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Daily Briefing April 3 2020

Free to read: Bahri brings in more VLCCs as Saudi oil cargoes head out | Capacity crunch risks return of rolling and no-shows | China issues crew change guidance amid port resistance | Scrubber cheerleader Scorpio postpones retrofits where possible

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

Bahri has added to its armada of very large crude carriers shipping oil from Saudi Arabia for deliveries to Egypt, the US Gulf and Asia as the kingdom pushes on with plans to flood the market with oil amid its ongoing price war with Russia.

With carriers rapidly cutting capacity to meet reduced demand, there is a risk those cargo owners with products still in demand may face shortages of available space.

China’s Ministry of Transport has issued guidance on the repatriation of Chinese crew amid lingering reluctance from local governments and port authorities to make the move.

Scorpio Tankers, one of the biggest cheerleaders for scrubber technology, signalled it will delay their installation on any remaining vessels in its fleet where possible, but only because current earnings for long range tankers are so high.

CMA CGM shareholder Robert Yildirim has voiced firm support for the French group, which faces a downgrade by a major credit-rating agency amid growing concern about prospects for the whole container shipping industry as consumer demand slumps across Europe and North America.


Vitol’s recently announced renaming of the bunkering business it bought out has raised expectations that merger and acquisition activity may ramp up in Singapore’s thriving marine fuel industry — possibly with some help from a regulatory overhaul.

Cargo owners should expect significant further ocean freight service disruptions this year with more blank sailings and likely service suspensions, as volatility linked to coronavirus worsens.

Shipping companies are currently shut out of the capital markets and may struggle to raise fresh equity after markets recover from the coronavirus shock, but consolidation is expected to help the industry’s cause, according to an online forum this week.


Policies taken by Singapore to contain the spread of coronavirus have stoked a fresh debate over why seafaring does not rank among essential services qualifying for exemptions, writes Hwee Hwee Tan.

The biggest risk to shipping is a matter of open debate. This week’s Capital Link forum kicked up a risk that rarely gets a public airing. What if the world learned to consume less? writes Richard Clayton.


A new dry bulk management standard has been launched, spearheaded by RightShip, to improve dry bulk vessel and fleet safety.

Dry bulk carriers can look forward to more employment opportunities on the coal trade from Indonesia and Australia to India in the coming weeks as the supply of thermal coal in India has been declared as an essential service.

GasLog has taken “extensive measures” to limit the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on its business at a time of increased activity in the spot market for liquefied natural gas carriers.

In other news

Freight forwarders are calling for fair and equal demurrage and detention charging during the coronavirus pandemic.

Planeloads of emergency medical equipment have been arriving at Athens airport in the past few days as Greece’s shipping industry has quickly ramped up contributions to help the country’s health workers in their fight against coronavirus.

Shipping and ports will benefit from the Italian government’s emergency measures to keep the country’s economy on the road during the coronavirus lockdown, according to local lawyers.

The Baltic Capesize Index has moved back into positive territory for the first time in just over two months, a sign that a recovery may be on its way.

The San Pedro Bay ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach were in a state of uncertainty after at least one longshore worker tested positive for coronavirus late yesterday afternoon.

The largest liquefied natural gas producer in the US has tendered for six shipments to Europe, prompting speculation that it may cut output in favour of sourcing cheaper spot cargoes to meet its contractual obligations.

The International Association of Ports and Harbours, through its World Ports Sustainability Programme, has set up a dedicated task force and online portal to offer support and information to port authorities about the coronavirus outbreak.





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