Week #04 – 2022

Share with a colleague!

In this edition: Video Interview: Toepfer Transport | Höegh Autoliners | Yearbook 2021 >>>

Week #04 | 27th January 2022

Dear Readers,

Bo H. DrewsenIt is the last Thursday of the month of January, and Thursday means that Project Cargo Weekly is being published.

The past week has been interesting in a number of ways. On the COVID19 front, it seems that my native country Denmark decided that they NO LONGER regard the pandemic (in general) and the Omicron variant (in particular) as pandemics. As a result, they will lift all restrictions. But as usual within the EU, there are as many different opinions about this as there are countries. 

And on a more embarrassing note for the union, they can hardly stand shoulder to shoulder to show Russia that bullying and intimidation towards the country of Ukraine won’t work because some of the major EU nations have either made themselves totally dependent on natural gas from Russia or are hopeful for some lucrative trade deals. 

In my view, it is sickening, and it shows that the US is right to focus more on themselves.  Rumsfeld, the former US defence secretary, said it once: ”Well whom to call in the EU?” Of course, the price of democracy is that we sometimes muddle along and there is not a better alternative. Yet, we DO need to find a way to stand firm, stand with a strong voice, and back it up by at least committing the minimum 2% of GDP for the defence forces as we are committed to via NATO. Also, as pointed out correctly by Trump, some countries are riding the cheapskate wave, hoping that the US will come to their aid in case of trouble. 

But I am glad to note that Germany is willing to provide helmets and a field hospital to Ukraine, and I am sure that France will be sending pillows next…….  see here from Times of Malta ?.

Let us see what happens, and let us not forget the 280 people who are also victims from this long-term conflict: They died on an MH flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur while flying over Ukraine [editor’s note: 2014 Malaysian Airlines flight which was shot down].  The fact remains that Ukraine is an independent country, so we had better stand up for it without succumbing to Russia’s salami tactics….Crimea, Donbas Region…what’s next?

I was also in the port of Södertälje / Stockholm Gateway this week where I witnessed a COSCO Shipping vessel mv Tian Lu (see photos here).

arriving and discharging a full load of housing modules. A few days after she departs, another charter vessel from Asia will arrive with a similar load. Smart isn’t it that housing modules can be put together, thus saving 6-9 months in the construction of housing for students and so on here in Sweden. Yet, whether it is green or not to transport things around the world that technically could have been made here is debatable, but at least in the past, global outsourcing and world trade has meant that transportation costs were a fraction of the overall expenditure.  That has certainly changed in the past year!

I am off to Dubai this coming Sunday and will be attending the breakbulk expo on February 1-2. This will be followed by chairing a CLC Projects and Cross Ocean Network meeting on February 3rd. Meeting people face-to-face again is indeed something that I am looking forward to, and it also means that you can no longer hide behind a computer screen when doing your sales work, although it is very smart in many ways and has become an accepted way of life in the last couple of years.  The wife has given me her long overdue list of duty-free cosmetic items to buy from the airport in Dubai, so it seems life is slowly getting back to normal ?.

In today’s issue of our newsletter, we first of all visit the wonderful city of Hamburg, Germany.  It is a renowned place for shipping, and it is also the HQ for Toepfer Research. Toepfer Research is part of the Toepfer Group and shares forecasts, particularly in the shipping field and what is to be expected. This video is very interesting to watch as the interviewee is more than “just” an analyst of which there are many, but he actually has a concrete past in shipping….which helps when believing the forecast I would say….  

After that, we visit the land of plenty when it comes to fish, oil, mountains and even shipping, and here I am talking about Norway.  We republish an interview here with Hoegh Lines which you will find interesting as they are very active in moving project cargo around the world using their giant RORO ships.  

Finally, I remind you of our Project Cargo Weekly Yearbook. At 472 pages and with clickable contents (to a great extent), it is a massive compilation of intelligence that will reward the active reader with insights, comments, and above all valuable contacts!

We also provide you with shipping news, trade intel, featured video and picture of the week, and finishing off with wise words, we wish you a wonderful weekend ahead.

Until next week, we remain,

Yours sincerely,
Bo H. Drewsen


Video Interview
Toepfer Transport

Toepfer Transport Interview

Yorck Niclas Prehm, Head of Research at Toepfer Transport was interviewed by Bo H. Drewsen, Editor in Chief at PCW.

Höegh Autoliners

Hoegh Autoliners Interview with Oskar Orstadius

Interview with

Mr. Oskar Orstadius

The vessels types service the Asia/Africa trade? What is the ramp capacity and door opening? Do you accept project cargo (static and rolling) for all the services into Africa?

On this trade we basically have two vessel types in service. They have a door opening between 5,0 and 5,1m and ramp capacity ranging from 100-150ton. We do accept all types of project cargo, both rolling and static. We have been most successful in loading many different types of commodities into Africa. If cargo is static it will be loaded on a roll trailer (mafi) before being loaded on the vessel to ensure a smooth loading and discharge operation.

Recently Published:
The 2021 Project Cargo Weekly Yearbook


The yearbook is a 472 page compilation of ALL PCW issues in 2021 featuring the editorial, interviews, featured videos (click to play), photos and wise words. We are using a feature filled viewing method which enables you to read the e-book somewhat like a real book with page turning etc. (viewing tips below) and you are more than welcome to use, distribute and forward the content as you wish. The yearbook continues our tradition of only allowing a few ads overall as not to clutter the real content.

