It is Thursday the 15th of April and we are here again already in the middle of spring month here in Sweden where I am located.
Latest news on the Corona vaccination front is that we will be inoculated in May for those over 18 years of age depending on the supply of vaccines. Astra Zeneca and now Janssen [owned by Johnson & Johnson] have both been stopped due to side effects, so let’s see what happens. Being 58, I guess May will be the month for me unless I visit Moscow as a Sputnik tourist – perhaps I could then even get a trip around the moon like Mr. Gagarin some 60 years ago now. Talking to people around the world not only as editor of PCW but also as chairman of www.clcprojects.com & www.cross-ocean.com, COVID-19 is on everyone’s lips. For some, business has never been better (right shipowners?), and for some, it’s never been worse, but these are the things we must go through in life—up/down and around we go.
Here in Sweden, as in many other European countries, drugs are becoming easily available even in smaller cities and sometimes even online. The French police managed to crack a secret communication network of encrypted phones (EncroChat) that apparently was used by criminals to discuss their action plans, and as a result of that, more than 50-80 individuals are now in custody here in Sweden. So it seems that European cooperation in law enforcement and the fight against drugs is partly successful. But open borders, lax controls, and a naivety when it comes to controlling who enters the countries of Europe has left us very vulnerable. I am not sure if the US is doing so much better, and with countries like China, for example, happily exporting anything that generates money, including Fentanyl and other deadly components, it seems we are fighting an ever uphill struggle. More about that here.
But drugs also involve logistics, and so much so that several reports have been made on this subject. I particularly want to point your attention to this one from Dryad Global which you may find interesting and instructive.
We must remember, though, that there wouldn’t be a market for this if there weren’t buyers! I am told that buyers come from all walks of life. It seems many are looking for an extra “high” and the ability to keep it going. Naturally, that is dangerous and expensive for most. I myself fought with an alcohol addiction for a while. It took me 5 weeks, a USD10,000 detox program, and a change in family and life circumstances to clean up my act a few years ago. I have always loved the fast life, but I have now also found pleasure in a life that is less fast and whose rewards are not always commensurate with earning loads of money, stockpiling for a rainy day that may never come. Grandfather used to tell me “save for a rainy day”, but it ain’t gonna rain for 3 months! I now follow that!
End of Philosophy 101. I turn now to the business world that is still seeing the repercussions of the Ever Given grounding in the Suez Canal. But fear not! The SCA (Suez Canal Authority) are hell bent on keeping their income come hell or high water. Thus, under shipping news, you can find more about their recent gigantic claim towards the shipowner.
As for interviews from around the world, we’ve got the following in store for you today: We start off in the German city of Bremen, and we talk to a well-respected and renowned shipbroker/owner/operator called Coli Shipping & Logistics with a long history from its inception way back in Hamburg.
We then focus on the African continent, and we remind you about an interview we had with ACE 54 . We spoke with an individual who actually lived for years in the continent. He tells us about solutions in this vast but yet still undeveloped area of the world and perhaps the last frontier for real project cargo business.
We finally, and in light of the recent attention to the attacks in Mozambique, speak to a Danish company that ventured out into East Africa and here I talk about Tschudi Logistics Group who set up shop in this big, resource rich country which is about to be developed full speed.
With that said, I will remind you as usual about our trade intel, shipping news, wise words and featured video and picture of the week, and I wish you a continued good week ahead.
Until next week, we remain,
Bo H. Drewsen
Coli Schiffahrt & Transport Bremen GmbH
Alain Akavi, Managing Directory at Coli Schiffahrt & Transport Bremen GmbH was interviewed by Bo H. Drewsen, Editor in Chief at Project Cargo Weekly. http://www.coli-shipping.com
ACE 54 Africa Project Management
Philippe Somers, CEO of ACE 54 Project Management was interviewed by Bo H. Drewsen, Editor of Project Cargo Weekly. http://ace54.com/
Tschudi Logistics Group – Mozambique
Mr. Thomas Vestergaard
How do you see Mozambique as a market overall? It is a big country, with lots of resources, but it also has transshipment possibilities. Does your office intend to get involved in all kinds of project forwarding or will you stick to a few selected areas?
I have worked on several projects in Africa throughout the years. I believe that the key to success is finding the balance between local adaptation and global complexity. In Africa, it is essential to be able to navigate risk in order to explore opportunities—something we have done for many years.
Tschudi Mozambique offers all kinds of project forwarding, purchasing services, and a local workforce in relation to ship management, Offshore & Towage, Ship-to-ship LNG. We benefit from being in a tight-knit group, so we can draw on know-how and resources from the eight other Tschudi companies.
