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Daily Briefing April 2 2020

Free to read: Tanker fleet sees ‘once-in-a-generation’ opportunities from oil demand shock | MSC prepares to store cargoes at transhipment hubs | BIMCO urges stimulus measures to keep shipping afloat | Shipping in the crosshairs of the EU emission strategy

Good morning. Here’s our quick view of everything you need to know today.

The Lloyd’s List Daily Briefing is brought to you by the Lloyd’s List News Desk.

What to watch   |   Analysis   |   Opinion   |   Markets   |   In other news




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What to watch


Current tanker market conditions represent a “once-in-a-generation” opportunity for owners and operators, according to Robert MacLeod, chief executive of New York-listed Frontline.

Mediterranean Shipping Co is responding to falling demand and congested supply chains by offering a ‘suspension of transit’ service to customers exporting from China.

Shipping association BIMCO has called for governments to introduce stimulus measures to prop up economies so that the industry can survive the coronavirus outbreak.


Analysis


Weekly briefing: Consortia Block Exemption Regulation extension is the only bright spot amid continued uncertainty in the containers sector, while shipbrokers cash in as oil prices drop to 20-year lows.

During a panel discussion last year on decarbonisation of the shipping industry, officials representing two different countries were asked if governments were at all considering what the 2023 revision of the International Maritime Organization’s initial greenhouse gas emission strategy would look like.

Shipowners’ appetite for exhaust gas cleaning systems as an answer to the global sulphur cap is quickly disappearing, according a senior Chinese shipbuilding executive.

Container terminals across the world, with the exception of China, are faced with imminent congestion when a multitude of boxes sent for shipment from factories in Asia arrive at their import destinations.


Opinion


If anything served to illustrate the new normal of life as we all shelter in place to avoid the ravages of the coronavirus, it was the last question and answer period of the 14th Annual Capital Link International Shipping Forum, writes Eric Watkins.



Markets


The dry bulk market is facing “inevitable disruptions” caused by the unexpected coronavirus outbreak, owners have said.

Containership owners chartering their vessels to box lines face lower rates this year as demand declines, but supply-side constraints could benefit non-operating owners when a recovery eventually emerges.

The current coronavirus crisis could spread wholesale disruption to shipping and its funding but at least some financiers are spreading a message of continuing business as usual, at least for the time being.

Further evidence has emerged of the seriousness with which container lines see the expected slowdown in demand with the announcement of a swathe of blankings by members of The Alliance.


In other news


Moody’s Investor Services has put CMA CGM’s credit rating under review for a downgrade as the coronavirus pandemic takes its toll on the wider economy.

Canada took steps to boost its exports of crude oil to the US on Tuesday, with the announcement that Calgary-based TC Energy Corp will proceed with construction of its Keystone XL crude oil pipeline.

Marine insurers will face challenges as their clients reshape their businesses in response to coronavirus, an industry lawyer has said.

London maritime and offshore arbitration saw substantial growth last year, with almost 3,000 arbitration appointments in the UK capital in 2019, according to statistics from the sector’s main trade association.

The shipping industry should not wait for the International Maritime Organization to draw up new regulations and should move forward with decarbonising on its own terms, according to a leading financier.

A coronavirus-related port issue has resulted in more than 60 dockworkers in DP World’s container terminal at the port of Melbourne being stood down after they refused to unload a container vessel on safety grounds.

Two dockworkers have suffered falls in the past two days, one dying in California and the other hospitalised in Delaware. Neither was related to the coronavirus pandemic, but both still underline the dangers of working on the waterfront.

The US government has acted on concerns about the efficacy of the country’s supply chain system by appointing a Federal Maritime Commissioner to identify solutions to challenges resulting from the coronavirus outbreak.

The Swedish Club has announced a 5% general increase for next year after its combined ratio slipped out to 106%, with the pain partially offset by a strong investment performance and increased business volume.

Trading giant Vitol Group has set up a new business unit to deliver marine fuels as a licensed player operating out of the world’s number one bunkering hub after acquiring the Singapore-based bunkering specialist Sinanju Tankers Holdings.

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