News Bulletin – 17 November 2018

1. Asian seafaring nations announce first ever Manila Statement on the Fair Treatment of Seafarers.

14 Nov 2018 : A Regional Meeting of Asia’s leading seafaring nations has highlighted the plight many seafarers face in the event of a maritime accident and has pledged to lead the drive towards proper and effective implementation of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and International Labour Organization (ILO) agreed Guidelines on the Fair Treatment of Seafarers.

The Regional Meeting, held in Manila today (Nov 13), was organised by Seafarers’ Rights International (SRI), a world leading international pan-industry body researching maritime and seafarers’ law, and DOLE, the Philippine Department of Labour and Employment.

Issuing the first ever Manila Statement on the Fair Treatment of Seafarers, senior government representatives from more than 10 countries in the region said the time was right for action to be taken to protect their seafarers. The Regional Meeting in Manila aimed at raising awareness of the Guidelines amongst stakeholders and role players, and at exploring how the region could develop resources, knowledge and expertise in relation to the Guidelines. It also addressed increasing cooperation amongst States at regional and international level.

2. Robots Are Coming – to Clean Cargo Holds.

14 Nov 2018 : Robots could soon take over and simplify the laborious and, at times, dangerous and time-consuming process of cleaning cargo holds of dry bulk vessels. Danish shipping company Dampskibsselskabet Norden has recently tested and participated in the development of a new belt-driven robot which can be operated remotely to go up and down along the sides of the holds while pressure cleaning them.

Namely, the company’s compatriot CLIIN developed the robot which in the course of 2018 and with assistance from the Market Development Fund has been tested as a prototype on one of Norden’s vessels. The new robot would improve safety, reduce water and chemical use and save time in connection with cargo hold cleaning, Norden explained.

“Preliminary results with the robot are positive. The robot is easily operated and also reaches those places that can be difficult to get to. I have seen many robots in the market, but this one is a qualified suggestion for how cargo hold cleaning in the future can be done in a better, more safe, environmentally friendly and quicker way, and it’s about time. It is pretty much the same method being used to clean cargo holds today as it has been for the past 20-25 years,” said Jonas Warming, Senior Optimisation Manager, who has followed the developments closely for the past few months.

It is expected that the robot will be ready for operation on board a selection of Norden vessels during the autumn of 2018, the companies said, adding that they would continue working together to further develop the robot..

3. JNPT to call bids for SEZ on 296 acres.

14 Nov 2018 : The JNPT Port, Mumbai, will soon call for fresh bids to develop a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) on 296 acres of industrial area developed near the port. This would be the second bidding process of JNPT management in the last two months.

A senior JNPT official told BusinessLine that the bidding would be on electronic platform and advertisements will be published by Tuesday. Last time around, the highest bid to buy an acre of land was about ₹12 crore.

In September, a joint venture of DP World and India’s National Investment and Infrastructure Fund outbid four other groups to develop a free trade warehousing zone on 44 acres at the SEZ. JNPT SEZ is spread over 277 hectares and located close to JNPT Port, the country’s premier container port. In 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the SEZ to boost export-oriented industries in the country. Being close to JNPT Port, it provides access to global markets and strong multi-modal connectivity.The upcoming New Mumbai airport, dedicated rail freight Corridor and trans-harbour road link will act as an additional attraction to the SEZ project.

4. New guidance for situations involving missing seafarers.

13 Nov 2018 : New guidance on dealing with situations involving missing seafarers has been launched for the benefit of shipping companies and manning agents.

The new Good Practice Guide for Shipping Companies & Manning Agents working with situations involving missing seafarers has been produced by the International Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN), the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) and InterManager.

The guidance covers managing relationships onboard, actions that should be taken, and managing relationships with the families of seafarers who have gone missing. It includes details of recommended procedures to follow, templates and scripts for communicating with families, and further resources including contact details for reporting incidents of missing seafarers.

5. Study to spot bottlenecks in cargo clearance.

13 Nov 2018 : Aimed at implementing trade facilitation programmes and investing in hard and soft infrastructure to promote cross-border trade, the Customs Department has embarked on a Time Release Study (TRS) to identify bottlenecks in cargo clearance in the State.

According to officials, the results of the study, initiated at all sea ports and airports in the State and involving all organisations that have a direct influence on the process, are slated to be released in two weeks. The initiative takes a cue from the recent improvement in the country’s ranking on World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business index, wherein the country vaulted to 80 from 146 in the parameter of ‘trading across borders.’

6. Pirates Fire at LNG Carrier off Nigeria.

13 Nov 2018 : An LNG tanker was chased and fired upon by nine pirates in a speed boat on November 6, around 30 nautical miles southwest of Bonny, Nigeria, the IMB Piracy Reporting Center informed. The crew raised the alarm, mustered in the citadel, and activated the sip security alert system.

The pirates approached the vessel several times but due to the increased speed and evasive manoeuvres, the pirates were unsuccessful and later aborted the attack,” IMB said.

Both the vessel and crew are reported to be safe. Another attack has been reported in the Gulf of Guinea by the independent security brokerage Asket.

Asket said in an advisory that on November 11, around 10 nautical miles off the mouth of the river Niger, a vessel was attacked by eight armed men with covered faces. The motor vessel was approached by a small blue-colored boat, however, the hijacking seems to have been prevented.

7. Stowaway major challenge in Ghana sea ports.

12 Nov 2018 : The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) is putting in stringent security measures to close all avenues used by persons who want to use the country’s sea ports to stowaway to Western countries.

Security operatives at the Tema Port say stowaway is the major challenge faced by the GPHA as ‘one or two’ persons have been caught engaging in it this year.

Mr Stevens Siaka-Anane, Deputy Harbour Master in-charge of operations, disclosed this on Thursday during the Second Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport-Ghana (CILT) Continuous Professional Development Programme at Tema.

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Categories: News Digest

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