Africa PORTS & SHIPS Maritime News 25 February 2019

Bringing you shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa since 2002
Bringing you shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa since 2002

Intermodal Djibouti March 2019, featured on Africa PORTS & SHIPS

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Tropical 1 arriving in Durban 18 December 2018. Picture: Keith Betts, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Tropical 1.     Picture: Keith Betts

The Mozambican fishing trawler TROPICAL I  (402 C05) which caught fire at Durban’s bayhead reapir quay last week, with the tragic death of six persons on board (details in story below). The trawler arrived in Durban from Mozambique on 18 December and is seen here entering the port. The picture is by Keith Betts


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African Harrier, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS. Picture by Keith Betts
African Harrier.     Picture by Keith Betts

The bulk carrier AFRICAN HARRIER (IMO 9700794) seen arriving in Durban harbour recently. These MUR-operated and managed ships are regular callers at the port as they have been over many years, carrying steel products and other cargo types away for export. Most of the MUR ships are prefixed with the word African as in this instance. The 37,707-dwt bulk carrier was built in 2014 at the Imabari Shipbuilding yard at Imabari in Japan. This picture is by Keith Betts


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Palma, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Palma, northern Mozambique

Jihadists operating in northern Mozambique have for the first time (as far as is known) attacked personnel of the American oil company Anadarko Petroleum Corp. It was reported on Friday that one of the Anadarko men working on developing a new airport near the port town of Palma was killed by a group of the Islamist terrorists.

According to sources the man was beheaded, which is becoming a symbol of the Jihadists who have been roaming across the district and making their attacks for more than a year and with apparent freedom. Until now no one connected to any of the oil companies preparing to go into production offshore and on land in the Rovuma Basin and adjacent land area has been reported as having come under direct threat. This latest atrocity marks an escalation of the insurgency.

The Mozambique government in far-off Maputo has responded by clamping-down of all journalists…[restrict] wanting to go to the area to report on what is taking place. A number of journalists who managed to reach the area have been arrested and some remain in detention, so far as can be ascertained.

Analysts have warned that unless a quick and firm response is taken by the Mozambique authorities the Jihadists will succeed in destabilising the entire northern part of the country. For Mozambique to survive as a sovereign nation it needs the gas and oil products that are being discovered and exploited in the far north, close to the Tanzanian border.

Armoured personnel carriers

Prior to the latest attack being reported, Anadarko issued a call for expressions of interest from suppliers of armoured personnel carriers for at least six vehicles, which are required to have armour capable of protecting personnel from AK-47 rifle bullets.

In the advertisement in the Mozambique newspaper Noticias Anadarko said it required the armoured vehicles immediately – “In order to ensure readiness for operations, there is an immediate need” for the vehicles, it stated.

Anadarko is reportedly investing US$20 billion on developing its gas production facilities in Palma.

Anadarko strikes deal with Indonesia’s Pertamina

In another development Anadarko Petroleum Corp announced this week that Mozambique LNG1 Company Pte Ltd, a joint-owned sales company operating from the Mozambique Area 1 region offshore of Palma, has signed a Sales and Purchase Agreement (SPA) with Indonesia’s Pertamina for 1 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) for a term of 20 years.

Anadarko’s joint co-venturers include ENH Rovuma Área Um, SA (15 percent), Mitsui E&P Mozambique Area1 Ltd. (20 percent), ONGC Videsh Ltd. (10 percent), Beas Rovuma Energy Mozambique Limited (10 percent), BPRL Ventures Mozambique BV (10 percent), and PTTEP Mozambique Area 1 Limited (8.5 percent).

“Indonesia is expected to be one of the fastest growing natural gas markets in Asia and Pertamina, the national energy company of Indonesia, will play a key role in meeting Indonesia’s long-term energy needs,” said Mitch Ingram, Anadarko Executive Vice President, International, Deepwater & Exploration.

“The Anadarko-led Mozambique LNG project is well positioned to make a sanctioning decision in the first half of this year, as we remain on track to complete the project financing process, secure the necessary approvals, and have executed a sufficient volume of long-term SPAs, which now total more than 9.5 MTPA. We are extremely pleased and grateful to Pertamina for selecting Mozambique LNG to be part of its long-term energy portfolio.”[/restrict]


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Representatives of the visiting French Port of Dunkerque and from the Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) after the signing of a MoU at Walvis Bay on Thursday, reported in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Representatives of the visiting French Port of Dunkerque and from the Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) after the signing of a MoU at Walvis Bay on Thursday

The Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with its counterpart the Dunkerque Port in France.

The signing took place on Thursday 21 February in the Namport Executive Boardroom at the Port of Walvis Bay, attended by a visiting delegation from the Port of Dunkerque and senior representatives of Namport. The MoU is to foster a stronger relationship between the two ports.

France’s third-ranking port, Dunkerque or Dunkirk as it is more commonly recognised in English, is a well known heavy bulk cargo port catering for its numerous industrial installations. It has also built its reputation in other sectors such as cross-Channel Ro-Ro traffic to the UK, containers, fruit, etc.

Classified as the 7th port of the North Europe Range which extends from Le Havre to Hamburg, it is also France’s leading port for ore and coal imports; France’s leading port for containerised fruit imports; France’s leading port for copper imports; and France’s second-ranking port for trade with the UK.

The port extends along a frontage of 17 km and has two entries for shipping : the older, to the east, which is restricted to ships with draughts of 14,2 metres (Eastern Port), and the other to the west, which is more recent and can accommodate ships with draughts of up to 22 metres (Western Port).


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Vehicle carrier Torrens at Fremantle. Picture: Wikiwand, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Vehicle carrier Torrens at Fremantle. Picture: Wikiwand

Wilh. Wilhelmsen Holding ASA, the shipping group which does extensive business in South African and other African ports with its vehicle carrying fleet, has recorded a 5% increase in top line earnings for the 4th quarter 2018.

Maritime services also noted a positive development in EBITDA, the announcement stated. The fourth quarter, however, ended at a net loss due to a substantial change in fair value evaluation of the group’s investments.

It said the market prospects for 2019 call for a…[restrict] steady, cautious outlook.

The total income for the Wilhelmsen group was US$ 224 million for the quarter.

“The underlying performance was stable in a continued challenging market,” says Thomas Wilhelmsen, group CEO. “With activity levels on par with the previous quarter in ship service and ship management, the seasonally lower activity level in the offshore sector was offset by delivering logistics services to the NATO exercise Trident Juncture.”

The EBITDA ended at US” 29 million, down 12% from the previous quarter. A positive development in the maritime service segment was not enough to make up for reduced EBITDA in the supply service segment.

“The value of our investments took a beating in the quarter, leaving us with a net loss of USD 40 million,” says Wilhelmsen. “The beginning of 2019 has so far shown an uplift in valuation of listed entities.”

He continued by underlining that: “2019 will be characterised by initiatives to strengthen profitability in all of our companies.

“Based on the market outlook, the board expects a stable development of underlying operating performance, but with normal seasonal variations. The board continues by emphasising Wilhelmsen’s exposure towards global trade and potential introduction of further tariffs and restrictions continues to create uncertainties. Wilhelmsen retains its robustness to meet such eventualities.”

The statement advised the board is proposing to pay a divided of NOK 2.50 per share. In addition, the board will ask for an approval to pay an additional dividend of up to NOK 2.50 in the second half of the year. The payout is pending approval from the annual general meeting, to be held 30 April 2019. source: Wilhelmsen Holding ASA[/restrict]


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SA Navy frigate SAS Amatola under refit at SA Shipyards repair quay in Durban, Picture: Steve McCurrach, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
SA Navy frigate SAS Amatola under refit at SA Shipyards repair quay in Durban, section of the floating dock at far left (blue, with tug under repair) Picture: Steve McCurrach

Southern African Shipyard (SAS) ship repair division was strengthened when it recently welcomed a trio of experts with some 120 years of experience in the industry between them.

John Coetzee, SAS Sales Manager, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
John Coetzee, SAS Sales Manager

John Coetzee, the sales manager, has notched up a wealth of knowledge in various companies during his 47 years in shipping, while Louis Maujean, the project manager has 38 years behind him and Derek Kurten, the national sales manager for the division, has 35 years under his belt.

Coetzee’s long stint in the industry started out in Durban and his career also involved working as an independent in Johannesburg, before he returned to Durban to work for another company in Durban’s Bayhead area. As well as running contracts for the company, he was also involved in marketing.

Louis Marjean, project manager at SA Shipyards, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Louis Marjean, project manager at SA Shipyards

Maujean’s previous job involved looking after 13 ships and doing all the technical work and running the South African operation for a a German-based maritime carrier.

“I used to work for shipping owners; now I’m working for owners’ contractors, so I can see both sides of the story and that’s to my advantage,” he said.


Derek Kurten, national sales manager at SA Shipyards, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Derek Kurten, national sales manager at SA Shipyards

Kurten has experience in vessel operations, chartering and ship brokering and he previously worked for a ships agency and logistical services company.

“We are thrilled to have assembled such a talented team,” said Charles Maher, who heads up the division.

SA Shipyard is based at the Bayhead in the Port of Durban, where it operates its own floating dock and ship repair quay.



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Site of the future Port of Ngqura liquid bulk terminal (tank farm) near Port Elizabeth, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS

At a sod-turning ceremony held yesterday work officially commenced on the Port of Ngqura’s future liquid bulk terminal, which is being developed and will be operated by Oiltanking Grindrod Calulo (Pty) Ltd (OTGC).

The Ngqura liquid bulk tank farm will replace the existing facilities at the nearby port of Port Elizabeth which will then be decommissioned.

The two ports are in close proximity a mere 22km apart in Nelson Mandela Bay (Algoa Bay).

According to a statement issued yesterday the Ngqura terminal will pave the way for Ngqura’s establishment as a new petroleum trading hub for Southern Africa.

The new tank farm is expected to provide…[restrict] storage and marine infrastructure to support the overall petroleum demand projections for South Africa.

“Having been awarded the concession to develop a liquid bulk storage and handling facility in the Port of Ngqura, OTGC is now embarking on the first phase of construction,” said the chairman of OTGC, Mkhuseli Faku.

“The terminal will be built to the highest international safety standards and provide exceptional service to its customers. OTGC looks forward to becoming a contributing member of the Nelson Mandela Bay community and expects to continue on its growth path in the years ahead.”

The port manager of the Port of Ngqura, Tandi Lebakeng welcomed the start of construction and said that Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA), as the landlord, was providing port infrastructure for the liquid bulk terminal to commence operations at the end of 2020.

“The new tank farm will develop the Port of Ngqura’s liquid bulk capacity for commodities such as petroleum, diesel, jet fuel, illuminated paraffin and liquid petroleum gas,” she said. “Once operational, the terminal will facilitate substantially increased throughputs over present volumes handled at Port Elizabeth due to Ngqura’s deeper draught which allows it to handle much larger vessels. The allocated 20 ha site also provides ample space for future expansion of the terminal.”

Liquid bulk products will be transported to the Port of Ngqura via ship and piped to the tank farm prior to local supply and/or local and global re-export. The new modern facility will service the oil majors, new entrants into the South African oil industry as well as international traders – all supporting the local shipping industry.

To date the contract for Bulk Earthworks has been awarded and this activity will begin immediately. Civil, mechanical and electrical contractors will be appointed shortly and they will be employing from within the community and developing skills within the construction industry. It is anticipated that 500 local jobs will be created during the construction phase of the project. The total number of permanent staff required for the terminal would be in the region of 50.

Respective roles

Mkhuseli Faku, Chairman of OTGC and port manager of the Port of Ngqura, Tandi Lebakeng also planted a ceremonial tree at the site of the entrance to the new tank farm, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Mkhuseli Faku, Chairman of OTGC and port manager of the Port of Ngqura, Tandi Lebakeng also planted a ceremonial tree at the site of the entrance to the new tank farm

TNPA has already completed Phase 1 of the infrastructure required to service the site, including the detailed design of the new port entrance plaza and the new main access road, as well as the pipeline servitude that will form the link between the new tank farm and the port.

Phase 2 commenced in November 2018 and includes the landside development forming the link between the tank farm and the berth. The port authority will provide infrastructure for the new OTGC Tank Farm by equipping Berth B100 to function as a liquid bulk berth. It will also construct a new access road from the tank farm to the berth. TNPA will provide all the associated services and construct a new port entrance on the eastern side of the Couga River.

