8,539 per day. Handysize bulk carriers rates were broadly flat with limited cargoes from ECSA (East Coast South America) and in the Pacific market.
Greek shipowner and operator Arista Shipping sold 2011 built supramax bulk carrier 55K MV Panworld (ex MV Montecristo) for around $10 million to a Chinese shipowner. In 2013, Arista Shipping acquired MV Panworld (ex MV Montecristo) for around $27 million from D’Alesio Group. In December 2019, Arista Shipping sold 2004 built handysize bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Panforce to Shenzhen Shipping for around $6 million. In 2011, Arista Shipping acquired MV Panforce for around $20 million from Clipper Shipping. Currently, Arista Shipping has a fleet of two (2) bulk carriers, 2012 built supramax bulk carrier 55K DWT MV Pangea and 2011 built handysize bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Panvision. Greek shipowner and operator Arista Shipping is controlled by Alexander Panagopoulos. Arista Shipping has a strong balance sheet and controls modern high-quality bulk carriers.
Fearnleys is opening a brand-new office in Stockholm, Sweden. Shipbroker Fearnleys’ Stockholm office is going to cover the dry bulk market. Peter Ulfvin is going to manage the Fearnleys’ Stockholm office. Fearnleys’ Stockholm office is going to cover coasters up to handysize bulk carriers for charterers in the Scandinavian market. Shipbroker Fearnleys is part of Norwegian Astrup Fearnley. Shipbroker Fearnleys also has offices in Oslo, Beijing, London, Dubai, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, and Tokyo. Shipbroker Fearnleys offers professional services in tankers, dry bulk, LPG, LNG, Ro-Ro, New-Building, and S&P (Sale and Purchase) markets.
Dutch shipowner and operator MUR Shipping has commenced transporting mineral sands from Weipa, Australia to China. Previously, bauxite was exported from Weipa, Australia. Mineral sands exports have been executed by Clear Logistics Australia which is a part-owner of Green Coast Resources. Mineral sands such as ilmenite, rutile, and zircon are adopted in the production of paint, ceramics, sunscreen, and cosmetics. Port of Weipa, Australia exports around 30 million tonnes of bauxite per year for Rio Tinto.
Capesize freight rates jumped to $19,036 per day on Wednesday. Capesize spot markets are no longer being fixed at loss-making levels. Baltic Dry Index (BDI) passed the 1,000-point mark for the first time in 2020. A standard capesize bulk carrier requires around $9,000 per day to break-even on an operating cash flow basis and around $14,000 daily on a free cash flow basis, after deducting regular debt repayments. Brazilian mining giant Vale’s iron ore export has returned to the market after mining stoppages due to coronavirus lockdowns and heavy rains. Baltic Dry Index (BDI) July 5TC contracts closed at $22,266 daily. Baltic Dry Index (BDI) Panamax contracts are also increased essentially due to the movement in the capesize market rather than any underlying factors.
S&P Global Platts has started KMAX 9 index which a new dry bulk weighted average index for the kamsarmax segment. S&P Global Platts has been planning to introduce a new index for supramax segment. Previously, S&P Global Platts launched dual daily time charter equivalent (TCE) for scrubber, non-scrubber ships. KMAX 9 index is obtained by applying an allocated weighting to the daily time charter equivalent (TCE) assessments of nine (9) essential voyages. KMAX 9 index is going to support index-linked ship charters that are for hedging purposes as part of a risk management application. Dry market players require clarity and this is rendered by a weighted average time charter equivalent (TCE) index, unlike time charter index.
Baltic Dry Index (BDI) increased to, supported by a more robust capesize spot market. In May 2020, the Baltic Dry Index (BDI) reached the lowest level reported for that period in 20 years. However, BIMCO predicts that dry bulk markets will survive at gloomy levels for the remainder of 2020. According to BIMCO, there will be a vital decrease in demand in the dry bulk market in 2020, as well as extraordinary supply-side overcapacity as seen in 2016. After the global financial crisis in 2008, the Chinese financial incentive rescued the dry bulk market. However, 2020 will not be the same recovery. Capesize bulk carriers earnings were appraised at $6,177 per day. Capesize bulk carriers in the spot market back above the estimated daily operating expenditure of $5,019, excluding bunker costs.
Greek shipowner and operator Remi Maritime’s 2008 built supramax bulk carrier 57K DWT MV Blue Marlin I was sold in auction for around $5 million. Currently, MV Blue Marlin I scrap value is around $3.1 million. In 2019, Remi Maritime’s supramax bulk carrier MV Blue Marlin I was arrested in China by the National Bank of Greece. In 2019, the National Bank of Greece also arrested and auctioned another Remi Maritime’s 2007 built supramax bulk carrier 57K DWT MV Blue Cat for around $9 million. In 2006, both supramax bulk carriers were ordered at Zhejiang Zhenghe Shipbuilding for around $30 million each. Currently, MV Pangeo (ex MV Blue Cat) is controlled by Amalthia Marine Inc.
In 2020, shipowners with vast cash reserves will survive the coronavirus recession. Shipowners will be burning cash reserves in 2020 due to the upturn that had been expected in Q2 2020 could be delayed. In the dry bulk sector, prevailing time charter rates and FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) in 2020 look grim throughout the year. According to our 2020 shipping outlook, shipping companies will be facing a cash burn till unforeseeable feature and many shipowners will not be able to sustain during coronavirus recession. Furthermore, due to the low bunker prices, shipowners with higher leverage, shipowners that opted to install scrubbers will face challenging markets. In 2020, publicly listed dry bulk companies are in a better financial state than the 2014-2015 downturn. Debt-free shipping companies with healthier balance sheets will easily handle the approaching storm. Small shipping companies with eco-bulk carriers and low overhead costs will be able to survive if the coronavirus recession lasts shorter than expected. Capesize spot rates averaged $4,500 per day during Q1 2020 and scrubber-fitted capesize bulk carriers averaged $10,500 during the same period. Capesize FFAs (Forward Freight Agreements) are trading at $12,500 per day for Q2 2020. Thus, this expected dry bulk shipping upturn in Q2 2020 might be reversed or delayed due to coronavirus recession. After opening Wuhan and having normalizing daily life, China’s imports seem to be increasing, but at a very slow pace. Handysize and panamax bulk carriers could still be challenged by a lack of cargo availability in Q3 2020. On the other hand, capesize bulk carriers will have enough iron ore cargoes from Brazil and Australia. But, coal cargoes will be at risk. There will be a reduction in coal exports from the United States, South Africa, and Canada in Q3 2020. We are expecting weak steel demand in Q3 2020 from importing countries such as Europe and the United States due to slow economic activities during coronavirus recession.
In light of the escalating coronavirus situation, Cleaves Securities has regretfully annulled its imminent Norwegian seminar. The firm, ever-committed to its clientele, anticipates orchestrating an alternative shipping and energy convocation later in the annum. The initially planned symposium, earmarked for 10th March in the illustrious city of Oslo, joins a burgeoning list of maritime congregations impacted by the pandemic’s reverberations. That day was poised to showcase an enlightening maritime colloquium spearheaded by the esteemed Joakim Hannisdahl, Head of Research. Concurrently, a session focused on oil and gas, steered by the sagacious Rystad Energy analyst Louise Dickson, was to culminate in a refined tapas and beverages soirée. Heeding expert advice, Cleaves Securities is ardently adopting suggested safeguards against the contagion’s proliferation. The firm extends its profound apologies for any resultant disarray and ardently hopes to extend an invitation to a subsequent maritime and energy gathering later this calendar year. This week bore witness to another significant casualty in Singapore’s maritime domain due to the virus’s spread: The Singapore Iron Ore Week, initially slated between 18th and 21st May. A week prior, the Maritime Port Authority (MPA) made the weighty decision to defer the anticipated Singapore Maritime Week, earlier penciled in for April’s conclusion. In a separate development, the renowned Marine Money saw it imperative to reschedule its Dubai conference, originally planned for the ensuing week, to the waning days of November 2020. The 20th edition of the Transpacific Maritime (TPM) conference, which was on the horizon for 1st to 4th March in Long Beach, stands as the most significant cancellation of an international maritime event outside Asian precincts, a testament to the outbreak’s vast implications.
Marine bunkers tracking company BunkerTrace has signed a contract with Marfin Management. BunkerTrace submits a service to ensure bunker quality to shipowners. Marfin Management operates eleven (11) bulk carriers and will be able to trace bunker supplies by the assistance of BunkerTrace. BunkerTrace’s block-chain service will record compliant bunker supplies across Marfin Management’s fleet. BunkerTrace was established to register each bunker transaction on a block-chain based platform. BunkerTrace is able to trace any dilution of bunker fuels and provide an apparent chain of guardianship for excellent quality assurance. BunkerTrace annexes special labels at particular points of the fueling operation, from ship terminals to bunker barges. This process will be approved and validated in real-time. Block-chain journals supply an audio track that can be used in front of a judge if any disputes arise over quality or contamination of bunkers. Collaborating with BunkerTrace will assure that prudent shipowners are compliant with IMO (International Maritime Organization) 2020 Rules.
Shipping lender Pareto Bank is endeavoring growth as a shipping lender. According to Norwegian shipping lender Pareto Bank, shipping markets are not well served. Pareto Bank concentrates fundamentally on medium-sized shipping companies. Pareto Bank has been in the shipping and offshore finance market since 2011. Up to now, Norwegian shipping lender Pareto Bank has financed 25 ships. According Pareto Bank, there is still room for growth and many opportunities in the shipping market. Pareto Bank is intending to finance quality tonnage and private shipowners with strong balance sheets.
Standard Club urged shipowners about raised pollution fines in Turkey. Substantial ship pollution penalties has been executed as of 1 January 2020. Turkey’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has increased shipping pollution fines by more than 20% for 2020. Pollution fines might be tripled for corporate shipowners. Turkey’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will reinforce disciplinary fines for ballast discharges. If a ship pollutes the environment, a 25% discount full amount of the fine or security must be paid immediately, otherwise, the ship might be arrested. Standard Club warned shipowners that the P&I (Protection and Indemnity) Club of LOU (Letter of Undertaking) is not regularly accepted in Turkey.
Japanese shipowner and operator Sanko Line acquired kamsarmax bulk carrier from compatriot Mitsubishi. Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) has acquired 2014 built kamsarmax bulk carrier MV Majestic Sky for about $21.5 million. MV Majestic Sky is due for dry docking in April 2020. Japanese trading house Mitsubishi has been rebuilding its fleet. MV Majestic Sky is built in 2014 at Imabari Shipbuilding, Japan. Japanese shipowner and operator Sanko Line is planning to acquire more secondhand ships. Sanko Line went into insolvency in 2012 but emerged from the bankruptcy case in 2014. Currently, Sanko Line is now controlled by Paul Singer led Elliott Management Corporation. In 2019, Sanko Line ordered newbuilding 82K DWT kamsarmax bulk carrier at Tsuneishi Shipbuilding, Japan for delivery in Q4 2020. Newbuilding order is in line with Sanko Line’s fleet renewal programme. In June 2019, Sanko Line sold 2005 built capesize bulk carrier MV Euro Fortune for around $14.7 million to Greek shipowner Capital Maritime & Trading. In August 2019, Capital Maritime & Trading sold MV Euro Fortune to Korean shipowner Samjoo Maritime for around $16.65 million. Samjoo Maritime renamed MV Euro Fortune as MV SJ Asia. Before bankruptcy, Japanese shipowner and operator Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) was a leading shipowner with a fleet of 200 ships.
European Union has granted to extend Cyprus’ tonnage tax regime for 10 more years. 10 more years extension of Cyprus’ tonnage tax regime will boost the registered tonnage in Cyprus. Cyprus has been in lengthy negotiations with European Commission regarding Cyprus’ tonnage tax regime. Cyprus has committed to the sustainable growth of the shipping and the shipping companies will evolve in Cyprus. Cyprus has a reasonable and simple tonnage tax system. Cypriot-flagged ships has been growing steadily. Cyprus ship register has more than 1,000 ships. EU desires to promote ship registration in Europe. Cyprus has also seafarer schemes that allow labor costs such as income tax and social security contributions to be partly or totally reduced on ships flying the flag of any European Union.
Mumbai-listed state-owned company Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) appoints first-ever female Managing Director (MD) Harjeet Kaur Joshi. According to the India Ministry of Shipping, Harjeet Kaur Joshi will be the Managing Director (MD) on a permanent basis until May 2022. Harjeet Kaur Joshi had been managing Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) on a provisional basis after Anoop Sharma. Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) was established in 1961 and since the establishment, the company has been managed by all-male Managing Directors (MD). Harjeet Kaur Joshi takes over at a historic time for Shipping Corporation of India (SCI). In 2015, Harjeet Kaur Joshi joined Shipping Corporation of India (SCI). The Indian government has confirmed the privatization of the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI). Currently, Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) has a diversified fleet of 135 ships.
P&I (Protection and Indemnity) insurer Shipowners’ Club has declared a 5% general raise on ship insurance premiums. Lately, Shipowners’ Club reported a $38 million loss. P&I (Protection and Indemnity) insurer Shipowners’ Club has a method of underwriting to a breakeven position. Up to now, UK P&I Club, the Standard Club, and Steamship Mutual has increased ship insurance premiums 7.5% at renewal in 2020. In 2019, Shipowners’ Club was struck by two major claims. In 2020, Shipowners’ Club anticipates an increase in the number of shipowners and total tonnage.
European Union (EU) appeals to the World Trade Organization (WTO) for the Indonesian government’s nickel ore export restraints. Indonesian nickel export restrictions put various businesses in the EU’s steel industry at risk. Especially, Indonesian export restrictions strike the supramax bulk carrier segment. Indonesian government desires to be export value-added commodities instead of solely exporting raw materials.
Antwerp based ship operator Conti7 appointed Pierre Dincq as new COO (Chief Operating Officer). Conti7 operates 40 bulk carriers. Fundamentally, Conti7 is concentrated on operating handysize, supramax, and ultramax bulk carriers. Conti7 was established in 1923. Conti7 has offices in London and Hong Kong. Family-owned company Conti7 is active in shipowning, ship operating, agency, logistics, forwarding, and warehousing. Moreover, Conti7 cooperates with GMT Hong Kong and Antartic Chartering.
VesselsValue has cooperated with ship inspector Idwal Marine for condition-based appraisals. VesselsValue and Idwal Marine partnership will provide ship value assessments that take into account maintenance and will render estimates representing the condition of a particular vessel. For the first time in the maritime industry, the computerized Condition Adjusted Values (CAV) assistance utilizes the condition of the ship coupled with algorithmically-derived market values. Condition Adjusted Values (CAV) will serve shipowners and operators to perceive value for the extra time, effort, and cost of sustaining quality ships. Shipowners can inquire about a ship’s actual inspection documents throughout the VesselsValue platform. If no permission has been granted by the shipowner, or if no recent inspection reports are available on VesselsValue platform, users can request to commission a new inspection report. VesselsValue and Idwal Marine cooperation will contribute shipowners more transcendent clarity into a vessel’s actual value.
Maritime Department of Malaysia announced that ships, which are adopting open-loop scrubbers for exhaust gas cleaners, are promptly prohibited in Malaysian waters. Malaysia Maritime Department declared that ships calling at the Malaysian ports are recommended to switch to the compliant bunker (VLSFO) or switch over to the closed-loop system before entering Malaysian waters and ports. Besides Malaysia, Singapore and Fujairah (UAE) have already forbidden open-loop scrubbers from their waters. According to International Maritime Organisation (IMO) 2020 regulations, which will be effective on 1 January 2020, ships either must be installed scrubbers or use low sulfur bunkers for low emissions.
United States sanctions are prompting congestion in Iranian ports. More than 20 bulk carriers have been stuck in Iranian ports for over a month. The delays in Iranian ports are triggered by bank payment lags. United States sanctions discouraged abroad banks from doing business in Iran. Bulk carriers are being lingered at BIK (Bandar Imam Khomeini) and Bandar Abbas ports due to delayed payments.
