• 20 Jun 2014 9:17 AM | Anonymous

    Original news was published on 19 June, 2014

    But cooperation may prove challenging

    Premier Li Keqiang this week began his first state visit to Britain where he will discuss trade with his counterpart, Prime Minister David Cameron.

    China could allow Britain to take part in the construction of the 123-kilometer Bohai Strait Tunnel in exchange for a role in its high-speed railway and nuclear power projects, a senior state firm engineer told the South China Morning Post.

    With an estimated cost of US$41.7 billion, the 123-kilometer tunnel would connect Dalian in Liaoning and Yantai in Shandong province.

    “Britain has offered the technology and experience that they acquired in the construction under the English Channel,” Wang Mengshu, deputy chief engineer with China Railway Tunnel Group, said. “China has asked them to come up with a plan with technical details.”

    In exchange, China wants to participate in Britain’s construction of high-speed railway lines and new nuclear reactors. But talks could become mired in contention.

    “Britain has favored burying rail lines underground to save land, while China builds them on high bridges. We can help if they can change their mentality,” Wang said.

    He also said Britain is too small for high-speed rail. “They don’t have much land for long-haul high-speed rail projects with speeds of 350 kilometers per hour or higher,” he said. “How sincerely do they want the high-speed rail from China? We have doubts.”

    Entering UK’s nuclear industry could prove equally difficult or even more so. A researcher with the China National Nuclear Corporation said negotiations over China’s participation in British nuclear plant construction had encountered a lack of trust. China had sought a French partner to ease its access to the British nuclear market, but negotiations had not gone smoothly, he said.

    “China is a latecomer in the game and our homegrown technology only looks good on paper,” the CNNC researcher who chose to remain anonymous said. “Why would the UK buy a new third-generation reactor from China if it has not even been used at home?”


  • 20 Jun 2014 9:12 AM | Anonymous
    Original news was published on 19 June, 2014

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has granted a construction permit to Austria’s Voestalpine Group for a US$740 million iron production plant in San Patricio County, Texas.

    The voestalpine Texas plant is being constructed at the La Quinta Trade Gateway Terminal near Corpus Christi, the Austrian company said in a statement.

    “We investigated 17 locations in eight countries for this project. In the end, Texas was the most promising on all key criteria, such as logistics, energy supply, well-trained employees, and political environment,” Wolfgang Eder, CEO of voestalpine and head of voestalpine’s steel division said.

    The plant will produce two million tons of hot briquetted iron (HBI) and direct reduced iron (DRI) annually for export to Austria, specifically voestalpine plants in Linz and Donawitz. Construction will include use of 20,000 tons of constructional steel and 13,000 tons of mechanical equipment.

    Voestalpine said the project is its biggest foreign investment and will enable it to reduce production costs in Europe.


  • 20 Jun 2014 9:10 AM | Anonymous

    Original news was published on 19 June, 2014

    Tuscor Lloyds has handled the transport of a 58-ton cable reel from Newcastle, UK, to Manila in the Philippines by way of South Korea.

    Tuscor Lloyds collected the steel wire rope reel from the manufacturer’s facility in Newcastle and transported the heavy cargo by road to the Port of Felixstowe, a distance of about 300 miles, the UK-based forwarder said in a statement.

    The project cargo team at Tuscor Lloyds opted to ship the cargo from Felixstowe rather than the port of Newcastle because this reduced transit time and provided a more direct route to Busan and onward to the Philippines.

    The cargo was delivered quayside where two flatrack containers had already been lifted and loaded onto the container vessel. Onsite surveyors agreed to the lift plan put forward by the stevedores and used a heavy-lift crane fitted with the appropriate gear to lift the breakbulk cargo. The cable reel was lowered onto the bed of flatrack containers which had been fitted with heavy dunnage spanning the complete width of the two flat racks in order to spread the weight and increase friction.

    Securing was carried out by the port stevedores using wooden chocks (nailed in position), 2-ton webbing lashings on each corner and 4-ton webbing lashings to the arms of the reel. The cargo was unloaded at the Port of Busan with onsite cranes fitted with specialized gear and secured onto low-loader trucks.

    The reel was hauled to the Port of Masan. From Masan the cargo was loaded onto another container vessel using two more flatrack containers and again secured using wooden chocks and webbing lashings and ratchet straps before being shipped to the Port of Manila.

  • 19 Jun 2014 8:46 AM | Anonymous

    Original news was published on 18 June, 2014

    The shipping partnership would save money, as moving iron ore from Valemax ships, which boast a carrying capacity of over 400k tonnes of iron ore, directly rather than transferring onto barges for discharging at Chinese ports would result in lower freight costs.

    As a result of the ban, the Brazilian miner developed a transhipment terminal in the Philippines in February 2012, where the Valemaxes transfer iron ore into smaller ships bound for China. Vale is also setting up a centre for iron ore storage and distribution in Malaysia, which is expected to start operations this year. Valemaxes have also been docking at other ports in Italy, Japan, Oman and South Korea.