After an open and transparent tender process, OTGC reached an agreement in late 2016 with TNPA for OTGC to plan, fund, construct, own, maintain and operate the new facility.

The OTGC design caters for 200,000 cbm of bulk storage and a final total capacity of 790,000 cbm. The planned commissioning is at the end of 2020.

Phase 1 will cater for dedicated jetty pipelines, bulk storage for up to 200,000 cbm, road loading with a Vapour Recovery Unit (VRU), firefighting facilities and site drainage facilities.

Provision has been made for the receipt, storage and distribution of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG).


The infrastructure will be designed to provide the following services – to accommodate vessel sizes of up to 100,000 deadweight tonnage, road loading facilities, inter-tank transfer/recirculation facilities, stock accounting in real time, office facilities for customers and an independent laboratory.


OTGC is a majority South African-owned Level 2 BBBEE company, combining Oiltanking GmbH’s international expertise in handling bulk liquids with the local expertise and the full Black Economic Empowerment credentials of Grindrod South Africa (Pty) Ltd and Calulo Terminals (Pty) Ltd.

Oiltanking GmbH is a subsidiary of Marquard & Bahls, a Hamburg-based company that operates in the fields of energy supply, trading and logistics and is one of the largest independent tank storage providers for petroleum products, chemicals and gases worldwide. The company owns and operates 73 terminals in 24 countries within Europe, North America, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, India, and the Asia-Pacific region, with an overall storage capacity of 20 million cbm.[/restrict]


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What the energy barge will look like, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
What the energy barge will look like

Southern African Shipyards (SAS) is gearing up to produce a unique state-of-the-art barge which will be the only one of its kind in the world.

The company, based at Bayhead in the Port of Durban, has been commissioned to build a R700-million energy barge for visionary entrepreneur Aldworth Mblati, the chief executive of DNG Energy, who is at the forefront of the Liquefied National Gas (LNG) revolution.

The first piece of steel was cut for the barge-to be called DNG Genesis- at the same ceremony at the end of last year when the first piece of steel was cut for SAS’s other mega contract, the SA Navy’s hydrographic survey ship.

Some 650 people will eventually be employed on both projects, while thousands of other indirect jobs will be created over the years.

Mblati has said that he could well have turned to China to have the barge built but that he wanted in built at SAS in Durban.

“I want it built in South Africa as it is important to create jobs. The money that is being kept in the country will allow South Africa to achieve a higher economic growth,” he said.

“Our success must be South Africa’s success,” he added.

Prasheen Maharaj, SAS’s chief executive, said the company was very grateful to DNG Energy and the patriotic leadership of its chief executive in entrusting SAS to build such a complex barge.

“The obligation upon us now as black industrialists is to ensure that local jobs are created and maintained and that smaller and emerging BEE enterprises benefit,” he said.

The barge, which is currently in the design stage at SAS, will be 143m-long and 34m-wide and will be 8,000 tons, which is predicted to be the largest vessel by weight ever to be built in Africa.

DNG Energy aims to invest more than R69-billion in creating a Pan African LNG supply network over the next five years.

It has a floating storage terminal and LNG will be stored at the terminal and then offloaded onto the SAS-built barge, which will act at a work horse, operating in Southern African waters and transporting energy to South African and SADC customers.

The exact location of the storage terminal will be revealed in March.

Mblati points out that liquefied natural gas is between 25 and 40% cheaper than other fuel and is also cleaner, and that his company aims to supply the country’s mining and trucking industry as well as industrial and commercial users.

It has the potential to become a prominent fuel in the petroleum industry with fuel stations of the future having natural gas at the pumps.

He says that LNG will dramatically improve the economy, reasoning that if the country stopped spending large amount of money importing refined gas, the rand will grow stronger and the country’s GDP will improve.


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IRClass vessel

Since opening its Greek office in 2010, the Indian Register of Shipping (IRClass) has made inroads into the Greek shipping market. Based in Piraeus, the IRClass office has been actively engaged with Greek shipyards and owners to offer its full range of classification services.

It has recently certified three ro-ro vessels in Greece for the Theodoropoulos shipyard and has also…[restrict] taken several other vessels into Class.

Currently, IRClass is working on seeking authorisation from the Greek maritime authorities to survey and certify all types of Greek-flagged vessels, it is reported.

To add focus to the Greek market IRClass Managing Director, Suresh Sinha,

Suresh Sinha MD INDIA Class, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS

was due to speak at Capital Link’s 10th Annual Greek Shipping Forum on 22 February at the Hilton Athens hotel.

In the words of Suresh Sinha (pictured): “The Greek maritime market is important to IRClass and our expansion strategy is to focus our services in this region due to the large concentration of ship owners.

“We look forward to networking and meeting with the Greek shipping community and build on the business relationships which our team in Piraeus has developed.”[/restrict]

Edited by Paul Ridgway


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Doraleh Multipurpose Port, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Doraleh Multipurpose Port

A year ago, on 22 February 2018, the State of Djibouti prematurely terminated the concession for the Doraleh container port, awarded in 2006 to Doraleh Container Terminal (DCT), a company essentially controlled by DP World, a minority shareholder.

A year after the termination, motivated by the country’s development imperatives and the necessity to control its strategic infrastructure, the Doraleh container terminal has established itself as an efficient structure, operated by a wholly publicly owned Djiboutian company, SGTD, which works for the public interest, say the Djibouti authorities in a statement issued today (Thursday 21 February 2019).

According to the statement, this has happened despite the ‘fake news’ campaigns, the multiplication of legal proceedings, and other attempts by DP World to intimidate the Djibouti State and its strategic partners.

Located at the mouth of the Bab el Mandeb Strait, at the intersection of the world’s main trade routes, the port clearly has multiple vocations: to serve its region, and in particular its Ethiopian sister nation, while positioning itself as a major transshipment platform, in direct alignment with Asia.

In early February, before members of the US Senate Committee on Armed Forces, General Thomas Waldhauser, Commander-in-Chief of AFRICOM (United States Africa Command), pointed out that the Doraleh container port had provided better services since DP World’s departure.

He also stated that the Republic of Djibouti, through the logistical and strategic platforms that it provides American forces in the region and in Africa, was an important strategic partner of the United States.

The US military base at Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
The US military base at Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti

However, Djibouti’s ambitions extend beyond the port of Doraleh. The container terminal is one of the cornerstones of an ambitious national development project: to make Djibouti a major commercial and logistics hub between Asia, Africa and the rest of the world. In addition to Doraleh’s development, a new multi-purpose port was set up on the same site (DMP, May 2017) and the Goubet and Tadjourah ports were opened (June 2017).

Boosting this expansion even more is the new free zone, expected to be the largest in Africa (opened in July 2018), and the launch of the new rail link between Djibouti and Addis Ababa (January 2018).

More recently still, an agreement with global scope in the energy sector was concluded on 17 February between Ethiopia and Djibouti. It provides for the commissioning of a gas pipeline between the natural gas fields of the Ogaden Basin in Ethiopia and the Djibouti coast. This will be followed, in a second phase, by the construction and operation of a natural gas liquefaction plant and a gas terminal in the Damerjog area, all with total private financing of around US$4 billion from POLY-GCL Petroleum Group Holdings Limited (China), the developer of this mega project.

The Ethiopian economy is on a long-term upward trend. The links between the two nations – strategic, commercial and cultural – are deep and long-standing. The spectacular regional “detente” enhances opportunities for all. For its part, Djibouti has invested heavily over the years in the establishment of enabling infrastructure and a legal framework that is strongly favorable to the private sector and service companies. This increase was highlighted by its 55-position leap in the 2018 Doing Business ranking.

map of Djibouti, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
map of Djibouti

Djibouti’s development project is therefore clearly underway. The major investments and amounts committed reflect the confidence of international partners in Djibouti’s long-term vision.

The Republic of China has actively participated in this effort either in terms of direct investment or through the financing of Djibouti projects. And as part of the new Silk Roads and its African strategy, China has established itself as an essential partner.

This “great Djibouti ambition” is supported by a constant geostrategic balance. Located on a maritime route vital to world trade, Djibouti fully assumes its role in maintaining security in the Gulf of Aden and in the fight against terrorism. The country has also established itself as a key humanitarian hub, in particular to assist civilian populations affected by the conflict in Yemen.

“The Republic of Djibouti, mindful of its responsibilities and alliances, would like to assure its friends around the world of its commitment to openness and its willingness to defend the interests of all, while upholding Djibouti’s rights and ensuring equity.” source: Government of Djibouti


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Port Elizabeth tank farm. There is a scheduled five-week shutdown of the tanker berth in the Port Elizabeth harbour from Monday, 18 February until Monday, 25 March 2019 to effect repairs, however the tank farm landside operations will still continue during the berth outage. Featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
There is a scheduled five-week shutdown of the tanker berth in the Port Elizabeth harbour from Monday, 18 February until Monday, 25 March 2019 to effect repairs, however the tank farm landside operations will still continue during the berth outage

Transnet National Ports Authority says it gives its full assurance that contingency plans are in place to avoid disruptions to fuel supplies during a scheduled five-week shutdown of the tanker berth in the Port Elizabeth harbour. The shutdown commenced on Monday this week, 18 February and will continue until Monday, 25 March 2019.

The berth outage will enable repairs to be carried out on the corroded steel structures supporting the berth’s access walkway.

“TNPA made the decision to temporarily close the Port of PE’s tanker berth after extensive consultation with the oil companies, namely liquid bulk terminal operators operating out of the PE Tank Farm and the South African Petroleum Industry Association (SAPIA),” said PE Port Manager Rajesh Dana.

“In our engagements with the oil companies, TNPA both advised and encouraged them to ramp up on the stock holdings at the PE harbour ahead of this shutdown and they have assured us that they have mitigation measures in place to ensure uninterrupted fuel supply to Nelson Mandela Bay. TNPA will meet them weekly during the repair period to share progress and address any challenges.”

During the repair period, fuel trucks will be redirected to the Port of East London’s Liquid Bulk Terminals, where there is sufficient capacity to manage the temporary diversion.

The tank farm landside operations of supplying local fuel outlets will still continue during the berth outage. No negative impact is anticipated for the port’s other operations including marine operations, the fishing industry, bunkering and more.

According to Dana there is no need for panic. “Whilst we appreciate isolated concerns regarding the closure, we have been assured by the oil companies that they have mitigation measures in place to ensure uninterrupted fuel supply to Nelson Mandela Bay. This matter is receiving our priority attention and weekly meeting on progress of the works will be held to ensure the timely completion of the repair works.”

Aerial view of the Port Elizabeth harbour and tank farm as featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Aerial view of the harbour and tank farm


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Germany's Port of Hamburg, featured in report in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Germany’s Port of Hamburg

Germany’s largest universal port, Hamburg, handled 135.1 million tonnes of cargo in 2018, (down on 2017 by one percent) and is asserting itself in a difficult environment. What is quite significant is that Hamburg has achieved a distinct advance on railborne seaport-hinterland transport.

In 2018, railborne traffic in and out of the port accounted for 46.8 million tonnes – up 2.7 percent – and 2.44 million TEU – up 4.7 percent.

In total more than 60,000 freight trains with around 1.6 million freight wagons were handled during 2018 on the Port Railway network alone. This topped the record total set in 2016 and extended Hamburg’s position as Europe’s leading rail port.

“The positive figures for the Port Railway are a success that we achieved together with our partners last year. We can be justly proud of this performance,” said Jens Meier, CEO of Hamburg Port Authority.

To a large extent this strong position is based on the large number of over a hundred liner services linking Hamburg with the great majority of the 1,000 seaports worldwide.

“Right at the outset of the new year, the Port of Hamburg is off to a flying start as it accepts four new liner services. With weekly sailings from Hamburg, these four Transatlantic container services also link ports on the US East Coast plus others in Mexico,” said Axel Mattern, Joint CEO of Port of Hamburg Marketing (HHM).

“With the transfer of these, ‘THE Alliance’ liner services additional throughput volume of the order of up to 500,000 TEU is arriving on the Elbe.”

Port of Hamburg, important link in South Africa-Europe trade, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Port of Hamburg, important link in South Africa-Europe trade

In container transport with China, along with the ocean-going vessel as the main carrier, a distinct increase is occurring in transport by rail. China again remained the Port of Hamburg’s largest trading partner in 2018. One in three of all containers handled in the port are for, or from, China.

Complementing the excellent seaborne services, more than 235 connections by rail are now offered from Hamburg along the New Silk Road.