Zeamarine has appointed Chad Call as a new CFO (Chief Financial Officer). Michael Dumas, who was CFO at Intermarine for more than 20 years, resigned after supervising the establishment of Zeamarine by parent company Zeaborn. Zeamarine is created by merging Intermarine, Zeaborn Chartering, and Rickmers Line. Zeamarine and Zeaborn has a fleet of about 90 multipurpose heavy-lift ships.
International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) published the International Maritime Organization (IMO) 2020 fuel specifications. International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) endeavors to prevent the shortage of certainty over low-sulfur bunkers’ viscosity. International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) broadcasted a paper concerning specs for brand-new IMO 2020-compliant low sulfur fuel. International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) has published its 23263:2019 Publicly Available Specification (PAS) on its website after cooperating with bunker suppliers, testers, shipowners, class societies, and bunker traders. International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) document 23263:2019 Publicly Available Specification (PAS) marks quality studies that implement to marine fuels in view of the implementation of a maximum of 0.5% bunkers from 1 January 2020. International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) document 23263:2019 specifies common provisions that refer to all 0.5% fuels and reinforces the applicability of its previous document.
Switzerland based, British–Swiss multinational commodity trading and mining company, Glencore has joined a group of charterers aiming to digitalize activities world-wide. In October 2018, world’s four largest grain traders: ABCD (Cargill, Louis Dreyfus, Archer Daniels Midland, Bunge) and later on COFCO started a chartering regeneration and associated mutually in order to review current technologies such as blockchain and artificial intelligence to automate grain and oilseed post-trade accomplishment methods, diminishing expenses required to transport agricultural and food products throughout the world.
Glencore has joined the group for a digital shipping ambition. The group is anticipating to start of the modern program in Q2 2020 subjected to administrative permission. ABCD (Cargill, Louis Dreyfus, Archer Daniels Midland, Bunge), COFCO, and Glencore aims to improve a digital program that will leverage the most innovative technologies and has the potential to transform shipping business. This digital program will perform contract fulfilling methods extra effective, more reliable also more simple. Digital program advantages will be observed by corporations of every size with the post-trade chain. A pilot scheme will soon be encompassed to comprise shipments of soybeans from Brazil to China.
In the first week of September 2019, surging iron ore exports from Brazil will keep Capesize and VLOC (Very Large Ore Carrier) ships in high demand in the Atlantic Ocean which will support the continued surge in dry bulk freight rates. Capesize market is witnessing a festive period with spot rates reaching record highs despite growing concerns of a slowdown in the global economy due to the USA-China trade war. Recent strength in spot dry bulk freight rates are expected to continue over Q4 2019 due to the upcoming IMO (International Maritime Organization) 2020 regulations and Brazil’s iron ore exports. In January 2019, Vale’s dam accident triggered widespread casualties in Brazil. Hence, iron ore supply from Brazil tumbled in the first half of 2019. In April 2019, Brazil could export less than 20 million metric tonnes of iron ore. Baltic Capesize Index (BCI) dropped to historical low values in the first week of April 2019. In Brazil, after approval from the court, Vale’s iron ore supplies have now resumed. After Vale’s dam collapsed in January 2019, Brazil’s iron ore exports registered a steep recovery. In July 2019, Brazil exported 34 million tonnes of iron ore which is more than 80% higher than the exports in April 2019. There is a strong demand for capesize bulk carriers in Brazil which created a shortage of capesize tonnage in the Atlantic Ocean. Hence, huge demand for capesize tonnage has been leading to skyrocketing spot capesize freight rates. Brazil exports most of its iron ore to China. China has been accounting for the lion’s share, capesize bulk carrier takes about 90 days to complete a round voyage from ex Brazil to China. Capesize bulk carriers that loaded cargo in June at Brazilian ports for discharge in China would be available again for loading only in September. According to AIS data, not many capesize bulk carriers and VLOCs (Very Large Ore Carriers) repositioned in the Atlantic to meet the surging demand in Brazil which triggered spot rates are on an upward spiral. Additionally, in the run-up to the impending IMO (International Maritime Organization) 2020 regulations, effective supply of capesize bulk carriers has contracted. In order to avoid using expensive low sulfur fuel and save on bunker costs, many shipowners are retrofitting their capesize bulk carriers with scrubber before IMO (International Maritime Organization) regulation comes into force on January 2020. Scrubber fitting at the shipyard takes about a month, during which time the bulk carriers will be removed from the operating fleet. In total, 45 Capesize bulk carriers and VLOCs (Very Large Ore Carriers) were retrofitted during June-August 2019 which is equivalent to 3% of the Capesize bulk carriers and VLOCs (Very Large Ore Carriers) operating fleet in terms of DWT (Dead Weight Tonnes). As IMO (International Maritime Organization) deadline (January 2020) approaches with almost 10% of the additional Capesize bulk carriers and VLOCs (Very Large Ore Carriers) fleet scheduled for retrofitting at shipyards in the remaining months of 2019. Hence, these two conditions will be taking the spot rates even higher during Q4 2019.
Taiwan based shipowner and operator Chinese Maritime Transport (CMT) has appointed James SC Tai as president of the company. Taipei based capesize shipowner and operator Chinese Maritime Transport (CMT) has a modern fleet of ten (10) capesize bulk carriers. Chinese Maritime Transport’s new president James SC Tai graduated from both the National Taiwan Ocean University and the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow. Taiwan based capesize shipowner and operator Chinese Maritime Transport (CMT) has a fleet of ten (10) capesize bulk carriers. The comparatively tiny range of newbuilding projects at Chinese Maritime Transport (CMT). Both Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) and Chinese Maritime Transport (CMT) are by-products of the Tung family shipping empire. Former Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) chairman Tung Chee-hwa is positively acknowledged as a politician.
Switzerland based shipowner and operator Doris Maritime Services has been intending to exit shipowning by selling its four (4) ultramax bulk carriers:
- MV Naess Absolute (63K 2015 built)
- MV Naess Courageous (63K 2015 built)
- MV Naess Endurance (63K 2015 built)
- MV Naess Intrepid (63K 2015 built)
Doris Maritime Services is preparing to sell ultramax bulk carriers to China Development Bank Leasing. Doris Maritime Services has new investment objectives. Besides bulk carriers, Doris Maritime Services has also invested in container vessels. Doris Maritime Services ordered four (4) ultramax bulk carriers at Cosco Shipyard, China. Sister company Naess Ship Management is also controlled by Doris Maritime Services’ CEO Nicholas Wirth. Naess Ship Management’s name comes from the late Norwegian shipping magnate Erling Dekke Naess. In the 1950s, Erling Dekke Naess owned the world’s third-largest shipping company. In 1994, Erling Dekke Naess sold Naess Ship Management for a symbolic sum to its employees.
On 2 September 2019, Baltic Capesize Index (BCI) reached 4,659 points, its highest level since 17 May 2010. Baltic Exchange’s five capesize routes (5TC) reached $36,101 per day today which is the highest in 9 years. In the last three weeks, capesize benchmark routes have increased by 27%. On 22 July 2019, Baltic Exchange’s five capesize routes (5TC) reached $32,963 per day. Capesize spot rate increase caused by cargo supply especially Brazil’s iron ore exports continues to outstrip the list of available capesize ships in the Atlantic Ocean. Brazil’s healthy iron ore demand struggled to find capesize tonnage. According to market veterans, capesize spot rates might potentially reach $50,000 per day over the next few months. In April 2019, Brazilian iron ore exports dropped to 18 million tonnes, but in July 2019 Brazilian iron ore exports reached 34 million tonnes which is predicted to stay at this level till the end of 2019. Baltic Exchange’s capesize Brazil-China (C3) benchmark reach to $28.73 per tonne. On the other hand, capesize spot rates for Trans-Atlantic (TA) round-trips continue to trade at around an $8,000 premium to those for round-voyages across the Pacific Ocean where capesize vessel supply is greater. On 2 September 2019, Baltic Exchange Capesize Index (BCI) Gibraltar-Hamburg (C8_14) for Trans-Atlantic (TA) round voyage reached at $39,725 per day. Baltic Exchange Capesize Index (BCI) China-Japan (C10_14) Trans-Pacific round-trips round voyage reached at $31,688 per day. Baltic Exchange’s Forward Freight curve still points to a bearish trend in rates for the rest of 2019. Current capesize spot rates reflect strong momentum in the physical shipping market. Baltic Exchange’s Capesize Forward Freight assessment for September 5TC contracts rose to $32,058 per day and October 5TC contracts rose to $28,708 per day. Baltic Exchange’s Capesize Forward Freight Contracts for the fourth quarter (Q4) 2019 also rose, but are still lower than those seen for the third quarter (Q3) 2019.
The struggling panamax segment is bouncing back as ship operators raise the bidding for longer employment. Panamax operators are chartering in tonnage as the period market tries to catch up with a peaking spot market. Panamax spot market is near a three-year high. Last week of August 2019, Japanese kamsarmax newbuilding has been fixed this week straight out of shipyard at $16,000 per day for 12 months. The latest fixture represents a significant increase as the previously lackluster segment continues to improve. Furthermore, Kwang Ming-controlled 2014 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 80K DWT KM Shanghai was fixed at $14,500 per day for 12 months. On the other hand, Athens based Olive Shipmanagement’s 2010 built panamax bulk carrier 79K DWT MV Elinda Mare was fixed $14,000 per day for 7 to 9 months. Copenhagen based Dampskibsselskabet NORDEN A/S was caught long on cargo when Norden fixed in 2019 built kamsarmax bulk carrier 81K DWT JY Hongkong at $15,400 per day for 7 to 9 months. Currently, all period tonnage that was taken in 2018 is trading very profitably now. Last year, German bulker giant Oldendorff and Norwegian Klaveness as players that had acted in time to catch the wave. Panamax and kamsarmax market is generally firming and will keep on as long as you can do period deals at a discount to spot. Panamax FFA (Future Freight Agreement) curve is standing at $16,000 per day for 2020’s trading would be worth it due to long-haul grain cargoes to the Far East. Currently, in the panamax market grain is key cargo. Besides, coal cargoes to China from Australia and Indonesia are just stable now, but China has been sourcing grain from long route East Coast South America which will be pushing panamax market up. End week of August 2019, kamsarmax bulk carriers are fixed at some $18,000 per day in the Pacific spot market. Kamsarmax bulk carriers are fixed around $20,000 per day for East Coast South America to Singapore and India range. First week of September, we might see some corrections in panamax spot market because panamax rates jumped too fast. There are about 250 newbuilding panamax bulk carriers on order in shipyards. Total orders include 75 kamsarmax newbuilding orders for delivery before the end of 2019. Shipowners are discouraged by the newbuilding order book. United States-China trade war is the second reason that triggered panamax bulk carrier spot market. United States-China trade war has increased tonne-miles by moving China’s grain and soybean sourcing from the United States Gulf to Brazil and Argentina. In the panamax and kamsarmax segment, speculative shipowners seem like winners of the market, if panamax and kamsarmax segment remains bullish. In previous years, kamsarmax bulk carriers have been one of the most popular financial investment plays in the dry bulk sector. Bank of Communications Financial Leasing, AVIC International Leasing, ICBC Leasing, and China Development Bank Leasing have unchartered bulk carriers on order in panamax and kamsarmax segment. AVIC International Leasing alone has a reported 12 kamsarmax bulk carriers on order.
Greek shipowner and operator Avin International might fully exit the dry bulk market. Avin International sold one of its two panamax bulk carriers. Athens based Avin International sold 2004 built panamax bulk carrier 76K DWT MV Vamos (ex MV Million Trader) for around $9 million. MV Vamos (ex MV Million Trader) was built at Tsuneishi Shipbuilding, Japan in 2006. MV Vamos (ex MV Million Trader) is not due for a special survey (SS) till February 2024. In May 2015, Vardinoyannis family-controlled Avin International acquired MV Vamos (ex MV Million Trader) from Japanese shipowner Nisshin Shipping for around $9 million. After the sale of MV Vamos (ex MV Million Trader), Avin International’s dry bulk fleet is left with 2000 built panamax bulk carrier 74K MV Evangelia. MV Evangelia was built at Sasebo Heavy Industries, Japan in 2000. In March 2013, Avin International acquired MV Evangelia for around $11 million. Avin International is primarily a tanker owner and has a fleet of 32 tankers.
Singapore’s High Court sold 2012 built handymax bulk carrier 37K DWT MV Long Bright. MV Long Bright was controlled by Highrich Logistics. MV Long Bright was built at Shandong Huahai Shipbuilding, China in 2012. MV Long Bright has spent over a year in lay-up and its certifications have expired. MV Long Bright was arrested in March 2018 by Singapore’s DP Shipbuilding & Engineering over an unpaid repair bill. Later on, a Chinese bank had taken control of MV Long Bright together with a sister ship MV Long Glory. Hong Kong-based Highrich Logistics acquired MV Long Bright and MV Long Glory as part of a deal from Shandong Huahai Shipbuilding, China. MV Long Bright and MV Long Glory had originally been ordered in 2006 by Sider Navi.
World Economic Forum warned about a possible recession and trade uncertainties may worsen. Prominent economists have been predicting that global growth since the 2008 financial crisis is running out of steam. Global economic growth expected to decrease to 3% in 2020. In 2019, global economic growth will be affected by:
- United States trade war with China
- Slowing growth in the European Union
- Increasing political instability in many countries
These connected obstacles will weaken confidence in various sectors of business. But, the shipping business will be affected deeply. Notwithstanding the low newbuilding orders at the shipyards and a developing supply-demand balance.
World Economic Forum summarized that global uncertainties are escalating. The world economy would have to master how to manage the next recession. Today, risks are frequently inter-related and the ability to deal with those risks was diminishing. Slowing growth, increasing debt, trade tensions, and mounting inequality are numerous difficulties that would require a world-wide collaborative scheme to solve. Demands on shipping to slash carbon emissions by financing modern combustibles is merely one portion of the enormous challenges the world faces.
Marshall Islands-registered Hunter Maritime received a warning from Nasdaq. Nasdaq requires Hunter Maritime to hold an annual general meeting. Hunter Maritime has 45 days to present a program for an annual meeting. Hunter Maritime commenced in 2016 with a $152 million IPO (Initial Public Offering) with the purpose of acquiring dry bulk carriers at the bottom of the shipping cycle. Hunter Maritime has failed to acquire bulk carriers as investors seemed to draw their capital out of Hunter Maritime.
Shipping business generated $15 billion to Greeks in the first nine months of 2018. In 2018, the total number of active Greek shipping companies reached 1,400. The number of ships under Greek management companies is around 4,500 ships with a capacity of around 200 million DWT. In Greece, shipping companies employed around 17,000 people.
As trade war has been intensified between the United States and China, shipping stocks plunged. Almost, every single New York-traded shipping stock ended the day in the red. Golar LNG, GasLog, Scorpio Tankers, and Matson were the most unsatisfactory performers. Among all shipping companies, Matson had the worst day on the stock exchange. Tanker stocks have not pummeled like other segments. Because China is not importing any US crude oil and crude is not on the tariff list.
Bergen-based coaster shipowner and operator Misje Rederi AS has been endeavoring to renew its coaster fleet with a series of hybrid-powered new-building bulk carriers. Norwegian family-owned Misje Rederi AS has approached shipyards in Norway, China, and the Netherlands for offers on coaster bulk carriers. Newbuilding coaster eco-bulkers will use batteries at the ports and diesel engines at the sea. Misje Rederi AS has collaborated with Marine Design & Consulting and Norwegian Electric Systems to develop the new ship design. Currently, Misje Rederi AS controls 14 coaster bulk carriers.
Heavylift, project, and break-bulk operator Zeamarine Carrier is very close to its aim of more than 100 multipurpose (MPP) ships after taking delivery of six (6) time-chartered new-buildings from Chinese ship manager New Legend. In January 2019, Zeamarine Carrier took delivery of 2019 newbuilding 13K DWT MV Zea Frontier F-class 900 designs outfitted with two 450 tons cranes. In September 2018, Germany based Zeaborn and Houston based Intermarine merged to establish Zeamarine Carrier. Zeamarine Carrier has also chartered in 2018 build 12K DWT MV Zea Servant outfitted with two 250 tons cranes MPP ship for the long-term. MV Zea Servant was constructed at Chinese shipyard Taizhou Sanfu Shipbuilding. MV Zea Servant was formerly ordered by Nordic Hamburg but has been secured by Chinese ship manager New Legend. In November 2018, MV Industrial Fame and MV Industrial Fusion were taken from CSSC Leasing. MV Industrial Fame and MV Industrial Fusionare are technically managed by Germany based Hammonia Reederei. Zeamarine Carrier chartered in vessels of bankrupt heavy-lift operator Hansa Heavy Lift.
