Cargo Business Newswire Archives
Summary for March 28- April 1, 2011:
Submit Your Press
Releases Here!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Top Story

Judges don’t overturn California’s 24-mile rule

Ships calling California’s ports will need to burn cleaner within 24 miles of the coast – a 2009 decision that was upheld for the second time by U.S. District Court on Monday.

As of July 2009, cargo ships have been required by the California Air Resources Board to use fuel with a sulfur limit of 0.5 percent. That limit is set to be lowered to 0.1 percent by January 2012.

The Pacific Maritime Shipping Association had filed with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on the grounds that CARB’s 2009 mandate is not constitutional and should be pre-empted by federal statutes.

The Circuit Court judges’ unanimous decision on Monday supported CARB’s claim that commercial shipping within the 24-mile zone of California’s coastline pose health hazards due to the levels of sulfur oxides in the vessels’ emissions.

For the full Sacramento Bee story:

Southern California port construction projects create thousands more jobs

Over $4.5 billion worth of construction projects at the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles could lead to the hiring of up to 7,000 workers over the next year.

The two busiest U.S. cargo ports have major developments in the works, including the $950 million replacement of the Gerald Desmond Bridge, and the $700 million re-jigging of Long Beach’s middle harbor.

The bridge replacement, which is scheduled to begin construction later this year and wrap up in 2016, will utilize more than 4,000 workers, according to the Long Beach Press Telegram.

For interested job seekers: Pacific Gateway's website , or call: 562-570-WORK (9675).

For the full LB Press Telegram story:

Kohl’s to open distribution center in Maryland this summer

Department store retailer Kohl’s Corp. announced it would open a distribution center this summer in Edgewood, Maryland, bringing its total to 12 nationally, and the third such facility servicing online orders.

Kohl said its online business grew 50 percent in 2010 and it expects to hit $1 billion for web-based sales in 2011.

Some Long Beach longshoremen concerned over potential radiation on ships from Japan

At least some longshoremen are reportedly concerned at the Port of Long Beach over cargo handling from ships that have arrived from Japan with the potential for radiation exposure resulting from the Asian country’s nuclear crisis.

At least three cargo ships from Japan have called at the port since the 9.0 earthquake and tsunami on March 9 that created havoc at a nuclear facility there, stirring fears of unsafe radiation being carried on the wind.

Customs officials at the port have reportedly not recorded any unsafe radiation levels with its detection equipment.

Two longshoremen reportedly refused to work a ship from Japan on Friday due to radiation exposure fears.

For the full NBC Los Angeles news story:

Dock worker killed by forklift at APM Terminals Virginia

A female dockworker died from injuries shortly after being struck by a forklift at APM Terminals Virginia on Monday morning.

According to the local police department cited in the Virginian Pilot, Paula Bellamy, 38, of Portsmouth, had been working as a "slinger," guiding a crane operator. A forklift operator had reportedly picked up containers and was on the move when the operator's vision was obstructed and hit Bellamy on the pier at 8:AM.

Bellamy was pronounced dead at 8:59AM at a local hospital.

For the full Virginian Pilot story:

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Top Story

Radiation fears in Japan drive shipping alterations

Global seaports are on alert and at least some shipping lines are diverting cargo routes in and out of Japan in attempts to avoid potential radiation contamination resulting from that country’s nuclear crisis in the fallout from the 9.0 earthquake and devastating tsunami a few weeks ago.

The damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and subsequent fears over radiation contamination has caused some shipping firms to avoid calling Japan’s big ports 140 miles to the south in Tokyo and Yokohama that reportedly handle up to 40 percent of the Asian country’s foreign cargo, according to a New York Times report.

The Port of Xiamin, China reported radiation was detected on an MOL containership from Japan, and have since quarantined the vessel that reportedly was sailing no less than 80 miles away from the nuclear facility.

German shipping line Hapag-Lloyd and Hong Kong’s OOCL have halted services to Tokyo and Yokohama, with the latter saying it is diverting Tokyo-bound ships to Osaka and coming up with a contingency plan to prevent containers traveling inland to Tokyo.

Some ships might have to be scrapped if they have been quarantined for radioactivity due to the costs associated with years of Coast Guard checks, according to Basil M. Karatzas, managing director for projects and finance at Compass Maritime Service in Teaneck, N.J. in the NY Times story.

As reported here yesterday, a ship was scanned for radiation at the Port of Long Beach on Friday when two longshoremen refused to handle cargo from the vessel over radiation fears, although no dangerous levels were reportedly found.

Southern China’s big port in Yantian announced Friday it had started screening all first-call arriving vessels and containers for radiation if they had been to Japan in the preceding 28 days.

For the full NY Times story:

COSCO forecasts major dry bulk shipping challenges

China’s COSCO Holdings Co Ltd., the largest bulk carrier in the world, sees major challenges ahead for dry bulk shipping until rates start to improve towards the end of the year.

At a news conference, COSCO’s Chairman Wei Jiafu said shipping companies "have to control capacity and should not be quick to order new ships.”

The dry bulk shipping market hit its lowest point in since 2008 in February, hitting 1,045.

