It is Thursday the 11th of March and we are back with PCW.
My last weekend was filled with shipping again and if I thought I should relax (as if I ever wanted to….), I was mistaken. First I joined a fantastic online event that took place in the city of Hamburg—namely, the christening of the UHL FAITH of United Heavylift. Since it was streamed online via link, it really gave credence to the fact that virtually everything is now possible online. From UHL I got a batch of nice pictures from this event, including one where the godmother of the vessel clearly can be seen swinging the bottle firmly towards the hull of the ship. It was a nice event and do take a look at the pictures here, courtesy of the nice lady in charge of communications at UHL.
Sunday had me then visiting the port of Gavle, north of Stockholm (again, I might add), but since flights abroad are more or less out of the picture, I take all the chances I can get to see some breakbulk or heavylift ships arriving in port. In Gavle, the vessel Symphony Sky arrived for discharging project cargoes, and since it was only a 2 hour drive up there (in other words, one way), I left in the morning, bundling in a couple of kids as usual in the back. See pictures here. Thanks a lot to www.tsaagency.se for the heads up about the ship’s arrival.
They do say that stress is a killer, but so is inactivity. I suppose that if you like what you are doing, then it is not really work. It would seem from one of the most watched television programs last week that Prince Harry and his wife didn’t like much what they were doing, so they had to escape their hardship life in the Royal Palaces of the UK—poor them, and I hope they will find happiness in Hollywood which perhaps is closer to “real life”… Anyhow, it is the opinion of this newsletter that they should be able to get a job and finance their own way of living and perhaps place more energy on that instead of whining. Still, the show must go on, so why not Hollywood?
In real life, containerised shipping is looking more and more like a Turkish Bazaar. Concerning the crazy market conditions with excessive amounts of cargo and lack of tonnage and containers, I was told the following by one reputable freight project forwarder with a global presence:
We are facing issues that some of our core container carriers are starting more or less to blackmail us in the current market in some sort of Dutch auction.
- With one top shipowner, we have an agreement to place bookings 1.5 month in advance only to be told there is no space… UNLESS of course we pay an additional of USD 500 per unit. Then magically, space appears and someone else gets canned.
- With another top shipowner their procedure is just hilarious. We are not sure whether to laugh or to cry. They say: “…and advise you to purchase shipping guarantee (at the moment USD 200/cntr) when you pls the bookings via web. This does not a guarantee that you will get a booking confirmation back”.
So reliability, long-term thinking, and trustworthiness of some of the world’s most reputable carriers seems to be in disarray right now, and whilst they are raking in money currently, there seems to be no thinking about the future. Regrettably COVID-19 will still take its toll for many, good and bad, for the rest of this year, so indeed, happy days are here but it is not for sure if we can count on things going back to “normal”. One might, of course, also say that some shippers and forwarders who were always used to playing owners against each other now do face tasting a bit of their own medicine.
Right! It is time to tell you what we’ve got in today’s issue of PCW for you.
We start off with an interview with a Qingdao Ba-shi Yuexin Logistics, a Chinese freight forwarder based in Qingdao, Shandong Province, and although the replies are short and to the point, I know from experience in China that they are capable.
We then remind you about two video interviews that we had not too long ago, starting off with AAL Shipping, a carrier that you might say has replaced the famous Pearl String service of the now defunct Rickmers-Line. Finally, we speak to a global chartering and project freight forwarding company called Liburnia Maritime based in Croatia who tells us that they have more than one solution always for any inquiry they get.
We finalise this week’s newsletter with shipping news, trade intelligence, featured video and project cargo picture, and last but not least, wise words.
Until next week, we remain,
Bo H. Drewsen
Qingdao Ba-shi Yuexin Logistics Development Co.,Ltd. – Qingdao, China
Vice General Manager
Do you have experience in handling project cargoes, and if so, could you provide us with some examples of cargoes you have handled?
Yes, we have. We are the contract logistics supplier of many government-owned corporations such as the Algeria China Power Construction Granary Project and the Congo Copper Hydrometallurgy Project.
Felix Schoeller – General Manager, AAL Shipping (AAL) speaks with Bo H. Drewsen.