Norwegian-Swedish owned Ro-Ro behemoth operator Wallenius Wilhelmsen expressed that European Union ship scrapyards must be able to satisfy the continuing recycling requirements of the EU-flagged vessels. In the last decade green-recycling advocate Wallenius Wilhelmsen has demolished 30 ships. Wallenius Wilhelmsen expressed that approved European Union facilities must be fitted for continuing recycling requirements of the EU-flagged ships and extra scrapyards should be introduced on European Union’s list Irresponsible recycling is solely not compatible with Wallenius Wilhelmsen’s own standards. Wallenius Wilhelmsen will proceed to recycle their ships only according to high standards.
Guinea will increase bauxite shipping after a brand-new mine was given permission. Guinea’s Kimbo project will generate around 3 million metric tons of bauxite per year and 1.5 million metric tons of alumina per year. Tremendous investments will be harmonized into the development of a refinery, highways, and railways.
Guinea government declared a range of infrastructure and constitutional bills for expansion in the bauxite shipping industry. Guinea’s bauxite producer Societe Miniere de Boke (SMB) is going to contribute $1 billion to build a railway. Societe Miniere de Boke (SMB) is a joint venture between Winning Shipping, Guinea, Shandong Weiqiao Aluminium & Power Co, and UMS International. On the other hand, in order to regulate the transportation of bauxite, Guinea’s government is introducing a national agency. Guinea is base for a quarter (1/4) of the worlds bauxite reserves. In 2018, total Guinea bauxite exports reach to 55 million metric tons which is around half of the world’s bauxite exports.
Kamsarmax bulk carrier (82K DWT) received its title by fitting a 229 meter limit on ship length at the Port of Kamsar, Guinea. Port of Kamsar, Guinea is a significant bauxite shipping port. Capesize bulk carriers require transshipment via barge to load at Guinea bauxite export ports.
In 2019, newcastlemax bulk carriers account for a quarter of Guinea’s bauxite exports. Chinese giant shipowner and operator COSCO Bulk Shipping is planning to order at least 6 newcastlemax bulk carriers to meet 5 million metric tons per year agreement with Chinese aluminum producer Chalco. Bauxite trade is expected to account for around one fifth (1/5) of dry bulk trade growth in terms of tonne-miles in 2019.
Three prominent shipping names Guy Hindley (Howe Robinson), Denis Petropoulos (Braemar Shipping Services), and Andy James (China Navigation) have joined the Baltic Exchange Council. Baltic Exchange Council governs the Baltic Exchange’s strategy and activities. Lambros Varnavides and John Hadjipateras have stepped down from Baltic Exchange Council. John Hadjipateras will remain on the Baltic Membership Council. Baltic Exchange Council is chaired by Duncan Dunn. Baltic Exchange Council governs the Baltic Exchange’s strategy for membership services, social responsibility, charities, and its relationship with its members, governments, regulatory bodies, and the global shipping community.
1997 built 9K DWT MV Paksoy-1 was attacked at the coast of Nigeria and 10 crew members were taken as hostages. Istanbul based Turkish shipowner and operator Kadioglu Maritime’s MV Paksoy-1 was in ballast from Douala to Abidjan in Ivory Coast. No injuries or loss of lives has been reported. Later on, 10 crew members were released by the assistance of the Nigerian government.
Shanghai-based Haiyi Shipping ordered four (4) newbuilding bulk carriers 12K DWT at CSC Jiangdong Shipyard in China. Haiyi Shipping is a subsidiary of Chinese Anhui Conch Cement. Four (4) newbuilding bulk carriers will be delivered in 2020. Currently, Anhui Conch Cement has a fleet of 15 small bulk carriers. Four new building bulk carriers 12K DWT will be the biggest ships in the fleet of Anhui Conch Cement.
Japanese shipowner and operator K Line’s 2017 built capesize dry bulk carrier 183K MV Cape Taweelah is the first fully-laden capesize bulk carrier to call at Khalifa Port, Abu Dhabi. Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) long-term chartered in 183K MV Cape Taweelah. MV Cape Taweelah is transporting bauxite from Guinea for Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA)’s new Al Taweelah alumina refinery. Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) will employ capesize bulk carriers to reduce per tonne transportation costs. Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) agreed a deal with Abu Dhabi Ports in late December 2017 to dredge and widen channel at Khalifa Port to enable large capesize dry bulk carriers to berth fully-laden. Except for Khalifa Port, at other ports in the region capesize bulk carriers must be partially unloaded offshore before capesize bulk carriers can berth at port safely.
Athens-based PrimeBulk Shipmanagement sold 2009 built supramax bulk carrier 57K DWT MV Moonray to a Chinese shipowner and operator for around $10 million. MV Moonray is a Dolphin 57 type supramax bulk carrier. The Dolphin 57 series supramax bulk carrier is the work of the Shanghai Merchant Ship Design Research Institute which is a part of China State Shipbuilding Corporation. Chinese shipowner and operator intended to use the MV Moonray for international trading as the China-flag domestic market struggles with charter rates and more stringent emissions prerequisites for imported tonnage imposed in 2018. Currently, Athens-based PrimeBulk Shipmanagement has a fleet of five (5) bulk carriers.
Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK), after a hiatus of seven years, has placed a newbuilding order with Tsuneishi Shipbuilding in Japan. The Tokyo-based shipowner Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) has ordered an 82K DWT built kamsarmax bulk carrier, set for delivery in the Q4 2020. Although Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko) announced the order for the vessel equipped with a scrubber on its website, it did not provide details about the shipyard, the cost, or the rationale behind the order. It’s worth noting that not many shipping companies have chosen to equip ships of this size with scrubbers. However, with upcoming environmental regulations, there’s a perceived advantage in having a scrubber installed. Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) anticipates a continued price disparity between high-sulphur and low-sulphur fuels and has expressed concerns about the availability of low-sulphur fuel. The impending IMO 2020 regulation is cited as a significant factor for this deal. Given the passage of time, fleet renewal becomes essential for Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK). The Sanko Steamship Co Ltd’s (Sanko Kisen KK’s) current financial health is stable, attributed to favorable market conditions in the recent past. Sanko Steamship Co Ltd’s (Sanko Kisen KK’s) shareholder has shown support for this new order. Historically, Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) was a significant player in the shipping industry, managing around 200 vessels. However, Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) faced insolvency in 2012, only to recover from the bankruptcy in 2014. Presently, Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) is under the control of the US-based Elliott Management Corp and has a fleet of three bulkers: a capesize (currently on sale) and two panamaxes. One of the panamax bulk carriers is scheduled for scrubber retrofitting this summer. Today, Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) operates as a standard company with a primary focus on the dry bulk sector, working diligently to rebuild relationships with bulker clients.
Dry cargo stakeholders are keenly observing the market in anticipation of a potential capesize sale this week, which could pave the way for an uptick in transactions and set a new pricing benchmark. Remarkably, no capesize has been sold for further trading this year, marking an unparalleled hiatus since the last transaction in December. The shipping community has been speculating that Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) controlled 2005 built capesize bulk carrier 177K DWT MV Euro Fortune might be the vessel to end this sales drought and clarify the prevailing ambiguity about ship values. While bids for the ship are believed to be around $12 million, counter-offers have yet to be made. Japanese sellers have become more selective, not accepting as many offers as before. They would have ideally aimed for a figure closer to $13 million. 2005 built capesize bulk carrier 177K DWT MV Euro Fortune is currently the sole capesize in Sanko Line’s fleet. Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) recently sold one of its two panamaxes, 2006 built panamax bulk carrier 76K DWT MV Ocean Wind, and just last week, Sanko Steamship Co Ltd (Sanko Kisen KK) commissioned a scrubber-equipped kamsarmax newbuild from a Japanese shipyard. Although the capesize sale and purchase market has seen limited activity, the combination of weak rates and subdued market sentiment has prompted brokers to adjust their paper prices downward. Shipbrokers believe that a successful sale of the 2005 built capesize bulk carrier 177K DWT MV Euro Fortune could rejuvenate the market by providing a definitive price point.
Wood Resources International (WRI) published that China imports of logs reached another record high in 2018. This is the third sequential year of year-on-year increases. China log import volumes reached around 40 million cubic meters. New Zealand (44%) is a leading supplier of logs to China. Russia’s log export share has fallen to 18% in 2018.
German ship financing bank Nord/LB withdraws from the maritime sector. German shipping lender Nord/LB is pulling out of ship financing as it looks to restructure with a capital injection of $4 billion. Nord/LB is taking an enormous hit on the remaining $11 billion maritime books. Nord/LB expects a refinancing deal with the German Savings Banks Association (DSGV). Nord/LB has been dropping NPL (Non-Performing Loans) in shipping at a quick rate and has taken tremendous provisions on the maritime book in recent years. Nord/LB will completely withdraw from ship financing and will focus on energy, infrastructure, property, and aircraft.
Panamax P8 Brazil-China soybean route will be introduced for Forward Freight Agreement (FFA) traders. Traders will be able to hedge grain and soybean voyages. Brazil-China soybean route is flourishing with 150 million tonnes of soybean annually. The US-China trade war and uncertainty in the global economy triggers to hedge freight and fuel risk on the booming Panamax P8 Brazil-China soybean route. Demand for soybeans has been highly elastic in China and fuel prices set to rise in 2019. Consequently, the timing is perfect for the introduction of Panamax P8 Brazil-China soybean route on Forward Freight Agreement (FFA). Panamax P8 Brazil-China soybean route means owners, charterers, and traders can manage their risk more accurately than using the existing Panamax 2A Continent-Far East route. Panamax P8 Brazil-China soybean route will bring liquidity in dry FFAs.
Capesize dry bulk carrier freight rates have plummeted below operating costs of $5,000 per day last week. Capesize dry bulk carrier owners are planning to idle their vessels because of the weak capesize dry bulk freight market. Experienced shipping market veterans believe that capesize market has bottomed out and is set for a rebound. Capesize dry bulk carrier freight rates can’t go much lower before ship owners start idling vessels. Capesize dry bulk carrier freight rates reached bottom and that an upturn should materialize very shortly. Capesize to panamax dry bulk market ratio is now is the lowest level since early 2016. Previously, when capesize dry bulk carrier freight rate was at such low levels, market rebound followed. Current capesize dry bulk carrier freight rate weakness represents the intra-year low for 2019, and forecast the Baltic Dry Index to average around 125% higher in Q2 2019. Currently, capesize dry bulk carrier freight rate costs around 40% less to hire a vessel and having 125% more cargo capacity. Soon, panamax dry bulk charterers to pool cargoes into capesize dry bulk carriers. United States – China trade negotiations are expected in late March could also trigger a rally in dry bulk rates. Capesize dry bulk operators are turning towards slow steaming amid the weak earnings. Capesize dry bulk carriers’ optimal speed for was lower at 11 knots at the beginning of 2019.
In 2015, Malaysia was the biggest bauxite supplier in China. Notwithstanding, in 2016, Malaysia outlawed bauxite mining due to notable pollution. Newly, the Malaysian environment minister published that its mining ban will not be extended after it terminates in March 2019. Malaysia’s bauxite export could damage the weak dry bulk market by lowering ton-miles. Malaysia bauxite was a substitute for Indonesian bauxite. However, in recent years China has invested profoundly in mines and infrastructure in Guinea. In 2018, China increased its bauxite imports to 83 million tons.
Indonesian coal exporters could encounter an unpredictable prospect due to regulative concerns. By 2027, Indonesia’s domestic coal consumption for energy will increase to 157 million tons. Indonesian government aims to preserve coal reserves and this is a potential risk for Indonesian coal exporters. Indonesian coal export laws appear to replace every year. Indonesia’s Domestic Market Obligation (DMO) obliges coal producers to trade 25% of coal production on the domestic market. Indonesian coal is particularly quite known for its low Calorific Value (CV). Australian and Russian coal is not technically feasible because Asian coal importing countries like India and China were building coal-fired plants around Indonesian coal specifications. Any decrease in Indonesian coal export volumes would lead to longer ton-miles which would be positive for the dry bulk shipping market. Coal demand in Asia, particularly in China and India, will soar in the upcoming years as many power plants are currently under construction.
Bankrupted Greek shipowner and operator Toisa Shipping has submitted a bankruptcy reorganization plan to the Southern District of New York bankruptcy court. Bankrupted Greek shipowner and operator Toisa Shipping has been in discussions with moneylenders including ING, Commerzbank, DNB, Citi Bank, and DVB. Southern District of New York bankruptcy court’s scheme presents the Toisa Shipping debtors to sell all assets. An inspector will be designated to liquidate Toisa Shipping‘s assets and wind down. Toisa Shipping filed for bankruptcy in early 2018. Greek Toisa Shipping had $1.7 billion appraised assets, including offshore vessels, tankers, and dry bulk carriers.
Norwegian coaster shipowner and operator Hagland Shipping acquired 2011 built coaster bulk carrier 4K DWT MV Hagland Carrier (ex MV Estime). MV Hagland Carrier (ex MV Estime) will be converted to a self-unloading bulk carrier. Hagland Shipping acquired DWT MV Hagland Carrier (ex MV Estime) from JR Shipping. Norwegian coaster shipowner and operator Hagland Shipping has a fleet of 14 self-unloading bulk carriers. Norwegian Hagland Shipping was established in 1872.
Florida-based World Fuel Services has filed a second lawsuit in Miami federal court on 10 January 2018 and arrested a second MPP carrier of German Hansa Heavy Lift to pay allegedly unpaid fuel bills. Previously, World Fuel Services arrested Hansa Heavy Lift’s other ship 2008 built MV HHL Elbe in France for unpaid bunker bill. After the MV HHL Elbe was seized in France, Hansa Heavy Lift filed an insolvency petition in Hamburg, Germany courts. An extremely challenging operating environment is the cause according to Hansa Heavy Lift’s major shareholder Oaktree Capital Management.
Greek shipowner and operator Dominion International acquired 2011 built kamsarmax 81K DWT MV India Vision (ex MV Trade Vision). 81K DWT MV India Vision (ex MV Trade Vision) was built at Guangzhou Longxue. Ioannis Chandris led Dominion International has not been active in S&P market for several years. Immediately, Dominion International delivered MV India Vision (ex MV Trade Vision) in M2M Management Panamax Pool. Dominion International was established in 1969 in Piraeus under the management of a JD Chandris. 81K DWT MV India Vision (ex MV Trade Vision) was the last vessel from the sale of 26 dry bulk carriers and tankers in the bankrupt Greek Toisa Ltd.
Hong Kong-headquartered Fleet Management has taken over NAESS Ship Management in Amsterdam. NAESS Ship Management was set up in 1973. Fleet Management has over 450 vessels under management. Hong Kong-headquartered Fleet Management has offices in London and Cyprus.
Wood Resource International (WRI) has published that China has imported record volumes of woodchips in Q3 2018. In Q3 2018, Chinese woodchip imports totaled 3.5 million tons, a year-on-year increase of 21%. Vietnam and Australia together account for just over 80% (28% Australia, 52% Vietnam) of Chinese woodchip imports in 2018, with the remainder being supplied by Chile, Thailand, Brazil, South Africa, and Malaysia. Vietnam’s woodchip export has been trending upward for over 15 years and will likely reach a new record high of almost 10 million tons in 2018.
Finland-based coaster and project shipowner Meriaura Logistics has been expanding its fleet by acquiring two dry bulk carriers. Meriaura Maritime Logistics sister company VG Shipping acquired 1998 built 4,200 DWT MV Aava VG (ex MV Nemuna) and 1997 built MV Lotta VG (ex MV Visurgis) from German shipowner and operator Shipcom Bereederungs GmbH. New ships are going to strengthen VG Shipping market position in European coaster size market. VG Shipping has a fleet of 8 coaster bulk carriers and sister company Meriaura Logistics operates a fleet of 20 dry bulk carriers.
