Cargo Business Newswire Archives
Summary for November 16 through November 20, 2015:

Monday, November 16, 2015

Trucking Trends: Mind the Gap

By Mark Montague, DAT Solutions

It’s not unusual for the spot truckload freight market to experience a lull in Q3. But this year the slack demand combined with an increase in capacity has led to an extended slump.

Spot market freight volume declined 9.7 percent in October compared to September, according to the DAT North American Freight Index. By equipment type, van freight availability fell 13 percent, reefers lost 16 percent, and flatbed volume slipped 4.5 percent lower during October.

Line-haul rates on the spot market followed these trends, sliding 2.6 percent for vans, 4.5 percent for reefers, and 1.7 percent for flatbeds compared to September.

The declines are more pronounced when taken year over year.

Compared to October 2014, spot freight volume was down 44 percent in October. Van demand was down 42 percent, reefer volume fell 34 percent, and flatbeds dropped 50 percent, compared to October 2014.

Rates fell as well compared to last year.

Line-haul rates declined 5.7 percent for vans, 5.6 percent for reefers, and 5.4 percent for flatbeds year-over-year. Total rates paid to the carrier declined by 15 percent, however, due to a 48 percent decline in the fuel surcharge, which comprises a portion of the rate.

So what’s the takeaway from these numbers?

1. The gap has widened between shipper-to-carrier contract rates and the spot market rates that freight brokers pay to the carrier. By mid-October, that gap had grown to 18 percent (25 cents per mile) on national average line-haul rates for vans, not including the fuel surcharge. In October 2014, the gap was much narrower at 8 percent.

2. The wider gap between spot and contract rates represents an opportunity for freight brokers, who can offer competitive pricing to their shipper customers while paying a fair rate to carriers who haul spot market loads.

3. Small carriers can get by with a lower rate in the short term, because fuel is relatively cheap. A declining fuel surcharge moderates the rising line-haul rate on the contract side, and gives the spot market rate an even more pronounced downward trend.

The gap may narrow again between spot and contract rates, for a variety of reasons. First, contract carriers will adjust their pricing to avoid losing market share to freight brokers and 3PLs. Second, small carriers will exit the market if rates drop below their breakeven threshold, or if increased costs and new regulations hamper productivity. An increase in overall freight volume would also tip the balance, as the additional demand would likely exceed contract capacity. Then spot market rates will rise, or perhaps contract rates will fall, as shippers adjust to the new conditions.

Mark Montague is industry rate analyst for DAT Solutions, which operates the DAT® network of load boards and RateView rate-analysis tool. He has applied his expertise to logistics, rates, and routing for more than 30 years. Mark is based in Portland, Ore. For information, visit

Port of Oakland to develop 20-acre section of Seaport Logistics Complex

Talks have begun to develop the next phase of a 170-acre Seaport Logistics Complex at the Port of Oakland. Port Commissioners gave the go-ahead last night, authorizing exclusive negotiations between the port and industrial real estate developer CenterPoint Properties.

The port and developer were given six months to reach agreement on building a portion of the complex. The new project would encompass 20 acres of port property and include transload and cross-dock facilities where importers could easily transfer containers from ships to trains.

CenterPoint, a major developer of transportation-related real estate projects, would build and lease the facilities to tenants involved in international logistics.

"We're pleased to engage with one of the most respected names in industrial development," said Maritime Director John Driscoll, the port's lead negotiator. "And we're excited to realize our vision for the Seaport Logistics Complex."

The 20-acre facility will be built on a decommissioned army base acquired by the port. It will be adjacent to phase one of the Seaport Logistics Complex, a 13-track rail yard that's nearing completion.

Port officials said they're creating the largest logistics complex at any U.S. West Coast port in order to attract additional containerized cargo volume.

Maersk receives market warning on pursuit of NOL

Debt markets are warning A.P. Moeller-Maersk not to pursue an acquisition in the struggling container line industry.

Neptune Orient Lines said last week it's in talks with Maersk and CMA CGM as the container company seeks a buyer. Borrowing costs for both potential buyers have risen since the announcement.

"Maersk Line could possibly derive some synergies from an acquisition but Maersk Line is one of the few profitable companies in the sector and it could dilute margins initially," Marie Fischer-Sabatié, a senior vice president at Moody's Investors Service, said by phone.

The yield on the Maersk $750-million, 2.55 percent bond due 2019 rose to a high of 2.84 percent this week.

The container line industry is suffering from vessel overcapacity and weak global growth that has sent freight rates plunging and rendered some of the world's maritime trade lanes unprofitable.