    “The total freight cost including the cost of transferring iron ore from a Valemax vessel onto smaller vessels is $22 per tonne. The additional cost could be saved if a Brazilian Valemax vessel takes iron ore directly to China, without switching it to barges at nearby ports.

    Vale could save about $7 per tonne over the cost and increase its competitiveness in addition to gaining an edge over Australian-based competitors such as BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto. Australian iron ore producers have normally had a $10 per tonne freight advantage over Brazilian iron ore miners, “ according to Drewry.


  • 19 Jun 2014 8:44 AM | Anonymous
    Original news was published on 18 June, 2014

    Gulf Tubing Company will build a 600,000-ton-capacity seamless pipe plant in Ras Alkhair in Saudi Arabia at an investment of US$1 billion.

    Gulf Tubing will partner with three international firms on the project: SMS Meer, a pipemaking and metals division of German company SMS Group, India’s Larsen & Toubro and a Czech firm.

    The new plant will be the first in the Middle East to produce seamless pipes with diameters of 19 millimeters to 137 millimeters, according to an Arab News report. The pipes will be used for industrial and construction equipment, including drill pipes, oil and gas well covers, pipeline steam boilers, heat exchangers and petroleum furnaces.

    Purchase agreements have been reached with Saudi Aramco and Saudi Basic Industries, as well as the Royal Commission in Jubail and Yanbu, Salama Al-Enizi, chairman of Gulf Tubing Company, told reporters.

    Construction will begin in 2015 and be completed in the summer of 2017.


  • 18 Jun 2014 8:51 AM | Anonymous

    Original news was published on 17 June, 2014

    CONTAINER volumes at the US ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach rose in May as shippers fearful of labour disruption sent goods to retail outlets before the contract between longshoremen and terminal operators expires on July 1.

    Los Angeles handled 689,141 TEU in May, an 8.2 per cent increase compared to the same month a year earlier. Long Beach handled 600,000 TEU, a 2.7 per cent year-on-year increase, and the busiest May since 2007.

    LA handled 351,403 container imports, up 7.75 per cent, and exported 158,473 boxes in May, an increase of 2.3 per cent year on year.

    Combined, total loaded imports and exports rose six per cent from 481,019 TEU in May 2013 to 509,876 TEU in May 2014. Empties were up 15 per cent year on year.

    In the first five months of the year, cargo rose by eight per cent, partly due to uncertainty over contract negotiations between the Pacific Maritime Association that represents west coast employees.

    The contract talks started in May and are expected to go beyond the July 1 expiry date, at which point a legal strike is a possibility. In response, retailers have been shipping early to ensure they are stocked for the back-to-school sales.

    About 312,439 TEU flowed into Long Beach, a 2.3 per cent increase in imports year on year, while exports dipped slightly at 0.3 per cent with 146,702 TEU. Empties were up 7.1 per cent at 140,368 TEU.


  • 18 Jun 2014 8:44 AM | Anonymous

    Original news was published on 17 June, 2014

    Signet Arcturus, a 105’ x 38’ Z-Drive, designed by Robert Allan Ltd. of Vancouver, British Columbia was delivered by Patti Marine Enterprises of Pensacola, Florida on May 25, 2014.

    Signet Arcturus is powered by two Caterpillar model C175-16 main engines, each rated 3417 BHP at 1800 RPM. The engines are coupled to two Rolls-Royce US 255 CP azimuth thrusters via carbon fiber shafting, providing thrust for ABS certified sustained bollard pull of 83.45 metric tonnes. All Caterpillar mains and John Deere 6068TFM76 generator engines aboard the vessel are U.S. EPA Tier 3 certified for reduced emissions.

    Joseph W. Dahl, Vice President, Signet Maritime said: “this technologically advanced newbuild complements Signet’s offshore towing, rig escort and subsea expansion.”

    Signet Arcturus will be joined by her sister, Signet Polaris, a second ocean towing tractor tug, scheduled for delivery later this month from Patti Marine. Both tugs will be based at Signet’s Ocean Towing Division in Port Fourchon, Louisiana for service to the offshore energy industry.

    Further, Dahl said, “bundling the controllable pitch propeller (CPP) tractor technology with the brute strength of SIGNET WARHORSE tugs will provide our customers the best of both worlds in strength and agility.”

    The vessel is equipped with fire resistant wheelhouse windows for servicing LNG and drilling platforms to ensure safety of the crew in case of fire hazard. It is USCG Inspected and is certified ABS International Air Pollution Prevention, International Oil Pollution Prevention and International Energy Efficiency for environmental compliance.

    Deck machinery includes a Markey model DEPCF-52S, 75 HP electric bow winch and Markey model TESD-34, 100 HP electric double-drum towing winch. The bow winch contains 650 feet of 3-inch diameter synthetic line and the towing winch contains 2 ¼” x 2500’ tow wire and one 2 ¼” x 1500’ tow wire. Signet Arcturus is ABS Maltese Cross A1, towing vessel, escort vessel, fire fighting vessel class 1, Maltese Cross AMS.