Chinese leasing company CSIC Leasing signed capesize new-building bulk carriers at Qingdao Beihai Shipbuilding Heavy Industry against long-term charters from German energy powerhouse RWE. China Shipbuilding Industry Co (CSIC) controlled shipyard has been commissioned to construct four (4) scrubber-fitted IMO Tier II standard capesize dry bulk carriers (180K DWT) for delivery between late 2020 and early 2021. Each capesize dry bulk carrier has a price tag of $54 million. CSIC Leasing deal is the second-largest newbuilding charter contract linked to RWE.
World’s largest scrap ship cash buyer GMS founder Anil Sharma has a positive outlook for Indian shipbreaking. GMS founder Anil Sharma has recently been supporting the Indian subcontinent’s green recycling. Indian, Pakistani, and Bangladeshi shipbreakers are frequently criticized for their beaching methods. Indian, Pakistani, and Bangladeshi shipbreakers can really lessen the environmental impact of beaching by following the IMO’s Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships. Furthermore, Indian, Pakistani, and Bangladeshi shipbreakers can use concrete floors to prevent pollutants from entering the subsoil. GMS is scrapping approximately 200 ships per year.
Bremen based MPP (MultiPurpose) ship operator dship Carriers has ordered two (2) MPP ships at Taizhou Sanfu Shipyard in China. dship Carriers picked up F-500 type Eco Traders which will join the fleet in Q1 and Q3 2019. MultiPurpose vessels F-500 type has been developed to reduce fuel consumption and to increase stowage flexibility.
Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Great Harvest Maeta Group seeking to diversify from its core dry bulk carrier business in order to decrease shipping risk. Great Harvest Maeta Group is planning to enter construction, tourism, and real estate projects. Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Great Harvest Maeta Group will strictly control operating costs and reduce all unnecessary expenses. Great Harvest Maeta Group is seeking to charter out its fleet to reputable charterers. Currently, Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Great Harvest Maeta Group has a fleet of four (4) panamax dry bulk carriers.
Great Lakes-St Lawrence Seaway dry bulk trade increased 38% due to the high demand for construction materials like asphalt, cement, and stone this summer. According to Canada’s Chamber of Marine Commerce construction projects increased across the region. Shipping activity at Great Lakes-St Lawrence Seaway increased to a total of 12 million tonnes.
International Maritime Organization (IMO) has invited the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) to introduce standards and to reassure shipowners that an identical type of methanol will be ready at ports. Developing ISO standard is a critical move for methanol to gain broader adoption as a marine fuel. International Maritime Organization (IMO)’s Maritime Safety Committee has been revising guidelines for low flashpoint fuels like methanol and LNG (liquefied natural gas). International Maritime Organization (IMO) already has standards for methanol as a cargo, but not as a marine fuel. Nevertheless, methanol as marine fuel encounters difficulties in terms of sufficient space and commercial availability.
Paris MOU port state organization banned 33 ships in 2017. In 2016, Paris MOU port state organization banned 20 ships. Last 3 years, Moldova, Tanzania, and Togo have recorded the highest number of ship bans of Paris MOU port state organization. In 2017, Paris MOU port state organization annexed Poland and South Korea to the white flag list. Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and the US moved from white to grey list. In 2017, Paris MOU port state organization blacklisted Ukraine.
Price tags of vintage secondhand dry bulk carriers slumped due to yuan and sluggish Chinese domestic bulk market. Secondhand bulk carriers are unlikely to gain interest from buyers outside China. Shipowners are keen to sell their vintage bulk carriers.
German shipowner and operator MLB Manfred Lauterjung Befrachtung GmbH & Co. KG ordered two (2) dry cargo vessels 2K DWT at Szczecin Shipyard in Poland. MLB Manfred Lauterjung Befrachtung GmbH & Co. KG has not reported price tag for new-building bulk carriers. German shipowner and operator MLB Manfred Lauterjung Befrachtung GmbH & Co. KG has a fleet of 23 ships from capesize dry bulk carriers, boxships and MPPs.
2001 built bulk carrier 51K DWT MV Sirina suffers blaze in Southampton, United Kingdom. British firefighters extinguished the fire. No injuries were reported.
Two (2) Ukrainian crew discovered dead in 2017 built handysize dry bulk carrier 31K DWT MV Atlantic Harmony off Cape Verde. MV Atlantic Harmony is controlled by Turkish shipowner and operator Istanbul Shipping. Further investigations started.
One of the largest Russian foodstuff producer Aston Group is endeavoring to acquire 10 river type dry bulk carriers from Chinese shipyards. 8K DWT river type dry cargo ship design is the largest to enter ports along the River Don. In the first week of April 2018, Aston Group has also started operating 4 handymax dry bulk carriers.
Greek shipowner and operator Arista Group’s affiliate Forward Maritime signed LOI (Letter of Intent) with Jiangsu Yangzijiang Shipbuilding to construct the world’s first truly LNG-powered ships. The world’s first truly LNG-powered ships 84K DWT kamsarmax dry bulk carriers are described as Forward Bulker 84-LNG.
Greek shipowner and operator Vita Management controlled 2001 built panamax dry bulk carrier 74K DWT MV Vitaspirit smashed into historical mansion at the Bosphorus during her Istanbul Strait passage on 7 March 2018. No injuries or pollution have been reported. Fortuitously, an expensive historical mansion was not occupied during the incident. Half of the waterside of the historical mansion was devastated. Authorities closed the Bosphorus Strait traffic for north and southbound after the terrible accident. Malta-flagged MV Vitaspirit was carrying 62K barley cargo from Russia to Saudi Arabia.
Indonesian government determined to postpone new cabotage limitations on coal shipping until 2020. In early 2018, the Indonesian government proposed to limit shipments of coal to Indonesian-flagged ships. However, cabotage restrictions postponed after tremendous objections from coal producers and shipowners. Indonesian Coal Mining Association is eager to assist Indonesian new cabotage regulations if national shipping companies are available. Moreover, Indonesian new cabotage regulations will also affect palm oil cargoes.
China imports approximately 40% of its soybean from the USA. Soybean trade accounts for 5% of total dry bulk ton-mile demand. If South American soybean farmers are able to fill the gap, 5% of total dry bulk ton-mile disappear could be negligible. The US-China trade war timing is terrible for the weak dry bulk shipping market. Tariffs also affect dry bulk shipping companies’ stocks.
Analyst Clinton Webb at AXIA Capital Markets released dry cargo rate forecasts for 2018 and 2019. According to analyst Clinton Webb demand will continue to outpace supply growth and that will trigger capesize, panamax and supramax dry bulk carrier rates. Analyst Clinton Webb believes that 2017 was just the first part of a dry bulk market recovery. AXIA Capital Markets’ report explains that in Q1 2018 dry bulk shares have been flat due to new building deliveries and Chinese New Year. Analyst Clinton Webb at AXIA Capital Markets raised its dry cargo rate forecasts by 20% on average for 2018. Analyst expects the upward trend to continue in 2019 due to the current order-book-to-fleet ratio at 9.6%.
Two multipurpose (MPP) and heavy-lift sector giants American Intermarine and German Zeaborn Shipping is in probable consolidation discussions in order to design multipurpose (MPP) company. Intermarine and Zeaborn Shipping are contemporary competitors in the multipurpose sector. Intermarine and Zeaborn Shipping plans to team up, consolidate and grow in the multipurpose (MPP) sector. Currently, multipurpose (MPP) sector top-two players in the heavy-lift sector by deadweight are Cosco Shipping and BBC Chartering respectively. Intermarine and Zeaborn Shipping merger as Zeamarine would be the third-largest player. In 2017, German Zeaborn Shipping acquired operations of Rickmers Linie. In 2018, German Zeaborn Shipping acquired ER Schiffahrt and its shipbroker arm Harper Petersen & Co.
Chinese shipowners have the greatest share with 21 million DWT of dry bulk carriers. Brazilian iron ore giant Vale’s 39 VLOC (Very Large Ore Carrier) newbuilding project is prolonging China’s rising prominence in the dry bulk market. Chinese shipowners’ fleet overall number is increased to 145 million DWT. China is the third-largest bulk carrier shipowner nation behind Greece and Japan. In 2018, Chinese shipowners control 18% of the global dry bulk fleet. In 2008. Chinese shipowners were controlling barely 7% of the global dry bulk fleet.
Briese Schiffahrts controlled MV BBC Neptune collided with Delphis’ container ship MV Delphis Gdansk off Denmark. Both ships MV BBC Neptune and MV Delphis Gdansk have been damaged but no injuries and no pollution has been reported.
Donald Trump is proposing to impose tariffs on $60 billion worth of goods shipped from China. Last year, the USA imported goods around $375 billion more than it exports. Trade war is launching new uncertainties in the world economy. Shipping market stocks were amidst those influenced by potential reciprocity. The largest parts of the USA and China trade are in containerized goods. On the other hand, soybeans remain the second-largest US export to China. Soybean is a major cargo in the dry bulk trade from the USA to China and most apparently will be affected by presumable tariffs and trade wars.
Chinese shipowner and operator Zhejiang Xin Yi Hai Shipping bought six (6) small dry bulk carriers. Before this acquisition Zhejiang Xin Yi Hai Shipping had a fleet of ten (10) dry bulk carriers. Zhejiang Xin Yi Hai Shipping is part of Zhejiang Shipping Group.
Indonesian Asian Bulk Logistics (ABL) is plotting to enter into the dry bulk sector. Asian Bulk Logistics (ABL) is financing in cargo transfer ships and barges. Presently, Jakarta-based Asian Bulk Logistics (ABL) is endeavoring to establish a dry bulk shipping fleet. Asian Bulk Logistics (ABL) aims to develop a ship owning and logistics company. Currently, the Indonesian government restricted coal trade to domestic ships.
President Donald Trump declared raising tariffs 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum. There would be a possible retaliation from China, Europe, and Canada for the US tariffs. Dry bulk shipowners have been following the US tariffs’ repercussions. USA president Donald Trump wants to protect domestic steel and aluminum producers.
Russia’s State Transport Leasing Company (STLC) subsidiary GTLK Europe is opening an office in Ireland. Russian GTLK Europe is going to control aircraft and shipping assets worth more than $1.5 billion.
Fujian Mawei Shipbuilding published that Dubai’s Marine Assets Corporation (MAC) has missed an installment of $18 million on a new mining ship in China. Mining ship is due to be delivered at the end of 2018 and will be chartered out to Canada-listed Nautilus Minerals for 5 years. Mining ship MAC Goliath construction has been almost completed. Canada-listed Nautilus Minerals requires MAC Goliath for the Solawara gold and copper mining project off Papua New Guinea.
Italian tanker and bulk carrier shipowner Rizzo Bottiglieri De Carlini Armatori (RBD Armatori) has declared bankruptcy. Italian judge in the court of Naples, Italy decided for bankruptcy. Rizzo Bottiglieri De Carlini Armatori (RBD Armatori) has failed to reach a settlement with mortgagers. In 2017, Pillarstone acquired a debt of $674 million from Italian banks owned by Rizzo Bottiglieri De Carlini Armatori (RBD Armatori). Pillarstone will now possibly chase the ships managed by Rizzo Bottiglieri De Carlini Armatori (RBD Armatori). Italian tanker and bulk carrier shipowner Rizzo Bottiglieri De Carlini Armatori (RBD Armatori) has a debt of around $1 billion. Rizzo Bottiglieri De Carlini Armatori (RBD Armatori) a fleet of 6 tankers and 7 dry bulk carriers. In 2012, compatriot Italian shipowner Deiulemar was also hit by the bankruptcy.
Dry bulk charterers are looking to keep or increase period and time-charter coverage for capesizes in 2018 after the extreme volatility in spot freight rates seen in 2017. Charter coverage demand comes as the capesize markets fall below the record highs seen in Q4 2017 and as forward rate expectations also weaken. Dry bulk shipowners are said to be holding out for better rates on expectations of a tighter capesize market in 2018. Main dry bulk charterers and operators Oldendorff Carriers, Cargill, SwissMarine, and Koch Shipping are keeping existing chartered in tonnages and potentially entering new charter deals. In December 2017, one-year period rates for capesizes were $18,600 per day are on the rise. For example, giant iron ore producer and one of the biggest dry bulk charterer Rio Tinto took Zodiac Maritime’s 2016 built capesize 179K DWT MV Buccleuch for a year at $20,000 per day. Cargill Ocean Transportation chartered in 2007 built capesize dry bulk carrier 178K DWT MV Pontotriton and 2011 built capesize dry bulk carrier 180K DWT MV New Shanghai at floating rates linked to the BCI (Baltic Exchange’s Capesize Index). 2017 was one of the most volatile years for spot capesize rates, which swung between $4,600 per day and $30,500 per day. Volatility continued into the new year of 2018. This volatility triggered to more demand for long-term charter coverage. Capesize operators would like to charter in more tonnage but shipowners are greedy and reluctant to fix at today’s low levels. Capesize spot rates are at $16,600 per day ahead of the seasonal slowdown due to the Chinese New Year. Baltic Exchange’s Forward Freight Assessment (FFA) for capesizes dry bulk carriers at $17,150 per day for 2018. FFA market does not fully reflect better fundamentals in the dry bulk market. After the end of the Chinese New Year (February 16) steel mills are expected to increase production again and so spot rates to strengthen again by March 2018. Furthermore, China’s construction activity should also grow in May 2018. There is going to be a supply deficit in 2018 due to capesize order-book stands at between 10 and 15 dry bulk carriers in 2018 which is creating further tightening of supply. Capesize dry bulk carriers should reach $25,000 per day levels by the beginning of Q3 2018.
Nova Marine Carriers’ 1992 built cement carrier 9K DWT MV NACC Valbella was attacked by Somali pirates on 21 January 2018. MV NACC Valbella was passing through the Gulf of Aden and was destined to Cebu, Philippines. MV NACC Valbella was attacked by pirates at 100 miles southeast of Mukalla. Special Anti Piracy Unit (SAPU) was onboard of the MV NACC Valbella fired warning shots and pirates escaped. MV NACC Valbella’s crew are reported as safe.
Norwegian tycoon John Fredriksen’s private company Seatankers Group has ordered four 82K DWT kamsarmax dry bulk carries at Chinese Shipyard Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co (DSIC) around $25 million each. Seatankers Group also plotting to order up to four kamsarmax dry bulk carriers at another Chinese Shipyard Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry. John Fredriksen’s private company Seatankers Group paid a total of $650 million.
In 2017, Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co (DSIC) and Shanhaiguan Shipbuilding Industry merged. Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co (DSIC) is going to construct Seatankers Group’s kamsarmax dry bulk carriers according to the old NOx IMO (International Maritime Organization) Tier II emission standards.
Seatankers Group has also ordered firm four newcastlemax dry bulk carriers with two options at New Times Shipbuilding. Norwegian tycoon John Fredriksen’s private Seatankers Group has a fleet of 16 dry bulk carriers and 2 aframax tankers.
Bankrupted Italian shipowner and operator RBD Armatori’s 2010 built panamax dry bulk carrier 87K DWT MV RBD Italia has been detained in Malaysia after authorities accused it of anchoring illegally. Malaysia Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) quoted that MV RBD Italia anchored without the necessary documents.
Japanese shipowner and operator Meiji Shipping Group is expecting to report a $17 million profit in 2017. This profit will be 64% higher than previous predictions. Meiji Shipping Group owns and operates bulk carriers, VLCCs, VLGCs, MRs, PCTCs, and containerships.
IMO’s (International Maritime Organization) global sulphur cap will begin in 2020 but the adoption of scrubbers in ships remains low. As of December 1, 2017 just 240 ships have been installed scrubbers according to Clarkson Research Services (CRS). Passenger vessels make up almost half of these ships comprising 57 ro-ros, as well as 62 cruise and ferry units have been installed scrubbers. Meanwhile, just 25 gas carriers and 23 tankers also ready for IMO’s (International Maritime Organization) global sulphur cap will begin in 2020. Shipowners currently have a number of compliance options to meet the IMO requirements: low sulphur petroleum-based fuels such as marine gas oil (MGO), fuels with a low sulphur content such as LNG, or a scrubber system to ‘clean’ SOx particles from the ship’s exhaust gases. Scrubber-fitted new building fleet looks set to accelerate in the near future. Many shipowners appearing to adopt a ‘wait and see’ policy. Shipowners are reluctant to install scrubber systems due to high installation costs. Besides, dual-fuel LNG engines, leading shipowners to remain cautious about installing scrubber systems.