Marin Skufca, CEO of Liburnia Maritime Agency speaks with Bo H. Drewsen.
Namport Continues to be the Preferred Seaport in Africa
Namibia is a beautiful country and what many don’t know is that it is also a transshipment point for Central African destinations among others!
The Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) continues to remain relevant amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The Ports Authority recently handled 20,000 MT of bulk sulphur destined for the Zambian market.
Eco-Bonus for Sustainable Transport to and from the Stockholm Region via Ports of Stockholm
Yes the green religion is here to stay and everything must be green and sustainable – latest from the port of Stockholm now giving you a bonus. Let us hope that green then really IS green and not just the buzz word for the elite to appear politically correct.
Shipping companies have been eligible to apply for an environmental compensation bonus to transition from land to sea transport. The good news was announced last week that three of the four projects selected to receive an eco-bonus promote sustainable transport to and from the Stockholm region.
Höegh Autoliners Returns to Gothenburg
Well reputed RORO and project cargo carrier Höegh Autoliners returns now to the Scandinavian port of Gothenburg.
Höegh Autoliners is pleased to announce its return to Gothenburg with a regular direct service to South Africa and Oceania. The service started this March and is offered every other week.
To service the Swedish import and export industry, Höegh Autoliners will call Gothenburg directly on its East Asia to Europe service. With direct calls to Gothenburg, customers will have the possibility to connect to a global trade network via ports on the continent or direct to South Africa and Oceania.
China-Laos Railway may be ‘Badly Needed’ Boost for Beijing. And the Region?
Regional news, although not directly related to shipping, still will impact exports out of South West China via Laos and ultimately via Thailand. When the China – Laos railway is completed it will enable you to go from China to Singapore by train!
In southwestern China’s Yunnan province, there is great fanfare around the construction of a mega-railway link to neighbouring Laos, Southeast Asia’s only landlocked country and one of its least developed.
Lehigh Cement Commences Mitchell Cement Plant Expansion
HeidelbergCement subsidiary Lehigh Cement has resumed work on an expansion at its 0.8Mt/yr Mitchell, Indiana cement plant with the execution of initial project plans and the delivery of materials to the site. Local media has reported that the upgrade will cost US$600m and create 1000 construction jobs over a four year project timeline.
Orascom in Negotiations to Acquire Stake in Ras Ghareb Wind Farm
Orascom Construction (OC) is currently eyeing a stake in a 500MW wind farm in Ras Ghareb, adjacent to a 262.5MW wind farm in which the company has a 20% stake and a 20-year PPA with the government.
A source told Daily News Egypt that OC is targeting more projects that have a build-own-operate (BOO) scope, and which will bring in recurring income in various sectors including water treatment.
Indorama to Create Cotton and Textile Clusters on 100 Thousand Hectares
The parties discussed the Indorama’s project progress in Uzbekistan, referring to the spinning unit in Kokand, the project to create cotton-textile clusters in Kashkadarya, Syrdarya and Fergana provinces on 100 thousand hectares, as well as a project to modernize the Kokand superphosphate factory.
Egypt’s AOI Inks Cooperation Protocol to Manufacture Natural Gas Cylinders
The Arab Organization for Industrialization (AOI) signed a protocol of cooperation with Qalaa Holdings, while another protocol was signed between ASEC for Manufacturing and Industrial Projects and TAQA Arabia.
The protocol is aimed at establishing a production line of natural gas cylinders for cars and heavy vehicles, the Chairman of AOI, Abdel Moneim El-Terras, said in a statement on Thursday.
Departure from Jeddah Onboard mv CMA CGM Andromeda
Departure from Jeddah onboard mv CMA CGM Andromeda as a passenger a couple of years ago was a fantastic experience. Next stop Jebel Ali where we could disembark for some Dubai shopping. Disembarking was not allowed in Jeddah when I was there.
mv Kraszewski of Chipolbrok, CP, was in Antwerp recently to load project cargoes for Asia. Some great photos provided here by their media representative Mr. Olaf Proes in Hamburg, Germany.
Enjoy these photos showing “real shipping”