Maersk said on Oct 23 that the container market was doing worse than it expected as it cut its 2015 forecast for the group's underlying profit by 15 percent to $3.4 billion. A week later, it said it will cut as many as 4,000 jobs at the container line, scale back capacity and delay investments to cope with a tepid market.

Maersk Chief Executive Officer Nils Smedegaard Andersen said last week his container unit "will look at everything that comes up for sale in the market but our base strategy is to grow organically." He also said he would "welcome any consolidation - - that would only be healthy for the container line industry."

For more of The Business Times story:

FEC Railway transfer station helps boost volume at Port Everglades

Improving on its record 1 million TEUs, container cargo volumes at Port Everglades grew another 5 percent during FY 2015 (October 1, 2014 through September 30, 2015) to 1,060,506 TEUs, according to preliminary reports.

Port officials credit the increase to new and expanded cargo services, and the first full operational year of the Florida East Coast Railway's intermodal container transfer facility at the port.

"We continue making substantial infrastructure investments to help our customers grow their businesses - most notably, the FECR's railyard and roadway improvements to improve the last mile of landside connectivity," said Port Everglades Chief Executive and Port Director Steven Cernak.

The FECR celebrated its first-year anniversary operating its ICTF at Port Everglades with a 26 percent increase in volume. The near-dock 43-acre, state-of-the-art rail facility resulted from a public-private partnership between the FECR, Broward County and the State of Florida.

El Faro bridge located by salvage team

A salvage team looking for the voyage data recorder for the sunken freighter El Faro said it had located the bridge deck that separated from the wreckage, although the ship's black box was still missing.

National Transportation Safety Board investigators said the search continues for the recorder, which normally is attached to the bridge but appeared to have detached when the ship sank in a hurricane last month, killing the 33 mostly American crew onboard.

The bridge was located about one mile from the main wreckage, according to Eric Weiss, an NTSB spokesman.

For more of the Reuters story:


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Drewry: What is NOL-APL draw for Maersk and CMA CGM?

According to Drewry Maritime Research, neither A.P. Moller–Maersk or CMA CGM would usually risk their balance sheets by buying NOL at a time when container shipping is expected to struggle for the next three years.

The announcement last week by Neptune Orient Lines that it is in preliminary talks with A.P. Moller–Maersk and CMA CGM, surprised most in the industry, according to Drewry’s latest issue of Container Insight. It was known that Temasek Holdings — the giant investment company of the Singaporean government and NOL’s primary owner — was considering a sale, but few had expected these companies to show up as prospective buyers.

Are these inquiries considered real approaches or merely opportunistic?

Drewry said it stands by its previous assessment of NOL, in which it concluded that that NOL was not a particularly attractive acquisition, since its liner shipping business has been losing money for a long time and its wealthy parent company was under no financial pressure to sell at a discount price. The analysts noted that the company lost another $66 million in Core EBIT in the third quarter and is on course for five-year operational losses from its liner division of over $1.1 billion.

Drewry says financial weakness seems to be delivering today’s M&A opportunities to the market, noting the most recent deals have involved purchases of loss-making companies (CSAV by Hapag-Lloyd and CCNI by Hamburg-Süd).

What would the buyer of NOL-APL get for their money? Following the sale of APL Logistics the company employs around 4,600 staff globally in 180 offices and on about 90 ships, 56 of which are owned. Its largest ships are its ten 14,000-TEU units. While these ships may be relatively new they are not a big draw in a slowing market. They have no vessels on order.

The NOL-APL draw may be the nine terminals it has in Asia, the U.S. and now Europe. Both CMA CGM and Maersk are expanding their terminal portfolios, Drewry says.

CMA CGM is smaller than Maersk in the trans-Pacific and would benefit from access to APL’s large base of textile and other time-sensitive product customers, as well as its profitable U.S. government contracts linked to the use of US-flag vessels, both of which Maersk already has.

For Maersk, even admitting an interest in APL sends out a very different message than one given a couple of weeks ago, when it announced lower profit expectations for the liner division and cutting around 4,000 staff.

"Our preferred route for growth is organic, but we will – as always – study M&A opportunities," said Maersk in a statement. "We have no comments re NOL."

"Neptune Orient Lines Limited has indicated being in talks notably with CMA CGM regarding a proposed transaction," reads a CMA CGM statement. "CMA CGM confirms that preliminary discussions are being held concerning a potential combination with Neptune Orient Lines Limited. Given the early stage of those discussions, there is no certainty that a transaction will actually occur."