“Having handled around 4.8 million TEU for or from China, compared to other locations in Europe Hamburg is the main hub for China freight by a wide margin,” says Mattern. Hamburg is the central freight handling hub for transport along both the maritime and overland Silk Road. “We shall be further strengthening and expanding our location in terms of transport geography for the benefit of our worldwide port customers,” he adds.

Hamburg is also an important port of call on the liner services between South Africa and northern Europe.

Looking at this report from a purely South African perspective one can draw a few comparisons with the admittedly much smaller Port of Durban. To compare cargo volumes, Durban handled 83.161 million tonnes of cargo all types but remains well behind Hamburg’s 135.1 million tonnes. Likewise with container volumes where Hamburg handled close to 9 million TEUs last year (Durban 2.956 million TEU). Ship calls Hamburg around 9,000 (Durban 3000), berths Hamburg almost 300 (Durban just over 50).

The figure that really stands out for us is that Hamburg received or dispatched no less than 2.44 million TEU by rail – a number that must leave Transnet and in fact all local port stakeholders feeling envious.


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Mozambique's controversial Ematum trawlers,featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS

No, not a South African scandal this time. The former Mozambique president Armando Guebuza’s son, Ndambi Guebuza, was arrested in Maputo at the recent weekend with regard loans worth something more than two billion US dollars. These concern the firm of Proindicus, the infamous EMATUM (Mozambique Tuna Company), and MAM (Mozambique Asset Management) and taken out in 2013 and 2014 when Guebuza Snr was in power.

The loans were acquired with illicit government guarantees, it is alleged.

ex-President Armando Guebuza, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
ex-President Armando Guebuza

Regular readers will recall that arrangements were made for EMATUM to acquire 24 tuna fishing trawlers and six patrol boats that were built in France. Both Presidents Guebuza and the then President François Hollande attended the signing of the contracts in France, which we reported at the time.

Since then the fishing vessels and patrol craft have arrived in Maputo but remained largely unused, with only a few having ventured out to sea and very little revenue being earned.

ex-PresidentFrancois Hollande of France was another that witnessed the signing ceremony of the Ematum vessels, festured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
ex-PresidentFrancois Hollande of France was another that witnessed the signing ceremony of the Ematum vessels

It is widely believed that the whole deal was a scam that involved a Swiss and a Russian bank in making the money available, a French shipyard and even the acceptance of the French government, in addition to senior people in the Mozambique government and security services.

According to Mozambique news agency AIM Ndambi Guebuza was detained by the Public Prosecutor’s Office on Saturday, becoming the ninth person to be detained in connection with Mozambique’s biggest financial scandal, which because the loan became a sovereign debt, has all but crippled the country’s finances with Mozambique unable to repay the interest owing. That matter was subsequently resolved only after renewed financing arrangements.

According to AIM, Ndambi Guebuza is a close friend and business colleague of …[restrict] Bruno Tandane, who was detained the previous day. The former President’s son also had contacts with Jean Boustani, a senior executive in the Abu Dhabi based company Privinvest, which played a central role in organising the loans from the banks credit Suisse and VTB of Russia to Proindicus, EMATUM and MAM.

Ndambi Guebuza was allegedly influential in presenting Boustani to Mozambican officials.

An independent audit found that a quarter of the loan amount was diverted, and remains unaccounted for.

According to the independent daily O Pais, Ndambi Guebuza accompanied Boustani on visits to France. The fishing boats and speed boats purchased for EMATUM and Proindicus were built in a ship yard in the French port of Cherbourg, owned by Privinvest.

The report said that the Maputo city court questioned the eight suspects detained on Thursday and Friday throughout Saturday. This was in line with Mozambican legislation that requires a detained person should be brought before a magistrate within 48 hours of detention.

The court ruled that seven of the eight suspects must remain in preventive detention. These include the most high profile suspects, namely Gregorio Leao, the head of the security and intelligence service (SISE) under President Guebuza, Antonio de Rosario the former head of economic intelligence at SISE, who became chairperson of the board of all three fraudulent companies, and Ines Moiane, the former private secretary to President Guebuza.

The eighth person, Elias Moiane, the nephew of Ines Moiane, was granted provisional release against payment of bail of one million meticais (about US$161,000).

It had been suggested that Leao, Rosario and other SISE officials should be released under the privileges and limited immunity which the law grants to intelligence officials. But that section of the law only applies to alleged crimes committed during their duties as SISE agents. By keeping them in custody, the court made clear that it considered the financial scandals as completely separate from SISE operations.

More information has come to light about Teofilo Nhangumele, one of those who allegedly convinced officials of the value of the loan of US$622 million dollars to Proindicus. Initially it had been reported that Nhangumele had no connections with the Mozambican state or government. But sources from the world of sport have now pointed out that he was the deputy general director for administration and finance of the African Games Organising Committee (COJA), responsible for holding the 2011 All Africa Games in Maputo. The scandalous mismanagement of the games left debts of at least US$10 million dollars to various companies.

Former Mozambique finance minister Manuel Chang, detained in South Africa regarding the Ematum scandal, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Mozambique’s former finance minister Manuel Chang, detained in South Africa

Among those who have been detained outside of Mozambique are several ex-Credit Suisse bankers arrested in the United States who are accused by the US of fraud, conspiracy to financial security fraud, and conspiracy to launder money. Another high level suspect wanted by the US is former Mozambique finance minister Manuel Chang, who is being held in South Africa pending a decision concerning a request by the United States to have him extradited.

According to the US at least $200 million was spent on bribes and kickbacks, including $12 million for former finance minister Manuel Chang, who allegedly signed off on the debt guarantees.[/restrict]


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Murjan 19m Multicat featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Murjan 19m Multicat

James Fisher and Sons plc has extended its capabilities in the Middle East with the acquisition of Murjan Al-Sharq Marine Contracting LLC.

Murjan is an established service provider based in Saudi Arabia, with a 10-year track record of successful projects with Saudi Aramco. The acquisition brings a wealth of local expertise into the JFS group – in particular the move adds strategically important…[restrict] nearshore marine construction and maintenance capabilities to the James Fisher offer.

This is supported by new, high quality vessels and equipment from Murjan and the group’s existing shallow water fleet.

“I am looking forward to a promising future with James Fisher & Sons,” said Chris Clark, vice president at Murjan Al-Sharq Marine Contracting. “It provides strength and stability to maintain our current growth and allow us to capture a larger market share.”

He said the company is well positioned now, having recently deployed new marine assets from Damen shipyards for existing and upcoming projects. “We will be performing marine services with the new fleet under Saudi flag to support Saudi Aramco and Vision 2030.

“James Fisher has a very good track record in the Middle East and the merger means that together, we can build on the last 10 years of development from Murjan to deliver well planned, multi-disciplined marine solutions to our clients.”

Paul Whiley, regional director for James Fisher in the Middle East, said that the acquisition by James Fisher solidifies its expansion into the promising Saudi offshore sector.

“We have now combined our existing offshore capabilities with the nearshore strengths of MCSC to offer a truly unique range of services that will be capable of delivering complete project scopes to the main EPCs,” he said. “The end result is cost and time efficiencies for our clients who are now getting a single interface for complete project support.”

The merger follows the recent announcement of multi-million dollar contract awards to support a major contractor in the region and wider investment from James Fisher & Sons to develop a significant and permanent presence on the Arabian Peninsula.[/restrict]


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RCL's Symphony of the Seas, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
RCL’s Symphony of the Seas

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd announced this week that it has entered into an agreement with French shipbuilder Chantiers de l’Atlantique to order a sixth Oasis-class ship for delivery in the fall of 2023.

“It is such a pleasure to announce the order of another Oasis-class ship,” said Richard D Fain, Chairman and CEO, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. “This order is a reflection of the exceptional performance of this vessel class and the extraordinary partnership between Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.”

“This is the twenty-third cruise ship that RCL will be building at our shipyard, and we are especially proud of it,” said Laurent Castaing, General Manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique. “The order reflects the confidence our customer puts on us, based on the exceptional quality of our long-term co-operation between the two companies and on our capacity to bring innovative solutions to meet our customer’s expectations.”

The order is contingent upon financing, which is expected to be completed in the second or third quarter of this year.

Of the existing Oasis class cruise ships, four are in service with a fifth, as yet unnamed, due from Chantiers in 2021. The earlier ships were OASIS OF THE SEAS (2009), ALLURE OF THE SEAS (2010), HARMONY OF THE SEAS (2016) and the latest SYMPHONY OF THE SEAS that entered service last year.

To provide a sense of the size of the Oasis class, the latest and biggest, Symphony of the Seas has a maximum capacity of 5,518 passengers at double occupancy in 2759 staterooms, or 6,680 passengers maximum. The crew count is 2,200. The 228,081-gt ship is 362 metres in length and cost US$1.35 billion.

Royal Caribbean Cruises controls and operates four global brands: Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Azamara Club Cruises and Silversea Cruises.

It is also a 50 percent joint venture owner of the German brand TUI Cruises and a 49 percent shareholder in the Spanish brand Pullmantur Cruceros. Together these brands operate a combined total of 60 ships with an additional 16 on order as of 31 December 2018. They operate diverse itineraries around the world that call on all seven continents.

Take now a video tour of the amazing Symphony of the Seas [24:01] – Click the YouTube Full-Screen tab (bottom right) for viewing


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The Clean Shipping Alliance 2020 (CSA 2020) today (Wednesday, 20 February 2019) expressed strong concerns about a proposal submitted by the European Commission (EC) which urges the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to change its Exhaust Gas Cleaning System (‘scrubber’) guidelines.

The proposal, which the Commission submitted to IMO on the 8 February deadline, calls for “evaluation and harmonization” of scrubber discharges across all ports, world-wide. The proposal is intended for consideration by the 74th session of the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 74) which meets in May in London.

Bunker fuel emission debate over scrubbers, is featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS

“This proposal is an attempt by the European Commission to push forward restrictions on scrubbers, which are accepted globally by the IMO, EU and others as acceptable means of improving air emissions quality in controlled areas,” said CSA 2020 Executive Director Ian Adams.

“Within two weeks of a draft surfacing, the Commission had taken the proposal to a one-day Working Party review and then submitted it to IMO,” he said. “Clearly this was planned to avoid the open discussion and deliberation that a proposal with such far-reaching impact requires. In the absence of credible evidence to justify such a major departure from the existing rules, the proposal is instead based mostly on speculation.

“CSA 2020 members, who represent…[restrict] over 30 leading commercial and passenger shipping companies have been investing for years to prepare their ships in time to meet emissions abatement targets in accordance with existing IMO and EU rules, which endorse the use of open and closed-loop scrubbers in all waters,” said Adams. “To see the Commission take this step within months of the entry-into-force of the Global ECA is beyond disappointing.”

Noting the broader issues facing the industry, Adams added: “The EC initiative is needlessly creating baseless concerns at a time when there are already very real issues in the maritime industry regarding the future availability, suitability and cost of fuels and the effects on global trade and shipping that this will have. There could also be safety implications should ships be required to change fuels in high traffic areas close to ports.

“I am sure Brussels is very aware that existing scientific data shows significant air emissions improvement from scrubbers, with no likely impact on the ocean environment, but it appears the submission to IMO was prepared with speed rather than accuracy.”

In a letter to its membership seen by CSA 2020, a European national shipowners’ association says: “The EC submission does not identify any scientific evidence of potential risks but is lost in assumptions and speculation about possible contaminant levels and claimed risk potentials.”

In its proposal, the Commission refers to the interim result of a study to be completed in May 2019 by the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (BSH) for the investigation of scrubber wash water from closed loop and open loop systems. But as the preliminary conclusions of the BSH study do not appear to align with the Commission’s proposal, it is far from clear whether it will contain any suggestion of new restrictions on scrubber wash water.

CSA 2020 will be hosting a technical conference tomorrow (21 February), in London, where scientific data relating to scrubber air emissions and wash water quality will be presented.

What is CSA 2020?

The Clean Shipping Alliance 2020 (CSA 2020) represents a group of leading companies from the commercial shipping and passenger ship industries that have been leaders in emission control efforts through significant investments in research and analysis, funding and committing resources to comply with 2020 fuel requirements through the development and use of Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS).
The Alliance was formed on 27 September 2018 with a mission to provide information and research data to better inform industry and the wider public. In addition to serving as an advocate for companies working to reduce marine exhaust gas emissions, CSA 2020 will support the scheduled implementation and effective enforcement of the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) requirement for a 0.5 percent global sulphur cap on fuel content as of 1 January 2020.