Combating the Box Shortage: Hapag-Lloyd Places Huge Container Order
Containership owners are indeed in heaven these days. I just chaired a meeting of project freight forwarders, and most were lamenting not only the lack of space but also the lack of containers. Customer service is hard to find, let alone finding anyone to talk to, so we are certainly in the upward cycle of business for container shipping now. One of the majors, however, seems to be taking it seriously, i.e., ordering a massive amount of containers.
150,000 TEU of new dry and reefer boxes plus 8,000 TEU of special containers / Delivery in 2021 to help alleviate current container shortage / Approx. USD 550 million investment one of largest for boxes in company history.
China Container Maker Reaping Rewards As Suez Canal Blockage Adds To Global Shortage, Demand Set For Record High
Whilst we are on the subject of the lack of containers and space, here an interesting article from SCMP with the latest from container manufacturers who also seem to be in heaven…. income-wise as least!
During the coronavirus pandemic, the price of a 20-foot standard dry storage container (TEU) more than doubled from a year earlier to above US$3,500, and it is not expected to fall much for the rest of year, as demand for the containers and the cost of the raw materials needed to build them remains high, said Mai Boliang, chief executive of China International Marine Containers (CIMC), which produces around half of world’s containers.
Ever Given Updates from the Ship Manager – Ship Arrest ‘Extremely Disappointing’
SCA or rather the Suez Canal Authority does seem to pull out all stops to cover their income, take no risk and enjoy only benefits with the recent Ever Given event. Yes it caused massive logjams but are we there where immediately when something happens vultures, lawyers and greedy corporations take over, perhaps we are! Accidents do happen and unless it was gross negligence, surely inflated claims lead nowhere and tells more about the claimant.
“The SCA’s decision to arrest the vessel is extremely disappointing. From the outset, BSM and the crew on board have cooperated fully with all authorities, including the SCA and their respective investigations into the grounding. This included granting access to the Voyage Data Recorder (VDR) and other materials and data requested by the SCA. BSM’s primary goal is a swift resolution to this matter that will allow the vessel and crew to depart the Suez Canal”, says Ian Beveridge, CEO of BSM.
Ascension Islands Project Complete
Certainly not everyday (if ever in my career) that I have discussed shipping to/from Ascension Island. But the island WAS in the news recently.
The successful project follows the delivery of three almost identical barges, also commissioned for shipping to and use in the Ascension Island waters, in 2018. Construction of the latest barge started in August 2020 and was ready for delivery just four months later. Heavily constructed, the 17-metre self-propelled barge was built in two halves for shipping to the island.
Masdar to Extend Zarafshan Wind Farm Capacity in Uzbekistan
Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company Masdar has signed an implementation agreement with the Government of the Republic of Uzbekistan to further enhance the capacity of its Zarafshan wind farm from 500MW to 1.5GW. Last year, the company entered into bilateral agreements with the Government of Uzbekistan to build and operate the 500MW wind farm project. The new agreement was signed in the presence of Uzbekistan Deputy Prime Minister Sardor Umurzakov and Energy Minister Alisher Sultanov.
Orsted to Develop Major Green Hydrogen Hub
Danish energy company Orsted announced on Wednesday its plans to develop one of the world’s largest renewable hydrogen plants to be linked to increased industrial demands in the Netherlands and Belgium. The “Sea2Land” project represents an ambitious vision, with plans to offer industrial-scale electrolysis to the Flemish-North Sea Ports Cluster through a planned cross-border pipeline while the electricity is set to be generated through offshore wind.
The Government Launches Work on a Hybrid Solar Power Plant in Impfondo
The Congolese government has officially launched construction work on a hybrid solar power plant in Impfondo, in the Likouala department. The project has been entrusted to Produits de construction de Brazzaville (Procob), the subsidiary of the Belgian company ABC Contracting.
Pacific Hydro Plans to Expand Chilean Solar Project to 293 MWp
Pacific Hydro is seeking an environmental permit to increase the capacity of its solar photovoltaic (PV) project in Atacama, Chile, from 120 MWp to 293 MWp. The company has made modifications to the design of its Central Desierto de Atacama project and plans to occupy more surface to add a total of 518,904 solar modules. Pacific Hydro would invest $300 million in the project. The expanded project would now take up 394 hectares of surface area in the commune of Tierra Amarilla in the Atacama region.
Onboard Breakbulk Vessel Rickmers Antwerp Enroute to Houston
From the memory bank (already 11 years ago now from 2010), here is some footage that I took two days before arriving into Houston onboard mv Rickmers Antwerp. Calm seas in the Gulf of Mexico and a wonderful sunset, and as I recall, a couple of drinks on deck with the co-passengers. A world class way of traveling indeed!
After a couple of whiskies at my parents’ house during Easter, I had to take a cab back to my condo in Grenaa, Denmark. What an evening! So told the taxi driver to take another route in order to get me this shot of a fantastic sunset. We all know how difficult it can be to get the shot just right, but this one qualifies.