In conclusion, Drewry researchers say any NOL-APL deal will be motivated by opportunity rather than logic. Of the two named APL suitors, CMA CGM is the better fit, analysts say, but Maersk has deeper pockets. Carriers are aware of the big risks attached to any takeover and are unlikely to enter into a bidding war, meaning that Temasek might not get the price it wants.

Port of New Orleans sets 12-month cargo record

The Port of New Orleans has handled more than a half million TEUs over the past 12 months, according to port president and CEO Gary LaGrange during his Annual State of the Port Address hosted by the International Freight Forwarders and Customs House Brokers Association of New Orleans.

"It’s another milestone that comes on the heels of four record years in a row," LaGrange said. "We anticipate continued growth in our container market, along with a robust breakbulk and project cargo market, as we recently set 14 year highs in tonnage moved over port docks."

The most recent 120-month container data through September found the Port of New Orleans handled 537,285 TEUs, a 13.6 percent increase year-over-year. Those figures reflect a more than doubling of container volume in the Central American trade lane through September, buoyed by banana imports and paper and chemical exports.

In addition, the latest breakbulk cargo data through May 2015, illustrates a more than 15 percent growth in breakbulk tons, led by an 18.7 percent increase in imported steel.

"While we expect some softening in the imported steel market this fall, we anticipate the investment boom in the chemical and petrochemical industry on the Lower Mississippi River will spur continued growth for the future," LaGrange said.

China approves $5B railway in Anhui province

China has approved a $5.24 billion railway project in central Anhui province, according to the state planner, Reuters reports.

The project will comprise several sections, one of which will be high-speed, the state planner said in a statement on its website.

For more of The Economic Times story:

Columbia Group opens new chassis depot in Bayonne, N.J.

The Columbia Group of companies will open a new intermodal chassis depot located in Bayonne, NJ on November 16, 2015. Trac Intermodal will be the first customer to join the depot.

"We already have had a successful working relationship with TRAC Intermodal," said Bruce Fenimore, president and CEO of Columbia Group. "Having them as our first client is a strong way to begin this service and we look forward to the opportunity to serve additional customers from this location."

Columbia Group, through its affiliates Columbia Container Services and Columbia Intermodal, already operate an off-dock empty container depot, a chassis maintenance and repair depot in the Port of New York/New Jersey and a chassis pool and container repair operation in the Port of Boston.

Fenimore says that the new depot will be open to all chassis owners. "The motor carrier community and chassis providers in the Port of New York and New Jersey want an adequate supply of available chassis, quick turn-times, and quality repairs. This is exactly the type of service we aim to provide," said Fenimore.

Located at 42 Military Ocean Terminal at Pulaski Lane West in Bayonne, NJ, the new intermodal chassis depot is situated on 12 acres of property. It features a covered repair facility, significant storage capabilities, express bob-tail exit lane for efficient movement of trucks through the facility, approximately 600 feet of queue space and EDI technology for efficient chassis management. The hours of operation will be 6:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (cut-off at 4pm) Monday through Friday.

Canada to implement oil tanker ban on northern B.C. coast

Canada will implement a moratorium on oil tanker traffic along the northern coast of British Columbia, effectively shutting down a controversial pipeline project that was already facing big development hurdles.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has instructed Transport Minister Marc Garneau to work with numerous other ministries to "formalize" the ban on oil tanker traffic, a Liberal campaign promise ahead of the federal elections last month.

The main casualty of the ban will be Enbridge Inc.'s Northern Gateway pipeline, which would carry oil sands crude from near Edmonton, Alberta, to a deep-water port at Kitimat, British Columbia for export to Asian markets.

Efforts to move oil by rail to northern British Columbia ports would also no longer be viable, but the moratorium would not impact the proposed tripling of capacity on Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline, as that project is in the south.

"It would appear that all oil transportation, including rail and Northern Gateway, are dead in the water," said Vancouver-based lawyer Merle Alexander, who has represented aboriginal groups opposed to pipelines.

For more of the Reuters story:


Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Just in Time: LNG Propulsion Coming of Age

By William DiBenedetto, CBN Feature Editor

When TOTE’s Isla Bella, the world’s first LNG-powered container vessel, transited through the Panama Canal late last month it marked a major milestone for an industry that needs answers both to cope with the cost of fuel and to become more environmentally-friendly.