See also




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Banner of 22nd Wall Street Project Economic Summit, dti,

Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Bulelani Magwanishe is highlighting trade and investment opportunities in South Africa at the 22nd Annual Wall Street Project Economic Summit in New York.

Magwanishe will outline trade and investment opportunities at the summit that gets underway in the United States today (Wednesday).

Globally, the US accounts for 7% of South Africa’s total exports to the world and is ranked second as an export destination for South African export products in 2018.

“Bilateral trade between South Africa and the US has shown tremendous growth in the past few years. Total trade has increased from R141 billion in 2014 to R161 billion in 2017 but declined slightly to R157 billion in 2018,” said Magwanishe.

Bilateral trade between the US and South Africa is almost balanced with South Africa mostly enjoying a trade surplus against the US mainly due to exports of primary products and commodities.

However, Magwanishe said in terms of manufactured exports, the US continues to enjoy a trade surplus.

The Deputy Minister said the US remains as one of the key sources of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for South Africa, with bilateral investments at approximately R2.2 trillion in 2016.

In addition, there are about 800 US companies doing business in South Africa with an increasing number of South African companies also investing in the US.

Of the $4.2 billion foreign direct investment stock in the USA from Sub-Saharan African, $3.1 billion originated from South Africa.

The three-day summit is focused on how to expand wealth opportunities; supplier diversity opportunities; and diversity and inclusion for minorities and women.

It brings together entrepreneurs, corporate executives and leading US members of Congress. Speakers at the summit include the host, Reverend Jesse Jackson, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Congressmen Emanuel Cleaver and Gregory Meeks as well as Reverend Al Sharpton, among others.

The summit is being held under the theme: ‘400 Years Later: Closing the Wealth Gap, Expanding Opportunity’.

Market access through the AfCFTA

While in the US, Magwanishe will also meet with existing and potential investors into South Africa that are looking to take advantage of the market access created by the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Last week, on the sidelines of the 32nd Ordinary Session of Assembly of the African Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, President Cyril Ramaphosa handed over South Africa’s deposit of instruments on the ratification of the AfCFTA.

The AfCFTA, as one of the flagship projects of the African Union’s Agenda 2063, aims to build an integrated market in Africa that will see a market of over one billion people with a combined GDP of approximately US$3.3 trillion. source:


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Cosco Shipping and Bollore Transport & Logisticshave signed a MoU
The Cosco and Bolloré participants at the signing of the MoU in Shanghai

COSCO Shipping Lines, which is among the world’s largest container carriers, has signed a strategic Memorandum of Understanding with Bolloré Transport & Logistics.

The two companies, partners for over 20 years, said the intention is to densify their commercial relations while exploring new opportunities for cooperation in transport, logistics and port infrastructure.

Through this agreement, signed in Shanghai, Cosco and Bolloré Transport & Logistics have agreed to explore the possibilities of commercial collaboration in order to develop their respective activities and satisfy the needs of their customers, particularly in terms of digitalisation.

The companies said they share a common ambition to intensify international flows, particularly on the African continent, where Bolloré Transport & Logistics is well established and regarded for its expertise and has a large network of maritime agencies and also a unique know-how in corridor management.

“This new agreement signed with COSCO SHIPPING Lines is the result of our common desire to develop synergies between our businesses,” said Cyrille Bolloré CEO of Bolloré Transport & Logistics. “It also illustrates our ambition to continue the development of our international network by promoting cooperation with strategic partners, recognised for their excellence and performance.”

Wang Haimin Managing Director of Cosco Shipping Lines said the new agreement has significant meaning to both of the two companies to further develop global business. “Thanks for the support of our old friend in the past 20 years, he added.”

About COSCO Shipping Lines

Cosco Shipping Lines, headquartered in Shanghai, is engaged in international and domestic container shipping and related services. By the end of December 2018, the company has a total of 376 container vessels, with a total capacity of 2.1 million TEUs. Cosco Shipping Lines operates 362 international and domestic shipping routes, consisting of 228 international services (including international feeder services), 47 domestic services, 87 Yangtze River and Pearl River shipping services, covering 329 ports in 100 countries and regions worldwide.


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The 2,500-TEU Safmarine Nuba alongside at the Matadi Gateway Terminal which is progressively facilitating larger vessel calls and unlocking the associated scale economies, featuring in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
The 2,500-TEU Safmarine Nuba alongside at the Matadi Gateway Terminal which is progressively facilitating larger vessel calls and unlocking the associated scale economies

The recent call of the 2,500-TEU capacity Safmarine Nuba at the Matadi Gateway Terminal (MGT) opens the door to major new shipping system benefits for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) says the ICTSI Group company which operates the terminal.

The call, which took place at the end of January (if you missed that report you can see it by CLICKING HERE ), marked the first call by a gearless containership and the first by a vessel with a capacity as high as 2,500 TEUs.

The deployment of a vessel of this size unlocks economies of scale…[restrict] as well as provides the most cost-efficient means of serving the capital city of Kinshasa. Use of any other port gateway entails substantial additional land transport costs dramatically pushing up the overall container transport cost from point of origin to destination.

The transit along the Congo River is also time competitive – it takes just eight hours from the Banana Roads, at the head of the Congo River, upstream to Matadi, compared to approximately five hours by road when optimum conditions are available.

“The MGT is built to handle vessels of up to WAFMAX dimensions and as such the Safmarine Nuba was straightforward to berth and work,” explained Tim Van Campen, MGT director general. “We see this as a step on the road to handling even bigger vessels as demand builds, eventually up to WAFMAX dimensions from direct calls.”

MGT, with support from the Government of DRC, has a two-step plan in place to realise strategic dredging in the Congo River up to a draught of 12.5 metres thereby opening the door to Panamax class vessel calls. This will be demand triggered as will a third phase, under development, which will facilitate access for the slightly larger WAFMAX vessels, which will require a draught of 14 metres.

Handling over the quay at MGT is undertaken by two Terex Gottwald Model 5 mobile harbour cranes, each able to handle up to 60 tons when working with an automatic twin-lift spreader and 50 tons in a single lift. Maximum working radius is 51m. A third Kone mobile, now on order, will soon be installed, providing the ability to turn a 2,500-TEU capacity vessel in under 12 hours.

Container clearance from the terminal is the most efficient in the DRC averaging around seven days, half the time typically taken and thereby promoting further supply chain efficiencies. The advances made in this respect have also served to double the terminal’s annual capacity from 175,000-TEUs to 350,000-TEUs.

“Progressively MGT is fulfilling its potential and unlocking scale economies and service efficiencies for cargo owners,” underlines Hans-Ole Madsen, ICTSI Senior Vice President and head of EMEA.

“The terminal is having a positive impact right along the supply chain, and is delivering tangible practical benefits to cargo owners, a scenario we expect to grow as demand builds, even larger vessels are phased in and the terminal reaps the benefits of comprehensive continuous improvement programs. The Safmarine Nuba represents a ground-breaking ‘first’ and we are very confident that MGT can deliver further efficiencies and consolidate and expand its role as the premier container gateway for the DRC.

“There is always competition,” adds Madsen, “but the logic of using Matadi, the closest port gateway to Kinshasa, where virtually all the cargo goes, is irrefutable. If you start your overland journey from points such as Banana or Pointe Noire the additional overland transport costs, compared to using Matadi, will work out to be more expensive than the entire sea-freight cost from Shanghai to Matadi! We are also working with the relevant authorities to enhance the rail link between Matadi and Kinshasa, the only direct uninterrupted rail link between a port gateway and the capital city. Matadi is by far the logical choice,” he concludes.

Matadi Gateway Terminal

The Matadi Gateway Terminal (MGT) is a joint venture company between International Container Terminal Services Inc (ICTSI), the Ledya Group and SCTP SA. ICTSI operates 32 terminals in 19 countries and is a leading developer, manager and operator of gateway container terminals of different sizes serving extended hinterlands including cross border. MGT opened for business in mid-2016 and is a state-of-the-art facility developed at a cost of US$100 million.[/restrict]

Congo River Schematic: Matadi, located on the left bank of the Congo River, 92 miles upstream, is the closest port gateway to the DRC capital of Kinshasa and offers major savings in overland transportation, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Congo River Schematic: Matadi, located on the left bank of the Congo River, 92 miles upstream, is the closest port gateway to the DRC capital of Kinshasa and offers major savings in overland transportation


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Rovuma Basin in Northern Mozambique where ENI says it will commence LNG exports from late 2022, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Rovuma Basin in Northern Mozambique where ENI says it will commence LNG exports from late 2022

The Italian oil company ENI said on Monday that everything was on schedule with the Mozambique Rovuma basin project and that the first export should take place in the second half of 2022.

“The development scheme envisages the construction of a floating liquefied natural gas (LNG) platform with a production capacity of 3.4 metric tons of liquefied natural gas per year, powered by six production wells connected to an underwater production system,” ENI told the Portuguese news service Lusa.

“Progress in the implementation of the activities [for the South Coral field] is on schedule and…[restrict] the start [of production] is expected for the second half of 2022,” a spokeswoman for the Italian oil company, which on Friday presented last year’s results.

The execution phase of Coral South, the first project on the huge gas reserves discovered in Mozambique, started in June 2017.

On Rovuma LNG, ENI and Exxon submitted a development plan to the government on 5 July last year and the government’s response and the Final Investment Decision are expected this year, the oil company said.

The plan foresees the start of exploitation in 2024 and production of about 22 billion cubic feet over a period of 25 years, including 1.4 billion cubic feet for the Mozambican domestic market.

On Friday, ENI announced a net profit of EUR 4,226 million for 2018, 25% more than in 2017. Adjusted profit was EUR 4,592 million Euros, 93% more than in 2017.

During the meeting of the board of directors, a dividend of 0.83 Euros per share was proposed, of which 0.42 Euros per share had already been paid in September.

Net cash flow from the group’s operating activities was EUR 13,651 million, 35% more than the EUR 10,117 million obtained in 2017, and financial debt was EUR 8,289 million, a decrease of 24% over the previous year, when it reached 10,916 million.

The company’s hydrocarbon production reached a record high in 2018, standing at 1.85 million barrels of oil equivalent per day, representing a growth of 2.5% over 2017. Source: Lusa[/restrict]


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Saldanha Bay from the air, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Saldanha Bay from the air

The Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) has signed new investment agreements, which bring the total number of signed investors to eight and investment value to over R3 billion, it has been reported.

These investors include international stakeholders from the United Kingdom, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, with the rest being local companies.

All these investors are investing in a variety of fabrication workshops for steel and other metals, equipment and marine repair facilities, oil lubricant and fuel plants, as well as…[restrict] specialised engineering services, the Department of Trade and Industry said on Tuesday.

The investors are targeting construction to start between March 2019 and March 2020, Minister Rob Davies said.

“The investments signal a significant start of establishing new industrial value chains in and around the Port of Saldanha,” Davies said. “The Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone is part of the dti Special Economic Zones Programme and is developing into a world-class offshore and maritime hub.”

Having established most of the major land-based infrastructure and some of the marine infrastructure, the zone’s partnership with Transnet National Ports Authority has already started some of the design and commercial work for expanding the infrastructure offering, with additional port facilities.

Davies said the value proposition to the market also includes a free port model for optimal operational ease in a sector where logistics efficiency and certainty are as valuable as quality engineering services.

“The Saldanha Bay IDZ’s investment pipeline includes at least five more investments that are close to conclusion.

“If these are realised, they will add another R2.4 billion of investment to the short and medium term outlook of the zone. The total investor pipeline includes around 40 additional interested companies in various stages of engagement,” the Minister said.

The Western Cape government and the dti have partnered with the Saldanha Bay Municipality and larger companies in the West Coast to start building the ecosystem for localised procurement and small, medium and micro-sized enterprises support as a result of the opportunities posed by the new value chains.

The MEC for Economic Opportunities in the Western Cape, Beverley Schäfer, says these investments by local and international investors signal confidence in the oil, gas and maritime sector will contribute to opportunities for the development of small businesses in the region.

“We have already seen significant strides in skills development as a result of our focus on the oil and gas sectors and continued growth and investment has the potential for further skills development and job creation opportunities into the future,” said Schäfer. –[/restrict]


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Seabed Constructor in Durban, December 2017. Picture: Trevor Jones, featuring in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Seabed Constructor in Durban, December 2017. Picture: Trevor Jones

Next generation AUVs Discover Wreck of Korean Vessel

Ocean Infinity, the next generation seabed survey and ocean exploration company, reports that it has successfully located the wreck of the lost South Korean tanker, STELLAR DAISY (266,141-dwt, built 1993), at a depth of 3461 metres in the South Atlantic Ocean, approximately 1800 nautical miles due west of Cape Town.