PCW-Shipping News

US Infrastructure Bill will Fund Inland Waterway Projects

Editor’s Note:
Finally, the US gets underway investing in its decrepit (in places) infrastructure. Fast profits instead of long-term thinking like in China has been the order of the day plus a bit of bickering in Congress, of course. But latest here on inland waterways, and adding to that the huge package for terminals, roads, and bridges should mean progress.

On January 19th, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released its “spend plans” outlining the specific inland waterways projects that were allocated funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (Infrastructure Package).

Debra Calhoun, senior vice president, Waterways Council Inc, based in Washington, D.C. told AJOT: “We are gratified to see a once in a generation funding opportunity from the Infrastructure Bill to fund a number of important lock and dam projects. Waterways Council has brought a coalition together of farmers, towboat and barge operators and conservationists to accelerate the process of replacement and upgrades on the nation’s inland waterways.”

Border of North Korea-China Reopens for Rail Freight

Editor’s Note:
Can you imagine the amount of project cargo coming into North Korea if ever the 2 Koreas were to formally merge their links? Yes, another mega market would pop up no doubt. Anyway, latest here on the railway connections being opened again between The Democratic Republic of Korea and China.

Having observed the train arrival, there was speculation over the border reopening by several media, as rail freight traffic had been suspended since the start of the pandemic, apart from a eight-day revival in November. The single journey could be a trial, some said, still anticipating to hear that it was only temporary. But, in the days that followed the confirming words that were spoken at the press conference made it to the news. Several Chinese news websites have reported about the resumption of rail freight traffic between China and North Korea.

Meet Hapag-lloyd Ceo Rolf Habben Jansen Online – Discussing the Current Challenges of the Industry

Editor’s Note:
A good initiative by one of the main carriers flush with cash to meet with the actual customers and not stay aloof from them.

I would be very happy to see you at our next live session, during which I will give you an update on Hapag-Lloyd and the current market situation. In addition, you are welcome to ask questions, which I will be happy to answer during the meeting. I am looking forward to welcome you on February 9, 2022 from 9 AM to 10 AM (CET) or, alternatively, from 4 PM to 5 PM (CET). You can register via the button below.

Russia’s Grand Arctic Plan Might get Stuck in the Ice

Editor’s Note:
We constantly hear about global warming, sustainable this and that. That may be, but the Northern Sea Route has not melted yet any time year round, and God knows if it ever will……

The troublesome shipping on the Northern Sea Route continues into the new year. Almost three weeks after the world’s most powerful icebreaker arrived in the Chukchi Sea, none of the four vessels stuck in the area have broken out of the ice.

Russia intends to start year-round transit shipments on the Northern Sea Route already in 2024 and that same year reach at least 80 million tons of shipping volumes on the route. But experiences from this winter show that capricious sea-ice could lead to a wreck of plans.


All On and Salpha Sign Investment Deal for Solar Home Systems Distribution in Nigeria

Shell-funded impact investment company, All On is announced a an investment in Salpha Energy Nigeria to scale the company’s solar home systems distribution business, focused on bottom-of-the-pyramid customers in rural and peri-urban areas across Nigeria including the Niger Delta.

Tanzania Signs a Railway Contract with Turkish Firm

Tanzania on Tuesday signed a contract with Turkish firm Yapi Merkezi to build a 368 km section of standard gauge railway.

It is part of a 1,219 km line which Tanzania is building to help boost trade with neighbouring countries and Yapi Merkezi is already building two other sections which are near completion.

Celsa France Starts Trial Production New Wire Rod Mill in Bayonne

Spanish CELSA Group unit Celsa France has begun the testing phase of the new rolling mill in the company’s industrial complex in Bayonne in South West of France, with the recent ignition of the furnace of the installation and with the production of first steel pieces, in which it has invested 65 million euros.

Celsa France will produce up to 550,000 tonnes of rolled products per year in Bayonne, which will allow it to access a new European market that consumes around 20 million tonnes of wire rod per year. At full capacity, the new rolling mill, whose manufacture began in January 2020, has a generating capacity and revenues of around 300 million euros per year. The new facility will come into operation once the tests that have begun with the ignition of the furnace and that will continue for a few weeks are finished.

KORAIL Wins Contract for Feasibility Study for Tanzania Railway Education Center Construction Project

Korea Railroad Corporation (KORAIL) announced on December 30 that it had won a feasibility study service for the Tanzania Railway Education Center construction project ordered by the Export-Import Bank of Korea.

This project is a service to confirm the feasibility of establishing a railway operator training institute to complete the 1,219km central line railway construction project, which is being promoted by the Tanzanian government on the largest scale in East Africa.

PCW-Featured Video

A COSCO Shipping Newbuild Paying a Visit to Port of Södertälje

Editor’s Note:
The Port of Södertälje close to Stockholm is a very large port for importation of cars but is also being used often for discharging project cargo, particularly housing modules. One of COSCO Shipping’s newbuildings recently paid a visit alongside.

Featured Video
PCW-Featured Photo

Editor’s Note:
And in yet another beautiful morning, this time at the Hutchison Port of Stockholm/Norvik, the Chipolbrok vessel mv NOWOWIEJSKI was seen discharging cable drums from Asia.