It’s Thursday 28th November and our final newsletter of the year 2019 is here. I just returned from Asia and I am now looking forward to a quiet December without too much stress and travel. December is already a stressful enough month as Christmas is around the corner and presents need to be bought, although I find it hard nowadays to buy anything that the kids don’t already have. I believe that I share this problem with many others in the western world.
Our consumerist society is here to stay and, with online shopping and clicking and buying with ease, it has never been simpler to buy whatever you need and to finance it with a quick loan if you are short of cash. In many ways it’s a vicious circle, getting in debt, and the culprits in a lot of this are the banks who, in their usual manner, cry foul when they don’t reach their ‘expected profit’ and when they borrow or whitewash billions for the wrong people, they also seldom get punished. Instead, the relevant CEOs responsible in times of such irresponsibility are rewarded with golden parachutes.
But when the normal person who wishes to start a company needs to borrow a bit to expand his business etc., they must jump through hoops to get approved, because the few destroy the trust for the many. A very good Russian proverb, particularly suited to Russia, says that the ‘little thieves are hanged, but great ones escape’. I believe it says it all.
For me, the year 2019 has been a fantastic one and, in retrospect, what more can one wish for if one’s overall health is good, the family is fine, and the economy is reasonable. Nothing much, I guess! I have visited South Africa, Asia several times, been on board a container ship with my daughter for three weeks from Singapore to Melbourne, visited Australia and New Zealand and chaired three successful conferences for the www.clcprojects.com and www.cross-ocean.com networks. So, yes, it’s time to take a break. Looking inward while traveling, I have found that what kids want most is to spend time with their parents, nothing more than that. I also know that I must struggle against the powers of the internet, the iPad, the mobile phone and whatnot to be able to spend time with the children, but I am determined to prevail.
Generally, on the shipping front in 2019, what has struck me most is the shift in shipowners’ motives, moving now towards cutting out the middle man. In other words, try to avoid, backstab or confront the freight forwarder, irrespective of them having provided the shipowner with help with cargo over the years. Now, there is no doubt that some freight forwarders are also tricky, and some use shipowners simply to benchmark prices, so for some they get what they deserve.
Overall, the business model is changing, as there is little profit left in the sea freight leg, so many owners believe that there is a profit to be found on land. Time will tell whether they are right, but perhaps some owners will get more than they bargained, as may the shippers who’ve created the ‘dysfunctional’ market that we are now witnessing. One explanation could be that there are fewer and fewer real shipping people around, as more are just number crunchers who wouldn’t know the aft from the bow of a ship, nor even know that it can be stormy in the Atlantic, because it wasn’t mentioned in the contract they signed. Still, certainly there are interesting times ahead!
Before I turn to the business segment of my editorial, I must recommend that those of you intending to visit the Philippines to pay a visit to and stay at the Shangri-La resort on Mactan island, Cebu. CLC Projects had its conference there recently. Besides being under excellent management overall, the food, ambience, location and, above all, the peaceful and quiet atmosphere of the resort makes you want to return as soon as possible. Have a look at their website and feel free to contact them here for more info: email@example.com
In today’s newsletter, we speak to Hansa Meyer Heavy Haul & Rigging, a German project freight forwarder with a strong and neutral trucking division set up in Texas. They tell us about inland transport in the US, which can be a jungle of inflated costs at the best of times unless you have the right contact from the start. We then revisit the Adriatic region of Europe and interview Liburnia/Comark, a new joint venture covering all the ex-Yugoslavian countries with project freight forwarding, shipping, chartering and, not least, packing services Europe-wide. We then pay a surprise visit to a country island not often in the news, and the place is Haiti in the Caribbean. It’s an interesting place, often overlooked, but still with a logistics story to tell and ADEKO, a Haitian freight forwarder, tells us all about it.
I wish to thank all of you who have been reading this newsletter and I hope you will continue to do so. It has now become a kind of a fun project for me as I learn a lot from those that I interview and of course, in business, you need all the friends and contacts you can get. This newsletter is a good tool because it helps to foster relationships. There are a ton of newsletters out there that I know of, probably more, so hopefully I can also keep arousing your interest in the new year, so that you’ll keep reading.
We also bring you the usual trade intel, shipping news and wise words and, with those words, from all of us here at Project Cargo Weekly, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2020!
PCW is on holiday during the month of December. The first issue in the new year will be on 9/1/2020, until then, I remain,
Bo H. Drewsen
Hansa Meyer Heavy Haul and Rigging USA, LLC. – Houston, Texas, USA
Mr. Frank Scheibner
President & CEO
Could you provide us with a few examples of projects that you have carried inland for companies outside of your group?
That’s an interesting question. In the beginning, ninety percent of what Hansa Meyer Heavy Haul & Rigging handled came from our network, but today that is twenty-five percent. The remaining…
Liburnia Maritime – Croatia / Comark – Slovenia
Mr. Marin Skufca / Mr. Branko Butala
C.E.O. / C.E.O.