Stellar Daisy sank on 31 March 2017, transporting iron ore from Brazil to China. Tragically, 22 of the 24 crew were lost. See our report of this LARGE ORE CARRIER STELLAR DAISY MISSING IN SOUTH ATLANTIC

Working from the research vessel SEABED CONSTRUCTOR, the search operation involved the deployment of four Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs), which, over 72 search hours, explored approximately 1,300 km2 of seabed.

Representatives of both The Government of South Korea, who awarded Ocean Infinity the contract to conduct the search, and the families of Stellar Daisy’s crew, were present throughout the operation. It is understood that the voyage data recorder (VDR) has been recovered from whar remains of the Stellar Daisy.

The AUVs emloyed to find the missing Stellar Daisy, featuring in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
The AUVs emloyed to find the missing Stellar Daisy

Ocean Infinity’s AUVs are the most technologically advanced in the world. They are capable of operating in water depths from 5 metres to 6,000 metres. The AUVs are not tethered to the vessel during operations, allowing them to go deeper and collect higher quality data for the search.

They are equipped with a side scan sonar, a multi-beam echo-sounder, a sub-bottom profiler, an HD camera, a conductivity / temperature / depth sensor, a self-compensating magnetometer, a synthetic aperture sonar and a turbidity sensor.

Stellar Daisy, featuring again in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Stellar Daisy, the giant bulker that disappeared

“We are pleased to report that we have located Stellar Daisy, in particular for our client, the South Korean Government, but also for the families of those who lost loved ones in this tragedy,” said Oliver Plunkett, Ocean Infinity’s CEO. “This operation is further testament to Ocean Infinity’s leading, technology led, search capability. Through the deployment of multiple state of the art AUVs, we are covering the seabed with unprecedented speed and accuracy.

“I would like to thank the Government of South Korea for their support, as well as all of the team onboard Seabed Constructor,” he added.

Ocean Infinity is a seabed exploration company. Based in Houston, Texas, it was founded in July 2017, and is led by CEO Oliver Plunkett and COO Melanie Smith.

The research vessel Seabed Constructor underwent maintenance and equipping for this voyage in the Cape Town dry dock before heading out into the South Atlantic.

Recovering one of the AUVs used to discover the missing bulker. Picture: Ocean Infinity, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Recovering one of the AUVs used to discover the missing bulker. Picture: Ocean Infinity


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The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering: The creators of GPS awarded The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, from left to right: Richard Schwartz, Bradford Parkinson, James Spilker and Hugo Fruehauf, featuring in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering: The creators of GPS awarded The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, from left to right: Richard Schwartz, Bradford Parkinson, James Spilker and Hugo Fruehauf

Benefits for the whole world

It was announced from London on 12 February 2019 that this year’s Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering (QEPrize) has been awarded to four engineers responsible for creating the first truly global, satellite-based positioning system – GPS.

The QEPrize is the world’s most prestigious engineering accolade, a £1 million prize that celebrates the global impact of engineering innovation on humanity.
The 2019 winners are Dr Bradford Parkinson, Professor James Spilker, Jr, Hugo Fruehauf, and Richard Schwartz – announced on 12 February by Lord Browne of Madingley, Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering Foundation, in the presence of HRH The Princess Royal in London.

The QEPrize, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS

As we know the global positioning system represents a pioneering innovation which, for the first time, enabled free, immediate access to accurate position and timing information around the world. Today, an estimated four billion people around the world use GPS, and its applications range from navigation and disaster relief through to climate monitoring systems, banking systems, and the foundation of tomorrow’s transport, agriculture, and industry.

Reintroducing GPS as a concept

Bradford Parkinson, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Bradford Parkinson

To remind our readers GPS uses a constellation of at least 24 orbiting satellites, ground stations, and receiving devices. Each satellite broadcasts a radio signal containing its location and the time from an extremely accurate onboard atomic clock. GPS receivers need signals from at least four satellites to determine their position; they measure the time delay in each signal to calculate the distance to each satellite, then use that information to pinpoint the receiver’s location on earth.

The basic tracking required for GPS dates back to the start of the space race, when radio operators tracked Sputnik I on its groundbreaking flight in 1957. Sputnik’s radio signals appeared to drop in frequency as it passed overhead, a phenomenon known as the Doppler shift that allowed the satellite’s position to be determined.

GPS has had a revolutionary impact upon modern society. At just $2 per receiver, GPS provides an accessible service and a powerful tool that people can integrate with their own applications. Simple smartphone apps can track disease outbreaks, self-driving tractors can optimise crop harvests, and sports teams can improve team performance. New applications for GPS continually appear, and its annual economic value has been estimated to be $80 billion for the USA alone.

The chief architect, Bradford Parkinson, is often called the ‘father of GPS’ after successfully building upon several separate systems to create the current GPS design. Parkinson directed the programme and led the development, design, and testing of its key components. He insisted that GPS needed to be intuitive and inexpensive, which later made navigation accessible to billions.

James Spilker, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
James Spilker

To realise the project, Parkinson recruited James Spilker to design the signal that the satellites broadcast. This type of ranging signal is critical to the success of GPS for civilian use; it is resistant to jamming, precise, and allows multiple satellites to broadcast on the same frequency without interfering with each other. Spilker’s team also developed and built the first receiver to process the GPS satellite signals; his delay-locked loop process, used for tracking code division multiple access (CDMA) signals, is essential to GPS accuracy.

GPS receivers rely on accurate timing information, broadcast from satellites, to determine their position on earth. Each satellite uses multiple atomic clocks – accurate to within billions of a second – to ensure consistent timing. Hugo Freuhauf, then Chief Engineer at Rockwell Industries, led the development of a miniaturised, radiation-hardened atomic clock – the heart of the GPS satellite. Its accuracy is the backbone of communications systems, power grids, financial networks, and other critical infrastructure.

Hugo Fruehauf, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Hugo Fruehauf

For the GPS programme to be affordable, each satellite had to be long-lived. Richard Schwartz, the Programme Manager at Rockwell during the development of these satellites, was tasked with ensuring a three-year life span. His design was resistant to the intense radiation from the upper Van Allen belt, and it also lasted over nine years.

How GPS changed the world

When asked whether the winners knew that GPS could change the world, Dr Bradford Parkinson said: “One of the most important things we had when the project started was a vision of world impact. Without that inspiration, it would have been difficult for us to weather the storms of doing something for the first time. Back in 1978, I made a few drawings that depicted GPS applications that I could personally foresee; they included an automobile navigation system, semi-automatic air traffic control, and wide-area vehicle monitoring, and seem to be rather accurate 41 years later. That said, none of us could fathom the sheer breadth of GPS applications – the many ways that it would become a System for Humanity.!

When asked which GPS applications surprised him the most, Hugo Freuhauf said: “What surprised me the most was the general response from industry – it blew me away. The world’s tech industry reduced a 40lb (18kg), $100K backpack-sized GPS receiver into a fingernail-sized chip receiver that now costs less than $2. Because of that, GPS is everywhere; it is part of the global economic engine and key to global safe-keeping. It’s had an almost unimaginable impact on the globe.”

Richard Schwartz, featuring in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Richard Schwartz

When asked about his future predictions for GPS, Richard Schwartz said: “It’s hard to imagine what young and creative engineers will come up with next – it’s such a rapidly developing world. That said, in the not too distant future I think I will be able to step into a driverless car, tell the car where I’d like to go, and then sit back and enjoy the ride.

“The second prediction relates to farming, as we are already starting to see rapid innovation in agriculture. If farmers can precisely tend to their fields around the clock – at low cost – then food supply around the world will significantly increase, providing the next step towards ending world hunger.!

Lord Browne of Madingley

Lord Browne of Madingley, Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering Foundation, said: “The 2019 Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering recognises the four engineers responsible for providing accurate position and timing information for billions of people around the world. Their revolutionary work epitomises the excellence in engineering that the QEPrize both recognises and celebrates, and we hope that it continues to inspire the next generation of engineers to take up the challenges of the future.”

Edited by Paul Ridgway


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SADC Logo, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS

South Africa will today (Tuesday 19 February 2019) host the first European Union (EU) – Southern African Development Community (SADC) Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) joint council meeting.

The meeting which is being held in Cape Town will provide an opportunity for the ministers of the SADC EPA states and the EU to discuss the state of play in the trade between the parties and how the EPA can contribute to inclusive and sustainable development.

The ministers will also consider a…[restrict] number of procedural issues such as the approval of the rules of procedure of the various committees created to oversee the implementation of the EPA, said Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies.

“The core objective of the SADC EPA Group and EU’s joint efforts in implementing the agreement must be to ensure that the EPA enables sustainable development in the SADC EPA states through changing the structure of trade, including the fundamental structural imbalance in the trade between the parties, and promote enhance value-added trade,” says Davies.

South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique and Namibia signed the EPA that was negotiated with the EU in June 2016.

The EPA provisionally entered into force on 10 October 2016 – replaced the trade chapter in the Trade Development and Cooperation Agreement (TDCA) between SA and the EU that entered into force in 2000.

Through the EPA, South Africa gained improved market access into the EU for agricultural products such as wine, sugar, ethanol and fruit, as well as for fisheries. SA exports to the EU have increased from R214 billion in 2015 to R262 billion in 2017.

Davis says SA exports to the EU are led by vehicles which contributed 26% of the country’s total exports to the EU in 2017.

This is followed by precious stones and metals, nuclear reactors, edible fruit and nuts and ores, slag and ash which contributed 17%, 8%, 8% and 7% respectively in the same year.

“Although South Africa has managed to increase exports of value-added products to the EU, thus contributing to South Africa’s industrial development objectives, there is still a need for further improvement in changing the structure of trade,” said Davies.[/restrict]


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NATO Ex Dynamic Move: In early February more than 160 naval personnel from 21 NATO and Partner nations met at the NATO Mine Countermeasures School (EGUERMIN), in Oostende, Belgium to practice large scale mine clearance operations in the computer-aided exercise Dynamic Move. Picture: NATO Allied Maritime Command (MARCOM) Northwood UK ©, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
NATO Ex Dynamic Move: In early February more than 160 naval personnel from 21 NATO and Partner nations met at the NATO Mine Countermeasures School (EGUERMIN), in Oostende, Belgium to practice large scale mine clearance operations in the computer-aided exercise Dynamic Move. Picture: NATO Allied Maritime Command (MARCOM) Northwood UK ©

As we well know the sea lanes are vital to the health and wellbeing of a nation. These strategic byways allow trade, travel and the movement of resources.

NATO maintains two groups of mine countermeasures ships ready to respond to a crisis if needed. In order to maintain a high level of readiness, NATO conducts training exercises to keep sailors skills sharp.

In the first half of February more than 160 naval personnel from 21 NATO and Partner nations met at the NATO Mine Countermeasures School (EGUERMIN), in Oostende, Belgium to practice large scale mine clearance operations in the…[restrict] computer-aided exercise Dynamic Move.

Three Task Force Battle Staffs each led four Task Units in a virtual task force to clear mines in a simulated crisis situation. The Task Force Battle Staffs included Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group One, the US Navy’s Mine Warfare Battle Staff from the Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center and a Mine Warfare Battle Staff comprised of Scandinavian Allies and Partners.

“Dynamic Move gives us an opportunity to work together as a staff in the controlled environment of the exercise to test our limits,” said Commander of Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group One (SNMCMG1), Commander Peter Krough, Royal Danish Navy. He added: “The exercise proved to be very valuable staff training. Acting on a higher level of command authority, the staff gained insight into our commanders needs and concerns.”

The Director of the US Mine Warfare Battle Staff, Captain Christopher Nelson, concurred: “Our team was able to achieve all objectives including training the Staff on NATO Mine Countermeasures techniques and procedures, refining internal staff processes and procedures and integration with our Allies and Partners.”

Dynamic Move is an annual exercise held in two parts. Part One is held in Ostend Belgium in the early spring of the year and the second part is held in La Spezia, Italy in the early autumn.

Each part of the exercise allows mine countermeasures personnel from across the Alliance to come together to enhance interoperability and hone tactics and procedures to ensure NATO is ready to work together should there be a need.[/restrict]

Edited by Paul Ridgway


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QGA watervtesting kit for LuminUltra, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Water testing kit

EXMAR Ship Management, which is headquartered in Belgium, says it has selected the LuminUltra Quench-Gone Aqueous (QGA) test kit to monitor the quality of the drinking water produced onboard the LPG FSO NKOSSA II.