World’s largest ore transshipment ship 1993 built 280K MV Ore Fabrica was sold to India scrapyard for around $19 million by Vale. MV Ore Fabrica was employed in Subic Bay, the Philippines for transhipments of iron ore. Valemax bulk carriers were outlawed to discharge at Chinese ports.
Maritime Port Authority (MPA) of Singapore has invested around $9 million for the construction of new LNG bunker vessels (LBVs) to facilitate the construction of ship-to-ship LNG bunkering in Singapore Port. Singapore, as the world’s most comprehensive bunkering hub. Financed firms by Singapore Maritime Port Authority (MPA): Keppel SMIT Towage, Maju Maritime, Harley Marine Asia, Sinanju Tankers, and PSA Marine.
German shipowner and operator Reederei Roth sold 2000 built panamax dry bullk carrier 72K DWT MV Silver One for around $8 million to Chinese shipowners. In 2003, GReederei Roth acquired MV Silver One for around $20 million. Reederei Roth is managed by Torsten Meier.
MV Koza’s 13 crew members have been safely rescued from a listing ship that sent a distress signal 100 miles south of Freetown, Sierra Leone on 7 December 2017. 2004 built 9K DWT MV Koza’s captain announced a puncture in the engine room and the crew prepared to abandon ship. MV Koza is operated by Burtrans, Turkey.
Former Hangin Shipping CEO was imprisoned for 18-months for insider trading. Choi Eun-young was accused of trading off her family’s stock in the Hangin Shipping just before it filed for a court-led restructuring in 2016.
Indian shipowner and operator West Asia Maritime sold 1984 built handymax dry bulk carrier 41K DWT MV Gem of Paradip to a Bangladesh scrapyard for 396 per ldt (lightweight displacement tonne) i.e. $3 million.
Bankrupted German shipowner and operator Bertram Rickmers is behind six (6) new-building containership orders in a Chinese Fujian Mawei Shipbuilding. Rickmers Holding filed for bankruptcy. Bertram Rickmers is restoring fleet with his own capital. German Bertram Rickmers’ new company is called Asian Spirit Steamship Co.
Arrested 2011 built handy bulk carrier 35K DWT MV Trading Fabrizia which has been lying in Kingston, Jamaica since 2016, will be sold at auction. Italian dry bulk carrier MV Trading Fabrizia has been left in Kingston, Jamaica.
Norwegian shipowner and operator Fonnes Shipping sold 1993 built coaster size dry bulk carrier 2.3K DWT MV Bon Vivant (ex MV Vestfjord) to Latvian shipowner Bon Vivant SIA.
UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) is examining ECDIS (Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems) of 2008 built coaster dry carrier 5K DWT MV Muros. MV Muros grounded on the coast of England. Numerous different grounding events might be caused by ECDIS (Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems).
Congo-based Lignes Maritimes Congolaises (LMC) chartered in 2011 built multipurpose MPP 8K DWT MV Thorco Reef from Thorco Shipping. Lignes Maritimes Congolaises (LMC) is projecting to develop business in West Africa. Broekman Logistics chartered in MV Thorco Reef on behalf of Lignes Maritimes Congolaises (LMC) which has been serving as an agent since 1975.
Around 13,500 vessels transited the expanded Panama Canal between October 2016 and September 2017. Containerships are the most general transitting vessel that is followed by tankers, bulk carriers respectively.
Orest Alexandrovich Sychenikov died in Russia. Under Orest Alexandrovich Sychenikov’s administration, Novorossiysk Shipping Co (Novoship) became a tanker market leader. In 2007, Novorossiysk Shipping Co (Novoship) was taken over by Sovcomflot (SCF). Orest Alexandrovich Sychenikov (1922-2017) advanced Russia’s port and shipyard infrastructure.
Dubai based shipowner and operator Emerald Shipping controlled 2010 built supramax dry bulk carrier 57K DWT MV Emerald Star sank in the Philippines Sea on 12 October 2017. Two (2) crewmembers have been missing. MV Emerald Star was carrying nickel ore cargo from Indonesia. Densa Shipping’s 2011 built cape size dry bulk carrier 180K MV Densa Cobra rescued 15 crew members of MV Emerald Star. Shagang Steel chartered in MV Emerald Star.
Bangladeshi shipowner and operator Meghna Group bought 2006 built supramax dry bulk carrier 56K DWT MV Santa Phoenix for around $12 million from Sanzo Enterprise of Japan. In 2016, Dakha based shipowner and operator Meghna Group bought sister ship 2006 built supramax dry bulk carrier MV Fleet Phoenix for around $9 million. In March 2017, Bangladeshi shipowner and operator Meghna Group bought MV Honest Spring. In May 2017, Bangladeshi shipowner and operator Meghna Group bought MV Marjatta P. Meghna Group has a fleet of 7 dry bulk carriers and 14 small tankers.
Greek tanker owner and operator Atlas Maritime signifies returning to the dry bulk sector after ten years. Greek shipowner Leon Patitsas led Atlas Maritime acquired kamsarmax dry bulk carrier. Atlas Maritime exited the dry bulk sector in 2007.
Turkey-based Karadeniz Powership sold 1996 built 109K DWT MT Karadeniz Powership Esra Sultan for around $7.5 million to Bangladesh scrapyard. In 2016, Karadeniz Powership bought MT Karadeniz Powership Esra Sultan (ex OBO MT SKS Tana) for around $7 million. In April 2017, Karadeniz Powership sold 1997 built 109K DWT MT Karadeniz Powership Yurdanur Sultan to Bangladesh scrapyard for around $7 million. In 2014, Karadeniz Powership bought MT Karadeniz Powership Yurdanur Sultan for around $15 million.
Corpus Christi Port Authority has been evaluating the devastation after Hurricane Harvey cleared through an area north of the port. Corpus Christi Port Authority will control the bottom of the channel as silt may be accumulated at the entrance at La Quinta. Currently, United States Coast Guards (USCG) prohibits vessels from Houston to Corpus Christi.
Four well-armed pirates boarded in 2008 built handysize dry bulk carrier 33K DWT MV Star Lily in Straits of Malacca off Singapore. MV Star Lily’s crewmembers activated anti-piracy devices on board. Pirates escaped and no crewmembers were injured.
US Navy destroyer USS John S McCain collided with Brave Maritime’s 50K DWT MT Alnic MC off Singapore. Search and rescue efforts continued with local Singapore authorities.
MV Spring Sky’s captain was airlifted by The US Coast Guard (USCG). 2014 built ultramax bulk carrier 61K DWT MV Spring Sky’s captain became sick and was airlifted 200 miles off Port Canaveral.
Erasmus Shipinvest will control three (3) capesize dry bulk carriers owned by Chinese Minsheng Trust. Erasmus Shipinvest will control 2004 built 175K DWT MV Msxt Vivienne, 2012 built 180K DWT MV Msxt Capella, and 2010 built 178K DWT MV Msxt Trinity. Furthermore, Erasmus Shipinvest will take technical and commercial management of 2009 built panamax dry bulk carrier 77K DWT MV Agri Kinsale (ex M/V Santa Celia). Currently, Erasmus Shipinvest is operating 16 dry bulk carriers.
German shipping lender HSH Nordbank sold a $570 million bond. HSH Nordbank commenced the privatization period. HSH Nordbank has been striving with outstanding shipping loans.
Singapore Court manager Yit Chee Wah scraps deal to transfer Mercator Lines’ Singapore stock exchange listing to Nickolaos Mitropoulous and Dimitrios Podaridis. Currently, Mercator Lines’s shares are suspended and the Mercator Lines fleet was sold to repay mortgages.
Sovcomflot (SCF) asked Russian administrators for enhanced Arctic navigation. Sovcomflot (SCF) requires substandard vessels to be forbidden from the Northern Sea Route (NSR). Sovcomflot (SCF) demanding a prohibition on substandard vessels and crews sailing in the Arctic region. Sovcomflot (SCF) shuttle tankers started year-round oil shipments from Novy Port at the beginning of 2017 and Yamal LNG is expected to come onstream in late 2017. Sovcomflot’s (SCF) new-generation vessels for Arctic trade are scheduled for delivery in 2018.
Swedish Alfa Laval Pure Ballast System gains agreement for ballast treatment equipment in the USA. Alfa Laval Pure Ballast System gained an order to retrofit up to 53 ships for US Coast Guard’s standard endorsement for ships steaming in US waters. In the USA, The Ballast Water Management Convention enters into force on 8 September 2017. IMO (International Maritime Organisation) has been attempting to delay the deadline for installing ballast water treatment equipment.
Shipowner and operator Wagenborg controlled 2010 built 14K DWT MV Flevobor grounded in Canada. MV Flevobor’s main engines stopped in St Lawrence. was carrying maize. MV Flevobor was refloated by tugs.
Ecuadorian police detained 25 crew members in 1996 built handysize bulk carrier 27K DWT MV Kraken I. The ship was transporting 5 tonnes of cocaine and controlled by Marshall Islands-registered Dellwood Marine.
Founder of Parakou Shipping CC Liu has passed away. Currently, Parakou Shipping has a fleet of 20 dry bulk carriers and tankers. In 1971, CC Liu began working for Ocean Tramping. Eventually, CC Liu acquired Parakou Shipping from a law firm in 1985.
Chinese Fred Cheng led shipowner and operator Shinyo International acquired two (2) capesize and one (1) panamax dry bulk carriers for around $45 million from distressed Shanghai-based Zhong An Shipping Co. Zhong An Shipping Co is led by Shi Kaicheng. 2003 built capesize dry bulk carrier 177K DWT MV Lin Jie, 2011 built panamax dry bulk carrier 79K DWT MV King Peace and 2002 built 177K DWT MV King Sail.
One of the largest shipping lender Deutsche Bank cut credit impairments by 56% in Q1 2017. German shipping lender Deutsche Bank’s revenues improved due to improved production in the metals, mining, oil, and gas portfolios. Chinese HNA Group owns a stake of 10% in Deutsche Bank.
Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKSE) listed Courage Marine canceled the sale of bulk carrier in order to sustain company listing at Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKSE). Courage Marine will be removed from Hong Kong Stock Exchange listing if the shipowner sells the last ship in the fleet. Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKSE) denounced that Courage Marine would not have satisfactory assets. In February 2017, Courage Marine agreed to sell a 2011 supramax dry bulk carrier 57K DWT MV Zorina for around $7 million. Courage Marine has been communicating with the buyer for permissible termination of the ship sale.
Egypt based Nejem Co Marine managed 1977 built livestock carrier MV Youzar Sif H collided with Russian warship near in the Black Sea off Turkey. Russian warship sank shortly after suffering a hole in the hull.
Singapore is honored as the world’s top maritime city. Singapore is followed by Hamburg, Oslo, Shanghai, and London. Singapore has a large, sophisticated shipping community, world-class services, and a solid, convenient political environment.
Taiwanese dry bulk shipowner and operator Sincere Navigation reported a weaker profit for 2016.
New York-based investment bank Stifel Financial Corp. alerts about the latest dry bulk market rise. The dry bulk market has recovered sooner than anticipated. Dry bulk carriers secondhand prices approximating newbuilding prices. Therefore, shipowners will unavoidably start ordering new vessels.
Jacques de Chateauvieux led Setaf Saget has sold 2010 built supramax dry bulk carriers 58K DWT MV JS Bandol and MV JS Pomerol for total $24 million.
Italian shipowner and operator RBD Armatori sold three (3) panamax bulk carriers: 1999 built 75K DWT MV Giovanni Battista Bottiglieri, 1999 built 75K DWT MB Grazia Bottiglieri, and 2001 built 75K DWT MV Orsolina Bottiglieri.
is sold to Tianjin Dongjiang Shipping Co for $4.37 million. 1999 built 75K DWT M/B Grazia Bottiglieri is sold for $5.1 million for further trading. 2001 built 75K DWT M/V Orsolina Bottiglieri is sold to Ausbulk Pte for $6.5 million.
2015 built panamax dry bulk carrier 81K DWT MV Key Opushas saved the life of a Polish yachtsman on the coast of New Zealand. MV Key Opushas ballasted two (2) days under severe weather conditions and saved the life of yachtsman en-route to Chile.
Singapore became an LNG-capable bunkering port that will serve truck-to-ship LNG bunkering to ships. Singapore commenced the LNG Truck filling equipment at the SLNG Terminal.
Chinese conglomerate shipowner and operator HNA Group offered $1 billion to take over Singapore based logistics company CWT. Furthermore, HNA Group also offered $775 million to acquire majority stake in Glencore’s PPSL business.
2013 built small coaster size dry bulk carrier 3K DWT MV Star 62 destroyed three (3) houses along the Cha River in Thailand due to steering system malfunction. Vietnamese M/V Star 62 is operated by Hung Hung Trade & Transport.
The first license is granted to export Indonesian nickel ore cargo. Aneka Tambang is granted a license to export up to 12 million tons of nickel ore in 2017. Due to liquefaction, 81 seafarers lost their lives between 2010-2013 while shipping nickel ore from Indonesia to China. Indonesian nickel ore is the world’s most dangerous cargo to ship however there is robust demand from China.
Indonesian shipowner and operator Samudera Shipping intends to dispose of 6 uneconomical vintage ships. Samudera Shipping’s earnings dropped to $260 million due to bankrupted Korean shipowner Hanjin Shipping. Currently, Samudera Shipping has a fleet of 37 container ships, tankers, and bulker carriers.
Turkish shipowner and operator Glamour Maritime’s arrested 1985 built handysize bulk carrier 34K DWT MV Infinity will go to public auction in India. Glamour Maritime’s bulk carrier was arrested by mortgager ING Bank and bunker supplier OW Bunker.
Chinese Communist Government ordered coal traders to reject North Korean fully laden ships to discharge in Chinese ports after North Korea tested missiles. Chinese Communist Government distributed official orders to coal traders to block coal from North Korea.
Ohio USA based Interlake Steamship outfitted exhaust gas scrubbers to fit IMO low sulphur 0.5% conditions in January 2020. Exhaust gas scrubbers installed on 1977 built laker ship 61K DWT MV Mesabi Miner and 1981 built 69K DWT Paul Tregurtha.
Singapore listed Rickmers Maritime Trust (RMT) will not be able to cope with challenging market conditions and the company will be terminated. Rickmers Maritime Trust (RMT) can not deal with moneylenders to restructure its debt. Moreover, Rickmers Maritime Trust (RMT) can not raise new equity to resume its services.
Till February 2018, Panama Canal Authority booked more than 60 LNG ships from the enlarged Panama canal. Since the new Panama Canal opening in 2016, more than 100 LNG ships passed.
On 8 April 2017, Oldstone Ship Management’s 1999 built handysize dry bulk carrier 35K DWT MV OS 35 was attacked by pirates off Somalia. M/V OS 35 was en-route to Aden from Malaysia. Pirates had obviously escaped before the navy operation.
German Federal Bureau of Marine Casualty Investigation (BSU) remarked that in December 2015, MV BBC Maple Lea grounded Lake Saint-Louis, Canada due to speed. After grounding, 2007 built 12K DWT MV BBC Maple Lea refloated the next day. Inspectors indicted excessive speed caused the incident.
International Maritime Organization (IMO) adopted the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships (Hong Kong Convention) is signed by Turkey. This moves the Hong Kong Convention a bit closer towards entering into force. Turkey’s ratification is unlikely to shift local shipbreakers’ focus away from complying with a separate set of rules adopted by the European Union (EU). EU-flagged ships have been Turkey’s main source of scrapping business. Other maritime nations signed and ratified Hong Kong Convention are Panama, Norway, France, Belgium, and Congo. According to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) at least 15 countries must ratify the Hong Kong Convention before it can enter into force. Shipbreakers in Turkey craves to captivate EU-flagged tonnage as a green ship demolition destination.