Am I correct in my knowledge that you are formally joining each other? Can you tell us why you believe this is a marriage made in heaven?
Mainly because of our relationship. Without honesty and open relations, every relationship fails. We’ve known each other for many years and now we’ve decided to combine our…
ADEKO Enterprises S.A – Haiti
Mr. Jean Marc Antoine
When was the company ADEKO established, what does the name ADEKO mean and who are the owners?
ADEKO Enterprises was founded back in March of 2008. It was created by the two brothers, Mr. Jean Marc and Mr. Marc Kinson Antoine. When choosing the name, we landed on ADEKO because…
Luka Koper Port News
Luka Koper Port in the Adriatic is growing and is a hub for cargo for the Adriatic but also for Central Europe and could be used if you wish save transit time as opposed to the traditional ports for Central European cargo ie Hamburg/Rotterdam etc. COSCO seems to think that Europe’s soft underbelly is the place to be also with their Piraeus investments, another southern located port. Here is their latest newsletter which you might find interesting.
Transportation and the Belt and Road Initiative: A Paradigm Shift
In Hong Kong recently I sat down for a dinner with the ex-CMA CGM staff Mr. Nicolas De Loisy, now an independent author focusing on the Silk Road and its potential for logistics development. He authored a book which you can find on Amazon easily here.
The Global Debt Binge Begins Anew
Although not directly shipping news, still all of us in the transportation and logistics ought to keep an eye out for the massive global debt that now exists. Financial analysts call a crash a correction, but if it’s coming we may be in for a roller coaster ride. I believe that ‘too big to fail’ has been allowed for too long and that we have been peeing in our pants to keep warm for quite some time – but the cold will reach us eventually.
The world’s debt rose by $3 trillion in the first quarter of 2019 — an almost unprecedented borrowing binge that brought total global debt to $246.5 trillion.
MSC Appoints Soren Toft as CEO for Container Shipping & Logistics
In shipping, as in many other businesses, the poaching of each others’ staff is normal. MSC seems to be on on a spree for new and fresh staffs nowadays. Besides having taken staff from CMA CGM in Asia, recently they also just hired their new CEO from their partner in the 2M Alliance. Shipping is definitely a people business. There is no doubt that it is harder to replace a key staff member than a key container, so to speak.
MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company, a global leader in transportation and logistics, is pleased to announce that Soren Toft will join as Chief Executive Officer.
As the world of shipping continues to evolve through great challenges such as digitalisation and the environmental goals set by the UN International Maritime Organization (IMO), container carriers and their customers face a range of exciting tests and opportunities.
COSCO Marketing & Sales Guidebook December 2019
Here’s the latest news from COSCO Shipping specialized carriers in Guangzhou.
Pulp Facts to the Fore in Montevideo
Leading forestry products group UPM has got the go-ahead from Uruguay’s National Port Administration (ANP) to develop a dedicated cellulose export terminal in the Port of Montevideo.
Bulgartransgaz Signs 34 Mln Euro Gas Pipeline Deal With Canada-Led Tie-Up
Bulgaria’s gas transmission network operator Bulgartransgaz said on Friday that it has signed on October 25 a 67.2 million levs ($37.9 million/34.4 million euro) deal for replacing several gas pipeline sections with a Canadian-Bulgarian tie-up The contract envisages replacing the gas pipeline sections connecting cleaning facility (CF) Beglezh with valve assembly (VA) Dermantsi, VA Batultsi and VA Kalugerovo, Bulgartransgaz said in a notice .
Kalmar and DP World Strengthen Partnership
Kalmar, part of Cargotec, announced it has concluded an agreement with long-standing partner DP World for 38 Ottawa T2 terminal tractors for the company’s Caucedo terminal in the Dominican Republic. The order was booked in Cargotec’s 2019 Q3 order intake, with delivery scheduled to take place during Q1 and Q2 of 2020.
Chinese Seek Distribution
Chinese manufacturers were under-represented at IMHX, with
fewer exhibitors than at other shows, some possibly disappointed by their
participation in previous European trade shows.
MiMA brought five machines to IMHX, according to export director Roger Qiu, including a NiMH pallet stacker. Also on show was MiMA’s special multi-direction forklift, designed for use in the lumber industry.
Obton Lands Canadian Contract of Record Proportions: Signs Canada’s Largest PPA Ever
The Danish solar developer Obton has just entered into the largest Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) to date on the sale of electricity from a 170-megawatt solar park in Alberta.
“Our Canadian staff have worked on the project for over three years, and we are tremendously proud and pleased that we have now secured a PPA that will allow the implementation of the project. It is a big contract for us, and we are looking forward to getting involved in the Canadian energy market.”
Last featured video this year in our last issue of 2019 is one that you perhaps have seen in our newsletter before. But it still remains impressive. From the bow of mv Rickmers Antwerp heavylift vessel in July 2010 I personally was lucky enough to be able to film this sequence with a group of dolphins speeding ahead of us. Truly amazing!
A beautiful day in the Red Sea looking towards the aft of the giant CMA CGM Christophe Colomb.