The 764-foot, 3,100-TEU Isla Bella (pictured) is equipped with the world's first dual-fuel slow-speed engine, an 8L70ME-GI built by Korea's Doosan Engine, under license from MAN Diesel & Turbo. The vessel’s LNG plant reduces NOx emissions by 98 percent, SOx emissions by 97 percent and CO2 emissions by 76 percent.

Even if bunker fuel prices remain at their current low level, those impressive emissions reduction numbers alone should make maritime operators take notice, because more stringent climate change standards are always on the way.

The future is now for LNG propulsion. A recent MAN report, which looked into the "Costs and Benefits of LNG as Ship Fuel for Container Vessels" says the use of LNG as ship fuel "promises a lower emission level and, given the right circumstances, lower fuel costs." The attractiveness of LNG as a ship fuel compared to installed scrubber systems on existing vessel engines is dominated by three parameters, MAN continues:
• Investment costs for LNG tank system
• Price difference between LNG and Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO)
• Share of operation inside Emission Control Areas (ECA).

There are four ECAs in effect: the Baltic Sea since May 2006, the North Sea since November 2007, North America (US and Canada) since August 2011, and U.S. Caribbean since January 2013. The effects of Annex VI of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) sulfur reductions and initiatives to adopt lower sulfur fuels have been largely limited to the ECAs. That’s likely to become global very soon, however.

The use of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as ship fuel has gained more attention in Europe, but also in Asia and the USA, especially now with TOTE’s Isla Bella.

There are several drivers for this, "which, taken together, make LNG as ship fuel one of the most promising new technologies for shipping," the report continues. One is that the use of LNG ship fuel will reduce sulfur oxide emissions by 90-95%, a level already mandated within ECAs; a similar reduction will be enforced for worldwide shipping by 2020. Another driver, according to MAN, is that LNG is expected to be less costly than marine gas oil (MGO) which will be required to be used within the ECAs if no other technical measures are implemented to reduce the SOx emissions. "Current low LNG prices in Europe and the USA suggest that a price – based on energy content – comparable to heavy fuel oil (HFO) seems possible, even when taking into account the small scale distribution of the LNG."

MAN’s conclusion is that LNG, as a ship fuel, has "become a reality in international shipping."

According to a recent paper, "LNG as Marine Fuel," by Frederick Adamchak, LNG advisor at Poten & Partners, LNG has been used to fuel diesel propulsion systems of LNG vessels since delivery of the Provalys in 2006.

Today 48 existing LNG ships operate with dual fuel and tri-fuel diesel electric propulsion, he wrote, and another 85 LNG ships are on order. "In view of the proven success of LNG as a fuel in marine diesel engines, ship owners have already constructed an estimated 30 LNG fueled ships and have ordered more than 30 additional LNG fueled ships."

Thus, given the potential advantages of LNG as a bunker fuel and the pace of recent developments, "the probability of LNG displacing oil as the preferred fuel will continue to increase."

That’s why in terms of containerships operations, the Isla Bella is so pioneering. Actually, it is the first of two Marlin Class container vessels contracted by TOTE Maritime and built by General Dynamics NASSCO in partnership with the American Bureau of Shipping and the U.S. Coast Guard. The Isla Bella is providing freight service between Jacksonville, FL and San Juan, PR. The Perla del Caribe, the second Marlin Class containership, was launched in August and will enter service in the first quarter of 2016. Once Perla del Caribe is completed, the boxships will be the largest and most environmentally friendly LNG-powered dry cargo ships in the world.

LNG is no longer a potential solution for meeting fuel and emission requirements, it has arrived.

S.C. and Georgia make a new deal for Jasper Ocean Terminal

Port officials from South Carolina and Georgia signed a new agreement Monday regarding the development of a prospective $4.5 billion port along the Savannah River.

The updated terms guide the permitting and planning process for the Jasper Ocean Terminal over the next 10 years, including financing, design work and any new infrastructure that will be required, such as rail access, roadwork and modifications to the shipping channel.

The new 1,500-acre container port is being proposed for Jasper County on the South Carolina side of the river, downstream from Savannah. It will be owned and operated by the S.C. State Ports Authority and the Georgia Ports Authority.

The updated agreement supersedes a deal signed in 2008 and takes effect immediately, according to a statement from the Jasper Ocean Terminal Project Office.

Last month, the S.C. SPA agreed to contribute $1.25 million to fund half of the fiscal year 2016 budget for the office. The spending plan includes geological studies, early design work and permit application expenses to the Army Corps of Engineers. The Georgia Ports Authority is funding the other half.