Greek tycoon George Economou led Cardiff Marine bought kamsarmax newbuilding 81K DWT MV BSI Lennox from Berkeley Shipping for around $26 million. MV BSI Lenno will be delivered in June 2017 from Hudong Zhonghua Shipbuilding. In December 2016, Malta-based Berkeley Shipping sold the sistership MV BSI Cadogan for around $20 million.
Dry bulk carriers demolition prices struck $400 per ldt (lightweight displacement tonnage) which would indicate an entire improvement in the demolition market. Recycling market prices utterly sustains as capesize demolition sales struck the $400per ldt (lightweight displacement tonnage). Because of the dry bulk market spike last week, demolition nominees decreased. The latest dry bulk market increase in freight and period charter rates affected secondhand, new building, and now increased demolition prices.
One of the greatest shipping lender ABN AMRO decreases down credits due to tonnage oversupply. ABN AMRO favors not to finance new shipbuilding orders that conclusively affect stability. Oversupply has been a well-known bar on shipping cycle rehabilitations. ABN AMRO decided not to finance any ships even with charter backed contracts. Netherlands based shipping lender ABN AMRO intends to prevent speculative tonnage. ABN With a $12 billion shipping portfolio, ABN AMRO is the third biggest ship lender after Nord/LB $18 billion and DNB $13 billion.
Greenship Bulk Trust sold 5 ultramax bulk carriers for around $17 million each. Crown-63 type ultramax bulk carriers were financed by DVB Bank and HSH Nordbank.
Greenship Bulk Trust’s five ultramax dry bulk carriers were
German HSH Nordbank reported a loss of around EUR 2 billion due to complications in shipping markets. Shipping NPE (Non-Performing Exposure) constituted EUR 9 billion. HSH Nordbank contracted a few contracts with blue-chip international shipping companies. HSH Nordbank shipping portfolio covers more than 1,300 ships.
2000 built multipurpose (MMP) sister ships 8K DWT MV Lady Gloria and MV Lady Gaia were put up for auction by a court. Bankrupt Italian shipowner Navemar was established in 2003.
2010 built small coaster dry bulk cargo ship 3K DWT MV Hai Thanh 26-BLC sank off Vung Tao City. 2 crew members were rescued by another ship and 9 crew members are missing. MV Hai Thanh 26-BLC was carrying clinker cargo and operated by Phuong Thinh Trading.
Dry bulk shipping tycoon George Economou’s Ocean Rig has filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 15 of the US Bankruptcy Code due to $3.69 billion debts and a lengthy drillship market downturn. Dry bulk shipping magnate George Economou’s Ocean Rig has reached a settlement with mortgagers expressing over 72% of its $3.69 billion debt for a financial restructuring. George Economou explained that Ocean Rig will rise as a more powerful corporation after Chapter 15. New York-listed Ocean Rig operations will proceed as usual.
Chinese shipowner and operator Globe Marine sold 1999 built handymax dry bulk carrier 45K DWT MV Seawing 3 for around $4.5 million. Chinese shipowner and operator Tosco Shipping sold 1997 built handy bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Alice to another for around $3 million.
Korea Maritime Transport Co (KMTC) is exiting dry bulk market by selling its last bulk carrier 2003 built supramax bulk carrier 52K MV KMTC Challenge (ex M/V New Navigation) for $6 around million. In 2011, Korea Maritime Transport Co (KMTC) bought MV KMTC Challenge (ex M/V New Navigation) from another Korean shipowner and operator Pan Ocean for around $23 million. Currently, Korea Maritime Transport Co (KMTC) is focusing on container ships and has a fleet of 21 container ships.
Russian based shipowner and operator Anship LLC ordered two (2) coaster size dry bulk carriers at United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) shipyard for around $17 million. Russian based shipowner and operator Anship LLC ordered Voga Don RSD 49-type coaster bulk carriers which are 140 meters long and can transit the Volga-Don Shipping Canal in Russia through the Caspian Sea. Voga Don RSD 49-type coaster bulk carriers are river type and seagoing ships.
United Ocean Group sold 2014 built panamax dry bulk carrier 81K MV United Prestige for around $22 million to Greek shipowner. Second-hand panamax bulk carriers’ prices increased. In July 2016 similar panamax dry bulk carrier 2014 built 82K MV Ocean Lord was sold for around $18 million.
Hong Kong-listed shipowner and operator Courage Marine sold its last supramax dry bulk carrier 2011 built 57K DWT MV Zorina for around $7 million to Universal Ship Investment Corp. After selling MV Zorina, Courage Marine will be repaying the bank loan for ships. In January 2016, Hong Kong-listed ship owner and operator Courage Marine raised around $12 million to use as general working capital. The preponderance shares of Hong Kong-listed Courage Marine is controlled by Paul Suen Cho Hung.
Tote Maritime’s US-flagged MV El Faro apparently experienced a cargo shift during Hurricane Joaquin in November 2015. Marine survey firm National Cargo Bureau’s chief Philip Anderson boosted attention regarding the lashing of moving cargo on MV El Faro. Cargo shift may have prompted the disturbance that sank MV El Faro.
German-based shipowner and operator Briese Schiffahrts operated 2008 built multipurpose (MPP) ship 6K DWT MV BBC Caribbean’s eight (8) crew members abducted off Nigeria. On 5 February 2017, MV BBC Caribbean was attacked by pirates. Pirates surrounded MV BBC Caribbean and kidnapped the crew members without using guns.
Korea Development Bank (KDB) has been collecting bids for ten (10) bulk carriers and containerships of collapsed Hanjin Shipping by 21 February 2017. Korea Development Bank (KDB) is attempting to rescue some of its loans. In 2016, Korean Woori Bank and EXIM Bank each sold off four (4) ships of Hanjin Shipping.
Otto Gregard Tidemand controlled Norwegian shipowner and operator Z Bulk filed for bankruptcy in Norway. Z Bulk was working with Canpotex of Canada. Z Bulk has been working with Canadian giant Canpotex for 20 years. Eastern Bulk Holdings’ company Eastern Bulk has provided Z Bulk significant capital for a solution. Nonetheless, Z Bulk has filed for bankruptcy.
Greek shipowner and operator Efploia Shipping Co. SA’s 2010 Korea built panamax dry bulk carrier 80K DWT MV Maverick Genesis will be auctioned on 31 January 2017. In 2007, M/V Maverick Genesis was ordered at the peak of the shipping market for $54 million. Credit Suisse has been trying to sell the ships for credit debts. In December 2016, MV Maverick Genesis sister ship MV Maverick Gunner was also sold at auction to Empire Bulkers for around $13 million. In November 2016, 2012 built panamax dry bulk carrier 83K DWT MV Maverick Guardian was sold at auction to Byzantine Maritime for around $15 million.
1991 North Korea built dry bulk carrier 9K DWT MV Chong Gen sank off Japan. MV Chong Gen’s 26 crew members picked up safely near Japan. MV Chong Gen sent distress signals on 11 January 2016 from the Goto Islands of Japan. MV Chong Gen was carrying about 5,000 tonnes of rice from North Korea to Wongsan. North Korean shipping company owns MV Chong Gen.
USA based shipowner and operator Probulk Carriers sued Eregli Shipping and Mr. Levent Karacelik for around $13 million unpaid arbitration award from 2013 against Marvel International Management and Transportation. Eregli Shipping has issued a denial of allegations that the Turkish company is an alter ego of vice-chairman Levent Karacelik’s Marvel International Management and Transportation.
Italian tanker and bulker owner Premuda SpA is in debt restructuring program with Pillarstone. Premuda SpA might be delisted from the Milan Stock Exchange. Private Equity company Pillarstone will be left as the largest shareholder of the shipowner Premuda SpA. Formerly, Premuda SpA controlled by the Duferco, Rosina family, and Generali Insurance. Currently, Italian shipowner Premuda SpA has debts around EUR 335 million. Enormous impairments are likely to wipe-out existing shareholders at Premuda SpA.
On 21 December 2016, 2005 built supramax dry bulk carrier 53K DWT MV Star Harmony grounded at Istanbul Bosporus Strait. MV Star Harmony was loaded with grain cargo. MV Star Harmony was heading from Odessa to Egypt. MV Star Harmony is managed by Greece based Dekoil.
Legendary Greek shipowners are going to flock towards the Portuguese ship registry over the next few weeks. Many renowned Greek shipowners have already accepted to participate in Portugal’s newly-founded International Shipowners’ Association (EISAP). Many Greek shipowners will shift to International Shipowners’ Association (EISAP). International Shipowners’ Association (EISAP) has offices in Hamburg and Rotterdam, Lisbon. International Shipowners’ Association (EISAP) which is established in 2013 has already had extraordinary progress in pulling shipowners, especially from Germany. Up to now, the International Shipowners’ Association (EISAP) has attracted around 300 ships under the Portuguese flag. Presently, Euromar is intending to replicate this success in Greece.
Argentine shipowner and operator Ultrapetrol bought a newbuilding kamsarmax dry bulk carrier while still considering a bankruptcy filing. Argentine shipowner and operator Ultrapetrol bought 2016 built 81K DWT MV BSI Cadogan from Malta-based Berkeley Shipping for around $20 million. 2016 built 81K DWT M/V BSI Cadogan was built at Chinese Shipyard Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group a sub-company of state-run China Shipbuilding Group Corp (CSSC). Argentine shipowner and operator Ultrapetrol have been focusing on its core business, river barge, and offshore fleets. In November 2016, Argentine shipowner and operator Ultrapetrol planned to put the river fleet into a pre-packaged Chapter 11 restructuring and would explore an out-of-court restructuring for its offshore supply vessels.
Dry bulk freight rates have been in the doldrums for eight years. Dry bulk shipping has grown up on the premise that world trade will increase that the trick to maintaining healthy earnings lies in keeping the supply equilibrium in check. Shipowners restraint in new orders, restraint in leveraging, restraint in keeping vintage tonnage trading, but shipowners actually over-order, shipowners love leverage, and vintage tonnage has been known to be a cash cow. Shipowners are subjected to repetitive and even conflicting vetting, inspections, surveying by a multitude of regulatory bodies, charterers, insurers, financiers, and others. Shipowners allowed to be manipulated by lesser groups with special interests. In the dry bulk shipping sector, if shipowners continue recycling this year at the pace of 2016 over the next 12 to 18 months and don’t shoot themselves in the foot with new orders, then even with the lackluster demand equation and scheduled deliveries, we should be poised for a return to a robust freight market in late 2017 and 2018.
New York-based Med Brokerage & Management Corp. is selling 2003 built supramax dry bulk carrier 53K DWT MV Besiktas M (ex MV Global Galaxy) for around $5.5 million. In 2015, Med Brokerage & Management Corp. bought the MV Besiktas M (ex MV Global Galaxy) for $8 million. New York-based Med Brokerage & Management Corp. co-operates with Turkey-based Iskenderun Ship Management which is listed with a fleet of 9 dry bulk carriers. Last year, Iskenderun Ship Management bought 2007 built supramax dry bulk carrier 55K DWT MV Deniz M (ex M/V Karaagac). Ibrahim Mazman is the owner of both Iskenderun Ship Management and Med Brokerage & Management Corp.
Desperate shipping markets have squeezed Greek shipping companies but big shipowners continue to get bigger. Smaller shipowners have been suffering for many months and have been forced to sell their ships. Large Greek shipowners are becoming larger as they take advantage of low ship prices. Greek shipowners fleet has expanded by 10% to 362 million DWT despite record scrapping in 2016. Greek shipping companies fleet number has increased to 5,230.
2000 built handymax bulk carrier 46K DWT MV Aurora Christine is sold for around $5 million. 1997 built handymax bulk carrier 46K DWT MV Baofeng is sold for around $2.5 million. 2009 built handy bulk carrier 21K DWT MV Qin Feng 180 is sold for around $4 million.
Greek shipowner and operator Adelfia Shipping has been rejecting rumors that the company is selling half of its fleet under order from debt lenders. Greek shipowner and operator Adelfia Shipping insists this is part of a reorganisation programme. Greek shipowner and operator Adelfia Shipping was founded in 1981. After these sales Greek shipowner and operator Adelfia Shipping fleet consist of with three ships: 2004 built panamax dry bulk carrier 76K DWT MV Agios Nikolas for about $36 million, 2002 built panamax dry bulk carrier 75K DWT MV Anna for about $34 million and 2005 built supramax dry bulk carrier 56K DWT MV Galini for $41 million.
Chinese shipowner and operator bought 2009 built handy bulk carrier MV Qin Feng 180 for around $4 million. Furthermore, Amsterdam based shipowner and operator Reederei Nord sold 2001 built panamax bulk carrier 75K DWT MV Nordems to Chinese shipowner for around $5 million.
MV Antaios’ 19 crew members safely picked up after fire 800 miles off Cape Town. 1999 built handy bulk carrier 27K DWT MV Antaios suffered flooding in its engine room after the blaze. MV Antaios was en route from Argentina to Saudi Arabia with a grain cargo. The fire caused some damage to MV Antaios which led to flooding in the engine room. When the flooding became uncontrollable, the captain of MV Antaios decided to make a distress call. In 2013, Greek owner and operator Amalthia Shipping bought MV Antaios for about $10 million from Ellora Sea Carriers.
Russian shipowner and operator Fesco Shipping has made less in the first 9 months of 2016 as tough shipping market conditions, lower time charter rates, and a general lack of demand for container ships. Russian shipowner and operator Fesco Shipping reported an operating profit of $30 million till Q3 2016. Russian shipowner and operator Fesco Shipping planning to sell shares.
The shipping outlook stays negative in 2017. Overcapacity in the shipping sector in 2017 putting pressure on freight rates and driving further consolidation and defaults. All segments will be under pressure but tanker shipping will face slightly less stress than dry bulk and container shipping. Funding is more critical for companies that are not able to cover their upcoming maturities. In 2017, shipping companies defaults are likely to be concentrated among companies with weak liquidity.
Irish shipowner and operator Arklow Shipping ordered four (4) 16K DWT small dry bulk carriers. Arklow Shipping has a fleet of 47 ships.
Chennai based shipowner and operator Sanmar Shipping sold 1985 built handymax bulk carrier 54K MV Sanmar Phoenix to demolition for about $4 million. MV Sanmar Phoenix was the last dry bulk carrier in Sanmar Shipping’s fleet. In August 2016, Chennai based shipowner and operator Sanmar Shipping sold 1996 built panamax bulk carrier 73K DWT MV Sanmar Paragon for demolition. After selling MV Sanmar Phoenix, Chennai based shipowner and operator Sanmar Shipping is temporarily exiting the dry bulk shipping market.
Korean financial institution sold 2010 built supramax bulk carriers 56K DWT MV CS Champ, MV CS Daisy, and MV CS Brave for $7 million each. Furthermore, 2011 built MV Jin Hai Xin was sold for around $8 million. MV Jin Hai Xin was built Jiangsu Yangzijiang Shipbuilding, China.
Greek shipowner and operator Rethymnis & Kulukundis (R&K) sold 2001 built handymax bulk carrier 45K DWT MV Star Capellafor for around $5 million. Greek shipowner and operator Rethymnis & Kulukundis (R&K) also owns a sistership 2002 built MV Star Canopus. After 16 years Rethymnis & Kulukundis (R&K) has started a new-building ship program.
Cyprus reunification would be a significant escalation to Cyprus’s shipping industry. Cyprus reunification would promote the country as an international ship-management hub. Cyprus reunification would have real strong consequences on shipping if Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders overcome Cyprus’s historical division. Cyprus has been divided since 1974 north as Turkish Cyprus and south as Greek Cyprus. A deal to reunify Cyprus would absolutely lead to an end of Turkey’s prohibit Cyprus-flagged vessels from calling at Turkish ports. Lifting maritime sanctions could bring a paramount boost and might double the size of Cyprus flagged ships. Cyprus’ open register was established in 1960 and has almost 2,000 registered vessels with a total tonnage exceeding 20 million DWT. Cyprus reunification deal could also produce benefits on the ship-management side, where Cyprus is already one of the world’s top ship-management hubs. Cyprus reunification could attract more numerous ship-managers, particularly from Turkey and shipowners that trade with Turkey.
