Lloyd's List's weekly view on the big issues impacting and shaping shipping, providing timely insight and thought-provoking opinion
It’s not yet time for Plan B on Russia shipping sanctions
Our industry is providing a second front without the shooting. Let the vice tighten slowly but surely
A Flag of Convenience is one thing. A Flag of Last Resort is another
Sanctions are only going to get more extensive. The past week shows that everybody in the industry — from Ulaanbaatar to the outskirts of Bristol — would benefit from greater situation awareness
The View: Combatting climate change needs passion, not statistics
The climate change activists were not parading around Dubai’s convention centre calling shipping to account: There was no point. Shipping has lost the radical edge that challenges, confronts and contests
Shipping is a target again just for doing its job
When 53 seafarers can be taken hostage in the space of a week and it barely causes a ripple in the international news, it is time for the shipping industry to address why it all too often seen as an ‘easy’ target
Banks learnt sanctions diligence the hard way. Shipowners don’t have to
Sanctions efforts have so far been unrolled more by way of moral suasion and threatened consequences rather than active enforcement. But that is likely to change shortly
The Wimbledon effect should see London still dominate maritime legal market
As long as shipping disputes are by default resolved under English law in English courts, domestic firms have an obvious head start
Dark fleet: Out of mind, but not out of sight
Hundreds of substandard, unclassed, uninsured vessels are routinely hauling Russian oil internationally while avoiding any serious oversight, so why are governments looking the other way and pretending the dark fleet is invisible?
It is still possible for the IMO to translate climate aspiration into action
Shipping’s climate negotiations are a high stakes game of poker, where governments will be looking to make deals in exchange for compromises. It makes little strategic sense to show your hand this early in the game, but real progress can be achieved in the next three months
Compliance with the law is not optional. Even for P&O Ferries
UK minimum wage will be extended to seafarers, while Labour is committing to a ‘Seafarers’ Charter’. Neither would have happened without the P&O Ferries’ shocking actions
The health of the oceans is shipping’s problem too
An industry that routinely allowed garbage to be dumped overboard until just 10 years ago needs to get with the programme
Container shipping faces change while the song remains the same
The pandemic was neatly bookended by TPM conferences in 2020 and 2023. The new set of challenges faced by container shipping, however, have a familiar ring
Do the legal trade with Russia. But stay the right side of the line
It is pointless admonishing owners to act like conscience-stricken peaceniks. Where there is a legal buck to be made, somebody will make it. But the mark is overstepped by breaking sanctions, or facilitating others to do so
Shipping and Ukraine: Repercussions of a crisis
Next week sees the first anniversary of the Russian invasion. There should be no second anniversary
Citibank has 30,000 compliance professionals. How many has your shipping company got?
The Russian price cap could easily see some shipowners who try to stay just within the rules find themselves just outside them
EU sanctions have yet to sever Russia’s sinews of war
It will be some time yet before we can know the consequences for certain. Whatever they are, there is little alternative to living with them
An urgent appeal to the shipping community: Help the UN avert catastrophe in Yemen
War-torn Yemen could soon face environmental degradation of a degree as large as any witnessed in recent decades. Shipping will not be to blame. But collective intervention from shipping is the last best hope of preventing it
Cargill deserves first-mover advantage from methanol-fuelled bulker gambit
The transition to net zero needs the emergence of a Field of Dreams’ factor. If you build methanol-bunkering terminals, will they come?
Time to make seafarer abandonment a thing of the past
Seafarers are entitled to as much protection as teenagers on a rite de passage Interrail jaunt or parents relaxing by a swimming pool
Poseidon Principles must show that virtue signalling can have teeth
As the recent annual disclosure report establishes, shipping is currently struggling to meet existing lacklustre IMO ambitions on greenhouse gas reduction. Heaven help the industry when it is forced to take on the transition to net zero
Your tankers are being held in a queue in the Bosporus. They must be answered shortly
The impasse in the Bosporus has reached crisis point. Don’t make P&I clubs the fall guys
Don’t look for CII workarounds — just make it work
If matters degenerate into a crazy free-for-all where each shipowner does the best for themselves individually, the industry seems collectively bound to reach the worst possible outcome, as if trapped in some real-world version of game theory’s famous prisoners’ dilemma
Waiting for IMO: Don’t let nothing happen twice
When it comes to climate change, shipping cannot be reduced to the roles of the hapless tramp protagonists of Samuel Beckett’s absurdist masterpiece. Rather than hanging around in the hope that Godot will turn up, we need to go out and find him
Don’t treat ships like chess pieces
Capturing a tanker is not the maritime equivalent of white triumphantly winning a rook for a bishop
All countries must back efforts to free Heroic Idun and its crew
Keeping an innocent crew prisoner is just as much piracy when perpetrated by states instead of pirate gangs, and therefore cannot be an element in any legitimate fight against piracy
What does a good COP27 look like for shipping?
Headline commitments to decarbonise shipping are finally being worked into the wider energy transition. The results of this year’s COP may be lower in profile as a result, but more substantive progress can come from aligning government energy transition plans with industry readiness
The good times are still rolling. But for how long?
Shipping has so far done well from the literally killer combination of the most devastating pandemic to hit the world in a century and the most serious war in Europe since 1945. But if something can’t go on forever, it won’t
What can shipping expect from China?
China’s zero-Covid policy has created an expensive new normal for shipping and President Xi Jinping’s steadfast stance at the policy-defining Communist Party congress suggests there is no respite on the horizon
Smart sanctions must heed the law of unintended consequences
If the G7 wants to introduce a cap on the price paid for Russian crude, it should make haste slowly. Let it talk to all concerned about potential for things to go wrong, including tanker operators
Shipping has its part to play in putting pressure on Putin
Sanctions are always a blunt instrument. But even blunt instruments are better than doing a job with no tools at all
Politics, macroeconomics and war unsettle outlook for marine insurance
Seeing the sector back in the black is positive for insurers — and ultimately for their shipowner clients too — but watch out for what could go wrong
Why it’s time to stop talking about shipping decarbonisation
The shipping industry is not on a trajectory to hit net zero by 2050. The only way it will find the pace and scale required to correct this dangerous path is to stop looking at this as a shipping problem
The View: Talk before you walk
Workforces in the maritime transport sector are becoming increasingly militant. It is incumbent on shipping to engage and negotiate agreements
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