Overall recovery for the global shipping industry helped boost COSCO’s July-December earnings to $3.41 billion.

For the full Reuters story:

China could import highest level of corn in over 15 years

China could import the most corn in over 15 years in 2011, potentially driving up prices in that tight market.

Corn futures that are traded in Chicago jumped 14 percent last week based on news that China might have struck a deal to import 1.25 million tons of U.S. corn, and might import a total amount in the range of 2-2.5 million tons.

For the full Cattle Network story:

Hong Kong passes laws to comply with sanctions on Iranian shipping ties

Hong Kong’s government announced today that it has passed laws that allow it to comply with United Nations sanctions against Iran after 20 shipping firms there were reportedly linked earlier this year to the Middle Eastern country’s weapons trade.

Hong Kong is now reportedly in line with the UN’s VISA and asset freezes on Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL).

In January, the U.S. Treasury Department announced the sanctions on the shipping companies that were reportedly affiliated with IRISL.

British authorities investigate how they missed fake wedding cake bomb in UPS package

British authorities announced they have launched an investigation into how a package with a fake bomb hidden inside of a wedding cake was not detected on a UPS cargo plane that recently flew from Britain to Turkey.

A Turkish man reportedly delivered the package that contained a timer, wires and a detonator to a UPS office in Camden, north of London, two weeks ago.

There were reportedly no explosives in the package.


Thursday, March 31, 2011

Top Story

Japan's reconstruction could boost bulk shipping

The massive reconstruction effort in earthquake-and-tsunami-devastated Japan could be a boon for a struggling bulk shipping sector that suffers from over-capacity and low rates.

Japan's infrastructure includes over 150,000 damaged buildings, according to a Bloomberg report.

"The rebuilding process will need big volumes of material," said Wei Jiafu, chairman of China COSCO (Holdings) Co., China's largest dry-bulk shipping operator at a press conference yesterday in Hong Kong.

Japan could be looking to import more iron ore, coal and forest products, for example, from countries like Australia and Malaysia.

After the Kobe earthquake in 1995, the Baltic Dry Index that charts commodity-shipping, leapt 20 percent in the three months that followed that natural disaster.

For the full Bloomberg story:

Credit index dropped in March

A decline in sales, credit applications and collections in March were factors in the Credit Managers' Index sliding from 64.1 to 62.2.

Volatile global events were a contributing factor, according to the CMI report.

The CMI had experienced several months worth of an upward trend, and is still in a range that is favorable, according to Chris Kuehl, PhD, the economic advisor for the National Association of Credit Management.

"This is not exactly catastrophic as the index remains in the 60...but the pace has dramatically slowed and that is hardly what had been anticipated or hoped for," Kohl said.

"It is important to note that the ripple effects of the events in the Middle East and Japan have only started to manifest and will be factors for months to come," said Kuehl. "The Japanese catastrophe has affected supply chains all over the U.S. and Europe and that has added considerable expense to manufacturers being forced to find new suppliers or wait for weeks to get what they need from the affected region."

The CMI report referenced the price per barrel of oil has jumped by almost $15 since December and is now filtering into all sectors of the economy.

The biggest change in the CMI data is in dollar collections where the combined index slipped back to levels not seen since November of last year, falling -0.7 from 56.4 to 55.7.

"The anecdotal evidence suggests that most creditors are reacting to some short-term shocks but expect to be back to normal in the months to come—providing that the situation in the Middle East does not worsen appreciably," said Kuehl.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Palo Alto equity firm announces $763 mil investment in China's logistics

A Palo Alto-based private equity firm — H&QAP — announced it has inked a deal with a Chinese investment counterpart, Grand China Logistics, to manage approximately $763 million that will focus, at least in part, on transportation, shipping and warehousing in China.

H&QAP's founder and chairman Ta-lin Hsu helped fund Hainan Airlines in the 1990s.

For the full Silicon Valley News story:

Pharma companies handing logistics over to freight firms like UPS, DHL

Pharma companies like Bristol-Meyers Squibb and Pfizer are handing off their logistics businesses to the likes of UPS and DHL, which have set up special divisions targeted at the drug makers' supply chains.

"In UPS's vision, they want that customer to do everything with them," said Kevin Sterling, an analyst at BB&T Capital Markets. "It will allow them to pump more volume through their network."

UPS is reportedly doubling the size of its health-care warehouses Louisville to four, part of the 30 such facilities it operates globally.

Bristol-Myers Squibb recently handed over all of its U.S. distribution responsibilities to DHL's Exel logistics division, much like what Pfizer has done with Exel.

For the full Fierce Pharma Manufacturing story:

Company in India to invest over $1 bil to build twenty-foot containers

India's Indicon Logistics Ltd. announced it would invest over $1 billion in the next three years setting up container-manufacturing facilities there.

One of the firm's factories reportedly already has the capacity to produce 1,200 twenty-foot equivalent unit containers a month and will start operations April 4.

"We would expand to multiple locations and will build new factories," told reporters. "We want to make 10,000 twenty-foot equivalent unit containers in the first year and take this to 30,000 twenty-foot equivalent units in three years," said Varun Thapar, director at Indicon.