Donald Trump is corresponding to the Iran nuclear treaty that was negotiated with the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia, and China. Donald Trump cautioned to shred the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreement. This might have a major impact on the Iranian shipping industry. Once again the US might restrict foreign shipowners from calling at Iranian ports or loading Iranian cargoes if shipowners want to continue trading to US ports. On the other hand, the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) and National Iranian Tanker Co (NITC) fleet renewal programmes might be crashed.
Donald Trump’s presidency could have significant impacts on the global shipping industry, especially in terms of foreign trade and security policy, the environment, and world trade. Donald Trump said he will pull the US out of a string of international deals, alliances, processes, and organizations. Currently, the United States is one of the largest single markets outside Europe for shipowners and a more isolationist USA will inevitably have consequences for shipping companies. Donal Trump’s statements about renegotiating existing trade deals and pulling the plug on processes such as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and ratifying the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) inescapably have effects for shipping companies.
Indian shipowner and operator Liberty Marine Syndicate went out of shipowning business with the sale of its single ship. Liberty Marine Syndicate sold 2003 built supramax bulk carrier 52K DWT MV Liberty Prudencia (ex MV New Orion) for around $6 million. In 2010Kolkata based shipowner and operator, Liberty Marine Syndicate acquired MV Liberty Prudencia (ex MV New Orion) for around $29 million from STX Pan Ocean.
In the second week of September 2016, Baltic Dry Index (BDI) punched through the 1,000-point mark and hitting highs not seen for nearly 2 years. Capesize rates at least have shown signs of life after a terrible year. Panamax rates have been on a steady upward trend helped by the recent rebound in Asian coal markets and seasonal demand from the US Gulf and Black Sea grain trades. Ship values at lows not seen since the 80s. 5-year-old capesize ships are now worth only around $24 million, panamax and supramax ships only $14 million to $15 million. Dry Bulk Shipping market’s recent rebound can be attributed to the usual seasonal bounce and shipping analysts believe the market is in for around another two years of poor freight rates as new deliveries and weak trade growth slows any rebound. In 2016, 44% of expected new dry bulk deliveries have been delayed which helped the market. Strong and bold shipowners who would be able to sustain at least another 18 months flat rates, then today looks like a good time to invest.
Capesize freight rates seem short-lived and were at the highest level since mid-2015. In November 2016, capesize freight rates saw spot earnings reached $16,000 per day. Capesize freight rates sparked due to higher commodity prices including iron ore, coking, steam coal, and following a reduction in Chinese stocks. Analysts expect spot rates of capesize bulk carriers to fall back below operating costs in the New Year essentially due to softer iron ore trade in Q1 2017 and more solid Chinese coal production has been narrowing coal import.
Indian Government’s commitment to ship recycling convention ratification which is provoked by compromises with Japan. India and Japan made the commitment to ratify the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships (HKC). Hong Kong International Convention requires the backing of nations representing a proportion of world shipbreaking capacity to enter into force. Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships (HKC)’s shortage of support of recycling nations like India was seen as a possible stumbling block. Indian Government’s ratification will be representing more than 50% of the level required. Japan is encouraging notable overseas development compensation to promote India’s recycling industry.
Italian shipowner and operator D’Amato sold 2011 built handy bulk carrier 35K DWT MV Trading Fabrizia to a Greek shipowner for about $10 million.
Japanese shipowner and operator Daiichi Chuo Kisen sold 2011 built handy bulk carrier 37K DWT MV Ocean Hawk for about $10 million.
Korean shipowner Hanjin Shipping’s tankers, bulkers, and containerships will be sold or refinanced. According to Sale-and-purchase (S&P) market sources $500 million worth ships under the control of 9 banks: Korea Exim Bank, Korea Development Bank (KDB), Woori Bank and Shinhan Financial Group and five European banks. While dry bulk sectors sentiment rising and shipowners eyeing specific candidates in collapsed Hanjin Shipping’s fleet, some lenders may opt to dispose of their tonnage. Around $16 million suggested by Sale-and-purchase (S&P) market players for eco-ship kamsarmax dry bulkers 2012 built 82K DWT MV Hanjin Port Kamsar, MV Hanjin Hadong, MV Hanjin Rosario, MV Hanjin Paradip. Around $19 million suggested by Sale-and-purchase (S&P) market players for capesize bulk carriers 179K MV N Fos (ex MV Hanjin Fos), MV Hanjin Rizhao, MV Hanjin Dangjin, MV Hanjin Esperance.
Bankrupt Taiwanese shipowner Today Makes Tomorrow (TMT) has lodged a lawsuit against JP Morgan Chase over allegations about wrongfully failing to turn over the Today Makes Tomorrow’s cash. US federal court in New York civil complaint alleges that Today Makes Tomorrow (TMT) has been unable to regain access to at least $5.2 million of deposits at Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) that were transferred to a JP Morgan account. In July 2007, Today Makes Tomorrow (TMT) deposited $5 million into the account and was transferred to a JP Morgan account for the benefit of Today Makes Tomorrow (TMT), according to legal papers filed by lawyers. New York-based lawyers say Today Makes Tomorrow (TMT) has demanded the return of the $5.2 million or, if it is no longer at the JP Morgan Bank, that JP Morgan provides information about its current location. Today Makes Tomorrow (TMT) also has asked for account statements for any cash held in the company’s name by JP Morgan.
Greek shipowner and operator Tri-Marine Shipping sold its last ship in fleet 2000 built panamax bulk carrier 75K DWT MV Capetan Tassos (ex M/V Amalia) for about $4.5 million to another Greek shipowner. In 2012, Tri-Marine Shipping bought MV Capetan Tassos (ex MV Amalia) for about $16 million. Greek shipowner and operator Tri-Marine Shipping sold 1997 built handymax bulk carrier 47K DWT MV Maria TL to a scrapyard for about $2 million.
Donald Trump is well-known antipathy towards trade deals and Iran sanctions may be eased. But the protection of domestic shipping under the Jones Act is expected to remain unchanged. Donald Trump protectionism on trade is more pronounced. Donald Trump’s victory also brings uncertainty to the domestic shipping policy. Donald Trump having a supportive secretary of transportation and maritime administrator is key for the health of the US-flag sector. Donald Trump’s stance on protecting US jobs and defense, the Jones Act is expected to be safe. Jones Act restricts shipping between US ports to vessels that are built-in domestic yards, crewed by Americans, and owned by a US company. Donald Trump campaign pledged to reduce the red tape and bureaucratic hurdles facing oil, natural gas, and coal projects in the US. This development potentially represents more cargoes for tankers and dry bulk ships heading out of the US, and may potentially represent a disruption of current trade flows as the US further reduces its dependence on seaborne oil from other countries. Donald Trump’s stance on fossil fuels could end up as a marginal plus for the US oil sector but it is far too early to draw any conclusions about what his victory will eventually mean to oil prices
Indian Sanmar Shipping sold 1996 built panamax bulk carrier 73K DWT MV Sanmar Paragon to Bangladesh scrapyard for about $3 million.
It is almost impossible for Korean Shipowner and Operator Hanjin Shipping to resurface despite it going under court protection. In the past some Korean dry bulk shipping companies that were protected by the court made a comeback and survive but Hanjin Shipping is a container operator and it will be difficult to come back. Shippers would not want to continue using a liner shipping company Hanjin Shipping that has collapsed. Liner operators like Hanjin Shipping operate differently from bulker operators because Liner operators have more customers, more ports to call and the volumes of cargoes vary. On
the bulker front, an embattled company can rely on long-term COA (contracts of affreightments)to turn things around. A containership company will have difficulty making freight income once it collapses. In 2015, Samsun Logix, Daebo International Shipping and
SW Shipping has also sought court receivership. Hanjin Shipping is the second liner company with Hyundai Merchant Marine and 5th largest Korean Shipping Company which was established in 1977.
Korean Hanjin Shipping filed for court receivership the first week of September 2016. Hanjin Shipping was set for a windup with assets returned to primary lenders, after state-owned secondary lender Korean Development Bank rejected the restructuring proposal devised by Morgan Stanley on the Korean Hanjin Shipping behalf. After the Korean Hanjin Shipping bankruptcy, 30 international banks are said to be exposed to the biggest lenders DVB Bank, ING Bank, DNB Bank, HSH Nordbank, Commerzbank, and Nord/LB. Unfortunately, these banks will have to take their ships back. Korean taxpayer will not support the shipping sector after all the problems with shipbuilding.
NewLead Holdings 2013 built handy bulk carrier 35K M/V NewLead Castellano sold at auction for $7.4 million. USA based MT Maritime Management’s (MTMM) dry bulk carrier arm Strategic Bulk Carriers SBC is the buyer of the vessel. After the auction, plaintiffs in two separate lawsuits that seized the handy dry bulk carrier are fighting over whether their cases should be combined now. DHL Project & Chartering has also filed a separate $14.3 million lawsuit.
Troubled Royal Bank of Scotland has more than $1.50 billion of dry bulk nonperforming loans in the shipping portfolio. According to the Royal Bank of Scotland, dry bulk has been mostly responsible for a near-trebling of the shipping loans and is considered to carry a 100% probability of default. Royal Bank of Scotland more than 15% of its current exposure to shipping debt around $8.7 billion. Royal Bank of Scotland is backed by the United Kingdom government. Royal Bank of Scotland attempted to sell all or parts of its shipping portfolio with help from investment bank Lazard. Royal Bank of Scotland’s current exposure of $8.7 billion, about $7.8 billion is assigned to new building vessels and shipyards.
Singapore based MSI sold 1998 built panamax bulk carrier 75K DWT MV Grand Sky to Chinese shipowners for about $3 million. Greek Kassian Maritime sold 1998 built panamax bulk carrier 75K DWT MV North Prince to Chinese shipowners for about $3.5 million. 1998 built panamax bulk carrier MV Jimei Funao (ex MV Jimei Funao) sold for about $2.5 million to Chinese shipowner Golden Hero Shipping. 1999 built 29K DWT handy bulk carrier MV Golden Lyderhom was sold to Chinese shipowners for about $3.5 million. Greek Sea Justice sold 1999 built panamax bulk carrier 73K MV Dong Jiang Li (ex MV Endless) to Chinese shipowners Tianjin Dong Shipping for about $3 million.
Greek Capital Management Services is trying to sell its last ship 1999 Japanese built panamax dry bulk carrier 74K DWT MV Salandi for around $3 million. MV Salandi is not due for a special survey (SS) until March 2019. Greek Capital Management Services is led by Leonidas Voyazides. In 2003, Capital Management Services acquired MV Salandi (ex MV World Rye) for about $20 million from BW Group. In 2014, Greek Capital Management Services the last ship sale was 1984 built handy bulk carrier 29K DWT MV Cleanthes for about $2.5 million.
Chinese shipowners and operators are showing an appetite for the late 1990s built panamax dry bulk carriers and vintage units. Last week, at least 6 panamax dry bulk carriers have been sold for trading, and 7 could soon follow.
Indian shipowner Mercator Line sold 2007 built panamax bulk carrier 74K MV Ganges (ex MV Gauri Prem) and 2001 built panamax bulk carrier 73K MV Yangtze (ex MV Prem Aparna).
Norwegian shipowner Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Skipsrederi sold eight (8) the 1990s built aframax 109K DWT Oil Bulk Ore (OBO) combined carriers. Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Skipsrederi sold 1996 built MV SKS Tyne and MV SKS Tana to Turkish shipowner Kardeniz Energy Group for $7 million each. Norwegian shipowner Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Skipsrederi is looking for ship buyers for other vessels for further trading.
Seoul based Hayne Shipping sold 1997 built panamax bulk carrier 73K DWT MV Evelyn Hayw for demolition in Bangladesh for about $3 million. In 2014, Korean shipowner Hayne Shipping bought MV Evelyn Hayw (ex MV Chang Sheng) for $7 million. Currently, Hayne Shipping has one more 1996 built handy bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Gloria Hayne in its fleet.
Norway DNB Bank is planning to appoint a new shipping chief for DNB Asia Ltd. Christos Tsakonas from Singapore, will take the position of current DNB Asia Ltd manager Vidar Andersen. DNB Asia Ltd has 15 employees in DNB Asia Ltd.
2010 built handy bulk carrier 27K DWT MV Qin Feng 318 was sold for about $2.7 million.
Japanese 1997 built handy bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Castle Island was sold for about $2 million. MV Castle Island is due for SS (special survey) in June 2017.
1997 built bulk carrier 18K DWT MV Moondy Bay sold at auction in Italy last week for about $1.8 million. Greek Antares Ship Management was the manager MV Moondy Bay. M/V Moondy Bay was arrested in December 2015 for financial debts and wages owing to crew members. Italian ship class RINA suspended the ship’s class in June 2015. Greek Antares Ship Management bought M/V Moondy Bay as M/V Bulk Sunset for about $4 million in 2013.
South Korean shipowner and operator Daebo International Shipping continues to reduce its fleet to two kamsarmax bulk carriers. Daebo International Shipping sold supramax 2007 built MV Maemi Pioneer for about $8 million. Daebo International Shipping has been under court protection since December 2015. In January 2016, Daebo International Shipping sold 2002 built 70K M/V Daebo Trader for about $5 million. In 2011, South Korean Daebo International Shipping owned a fleet of 11 bulkers which were acquired at the peak of the shipping market between 2007 and 2009. Daebo International Shipping was established in 1974 and operated a fleet of 35 vessels but currently having financial difficulties.
Singapore based cash ship buyer Wirana Shipping lost top legal advisor Shashank Agrawal. Shashank Agrawal will continue his career to assist shipowners for legal issues involving sale-and-purchase (S&P) and chartering activities. Shashank Agrawal decision might be triggered by the decline in the ship demolition market, due to the fall in demand for steel.
Greenship Bulk sold 2012 build supramax bulk carrier 63K DWT MV JS Meuse for around $12 million. In July 2016, Jacques de Chateauvieux led Greenship Bulk sold sistership supramax bulk carrier M/V JS Rhone for around $12 million. Norwegian Greenship Bulk has a fleet of 16 sister-ships which are operated by French Setaf-Saget.
Another lawsuit filed against 2012 built bulk carrier 25K DWT MV Bulk Rose which is still under arrest in India since last October. Indonesian marine supplier Gamarends has been claiming $55K against MV Bulk Rose. 2012 built bulk carrier 25K DWT MV Bulk Rose is owned by Turkey-based shipowner Deniz Endustrisi. Deniz Endustrisi might abandon the bulk carrier which has a market value of around $6 million. Indian Gujarat Maritime Board set to take under the hammer in the forthcoming weeks.
Netherlands based shipowner and operator Wagenborg sold 1996 built multipurpose (MPP) bulk carrier 9K DWT MV Keizersborg for about $2 million.
Lorentzen Skibs has been expanding its fleet with acquisitions of both dry bulk carriers and containerships in Q12016. Five (5) ships have been bought by KS (limited partnership) companies. Lorentzen Skibs has also bought 2002 built supramax bulk carrier 52K DWT MV Anna. Generally, CEO Nicolai E Lorentzen takes around a 20% stake in the company’s projects. Furthermore, Lorentzen Skibs will acquire three (3) supramax bulker carriers and two (2) containerships.
Oslo Shipbrokers in profit in 2015 despite the slowdown in the newbuilding market. Norwegian privately-owned shipbroker reported a pre-tax profit of $1.8 million in 2015. Oslo Shipbrokers CEO Paal J Norenberg finds the result satisfactory. Paal J Norenberg says that 2016 will be more challenging due to the late payment of commissions. CEO Paal J Norenberg holds 40% Of the shares in the Oslo Shipbrokers. Oslo Shipbrokers was set up in 1987 by 7 shipbrokers. Oslo Shipbrokers specializes in newbuilding and sale-and-purchase (S&P).
Pankaj Khanna led Pioneer Marine in a loss in Q2 2016. Pioneer Marine canceled two (2) new-buildings at Chinese Shipyard. Pioneer Marine. Pioneer Marine reported a loss of $6.7 million in Q2 2016 including cancellation fees at Chinese Yangzhou Guoyu Shipyard. Pioneer Marine looking for more opportunities in the second-hand market for bigger dry bulk carriers. Pioneer Marine total revenue dropped to $7.1 million due to time charter equivalent dropped to $5,070 per day.