The decision follows the success of the QGA solution in analysing the quality of the water produced by reverse osmosis aboard accommodation barges operating in offshore waters of West Africa.

“We cannot emphasise enough the importance of testing the quality of our drinking water on a regular basis,” said Paul-Philippe Halleux, who is a Technical Superintendent from EXMAR Ship Management’s Offshore Services division. “We produce drinking water through reverse osmosis and with…[restrict] some of our accommodation barges operating offshore Africa we do not have the time to wait for onshore laboratories to test the samples.

“As a shipmanager, we are responsible for health and safety of all the people onboard our vessels. Even though regulations require bacterial testing only twice a year, we prefer to carry out water quality tests every week. For us the best way of assessing whether water is safe is to use LuminUltra’s portable test kit onboard. The results are available within minutes, so we know immediately if the water is fit for human consumption.!

The QGA test kit has been in constant use over the past four years aboard EXMAR Offshore Services’ 450 POB barge NUNCE and the 300 POB WARIBOKO. The LPG FSO NKOSSA II will be equipped with the kit later this month and the company is considering its use aboard LNG and LPG vessels.

Pat Whalen, LuminUltra Technologies’ President & CEO, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Pat Whalen

Pat Whalen, LuminUltra Technologies’ President & CEO, said the company is delighted that EXMAR Offshore Services has selected the LuminUltra QGA water test kit for additional use in its fleet. “Regular potable water testing is vital to prevent any risk of infection from water-borne pathogens, thereby ensuring the well-being of seafarers, offshore workers and guests onboard,” he said.

Using a single analysis based on the measurement of Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP), Quench-Gone Aqueous (QGA) provides a rapid and interference-free determination of total microbiological concentration in any filterable water sample with a wide detection range.

Designed for low-solids, low-biomass concentration applications, the speed and portability of the QGA kit enables tests from many points in a water generation system to detect elevated microbial growth levels in real-time. Results are available in under five minutes.

Anna Whittaker, LuminUltra Technologies Regional Sales Manager – Europe, pointed out that drinking water standards are heavily regulated by the World health Organisation. “In 2006, the Maritime Labour Convention introduced guidelines [Standard A3.2] aimed at maintaining the quality of drinking water onboard ships,” he said. “In the case of accommodation barges, SOLAS recommends that drinking water is tested for bacteria just twice a year, although other tests are more frequent.”

Ms Whittaker added that shoreside, water samples are routinely analysed to determine the type and concentration of microbes present. “Rapid bacteriological water analysis gives us access to critical data, making it possible to identify trends and proactively address concerns,” she said.

“In the past years, LuminUltra have developed three monitoring kits for the marine industry. LuminUltra has already developed three monitoring kits for the marine industry. Now, using the same equipment, operators are able to check ballast water, drinking water and fuel quality in minutes.”[/restrict]


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Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, reported on 18 February that it has developed a smelting process to produce soluble phosphate for fertiliser from low value ores, eliminating hazardous waste and making production more economically and environmentally sustainable.

Phosphate is a key ingredient in fertilisers and essential for plant health and growth. The AUD$73 billion global phosphate market continues to grow as demand for fertiliser increases to meet food production needs.

CSIRO team leader, Keith Barnard, said the CSIRO-developed PyroPhos process offers a simpler, safer and more efficient alternative to conventional phosphate production processes.

In his words: “The PyroPhos smelting process uses high temperature to extract phosphate from ores, producing prized phosphate feedstock and a glassy gravel that can be used in road base construction and Portland cement.”

“A major benefit of the process is that is can be used on lower grade ores giving phosphate miners and processors the opportunity to increase their productivity in an environmentally sustainable way.”

The PyroPhos process is exclusively licenced to PyroPhos, a subsidiary of Process Capital and its technology has emerged out of decades of research from CSIRO’s award-winning Sirosmelt innovation and pryometalurgical expertise, it is reported.

Paul Ridgway


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Mombasa container terminal port scene, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Mombasa container terminal port scene

The Kenya Port of Mombasa says that it is targeting greater efficiency in order to increase container handling capacity to 1.6 million TEU per year by 2022.

Mombasa is currently handling a throughout of just over one million TEU – one of the few ports in sub-Saharan Africa to do so, although growth has been static for several years.

Kenya Ports Authority managing director Daniel Manduku said they were…[restrict] working on reducing the turnaround time in cargo handling from 3.5 days in 2014 to two days in the year 2022.

The port boasts two container terminals, the latest providing an increased number of berths and adjacent container stacking area.

According to Manduku KPA is planning to renovate berths 11 to 14, build a multi-user grain facility and establish a special dedicated team to deal with all Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) related projects at the port. The port is now connected with Nairobi by SGR, with construction continuing further inland towards Naivasha and the Uganda border, with a branch from Naivasha to Kisumu on Lake Victoria.[/restrict]

Kenya’s Standard Gauge Railway

Kenya Standard Gauge Railway container train under the gantry at Mombasa container terminal
Kenya Standard Gauge Railway container train under the gantry at Mombasa container terminal    Picture: KPA

Concern over the mounting debt owed by Kenya to the Chinese banks for the construction (and operation) of the SGR is continuing to be expressed within Kenya, where it is reported that the debt has risen to approximately 1.9 billion Euros (KSh227 billion).

A recent report on the front page of Daily Nation claimed that Kenya could lose control of the Port of Mombasa if the country is unable to service the SGR debt, which is continuing to grow as the line is further extended.

The report stated that a…[restrict] clause in the agreement between Kenya and the Chinese Exim Bank stipulates “neither the borrower (Kenya) nor any of its assets is entitled to any right of immunity on the grounds of sovereignty, with respect to its obligations”.

A parliamentary committee was advised last year that the SGR railway company had lost KSh110 billion in its first year of operations. This represented a shortfall of 943 million euros which was put down to low cargo business – in particular containers.

A Kenyan economist, who is an outspoken critic of the SGR told Radio France International that the cost of servicing the SGR loan is about KSh20 billion or the equivalent of about US$250 million a year. David Ndii said that the Kenya Ports Authority was obliged to apply tariffs of 12 cents/ton/km set by the Chinese funded and operated SGR Company.

It was his opinion that the Chinese were “able to securitize the port’s cash flows, in the event that the KPA did not meet recovery requirements.”

As a result of all this China is now Kenya’s largest lender, accounting for 72 percent of all its foreign debts set to surpass the 5 trillion Shilling mark (42.8 billion euros). That accounts for more than 60 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product. Kenya will spend 800 billion Shillings (6.8 billion euros) in 2019 to service its debts, becoming the third-most indebted country behind Angola at 36 billion euros and Ethiopia at 11 billion euros. sources: Daily Nation, RFI, Shipping Gazette[/restrict]


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Two new offices in Paradip and Guwahati

The Indian Register of Shipping (IRClass), a leading classification society, has opened two new offices in India – one located in Paradip, a major port town on the east coast of India, and another in Guwahati, the largest city in the northeast Indian state of Assam.

Strengthening IRClass’ service network, these new offices join an existing… network of 24 offices in India.

Opening of an office in Assam’s Guwahati follows the recent announcement on a joint initiative with the Assam Government in further developing the state’s inland water transport (IWT) system to improve commuter safety.

Mr K Bhardwaj, Head (Operations) IRClass, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Mr K Bhardwaj, Head (Operations)

Paradip is amongst the leading ports in the country and several infrastructure projects under the Sagarmala programme are planned around the port. The Paradip office was opened against long standing demand from the industry, it is understood. This office will serve ship owners, ports and drydocking repair facilities within proximity, as well as neighbouring ports including Dhamra and others in the region.

Pictured is Mr K Bhardwaj, Head (Operations) who commented on 11 February: “Establishing a presence in both Paradip and Guwahati has been a key part of our strategic development priorities, and this underlines IRClass’ commitment towards servicing its clients in the eastern part of India as we strive to provide high quality classification services to the maritime community in this region.”

Edited by Paul Ridgway


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Standing NATO Maritime Group Two (SNMG2) ships conducting a passing exercise (PASSEX) with the Turkish Navy while performing their Force Integration Training (FIT) in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Photo credit: MCPL Manuela Berger, Royal Canadian Navy © featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Standing NATO Maritime Group Two (SNMG2) ships conducting a passing exercise (PASSEX) with the Turkish Navy while performing their Force Integration Training (FIT) in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Photo credit: MCPL Manuela Berger, Royal Canadian Navy ©

Mine Counter Measures Exercise Dynamic Move

On 13 February it was reported that Standing NATO Maritime Group Two (SNMG2) ships are taking their at sea training to an advanced level, performing Force Integration Training (FIT) while patrolling in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea to maintain the high readiness level required of the NATO Standing Naval Forces.

Composed of four frigates, NATO ships in SNMG2 TU02 are the Royal Dutch frigate HNLMS Evertsen, as Flagship, the Royal Canadian frigate HMCS Toronto, the Turkish Navy frigate TCG Gelibolu and the Spanish Navy frigate Santa Maria. In addition to their FIT, NATO Groups regularly conduct exercises with various NATO Allied navies.

On 21 January SNMG2 conducted an in-depth air defence exercise with the Hellenic Navy with warships HS Psara, HS Ritsos and twelve aircraft from the Hellenic Air Force.

SNMG2 then conducted an advanced air defence exercise with the Turkish Navy on 8 / 9 February and the Turkish Air Force. Similar training was conducted on 1 February with the Turkish Navy ships TCG Barbaros, TCG Bafra and TCG Akar approximately 250 kilometres south of Antalya in international waters of the Mediterranean Sea. The exercises included manoeuvring, seamanship, helicopter operations and various synthetic serials.

Exercises between NATO and Turkish units contribute to the Tailored Assurance Measures for Turkey, as agreed on the NATO Summit in Warsaw, 8 and 9 July 2016 in support of Turkey as part of NATO.

SNMG2 is one of four Standing Maritime Groups (two destroyer/frigate groups and two mine countermeasures groups) which are multinational, integrated maritime forces made up of vessels from allied countries. These vessels are under continuous NATO command to perform a wide range of tasks ranging from deterrent presence and situational awareness to exercises and the conduct of operational missions.

These groups provide NATO with an immediate operational response capability both in peacetime and in crisis. They demonstrate Alliance resolve and foster solidarity, as well as enhance the Alliance’s relations with Partner nations through visits and exchanges.

Edited by Paul Ridgway


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Mixing football with ship supply may not be an obvious choice unless you are ISSA* Executive Vice President Mr Kouame Aduo Luc (pictured) who has seen his love of the game result in him being elected as a senior member of the Ivory Coast team organising the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

ISSA Executive Vice President Mr Kouame Aduo Luc featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS

Apart from overseeing ISSA’s interests in Africa, Kouame Aduo Luc is also President of the Ivory Coast Premier Division club Stade d’Abidjan, and it is the sterling work he has undertaken here that has seen him elected as a Vice President of Cocan 2021, organisers of the football tournament.

The Ivory Coast was awarded the 2023 tournament instead of 2021 after Cameroon, which was stripped of the right to hold this year’s tournament, was chosen to…[restrict] stage the event in 2021. Ivory Coast will delay its hosting by two years and Guinea, initially chosen as 2023 host, will have the tournament in 2025.

A total of 24 teams are expected to compete for the Cup in 2023.

Among his many responsibilities, Kouame Aduo Luc, who has been involved in the football industry for nearly 48 years, will oversee much of the infrastructure surrounding the event such as construction of the hotels, roads, airports and the stadia as well as the supply of food.

He said: “I am delighted to have been asked to play a part in bringing this global tournament to The Ivory Coast in 2023. Football is very important to Africa and we look forward to producing an event of world class proportions. I am also proud for ISSA. Africa is an important ship supply market and to have the association linked to a global event like the Africa Cup of Nations can only be great news.”[/restrict]

*ISSA, the International Ship Supply Association ( )

Edited by Paul Ridgway


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SAS Spioenkop departs from Durban. Picture: Trevor Jones, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
SAS Spioenkop. Picture: Trevor Jones

It’s all systems go for this year’s Armed Forces Day which will be taking place this week in Cape Town.

According to the Department of Defence, the mobilisation phase of Armed Forces Day 2019 is well underway and final on-the-ground preparations are nearing completion.

