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Daily Briefing April 9 2020

Free to read: Don’t let coronavirus take down ferry companies | P&O Ferries claims survival at risk without major cuts | World leaders pressed to resolve crew change crisis | Seafarers suppers fed by triple barrel supply pipeline

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


It’s easy enough favourably to namecheck Schumpeter’s notion of creative destruction until it’s your company that stands on the cusp of being creatively destroyed, writes David Osler.

P&O Ferries has sparked union anger after seeking major concessions from its workforce in response to the coronavirus crisis. The owner of the group, DP World, is accused of trying to use the coronavirus backdrop to force through pay cuts, replacement of UK seafarers with foreign crew, no-strike clauses, statutory redundancy, cuts to the sick pay scheme, scrapping benefits for long service, and restrictions on leave.

Governments worldwide should come together to identify seaports and airports where crew changes can resume, a group of maritime bodies has argued, as they fear that marine accidents and disasters will exponentially rise as more seafarers get stranded for longer at sea.

At a time when globalisation is falling out of favour, Jens Holger Nielsen is adamant that his company’s worldwide network is essential in order to keep international trade moving by ensuring those working at sea receive the provisions they need.


Analysis


Weekly coronavirus briefing — sector by sector: Shipping industry steps up efforts to improve crew welfare during the coronavirus crisis, crude tanker rates dip again on talk of Russia-Saudi Arabia oil production truce, and optimism returns to dry bulk sector.

Total shipbuilding output this year is 122m dwt, up 24m dwt from last year, according to Lloyd’s List Intelligence’s latest Shipbuilding Outlook report.

The US will relinquish its current status as a net exporter of crude oil and petroleum products in the third quarter of 2020 and remain a net importer for the foreseeable future, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

World boxship fleet update: Container shipping is going through a convulsion of plummeting demand. With record numbers of blanked sailings, lay-ups are on the rise.


Opinion


Remote survey work had become a reality for Bureau Veritas before the coronavirus outbreak; in months to come, remote working will be a feature of how class works, Matthieu de Tugny, its head of Marine & Offshore, tells Lloyd’s List.


Maritime training and education go on even when educators and students are unable to travel. But getting the best from online training is much more than running classroom teaching via video, writes Richard Clayton.



Markets


Imports at major US retail container ports dropped to their lowest level in five years during March, and are projected to remain “significantly” below normal levels through early summer, according to a report issued by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.

Encouraging signs of trade normalisation are beginning to emerge as China is reported to have started granting tax waivers to some liquefied natural gas importers, resulting in shipments of US LNG starting to make their way to the giant Asian consumer.


In other news


Some seafarers may be ineligible for the UK’s furlough scheme as stricken companies lay off workers, according to maritime unions.

BP’s bid to invoke coronavirus-linked force majeure on the delivery of the Gimi floating liquefied natural gas unit has prompted a downgrade on Nasdaq-listed Golar LNG’s equity value.

Tech vendor ABB is partnering with Hydrogène de France on the development of megawatt-scale fuel cell systems that could power oceangoing vessels in an effort to commercialise the zero emissions technology.

Long Beach continued to feel the economic effects of the coronavirus outbreak in March with more cancelled sailings and a decline in cargo containers shipped through the nation’s second-busiest seaport.

Hong Kong-based small to medium-sized dry bulk vessels operator Pacific Basin Shipping has decided to cease any secondhand bulker purchases and reduce its exposure to long-term charters due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Total is continuing its commitment to liquefied natural gas while leveraging on the expertise of established energy logistics player AET, with the signing of a time charter for two newbuilding LNG-powered dual-fuel very large crude carriers.

Cyprus and South Korea have joined the ranks of flag states eligible for the Qualship 21 programme run by the US Coast Guard and reserved for those with the best compliance record in US ports.

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