Greek shipowner and operator Efploia Shipping’s 2010 built kamsarmax dry bulk carrier 81K MV Maverick Gunner was detained in Singapore due to unpaid services. In 2010, MV Maverick Gunner was built in the Korean STX Shipyard. Greek Shipowner Efploia Shipping has a fleet of modern three kamsarmax bulk carriers M/V Maverick Genesis, M/V Maverick Guardian, and M/V Maverick Gunner.
India Cements Ltd (ICL) sold 1983 built 41K DWT handymax bulk carrier MV Chennai Jayam to Bangladesh Scrapyard for $290 per ldt. In 2007, India Cements Ltd (ICL) bought MV Chennai Jayam (ex M/V Effy N) for $30 million from Greek Shipowner AM Nomikos. India Cements Ltd (ICL) fleet has 2001 built 52K DWT MV Chennai Selvam. India Cements Ltd (ICL) will focus on spot chartering ships to transport coal and limestone to India.
Thailand’s Wong Samut Navigation’s general cargo ship 1980 built 8K DWT MV Bangsrimuang was sold to Bangladesh ship scrapyards. Bangladesh Shipping Corp’s 1980 built 17K DWT MV Banglar Kallol was sold to Bangladesh ship scrapyards. GMZ Ship Management sold 1985 built handy bulk carrier 28K DWT MV Arwad Tower to Pakistan ship scrapyards. RK Shipping & Trading of Singapore’s sold 1990 built 7K DWT MV Jai Krishna to India ship scrapyards.
ACT Shipping started Indian Coastal Shipping with 1997 built handy dry bulk carrier 30K DWT M/V Propel Progress. Due to Indian Government initiatives to promote coastal shipping in India. In April, M/V Propel Progress loaded steel cargo at Paradip India and discharged at Mumbai India. In order to promote Indian Coastal Shipping, Mumbai port has reserved 2 berths exclusively for coastal ships besides a 40% discount on Port DAs.
NewLead Holdings’ 1990 built 135K DWT small capesize bulk carrier M/V NewLead Castellano was arrested off Savannah USA in April 2016. No detentions found and no crew wage complaints on M/V NewLead Castellano. USA based Ray is trying to recover $1.6 million it claims is due on $6 million in convertible promissory notes that it took in 2013 from Tiger Capital. NewLead Holdings is putting up $7 million in security to release M/V NewLead Castellano.
Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) orders worth close to $2.5bn at South Korean shipyards. Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) and Daewoo (DSME) top managers recently visited Iran in order to talk with Iranian leaders. Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) signed with Tehran officials for offshore vessels, mega-containerships and handysize bulkers. Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) has made an agreement with Hyundai Mipo Dockyard (HMD) to build 10 handysize products tankers and 6 handysize bulkers and 3 pieces 14,500 TEU containerships at Korean Shipyards. Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) sister company Iranian Offshore Oil Co ordering 5 jack-up rigs worth more than $200m each at Daewoo (DSME) Shipyard. Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) is in talks with medium-size Korean yard SPP Shipbuilding to convert 10 handysize bulker new-buildings into an equal number of medium-range (MR) tankers.
Due to higher iron and steel prices pushed upward trend in capesize bulk carrier spot rates in the first quarter of 2016, dry bulk shipping should remain cautious about speculative housing boom in China and economic growth signals. It is obvious that China’s housing boom is more speculative than substantial. Mostly, the housing boom and housing price gains inexpensive high rise buildings in big cities. In order to lower the steel demand, China’s government would tighten the credits. Steel prices almost entirely government-driven instead of market-driven demand. Underperforming loans in China are still a major economic risk. Furthermore, the Chinese economy is not growing steadily with consumers’ demand. China’s heavy industries and shipbuilding is another major problem. China’s socialist government might withdraw support for inefficient domestic miners that could trigger Brazilian and Australian iron ore imports. China’s coal imports also affect the dry bulk shipping market. Coal imports are in long-term decline due to the greater use of natural gas. Predicting that coal will continue to maintain a negative trend and so on dry bulk shipping. Chinese government’s agricultural policy is unclear. China has been the biggest consumer of surplus grain produced in the US and Europe. China’s government wants to favor domestic grain production. In sum, all these factors in commodities markets affect freight rates. The dry bulk shipping market will soon find a proper equilibrium point for demand and supply.
Oaktree Capital Management sold 2006 Chinese built handymax bulk carrier 50K DWT MV Neer for $3.6 million.
A maritime Law firm based in the USA, Vedder Price, move into Far East Singapore. Vedder Price New York partner Ji Woon Kim will lead the new setup and begin recruiting new staff in both maritime and aviation. Vedder Price has grown into the maritime sector as part of a geographical expansion from its home base of Chicago, USA. Vedder Price is active in transport, corporate, and employment law.
Troubled Indonesian shipowner and operator PT Meranti Bahari is losing control of handysize bulk carrier 27K DWT MV Kenanga which will be sold at public auction in Cape Town. MV Kenanga was arrested in January 2016 by STX Marine Services Co for outstanding ship management fees. Indonesian shipowner and operator PT Meranti Bahari operates 3 handysize and 3 panamax bulker carriers. Company’s many ships are under arrest while PT Meranti Bahari was seeking cash to settle debtor claims and crew wages. In December 2015, PT Meranti Bahari filed for bankruptcy protection to survive in Indonesia Jakarta Central Court in January 2016. PT Meranti Bahari was granted protection in Indonesia which is similar to a Chapter 11 filing in the US. PT Meranti Bahari’s other 1995 built panamax bulk carrier 75K DWT MV Kayu Ramin is under arrest in Dubai. PT Meranti Bahari’s 69K DWT MV Kayu Putih and 27K DWT MV Mahoni have been idle in China and waiting for enough money to undergo surveys and drydocking.
Seth Glickenhaus was a believer in the dry bulk shipping story that saw so many owners go public in New York between 2004 and 2007. Seth Glickenhaus was a link to the old days and old ways of Wall Street underpinned by experience that stretched back before the stock market crash of 1929. Seth Glickenhaus was a believer in the dry bulk sector and his dry bulk investments came in New York’s Eagle Bulk Shipping which he placed a $12 million order in 2006. The dry bulk shipping market is full of freshly-minted junior analysts who were new to shipping but Seth Glickenhaus was an experienced gentleman who was a macro guy who looked the world from a different perspective.
Greek Phoenix Energy Navigation sold its two oldest baby cape size bulk carriers to Indian shipowners. Korean Daewoo 2003 built baby cape size bulk carriers 104K DWT MV Phoenix Alpha and MV Phoenix Beta sold for $20 million each. Greek Phoenix Energy Navigation bought both bulk carriers in 2004 for $53 million each as M/V Finesse and M/V Felicity. In January 2016, Greek Phoenix Energy Navigation bought cape size bulk carrier built 2005 176K DWT MV Maritime Power (ex M/V Nord Power) from Dampskibsselskabet NORDEN A/S for $12 million.
Loss-making fixtures causing shipbrokers to work for a discount in a dry bulk market where both shipowners and shipbrokers would be suffering together. In the current depressing market, shipbrokers are still providing the same services and information as in a peak dry bulk market. Shipbrokers comment “fixture below operating expenses is better than no coverage at all”. The discounting for shipbrokers services from 1.25% to 1% is said to be particularly widespread in the Far East. Big players, including Chinese State-Owned Enterprises prefer not to use shipbroker services and deal directly with charterers.
ABYO is a new joint venture between Augustea Bunge, York Capital Management, Oceabulk. New joint venture ABYO bought one (1) panamax and one (1) cape size bulk carrier. ABYO bought 2006 built panamax bulk carrier 82K DWT MV ABYO Oprah and 2011 built cape size bulk carrier 175K DWT MV ABYO Audrey.
Last two remaining Greek shipping companies are leaving the London Stock Exchange. Goldenport Holdings and Hellenic Carriers are planning to take their publicly listed companies to private. Dry bulk shipping markets have been historical deep conditions as the main reason for their leaving. London may be a very big center for shipping services but, unfortunately, not for shipping investment like New York.
Allianz reported that concerns increased in the number of ship losses and casualties likely be caused by the cuts made by shipowners to operating standards due to the financial difficulties. Ship maintenance has already being stretched to the longest possible intervals. Cold layups might cause further unexpected problems when vessels return to the shipping market that has moved on to new technologically. Especially seafarers might confront with many risks.
Japanese Daiichi Chuo Kisencan can repay a fraction of its debt to creditors $1.79 million. Kurushima Dock which is a subsidy of Daiichi Chuo Kisen is also understood to be supporting the rehabilitation plan.
Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Skipsrederi sold OBO (Oil Bulk Ore Carrier) 110K DWT MV SKS Tana built 1996 to Turkish shipowner for $7 million was mainly used as a tanker. OBOs phasing out gradually from the market.
Italian shipowners will soon mass flag-out if Italian laws are imposed restricting the use of cheap foreign crew instead of the Italian and European Union (EU) crew. 600 ships will be forced to leave the Italian registry if the new laws are enacted. 13,000 seafarers will lose their jobs after flagging out.
Panamax bulker sale is evidence of strong buying interest in the sector and a leveling off asset prices after heavy falls. This week some panamax and kamsarmax bulk carriers changed ownership. Ship sale and purchase (S&P) shipbrokers say the unusually high interest in today’s market is due to the fact that some shipowners are simply testing the market. MV FD Isabella, MV Sadan K, MV Zeynep K, MV Tenshin Maru, MV Tensei Mara, and M/V Triple were sold this.
Norway’s KG Jebsen family is selling 2012 built supramax bulk carrier 53K MV Anne Kjersti for around $9 million. MV Anne Kjersti was built in 2012 at Ha Long Shipyard in Vietnam. MV Anne Kjersti is managed by KGJ Cement which is owned by Hans Peter Jebsen. M/V Anne Kjersti was trading as a conventional supramax bulk carrier but converted into a cement carrier.
Greek shipowners have pushed fleet number more than 4,100 ships in 2016 which is representing 16% of the world fleet in Deadweight Tonnes (DWT) terms around 320 million DWT. In 2016, Greek shipowners have 347 new ship orders.
Confirmation of 30 more Valemax 400K DWT, i.e. $85 million per ship, bulkers shows China intends to enforce control of the iron ore freight market. For the next ten years, there is no chance of a spike in profits for capesize owners like in 2005. 30 Valemax mega bulkers will be built at Chinese domestic yards to carry iron ore from Brazil to Chinese mills. Order total $2.55 billion. China’s long term strategic aim of carrying 50% of its seaborne trade on its own vessels.
Norwegian war risks mutual Den Norske Krigsforsikring for Skib (DNK) fully covers Iran without the risk of claims going partially unpaid. Oslo based DNK has decided to bridge any gap in cover, so can provide full regular cover for legitimate trade to Iran.
Erasmus Invest chartered out most of its fleet to commodity companies majors for the long term. The next ship to come up for charter renewal will be in 2017. Erasmus Invest fleet consists of 1 ultramax, 7 panamax, and 1 kamsarmax bulk carriers.
From Athens to London, Europe is facing a crisis of confidence in shipping. Athens’ claims that its shipping sector deserves special treatment and tonnage tax policy. The threats of the Union of Greek Shipowners (UGS) that its members will quit Greece and head to Asia if Brussels drives a hard bargain on the tonnage tax will carry some weight.
Australian bulker 1998 built handysize bulk carrier 36K DWT DWT M/V Portland (built 1988) involved in an acrimonious crewing row between unions, employers and the government is sailing into a fresh controversy over where it should be demolished. Environmental recycling lobby group NGO Shipbreaking Platform says that Australia is a signatory to the Basel Convention on Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Waste and that since it is an Australian-flagship operating in the Australian cabotage trades it should be demolished in line with the convention. Under Basel Convention‘s ban amendment, the owner, Alcoa Australia, is obliged to dispose of the bulker at another OECD member country and none of the mainstream ship recycling nations (Bangladesh, India, Pakistan) with the exception of Turkey, are members of the OECD.
MV El Fara sinking has revealed a potential weakness in the oversight of US programs that delegate the US Coast Guard (USCG)’s authority to carry out flag-state inspections and plan approval.
New Panama Canal Pilots had previously complained of plans for two-way traffic of post-panamax ships of up to 49 meters beam in the Culebra Cut, the narrowest area of the canal. Londor Rankin, who became secretary-general of the Panama Canal Pilots Association in January, says the union still has some concerns, particularly with regard to the prospect of the first LNG carriers to transit the canal.
Top protection and indemnity (P&I Clubs) plan to join forces to create a superclub that would be bigger than the current market leader Gard. Britannia and UK clubs are in merger talks. Britannia and UK clubs confirmed they are in discussions with the aim of creating a world-beating mutual. Currently, there are 13 International Group P&I Clubs.
Hadley Shipping sold 2001 built panamax bulk carrier 73K DWT MV Cymbeline for $3.3 million. The buyer has not been identified. Last month, M/V Cyrnbeline began a six-month charter to Denmark’s Norden Shipping at $5,250 per day. MV Cymbeline sale price is marginally above the panamax bulk carrier’s scrap value.
Dry Bulk Shipping market could even worsen in 2016 as India’s increasing self-sufficiency in coal defies. The oversupply of dry bulk tonnage is well known, with this year seeing the daunting prospect of 173 capesize, 199 panamax, and 554 handymax bulk carrier new-buildings are entering in and trading at all-time lows. The growth predictions for the five main dry bulk cargoes – iron ore, coal, grain, soya beans, and other minerals add up to zero. In 2015, seaborne trade in the five main bulk car-goes aggregated 3.1 billion tonnes. That level is expected to stagnate in 2016. Nor do things look much better for the minor bulk trades, which the broker estimates are expected to grow by just 2% in 2016. All eyes have been on China’s iron ore imports, which are set to fall by 2% this year in line with the country’s declining steel production.
Turkish shipowner Gulnak Shipping has acquired supramax M/V Gulluk (ex M/V Karavadosthe) for $5.5 million from Neda Maritime Agency. Greek shipowner, Neda Maritime Agency sold 2002 built supramax bulk carrier 51K DWT M/V Gulluk (ex M/V Karavadosthe) in December to Gulnak Shipping.
1985 built handysize bulk carrier 27K DWT M/V South Star has been severely damaged by an accommodation block fire in Vietnam, at anchorage in Tonkin Bay northeast of Haiphong. M/V South Star is owned by Tuan Huy Shipping. Severely damaged M/V South Star was extinguished after two hours and no injuries were reported.
American TOTE Maritime’s sinking M/V El Faro case claims reached $20 million. M/V El Faro case cargo claims total includes nearly $13.8 million in potential claims that New York law firm Nicoletti Hornig & Sweeney has indicated it will file in the Jacksonville federal court on behalf of Starr Indemnity & Liability, Zurich American Insurance, Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, and others. Settlements with family members of 10 crew members will be adding $5 million. After the loss of the M/V El Faro 5,330 lane meter (built 1975), that sank off Crooked Island, Bahamas, after it lost propulsion and was beset by Hurricane Joaquin in the deadliest US-flag casualty in decades, BMW taking steps to lodge an insurance claim.
Besides coal and iron, seaborne grain markets may provide little comfort to failing dry bulk companies. Worldwide grain surplus has sent export shipments falling to three-year lows. Senior Economist Jay O’Neil explained that there are too many ships and not enough demand from the grain trade. US Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates world grain stores stand at 3.027 billion tonnes and estimated world trade for 2015/2016 to be at 361 million tonnes. Senior Economist Jay O’Neil explained that US soybean exports to China have remained healthy but corn and wheat exports are lagging and likely not going to meet current projections. Freight rates reflect that weakness. Supramax rates from the US Gulf to China and south Japan destinations have fallen from $19,800 per day in August 2015 to $8,000 per day as of January. Besides the USA there is growing competition from other exporters like Argentina. Argentina’s combination of a devalued currency and relaxed export duties cut a soybean export tariff and several crop taxes, brightened Argentina’s export outlook