It is Thursday the 3rd of December, and the board (myself) has decided that this will be the last issue of Project Cargo Weekly 2020.
As you might all know, having a snowball that just grows in front of you by pushing it forward sooner or later has to be dealt with. So yes, ending this very strange year of 2020 with the issue today and taking a break and having a Kit-Kat (as the advertising jingle goes) until the first issue of 2021 on the 14th of January seems like the right decision. But what a final PCW 2020 we have got in store for you – more about that below.
My reflections on the year passed can, of course, not bypass the pandemic—a virus that apparently started in China and now has reached everyone around the world. Globalisation indeed and certainly in a horrible way for many. We pin our hopes on the development of vaccines and that our scientists know what they are doing. Until then, I suppose it is doctors’ or health authorities’ orders, i.e., keep the recommended distance and keep yourself to yourself as much as possible.
Propaganda machines around the world, not only in China but also elsewhere, are now trying to find ways and means to explain away the origins, and when Australia tries to ask for an investigation into the matter, they are quickly slapped by severe trade sanctions from China. Hardly a conduct commensurate with fancy words about mutual beneficial cooperation and long-term friendship. My grandfather always said that the man is good but the money is better. Regrettably, this seems so as some governments show their true colours when it’s about money, pride and power!
In my 57 years of life, since I was 20 years old, I have never gone 9 months without being on a flight. Last time I was onboard nursing a hangover was returning from Dubai to Stockholm March 5, 2020 on Emirates. So if nothing else, I am more awake than ever now, much to the dismay of the wife at home 😃. Still, things are slowly looking up, and it seems that my oldest son stationed in New York and my oldest daughter in London both will be able to make it home for the holidays in December—that, of course, I am looking forward to immensely.
Without further ado about politics and the usual, I would like to tell you in detail what this final issue of 2020 has in store.
We have below an interesting interview with Mr. Felix Schoeller, General Manager of AAL Shipping.
Then we continue with a special podcast interview with Maersk Line Head Office in Copenhagen and their special cargo division head Mr. Kristian Lund Knudsen and his colleague Mr. Esben Flinker Noergaard. Besides being global and part of 2M alliance they have in fact been shipping special cargo by containership since the 1970’s!
And if those 2 online interviews were not enough to satisfy you, we start off the usual traditional interviews by talking with one of the leaders in heavylift and breakbulk cargo who are truly worldwide and the interviewee is BBC Chartering, Leer in Germany. Their CEO shares with us his thoughts and answers some well-chosen questions. There is no doubt that BBC is up there with the Joneses, and their ships can be seen globally and in the remotest of destinations. They are well-known to anyone in the project cargo field, big or small.
We stay in the German hemisphere and then talk with a project cargo specialist located in Hamburg, Coli Shipping who tells us an interesting story, too.
We finally re-visit a country known for cannabis cookies, low tax jurisdictions and fishermen from URK, and the country is The Netherlands. Here ISS-Palumbo tells us a story about their capabilities in the heavy and project cargo field worldwide.
So all in all 5 excellent interviews with hands-on people with real know-how!
We finally end this newsletter with the usual condiments of shipping news, trade intel, featured video, photo of the week and wise words.
On a final note, before letting you all off the hook, I would like to copycat the Oscar winners who always “wish to thank my maaaam, my daaaad” whenever they get an award. So also here, I wish in particular to thank the Swedish shipping agency company of TSA (www.tsaagency.se) who through handling several ships in many Swedish ports of various origin, allowed me to visit and made my days here during COVID-19 brighter by making up for not being able to “travel as usual”.
To you, the readers around the world, I hope you will stick with PCW also in 2021, and don’t forget that we will publish the 2020 yearbook online around FEB, 2021 with the main interviews from the year passed. It is a must read yearbook and for advertising (restricted), contact me by email!
Wishing you all health, happiness, safety and a good arrival into the “western” New Year of 2021!
Until 14th of January, we remain,
Bo H. Drewsen
BBC Chartering – Leer, Germany
Mr. Ulrich Ulrichs
What are the strengths of BBC Chartering?
BBC Chartering has the market coverage to work ‘any port, any cargo’ (our ‘APAC service’).
We have the economies of scale due to our 150 ships world-wide and fleet diversity (4,000t dtw to 30,000 dtw vessel and crane capacity of up to 800mt combined) to match the service requirements of our clients and provide the flexibility they need.
We have highly skilled and experienced employees based in 30 offices, being close to all key markets, and having very close relationships with clients in those markets and countries.
BBC Chartering is family-owned, with the shareholders being involved in the business, which gives us flexibility and speed to make quick and swift decisions with regards to any major topics. Furthermore, the Briese family continues to invest in the business, for example in newbuildings.
Coli Logistics GmbH – Hamburg, Germany
Mr. Patrick Zernikow
First of all, Patrick, tell us why you got into shipping in the first place and how you ended up as MD of COLI Logistics GmbH?
Due to the fact that my grandfather was a shipowner, I got in touch with the shipping business very early, actually from the time I was a child. Shipping was always a topic in our family. When I was a child, my father and I went to the port of Bremerhaven and could get very close to the ships. In those days, it was still possible, because it was before 9/11. Even though shipping and logistics is part of my daily life, for me it is still unbelievable how such big ships can keep afloat and carry so much cargo.
After several years working for another freight forwarder and doing some port consulting afterwards, the owner of COLI Group asked me to join COLI in order to set up the logistics division as a service addition of the COLI Group. So now we have brokerage, carrier and logistics under one umbrella.