The Armed Forces Day main event will take place on Thursday, 21 February, marking the sinking of the SS Mendi in the English Channel in 1917 when over 600 SA Native Labour Corps members and 33 crew members died.

It has evolved into a week-long event with the national defence force using it to honour men and women in uniform, bring the…[restrict] SA National Defence Force (SANDF) to the people and allowing SANDF Commander-in-Chief President Cyril Ramaphosa to take the salute from a mass parade of all four service arms and the Reserve Force.

During the Armed Forces Day, the public will be afforded an opportunity to interact with men and women in uniform and will be exposed to the capabilities of the country’s state-of-the-art military equipment.

The Armed Forces Day is also a platform to test the SANDF’s logistic capabilities and state of readiness.

More than 8,500 troops from all four services will be in the Western Cape for the Armed Forces Day.

The SA Army will have an array of assets from long-range artillery guns, tanks and armoured cars, bridge building and water purification capabilities, advanced battlefield surveillance and intelligence capabilities, ground-based air defence capabilities and infantry skills at the event.

Ground and air crew as well as support staff, command and control personnel including the planning and safety disciplines from the SA Air Force (SAAF) will be present to back various aircraft in service.

These include Agusta A109, Oryx, Rooivalk and Super Lynx helicopters, Gripen and Hawk Mk120 fighters and CASA 212, King Air and PC-12 from the transport fleet.

The SA Navy, host for Armed Forces Day 2019, will have the frigates SAS Amatola and SAS Spioenkop at the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront along with the Type 209 submarine SAS Manthatisi, offshore patrol vessels SAS Galeshewe and SAS Makhanda and the support vessels SAS Drakensberg and SAS Protea.

In addition to providing medical support to all national defence force members taking part in the event, the SA Military Health Service (SAMHS) will exhibit some specialist capabilities.

These include an air-droppable surgical post, communicable disease isolation unit and mobile hospitals of varying size.

There is a static display of military equipment and live arena military demonstrations between 16 and 19 February at the Mandela Park Sports Stadium in Khayelitsha from 08h00 – 18h00.

Other events include a 5/10 km fun run at 08h00 that took place on Saturday 16 February, marching band at the V&A Waterfront on 16 and 17 February at 16:00, an inter-faith service at 10h00 on 17 February at Cape Town City Hall and sports clinics for primary schools in Khayelitsha between 16 and 20 February.

The South African Navy ships and submarines were open to visitors on 16 and 17 February at the V&A Waterfront from 09h00 – 15h00.

The highlight of Armed Forces Day will be the military parade and capability demonstration on 21 February at Table View Beach.

This will include marching and mechanised columns (10h30 -13h00) and the capability demonstration (13h00). Entry is free and members of the public are invited to attend.

In anticipation of large numbers expected to attend these activities, there will be viewing areas with big screens at the Grand Parade, Mandela Park Sports Stadium (Khayelitsha) and Table View Beach. –[/restrict]


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Ankoveld, which sank on Saturday 16 February 2019 off Saldanha Bay. Picture: Jaco Louw, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Ankoveld.     Picture: Jaco Louw

Ten crew members of the fishing vessel ANKOVELD (ZR4388) were rescued this morning (Saturday, 16 February 2019) when their vessel sank off the West Cape coast near Saldanha Bay.

According to the Maritime Rescue Coordinating Centre (MRCC) based in Cape Town, the sinking took place in position 28.5 nautical miles west-north-west of Cape St Martin and some distance from the nearest land point.

The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) reported that the Ankoveld’s skipper was among those rescued after he reported that the vessel was taking water in the engine room. Shortly afterwards the vessel capsized and sank.

Meanwhile, on being alerted to the unfolding drama, the MRCC through the sub-rescue centre in Saldanha mobilised a vessel nearest the incident, the Atlantic Leader, which successfully rescued the sunken fishing vessel’s 10 member crew who had already abandoned ship into life rafts.

The MRCC reported that a navigational warning had been promulgated warning other vessels sailing in the vicinity of the sunken vessel. SAMSA officials in Saldanha Bay were preparing to conduct an investigation into the incident.

It has subsequently been learned that the 10 crewmembers of the sunken fishing vessel have been taken by the Atlantic Leader and safely landed at Laaiplek Harbour.

Both Ankoveld and Atlantic Leader are owned by the firm of Eigelaar Group of Laaiplek. Ankoveld was built in 1969 by Louw & Halvorsen in Cape Town harbour and was named for the two sons of founder Mnr Johnnie Eigelaar – Andre and Kobus Eigelaar.

Atlantic Leader was built in 1971 also in Cape Town harbour but by Globe Engineering.

Source – SAMSA (news of sinking). Pictures: Jaco Louw of Trawler Heritage
Atlantic Leader, which rescued to crew from the sunken Ankoveld off Saldanha Bay on Saturday, 16 February 2019. Picture: Jaco Louw, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Atlantic Leader, which rescued the crew from the sunken Ankoveld off Saldanha Bay on Saturday, 16 February 2019. Picture: Jaco Louw



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Fire on the tawler TROPICAL I in Durban harbour, Thursday 14 February 2019, picture courtesy Rescue Care, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Picture: Rescue Care

The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) has launch an investigation into the background and cause of the deadly fire on a Mozambican trawler, TROPICAL I, on Thursday afternoon, in which six people have been confirmed to have died.

Five of the men who perished in the fire were from Mozambique, the sixth person was a Portuguese citizen. All were crew or working on the vessel which was undergoing a maintenance repair. Three of them died from burns and the other three from inhaling the intense smoke.

In addition to the deceased, who are understood to have been in the accommodation area when the fire started, a large number (initially reported as 80) received treatment for smoke inhalation.

It is widely speculated the the fire began as a result of welding taking place on the vessel, but this has not been confirmed.

SAMSA said today (Friday) that it was in the process of making formal contact with the Mozambican authorities to inform them officially about the incident. The Mozambicans have been briefed by telephone of the details.

The bodies of the six who died were recovered in the early hours of Friday morning once the fire had been put out and the ship sufficiently cooled down for rescue teams to go on board. There are a further 12 crew members in Durban who are being attended to and a SAMSA team was scheduled to meet with them earlier today.


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Poposed extensions and developments at Saldanha Bay, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Proposed extensions and developments at Saldanha Bay

The Western Cape Government has unlocked R1.8 billion in provincial and private sector infrastructure funding for the Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) since 2014/15.

Presenting her final State of the Province (SOPA) address in Cape Town today (Friday), Western Cape Premier Hellen Zille said there are currently eight confirmed major investors in the IDZ, with a total investment value of R3 billion.

“We were also instrumental in establishing the Atlantis Special Economic Zone for Greentech. It is projected to attract R3.7 billion in investment, create nearly 3,000 direct jobs by 2030… At local level, we’ve helped municipalities create 15-year infrastructure investment plans through our local government department.

“Wesgro, our world-class trade, tourism and investment promotion agency, has secured…[restrict] 299 investments since 2009, attracting R100 billion worth of foreign direct investment and creating over 19,000 jobs in our region,” Zille said.


In just three years, Zille said the provincial government has added over 750,000 international inbound seats to Cape Town and 13 new routes, generating jobs, tourism and investment.

“These expansions have injected an estimated R6 billion in tourist spend into our local economy. Tourism means jobs. Estimates based on the new Hong Kong route have shown that 1,000 jobs can be created for each new route added.

“We continue to add new tourism offerings such as cycle routes, a Mandela Legacy Route, and a new Archaeology and Paleontology route to show the world that humanity did indeed begin in southern Africa,” said Zille.

Energy and water

On electricity consumption, Zille noted that the provincial government is playing its part to reduce electricity consumption in its metered buildings by 24% since 2015.

Zille said the public buildings are now so energy efficient that monthly electricity usage is roughly half that of the private sector, with water consumption also down 20% over the same period.

She said during the worst of Eskom’s load-shedding five years ago, they recognised the essential need for greater energy security and a diversified energy mix.

While the generation and distribution of energy is not a mandate of provincial government, Zille said their Energy Security Game Changer project has focused on driving small scale embedded generation and rooftop solar PV in particular.

Liquefied Natural Gas

In addition, the provincial government undertook much of the groundwork needed for the importation of liquefied natural gas at Saldanha Bay, and enabled an increase in rooftop PV installations from 18 MW to more than 110 MW, mostly by businesses.

“We have assisted 22 municipalities to put in place the necessary systems to accept rooftop PV power into their grids and 18 of these municipalities have approved tariffs in place so consumers can be compensated for electricity they feed back into the grid.

“We have also led by example, having committed R43 million for 14 solar PV installations on provincial government buildings, which will have a projected annual saving of just over R4 million once completed,” Zille said. –[/restrict]


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Scene from Huletts sugar estates in KZN, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Scene from Huletts sugar estates in KZN

South Africa’s struggling sugar industry has come under scrutiny in Parliament, with the Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industry now engaging the industry to alleviate the plight of local sugarcane farmers.

In a statement issued on Thursday by committee chairperson Joanmariae Fubbs, the committee said challenges range from a lack of transformation and drought, to concerns around pricing, imports and the implications of the recent tax on sugary beverages.

“Many of these matters came to the fore when they were highlighted to the committee by the South African Development Farmers Association (Safda) in late 2017. The committee immediately prioritised the matter and…[restrict] went on an oversight visit to KwaZulu-Natal in January last year,” said Fubbs.

The committee in the statement lambasted the Democratic Alliance (DA) for issuing a media statement stating that it wrote to Fubbs requesting an urgent joint meeting with the committees of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and of Land Reform and Rural Development to discuss the imminent threat facing the sugar industry.

Fubbs said the committee has been engaging all industry role players since 2017 to understand the challenges this sector faces.

“All members of the committee were invited to attend, which provided valuable insight into the industry. However, both DA members that serve on the committee unfortunately did not attend.

“If they had, they would appreciate that this is a complex industry, which needs a long-term solution. Diversification might be a possible solution – bio-fuels and co-generation, as well. Some of these matters require legislative changes and the committee recognises this.”

The Department of Trade and Industry (dti) has commenced the legislative process to amend the Sugar Act, 1978 and its regulations.

“The office of the Speaker took cognisance of the committee’s oversight report and has received a response from the Minister indicating that engagements are ongoing with the relevant ministers about infrastructure requirements for roads and water, as well as on increased support for emerging black sugarcane farmers,” the statement read.

Access to water is especially important in light of the prolonged drought in KwaZulu-Natal. The committee has requested a status report on these inter-departmental aspects to ensure a holistic approach, said the committee.

“The committee has been fortunate that the Director-General of DTI has been closely involved in this process, but it required the political decision of the committee to expedite the process.”

As a result of the committee’s engagement and intervention, major initiatives have been implemented relating to transformation, which have led to the reconfiguration of the industry body, and to measures that have adjusted the Sugar Tariff upwards. This has brought significant relief to all farmers, and alleviated the plight of small-scale farmers. Consequently, the tariff adjustments saved at least 30,000 jobs.

“The committee should be commended for this progressive intervention within a very short space of time. Our continued engagements and monitoring of all stakeholders in the sector led to this milestone,” said Fubbs.

She assured the sector that the plight of poor farmers has not been ignored. At a recent imbizo hosted by Safda, various government departments pledged support for these farmers and if the DA had been in attendance, they would be better informed of the progress made thus far, Fubbs said.

“We are well aware that much more needs to be done by the committee and the department and we urge Mr Dean Macpherson, who serves on the committee, to appreciate the work that has already been done as well as the time constraints we face and assure him that we will highlight this as a priority to our next Parliament.”

The committee will be dealing with issues relating to the sugar industry in its legacy report so that the next Parliament can continue to deal with the issues that were highlighted.

South Africa’s sugar cane production is set to increase by 11 percent year-on-year to 19.3 million tonnes in the 2018/19 season, according to a report in AgriNews Farming Portal.[/restrict]


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Thursday 14 February 2019, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS. Picture: Rescue Care
Picture: Rescue Care

Three people are missing,* feared dead from a fire that broke out on a fishing trawler at Durban’s Ship Repair Jetty No.2 this afternoon (Thursday, 14 February 2019).

* It has since been confirmed that six people died as a result of the fire on the fishing trawler yesterday LATEST

The name of the vessel appears to be TROPICAL I, not one of the Krustamaroc trawlers as suggested in our Newsletter of earlier today. Her number is as stated below, 402 C05.

A large number of people, thought to be between 70 and 80, were treated on the quayside for smoke inhalation.