For the full NASDAQ story:

$2 mil worth of cosmetics stolen from container turn up in L.A.

Approximately $2 million dollars worth of cosmetics that had been stolen from a shipping container in Utah that was bound for Washington State were recovered at different locations by the Los Angeles Police Department.

According to the Daily Breeze, detectives from the L.A.P.D.'s Commercial Crimes Division seized some of the cosmetics that were being loaded into a truck at a large warehouse, where a search turned up more of the stolen merchandise and eight workers were detained.

More of the stolen cosmetics were found at a store and other locales around the city. Authorities said about half the container-load has been recovered.

For the full Daily Breeze story:


Friday, April 1, 2011

Top Story

New trans-Pac service to bypass Japan for now

A new trans-Pacific container-shipping service to be operated by COSCO, Hanjin, Pacific International Lines, and Wan Hai, will initially bypass Japan and it's disrupted production supply chain that resulted from March 11's 9.0 earthquake, tsunami and subsequent fears over nuclear radiation leaks.

The Central China Long Beach Express (CLX), which commences April 5, will head for the Port of Long Beach after three calls at ports in China, bypassing a stop at Japan's port of Yokohama until mid-May, according to a press release posted yesterday on Hanjin's website.

The CLX service will deploy five containerships that range between 3,600-3,850-TEU capacity, with two provided by COSCO, and one by each by the other three other partners.

The CLX port rotation will be: Fuzhou - Ningbo - Shanghai - (Yokohama) - Long Beach - Fuzhou, and Yokohama starting from the middle of May.

China, India led global manufacturing in March

While Europe's manufacturing dipped in March, China and India's production showed no adverse impacts from the Japan crisis or rising oil prices.

The Eurozone Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) slipped to 57.5 last month from February's 11-year high mark of 59.0, the 18th month above the 50 mark of growth.

According to a Reuters report, a primary focus in the coming months ahead will be on inflation concerns throughout Europe, as the European Central Bank has indicated interest rates could go up as soon as next week from its record low of 1.0 percent, with the Bank of England following suit as soon as May.

China's PMI indicated production there is growing at a moderate pace with that country's tighter monetary policy, rising to 53.4 from February's six-month low of 52.2.

In India, HSBC Bank's PMI was at a four-month high of 57.9. The HSBC PMI is culled form a survey of 500 companies.

For the full Reuters report:

Texas transportation funds forecast to hit $170 bil shortfall by 2035

Over the next twenty years, transportation funding in Texas could experience a $170 billion shortfall, according to a recently released report.

The Texas Transportation Commission's 2030 Committee forecasts a growing gap between transportation infrastructure needs and what that state currently expects to bring in from federal funds and statewide fees such as gasoline tax and vehicle registration revenue between now and 2035.

"The majority of Texas roadways were built more than 40 years ago and are reaching the end of their designed life," said C. Michael Walton, the committee's chairman, in the Houston Chronicle.

The 2030 Committee said it is concerned the ever-booming population in Texas is going to place undue stress and congestion on the aging infrastructure if something isn't done to address the funding issues, such as raising a gas tax that has not gone up since 1991.

For the full Houston Chronicle story:

Maersk adds South China port to TP6 service

Denmark's Maersk Line announced the addition of a direct call to its Trans-Pacific 6 service at the Port of Nansha in the West Pearl River Delta region in Southern China.

The TP6 service is scheduled to commence May 2 and the eastbound rotation will be Tanjung - Pelepas - Ho Chi Minh City (Vung Tau) - Nansha - Yantian - Hong Kong - Los Angeles. The ocean carrier said there would be a 15-day transit time from Nansha to the U. S. West Coast. The westbound rotation will be Los Angeles - Ningbo - Shanghai - Nansha - Yantian - Tanjung Pelepas.

In a press release, Maersk touted Nansha's connections to regional manufacturing centers and deepwater port, among other attributes.

Maersk adds South China port to TP6 service

Denmark's Maersk Line announced the addition of a direct call to its Trans-Pacific 6 service at the Port of Nansha in the West Pearl River Delta region in Southern China.

The TP6 service is scheduled to commence May 2 and the eastbound rotation will be Tanjung - Pelepas - Ho Chi Minh City (Vung Tau) - Nansha - Yantian - Hong Kong - Los Angeles. The ocean carrier said there would be a 15-day transit time from Nansha to the U. S. West Coast. The westbound rotation will be Los Angeles - Ningbo - Shanghai - Nansha - Yantian - Tanjung Pelepas.

In a press release, Maersk touted Nansha's connections to regional manufacturing centers and deepwater port, among other attributes.

Shipwreck from early 19th century found at bottom of Lake Michigan

A 60-foot, single-masted sloop was found at the bottom of Lake Michigan that could reportedly date back to the 1830s, according to a story in the Detroit Free Press.

Michigan Shipwreck Research Associates made the announcement this week that the wreck was found upright approximately 250 feet deep down in Lake Michigan and is in fairly good condition.

For the full Detroit Free Press Story:


[ TOP ]