The estimated $2 billion first phase of the deep-water terminal could be open as early as 2029, to provide an alternative as the container ports in Charleston and Savannah run out of space.

It would be designed to accommodate huge cargo vessels that can carry 14,000 to 20,000 TEUs, according to the agreement.

The two states still need to decide how they would pay for it.

For more of the Post and Courier story:

China Merchants in talks to buy Sinotrans & CSC

China Merchants Group is in talks to acquire logistics group Sinotrans & CSC in the latest deal in the country's state sector, according to financial magazine Caixin.

The two companies have been in reorganization talks, Caixin said, citing sources close to China Merchants.

Officials from both companies declined to comment on the talks when contacted by Reuters on Tuesday.

The two Hong Kong-listed units of Sinotrans & CSC - Sinotrans and Sinotrans Shipping - informed the Hong Kong stock exchange on Sunday that their parent group was considering a strategic reorganization that involved another unnamed state-owned enterprise.

Caixin said at the end of 2014, China Merchants had total assets worth $97.92 billion while Sinotrans & CSC had $17.1 billion, making China Merchants the bigger player of the two.

This step is being taken as the Chinese government is encouraging restructuring and mergers among state-owned enterprises. The domestic shipping industry's two largest firms, China Ocean Shipping (Group) Company and China Shipping Group, are also in talks to merge, a source told Reuters in August.

China Merchants' business includes ports, shipping and financial services, while Sinotrans & CSC is involved in logistics and vessel chartering.

For more of the Reuters story:

Fitch Ratings: Long-term infrastructure bill a first step

The multi-year infrastructure funding bill passed last week by Congress is a positive first step toward funding that will allow state DOT to plan for longer terms, according to Fitch Ratings. Passage of the bill is the first meaningful indication that Congress recognizes the infrastructure deficit and is willing to act on it, although important details remain to be worked out between the House and Senate bills.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a $325 billion transportation funding measure last week. H.R. 3763, the Surface Transportation Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2015, will extend federal infrastructure programs for the next six years and has funding for the first three. It must be reconciled with the Senate’s $342 billion DRIVE NOW Act before November 20, when the current reauthorization of the funding will expire.

The bill’s approval would represent a departure from the pattern of short-term extensions that has been in place in recent years.

Resolution of the ultimate funding sources for the bill is important, as it needs to lead to a long-term revenue source that could stabilize the Highway Trust Fund program at the level needed to support proactive long-term investment. However, if funding relies on one-time revenues or continued general fund transfers, the bill won’t address longer-term challenges facing the HTF due to the inherent structural imbalance between pledge funding and expenditures.

State DOTs and transit agencies also need longer term plans in regards to their capital needs. Expanded use of tolling and other user fees like vehicle miles traveled fees will be part of the solution, but will certainly not satisfy the overall need. In Fitch’s view, a coordinated strategy of tax revenues and surcharges at the state and federal level will remain critical to a viable and sustainable long-term infrastructure policy.

Cargo ship runs aground on the Columbia River

The U.S. Coast Guard announced a cargo ship that lost steering and ran aground in the Columbia River Saturday has been towed to Portland.

The Viking Emerald ran aground on the Washington side of the border in Caples Landing, across the Columbia River from Columbia City. The vessel was making a trip from Tacoma, Wash. and was supposed to arrive in Portland at 4 p.m., according to marine traffic reports. Viking Emerald is about 548 feet long by 91 feet wide. It was transporting vehicles.

Viewers told KGW that people could walk down to the ship on the Washington side of the beach.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Amanda Norcross said that Foss Maritime tugboats got the 550-foot long Viking Emerald off the beach and towed it to Portland's Terminal 6 sometime Saturday night.

For more of the KGW Portland story:


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Norfolk Southern rebuffs $28B offer from Canadian Pacific

U.S. railroad operator Norfolk Southern Corp all but rejected a $28.4 billion acquisition offer by Canadian Pacific Railway Tuesday, calling it "low-premium" and saying it would face significant regulatory hurdles.

While Norfolk Southern said it would carefully review the offer, its sour response represents a setback to Canadian Pacific as well as its largest shareholder, William Ackman's hedge fund Pershing Square Capital Management LP. Ackman is a big advocate of consolidation in the North American railway sector.

In a statement announcing its offer to Norfolk Southern, Canadian Pacific argued that the combined railroad would offer excellent customer service and competitive rates for shippers, and that it would satisfy the U.S. Surface Transportation Board and Canadian regulators.

