Daily Briefing October 11 2019
Free to read: Unipec joins ExxonMobil embargo on vessels linked to Venezuela | LNG oversupply forcing floating storage, says Poten | DryShips to de-list from Nasdaq after Economou buyout approval
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Unipec, the world’s largest dirty tanker spot charterer, appears to have halted chartering vessels that have had any business links with Venezuela, including port calls, within a 12-month period. The move, which matches the same decision by ExxonMobil last week, comes amid already tightened tonnage and 11-year tanker rate highs.
Mild weather and LNG oversupply are said to be forcing product into floating storage as tank capacity is nearing 100% at European terminals. Meanwhile, the ability of countries outside Europe to absorb excess LNG in the next year is limited, with not much potential in traditional demand centres such as Japan, Taiwan and South Korea.
DryShips will de-list from the Nasdaq stock market after 14 years following an overwehelming vote by shareholders in favour of a buyout offer from a vehicle controlled by founder and chief executive George Economou.
The Giuseppe Bottiglieri Shipping Company’s decision to seek bankruptcy protection in 2017 was forced by low rates, excessive regulation and unfavourable currency effects, its owner has told an industry audience.
The widescale pig cull in China in response to the spread of African swine flu is working in combination with the US-China trade war to reshape soyabean trade patterns and altering the pattern of dry bulk shipments.
If there is a limit on power, it is argued, there will be every incentive to use that power efficiently, to maximise utilisation, to minimise downtime and port time, writes Michael Grey.
A number of high-profile containership fires has brought the issue of misdeclared dangerous goods transport to the fore. A forum to be held in November will seek to find solutions to the ongoing threat.
Pressure on spot rates and a general slowdown in demand is providing shippers with an ideal opportunity to fix contract rates ahead of the introduction of the International Maritime Organization’s sulphur cap in 2020.
In other news
Greece has given the green light to the Cosco-controlled Piraeus Port Authority to proceed with an €612m ($675m) investment plan for the country’s largest port.
MISC has ordered two liquefied natural gas carriers on the back of a long-term charter contract with oil major ExxonMobil, building on earlier deals it has also sealed with Japanese companies NYK and Mitsubishi.
Class NK, the Japanese classification society, has joined a shipping-industry led effort to develop zero-emissions vessels.
Criminalisation has been highlighted as a core concern among seafarers, according to a new survey by maritime professionals’ union Nautilus International.