ISS Palumbo – Rotterdam the Netherlands
Mr. Jan-Hein Dissel
Vice President Global
Tell us a bit about the history of ISS-Palumbo to the naked eye the name looks like 2 companies that have been joining into one? Who are the actual owners of your company today?
The Palumbo Group was founded in Italy in 1974 by its current Chairman Mr. Andrea Palumbo. Since then, Palumbo has grown rapidly and increased its market presence around the globe, ranking among the top five project and logistics service providers within the Italian oil and gas energy sector.
Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS) and Palumbo formed a joint venture in October 2012 establishing ISS Palumbo Srl, to provide a combination of marine agency, project logistics, and project freight forwarding solutions to customers globally.
Marguisa Shipping Lines Expands in Latin America
Recently I had an interview with UHL/MARGUISA Lines and it now seems that Marguisa indeed are developing and extending their services into South America so it was one of the questions that I asked during the interview and it seems now to be happening.
Marguisa Shipping Lines, the shipping company of the Sea & Ports group, has appointed Wasa Projects & Chartering as its general agent in Brazil as of January 2021. This is part of the ongoing expansion plans with full container services followed by the existing express and exclusive Ro-Ro services to West Africa.
World Shipping Council Board Elects New Chairmen [2 co-chairs] and Welcomes Two New Members
The World Shipping Council, mainly consisting of the main container carriers of the world, has elected new “heads of state”. Some names will be familiar to you I am sure!
Washington, November 24, 2020 – The World Shipping Council Board of Directors elected two Co-Chairs of the Board to succeed outgoing Board Chair Ron Widdows. The board also welcomed Matson Navigation and X-Press Feeders as new members to WSC.
FMC Increases Reporting Requirements for Major Carrier Alliances
Nothing keeps people at work more than bureaucracy. So also in shipping. I hope there is a reason for why the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) now demands even more reporting. Strange isn’t it that not only is the US trailing soon far behind China in data capacity (see here) but they are surely soon overtaking them (if not already) in bureaucracy and red tape – rhetoric to the opposite notwithstanding.
After announcing that it was opening an investigation into the tactics used on container fees and the logistical challenges, the FMC announced that it has also increased the reporting requirements for the three global carrier alliances. The limited carrier space to deal with the surge in shipping volumes and rise in rates has brought increasing scurrility on carriers with many countries calling for action.
Digitalisation the way ahead as Caribbean Shipping Association celebrates 50 years
The Seatrade Maritime News is normally well-informed. Here, some latest news from the Caribbean involving shipping.
Juan Carlos Croston told more than 200 online participants that they had been able to keep the supply chain open: “For eight months, working together, we have kept the Caribbean shipping industry afloat.”
“We have immediately made our voice heard on urgent and critical matters such as the safe repatriation of seafarers, appropriate arrangements for crew change and the need for greater harmonization of laws and regulations to ensure safe movement of vessels, crews, passengers and cargo,” said the CSA president.
The Mission to Seafarers’ Christmas Service Celebrates Seafarers with Global Online Event
The plight of the seafarers has not gone unnoticed, perhaps only by some who are benefitting the most from seafarers, their labour and their daily duties to keep the world’s major trade lanes supplied with goods and services. We should support them wholeheartedly, and thus the Mission to Seafarers is hosting a global online event./p>
The Mission to Seafarers is hosting its annual carol service celebration ‘Festival of Light and Hope’ on Wednesday, 9th December 2020, as an online event.
In a year which has been extremely challenging across the world, our international seafarer community has been badly affected, with extended contracts, severely limited shore leave, and a lack of contact with loved ones, as well as a chronic lack of work for those stranded ashore. The Mission has dedicated its time to providing support around the world in a variety of circumstances and is shining a light on the resiliency and hard work of seafarers around the world in a year like no other.
Water Bottle Manufacturing Facility for Oman
A water bottle manufacturing facility and a factory dedicated to plastics-related products are to be built as part of the establishment of a new ‘economic city’ in Oman.
The new factories follow the announcement of deals struck between Khazaen Economic City, and the Omani-Saudi joint venture United Vision for Investment and Development and Al Maha Food Industries.
Nissan to Open Vehicle Assembly Plant in Ghana, Appoints Japan Motors As Local Assembler
Nissan is set to open a vehicle assembly plant in Ghana with its longtime partner, Japan Motors Trading Company Ltd. (JMTC) appointed as its local partner in all new vehicle assembly facility in Tema, Ghana.
Clarke Energy Expands Investment, Sees Opportunities in Northern Nigeria
Clarke Energy, a leading energy solution provider in Nigeria is seeing opportunities in the northern part of the country with new projects being developed following expansion plans of some industries in the region.
Brazilian State Building Factory to Make Chinese Vaccine
The government of the Brazilian state of São Paulo has begun building a factory to produce 100 million doses a year of CoronaVac, a potential vaccine against the Covid-19 virus developed by Sinovac Biotech Ltd of China, Reuters reports, citing São Paulo Governor João Doria.
Six Months At Sea In The Merchant Marine
A very nice video here from a US citizen who took a 6-month trip in the merchant marine as a sailor. Have the proverbial cup of coffee and enjoy his footage and nice and relaxed way of telling about his working life onboard. Perhaps one of our politicians could do with a trip like this, and we would get sailors more quickly repatriated after the end of their tenure, COVID-19 or not!
Driving at 5am from DK-Grenaa to DK-Frederikshavn to take the Stena Line ferry to Gothenburg recently, I stopped momentarily nearby the beach, and as the sun slowly rose, no painting could ever portray the colours that could be seen. Enjoy this view – I certainly did!