The STB has a public interest test when considering whether to approve mergers, so a deal would not only have to address antitrust concerns but also result in improved service, economic efficiencies and public safety for those using the railways.

Yet not only has Canadian Pacific failed to convince Norfolk Southern that the merger could receive regulatory clearance, it has offered no protection for Norfolk Southern shareholders in the event the deal would be blocked, according to an anonymous inside source.

For more of the Reuters story:

Crowley breaks ground on LNG pier/terminal project at San Juan port

Crowley Puerto Rico Services has broken ground on a $48.5-million construction project for a new pier at its Isla Grande Terminal in San Juan, Puerto Rico, according to a company statement.

The project includes the development of a new 900-foot-long, 114-foot-wide concrete pier and all associated dredging needed to accommodate Crowley’s two new LNG-powered, Commitment Class ships, scheduled for delivery in 2017.

Crowley says its terminal expansion also includes the installation of three new ship-to-shore container gantry cranes, which will be supplied under a separate contract.

"This important project represents close collaboration between private business and the Puerto Rico Ports Authority (PRPA) to make a major investment in the infrastructure of Puerto Rico," explained Jose "Pache" Ayala, Crowley vice president, Puerto Rico. "We are very pleased to be working with a Puerto Rico-based construction company that is utilizing workers on the island and keeping the money in the local economy."

The construction contract is being executed by L.P.C. & D. Inc., of Las Piedras, Puerto Rico, which began driving the first piles for the pier last week.

Maersk Container Industry produces first reefers at new plant in Chile

Maersk Container Industry, an independent business unit of the Maersk Group, announced that it has begun production of the first refrigerated containers and Star Cool refrigeration machines built at its new MCI facility in San Antonio, Chile.

The first trial production of these ISO standard 40-foot reefer containers were delivered during the third quarter of 2015 to Maersk Line and CMA CGM, which both placed new orders. Maersk Line has secured a fixed monthly volume from the MCI plant, allowing for faster response time to regional demand.

"In this sweet spot of fruit exporters, we have placed the factory right where the demand is. For the first time ever in South America, reefer containers can go straight from factory to farm," said Stig Hoffmeyer, CEO of MCI in the statement. "Offering the Star Cool Integrated reefers locally to shipping lines, farmers, fruit distributors and leasing companies, will have a financial benefit counted in thousands of dollars per reefer, and millions for the industry in total," he continued.

Every year, MCI says more than 100,000 reefer containers are needed in Chile to cater to large exports. Adding Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, the figure would rise to 300,000 reefer containers, predicts global shipping and transportation analyst Seabury. For many years, China has, up until now, been the only country with reefer container production.

"MCI is a strategic supplier for Maersk Line. The production of the Star Cool reefer containers out of Chile means that we can immediately employ them instead of an empty relocation trip. It will help us create new business opportunities in the West Coast of South America," said Søren Toft, COO of Maersk Line.

NUTEP container terminal will bring 10,000-TEU ships to Black Sea

The construction of a deep-water berth at the NUTEP terminal in the Black Sea port of Novorossiysk will allow Russia to offer regular year-round ice-free calls for ships up to 10,000 TEUs for the first time, according to a company release.

The first piles have been driven for the new 341-meter quay after two years of planning and approvals, with completion scheduled for late 2018. The berth will be deepened to about 51 feet, compared to the two berths of 40 feet 4 inches it has today.

"The new deep-water quay will alter the status quo on the Black Sea and change existing supply chain networks in the region," said Konstantin Kalugin, CCO of NUTEP. "It will reduce both shipping and terminal costs for clients and increase delivery speed by 4-12 days for cargo headed for Russia."

NUTEP, a subsidiary of DeloPorts, is already the largest container terminal at the port but currently handles most deep-sea cargo via transshipment at Istanbul or Piraeus.

Two cargo ships collide in Taiwan Strait

Officials report the cargo ships Ji Xin 9 and Guang Yun collided off Shantou in Taiwan Strait.

The two vessels were proceeding on crossing routes when a last minute maneuver caused the Ji Xin 9 to hit the portside of the Guang Yun, opening a huge breach below the waterline. Consequently, the Guang Yun started taking on water.

The cost guard sent patrol boats and evacuated the crewmembers of the sinking ship. The salvage team boarded the Guang Yun and began pumping out the water from the compartments to keep the ship afloat. Local officials are investigating the cause of the collision.

The Guang Yun was on its way from Zhoushan to Dong Guan at the time of the accident. The Ji Xin 9 remained seaworthy and reached Shantou on its own power.

For more of the UB Alert story:


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