According to acting port manager Nokuzola Nkolwane, emergency services rushed to the scene to attend to the fire.

The fire did not spread to other vessels sharing the quay which is used for lay-by and for repair purposes.

The trawler is believed to be one of the Mozambique prawn trawlers that spends the summer off-season months in Durban each year – vessel No. 402 C05.

Durban harbour has had its share of drama this week. On Tuesday morning the driver of a large truck inadvertently reversed his lorry into the harbour while loading cargo at M-Shed.

The deceased’s body, identified as Mr Sifiso Dladla, was later recovered from the wreckage of the truck’s cab at a depth of about 12 metres. A large crane was employed to pull the vehicle from the bay after police divers secured heavy duty rigging to the truck.

An inquest docket has been opened.

Picture: SA Police Services via Twitter
Picture: SA Police Services via Twitter



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Our photograph shows, left to right: Jason Rhee, Senior Engineer and OMC UKCM Support Manager, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack, OMC International CEO Peter O’Brien and Executive Director Dr Terry O’Brien, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Our photograph shows, left to right: Jason Rhee, Senior Engineer and OMC UKCM Support Manager, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack, OMC International CEO Peter O’Brien and Executive Director Dr Terry O’Brien

Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack has welcomed the opportunity to learn more about another great Australian business success story, OMC International, with its award-winning e-Navigation technology designed to improve transits for large commercial ships.

McCormack visited the Australian-owned maritime engineering company’s Melbourne HQ and was shown in detail how its innovative navigation software technology is helping to ship more cargo, more safely, more often.

“OMC International is an impressive, family-owned maritime business being used by ports and waterways serving the world’s largest mining, oil, gas and grain companies,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.

He continued: “It was fantastic to meet with Executive Director and Founder Dr Terry O’Brien, his wife and company director Pauline O’Brien and their son and CEO Peter O’Brien.

“OMC’s advanced under keel management system monitors the under keel clearance of ships in real time which means they can sail up to one metre deeper allowing them to carry significantly more cargo while maintaining the highest safety standards.

“This impressive technology improves port efficiency and brings huge economic benefits. For example, at ports throughout the Pilbara in Western Australia, the technology has allowed miners including BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and FMG to ship out $5 billion in extra iron ore revenue each year.”

Executive Director and Founder Dr O’Brien said it was a great honour for OMC to host the Deputy Prime Minister at its head office.

He reflected: “As maritime safety policy falls within his portfolio, it was an excellent opportunity to provide a live demonstration of the Torres Straits UKCM system. In doing so, our team was able to demonstrate to Mr McCormack the collaborative and successful journey AMSA and OMC have been on and how this has significantly enhanced both the safety and productivity of shipping through this sensitive area.”

Edited by Paul Ridgway


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The Department of Trade and Industry (dti) is expected to reach a roll-over agreement with the United Kingdom post Brexit.

Brexit logo, featuring with Africa PORTS & SHIPS

The department briefed Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industry on Wednesday on developments made by its negotiating team regarding preferential trade arrangements after the British exit (Brexit) from the European Union (EU).

Brexit is expected to occur on 29 March, while the negotiating team expects to reach the agreement by 21 February.

Committee chairperson Joan Fubbs commended the department and…[restrict] other government departments for the work they are doing in ensuring a “form of continuity in arrangements after Brexit”.

The Chief Director for Trade Negotiation, International Trade and Economic Development Division at the dti, Niki Kruger, explained the intricacies of the agreement.

“It is only once the UK leaves the EU without an agreement that the UK can draw up its own agreements with other countries. The impact of them not reaching an agreement with the EU before Brexit is difficult to quantify now,” said Kruger.

Fubbs said all should be done to ensure more positive agreements for South Africa and all African countries in the future.

The committee heard that a final agreement will be signed by the end of the first week of March.
In addition, the committee heard that no agreement has been reached between the UK and the EU about the UK’s continued use of existing EU trade agreements.

The UK is currently South Africa’s second biggest trading partner in the EU, despite South Africa having a negative trade balance with the EU.

South Africa has a positive trade balance with the UK and this has increased significantly over the last few years.

The South African and UK trade balance is currently at about US$1.5 billion in South Africa’s favour. The UK currently receives about 40% of all fresh food products or agricultural products exported from South Africa to the EU. –[/restrict]


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Port statistics for the month of January 2019, covering the eight commercial ports under the administration of Transnet National Ports Authority, are now available.

The port with the highest turnover throughput in terms of tonnages handled in January was….. Saldanha Bay. This is the first time in recollection that Saldanha has been top in the rankings so well done to all concerned. For the record Saldanha handled a total of 9.381 million tonnes of cargo, consisting almost exclusively of dry bulk exports.

Not too far behind was the port that usually occupies top position in such terms, Richards Bay, with a total cargo handled of 8.341 million tonnes, followed by Durban with 6.645 million tonnes. The Durban cargo was made from 2.9mt of liquid bulk (mainly petroleum products) and a similar volume of containers, with dry bulk and breakbulk covering the rest.

Details of the port throughputs, ships berthed and containers numbers handled are in the Tables below.[restrict]

Total cargo handled for the month of January amounted to 27.598 million tonnes.

For comparison with the port turnover of the equivalent month of last year, October 2017 please CLICK HERE

These statistic reports on Africa PORTS & SHIPS are arrived at using an adjustment on the overall tonnage compared to those kindly provided by TNPA and include containers recorded by weight; an adjustment necessary because TNPA measures containers by the number of TEUs and does not reflect the weight which unfortunately undervalues the ports.

To arrive at such a calculation,  Africa PORTS & SHIPS uses an average of 13.5 tonnes per TEU, which probably does involve some under-reporting.  Africa PORTS & SHIPS  will continue to emphasise this distinction, without which South African ports would be seriously under-reported internationally and locally.

Port Elizabeth harbour scene, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Port Elizabeth harbour scene

Port Statistics continue below

Figures for the respective ports during January 2019 are:

Cargo handled by tonnes during January 2019, including containers by weight

PORT January 2019 million tonnes
Richards Bay 8.341
Durban 6.645
Saldanha Bay 9.381
Cape Town 1.263
Port Elizabeth 0.879
Ngqura 0.945
Mossel Bay 0.062
East London 0.081
Total all ports 27.598 million tonnes

CONTAINERS (measured by TEUs) during January 2019
(TEUs include Deepsea, Coastal, Transship and empty containers all subject to being invoiced by NPA

PORT January 2019 TEUs
Durban 214,291
Cape Town 69,955
Port Elizabeth 5,316
Ngqura 56,832
East London 1,258
Richards Bay 0,990
Total all ports 348,642 TEU

SHIP CALLS for January 2018

PORT January 2019 vessels gross tons
Durban 248 9,966,834
Cape Town 162 4,019,492
Richards Bay 159 5,668,639
Port Elizabeth 59 2,036,994
Saldanha Bay 54 4,931,944
Ngqura 54 3,194,685
East London 21 716,053
Mossel Bay 32 252,962
Total ship calls 786 30,787,603
— source TNPA, with adjustments regarding container weights by AP&S[/restrict]


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Map of Lamu archipelago courtesy Lamu Holiday Homes, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Map of Lamu archipelago courtesy Lamu Holiday Homes

As elements of the new Lamu port in Kenya move forward (see below) the government has commissioned the reconstruction and rehabilitation of Phase 1 involving two jetties in Lamu County.

The two jetties concerned are the Mokowe Customs Jetty in Lamu West on which approximately US$ 6 million is being invested and another, the Mtangawanda Jetty in Lamu East costing $720,000.

Phase 2 will see construction of the Manda Airport Jetty and…[restrict] the Lamu Mangrove Terminal Jetty in Lamu East. Awarding of contracts for this phase is expected to be announced in about two months’ time.

Lamu scene, picture by Jimmy Kamude/IRIN, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Lamu scene, picture by Jimmy Kamude/IRIN

The Kenya Government has come under some strong criticism for its slow approach to rebuilding and equipping the Lamu jetties which have suffered from lack of maintenance and general care.

A joint venture of the Appallan Marine and General Contractors Company Limited working together with Benris Investments Limited will do the restoration work on the Mokowe jetty, while the Mtangawanda Jetty is to be repaired by Aven Premier International.

According to Stephen Ikua, Secretary of Administration in the State Department of Public Works, who officially launched the project on Monday, the Mokowe Jetty is expected to be completed in two and a half years. Mokowe is the largest of the Lamu jetties and is the main link between Lamu mainland and the archipelago,

Lamu: First ship to dock

Site of the new Lamu port before construction, feasturedd in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Site of the new Lamu port before construction commenced

Meanwhile it has been announced that the first ship to berth at the new deepwater Lamu Port will do so this November.

The first berth of three currently planned and under construction at the Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport (Lapsset) Corridor project will be completed by the end of June 2019. The other two berths will be completed next year.

Ultimately Lamu Port will have 32 berths and will have modern road and rail connectivity to South Sudan, Ethiopia, Uganda, the eastern DRC, and Kenya’s hinterland.[/restrict]

Long term Great Equatorial Land Bridge, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Long term LAPSSET Great Equatorial Land Bridge


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Design study of Sea Cloud Spirit. Source: Acubens, featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
Design study of Sea Cloud Spirit. Source: Acubens

​DNV GL has been awarded a contract for the classification of the passenger sailing ship SEA CLOUD SPIRIT, built by Metalships & Docks in Vigo, Spain.

Representatives from both companies came together in Vigo, Spain this week to sign the agreement. Ordered by the Hamburg-based operator Sea Cloud Cruises, the vessel is designed to meet the increasing demand from both independent travellers and the charter market, mainly in the Caribbean and the Mediterranean.

“Sea Cloud Spirit will offer a new level of comfort to sailing cruise passengers. In addition to beautiful views from private balconies, it will have the first elevator ever to be installed on a large sailing ship that will connect its five different decks. DNV GL has unrivalled competence in the passenger ship sector, and both our companies have a long history of working together, so the selection of class was a natural choice,” says Alberto Iglesias, Managing Director at Metalships & Docks.

“We are very pleased that Metalships & Docks has chosen DNV GL as the preferred classification partner for this high-end sailing ship. The yard specialises in the construction of technically sophisticated ships, and we look forward to continuing our close collaboration on this exciting project,” says Torgeir Sterri, Regional Manager West Europe at DNV GL – Maritime.

“Sea Cloud Spirit will become the third addition to our fleet of luxury sailing vessels. She will offer a unique combination of luxury accommodation, technologically advanced amenities and traditional sailing, and we look forward to welcoming our first guests on board in 2020,” says Daniel Schäfer, Managing Director of Sea Cloud Cruises GmbH.

“Knowing that both DNV GL and Metalships & Docks are working on this project, gives us confidence that it will be an outstanding vessel, delivered on time with the highest level of quality and safety,” he said.

Measuring 138 metres, Sea Cloud Spirit will be equipped with 69 outside cabins, 25 of which will have a private balcony. The vessel is a full three-masted sailing ship, able to carry up to 136 passengers on luxury cruises, with 85 crew members on board. The planning firm Partner Ship Design from Hamburg will be responsible for the design of the ship’s interior. Sea Cloud Spirit is scheduled to set sail in the summer of 2020.

Length overall: 138m
Width: 17.20m
Draught: 5.65m
Air draught: 57.70m
Sail surface overall: 4,000m²
No. of sails: 27
Propulsion: Sails + diesel-electric engines (2 x 1,700 KW)

(Left to right): Alberto Iglesias, Managing Director at Metalships & Docks, Jorge Dahl, Business Development Manager Iberia at DNV GL, and Vicente Santiago, Commercial Manager at Metalships & Docks (Source: DNV GL), featured in Africa PORTS & SHIPS
(Left to right): Alberto Iglesias, Managing Director at Metalships & Docks, Jorge Dahl, Business Development Manager Iberia at DNV GL, and Vicente Santiago, Commercial Manager at Metalships & Docks (Source: DNV GL)



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Port Louis – Indian Ocean gateway port

Ports & Ships publishes regularly updated SHIP MOVEMENT reports including ETAs for ports extending from West Africa to South Africa to East Africa and including Port Louis in Mauritius.

In the case of South Africa’s container ports of Durban, Ngqura, Ports Elizabeth and Cape Town links to container Stack Dates are also available.

You can access this information, including the list of ports covered, by going HERE remember to use your BACKSPACE to return to this page.


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QM2 in Cape Town. Picture by Ian Shiffman

We publish news about the cruise industry here in the general news section.


Naval News

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