    With the inclusion of the Arcturus and the Polaris the Offshore Towing Division has increased its fleet to ten OTVs, equipping Signet to provide energy service companies with high bollard pull towing and marine movements from harbor to offshore throughout the Gulf of Mexico.


  • 17 Jun 2014 8:48 AM | Anonymous
    Original news was pubished on 16 June, 2014

    Through the transaction, Star Bulk is acquiring an operating fleet of 15 dry bulk carrier vessels, with an average age of 5.6 years and an aggregate capacity of approximately 1.75 million dwt.

    The fleet includes five Capesize vessels, two post‐Panamax vessels, six Kamsarmax vessels and two Supramax vessels and contracts for the construction of 26 fuel‐efficient, eco‐design newbuilding dry bulk vessels including eight Newcastlemax vessels, eight Capesize vessels and ten Ultramax vessels each being built at shipyards in Japan and China.

    The newbuild vessels are scheduled to be delivered in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

    Upon completion of the transaction, the Oaktree Investors will own 61.3% of Star Bulk’s shares of common stock and the Pappas Investors will own 12.5% of Star Bulk’s common stock.

    In connection with the transaction, Star Bulk has agreed to enter into shareholders agreements with the Oaktree Investors and the Pappas Investors providing for certain voting restrictions, standstill obligations and ownership limitations and, for the Oaktree Investors, certain rights to make Board nominations and to appoint officers of the company.

    As part of the transaction, the Oaktree Investors, the Pappas Investors and the company have agreed that Mr. Petros Pappas will become the Chief Executive Officer of the company and Mr. Spyros Capralos will become Non‐Executive Chairman of the Board.

    Spyros Capralos, President & CEO of Star Bulk, commented: “The transaction marks an important next step in the evolution for Star Bulk.

    Since 2013, Star Bulk has dramatically improved its market capitalization and liquidity through the successful completion of the rights offering and add‐on equity offering, modernized its existing fleet and placed a series of significant newbuilding orders to position the company for the future.

    With this transaction the company creates the largest U.S. listed dry bulk company with a strong shareholder base.

    We believe that the transaction is accretive to earnings, cash flow, and net asset value, and also has additional benefits as it will dramatically increase the market capitalization and asset base, enhance the on‐the‐water fleet portfolio, increase the newbuilding portfolio by combining two similar newbuild strategies, and improve access to capital to fund the current and assumed capital expenditure obligations.

    In addition, the combined business will be well positioned to capitalize on an improving dry bulk market with significant operating leverage to rising rates. ”

    The transaction is expected to close within the next 30 days subject to customary conditions, including the affirmative vote of a majority of Star Bulk’s shareholders that are not affiliated with the Oaktree Investors or the Pappas Investors to approve the transaction at a special meeting of shareholders.


  • 17 Jun 2014 8:46 AM | Anonymous

    Original news was published on 16 June, 2014

    JAPANESE shipping giant NYK has acquired 30 per cent ownership of the CSI (Consorcio de Servicios Internacionales) Group, a finished-car logistics company as domestic auto sales and export boom.

    The signing ceremony was held at the NYK head office in Tokyo and attended by CSI chief executive Leon Antonio Flores Elizondo and NYK president Yasumi Kudo.

    Mexican exports of cars is increasing, and a number of car companies making plans to build and expand plants is growing as domestic sales contribute to Mexico's strong economic performance, said an NYK statement.

    Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK) is one of the world's leading transportation companies operating 846 major ocean vessels, as well as fleets of planes, trains, and trucks.

    NYK's fleet consists of 389 bulk carriers, 126 containerships, 120 car carriers, 82 tankers, 51 wood-chip carriers, 28 LNG carriers, 18 heavy-load carriers / conventional ships, three cruise ships, and 29 other ships.


  • 16 Jun 2014 8:44 AM | Anonymous

    Original news was published on 15 June, 2014

    “In the specialised shipbuilding sector, this is the most important ship we have built in the past 20 years. She has opened a door for us into a market segment which will help to secure the future of our concern”, said FSG Managing Director Peter Sierk.

    Speaking during the hand-over ceremony he also recalled the orders signed just this spring for two further offshore ships for Siem Offshore for charter to Helix Energy Solutions.

    “We are making our mark in this market segment, drawing attention to ourselves because of our outstanding performance and working to create follow-up orders. We are very proud of all of this”, the yard chief said.

    The AMAZON WARRIOR is an Amazon-class vessel that features the world´s first custom-built hull and propulsion system, developed exclusively for seismic operationsusing a WesternGeco proprietary design.

    As far as efficiency, safety, reliability and durabilityare concerned; this vessel meets the highest of demands and supports secureoperation anywhere the ship operates, including the Polar Regions, even in the most inhospitable weather conditions.

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