Hot Port News from GAC

Earthquakes, Tsunamis, Cyclones and Typhoons, Piracy and Terrorism, Port Conditions, Ports & Terminals — By on July 8, 2019 at 7:18 PM

Hot Port news from GAC

08-Jul-2019

TSUNAMI WARNING LIFTED
Sulawesi, Indonesia

WEST AFRICA WORST FOR PIRATE ATTACKS, IMB REPORTS
Worldwide

PROPOSAL TO MODIFY TOLLS STRUCTURE
Panama Canal, Panama

Tsunami warning lifted
Monday, July 8, 2019, Sulawesi, Indonesia

The tsunami warning issued after a 6.9 magnitude earthquake off the northeastern coast of Sulawesi last night (Sunday 7 July) has been lifted. Life is returning to normal today with offices and schools opening as usual.

The quake’s epicentre was out at sea at a depth of 36km. Tremors shook buildings and some residents were urged to move to higher ground. Despite several smaller aftershocks, there are no reports of serious damage or casualties.

For information about operations at Indonesian ports contact PT Andhika GAC Indonesia at shipping.indonesia@gac.com

West Africa worst for pirate attacks, IMB reports
Monday, July 8, 2019, Worldwide

The seas around West Africa remain the world’s most dangerous for piracy, the International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) latest report reveals. Of the 75 seafarers taken hostage onboard or kidnapped for ransom worldwide so far this year, 62 were captured in the Gulf of Guinea – off the coasts of Nigeria, Guinea, Togo, Benin and Cameroon.

Worldwide, the IMB Piracy Reporting Centre (IMB PRC) recorded 78 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships in the first half of 2019, compared with 107 incidents for the same period of 2018. Overall, 57 vessels were boarded successfully, representing 73% of all attacks. Pirates killed one person, took 38 crewmembers hostage, and kidnapped a further 37 for ransom.

The IMB report reveals 73% of all kidnappings at sea, and 92% of hostage-takings, took place in the Gulf of Guinea. Armed pirates in these high-risk waters kidnapped 27 crewmembers in the first half of 2019, and 25 in the same period in 2018. Two chemical tankers were hijacked, as well as a tug that was then used in another attack. Of the nine vessels fired upon worldwide, eight were off the coast of Nigeria, Africa’s top oil producer. These attacks took place on average 65 nautical miles off the coast – meaning they are classified as acts of piracy.

But there are some encouraging signs of improvement. IMB PRC reports “a welcome and marked decrease” in attacks in the Gulf of Guinea for the second quarter of 2019, commending the Nigerian navy for actively responding to reported incidents by dispatching patrol boats. While recognizing that many attacks go unreported, IMB recorded 21 incidents around Nigeria so far in 2019, down from 31 in the same period of 2018.

Naval vessels from Equatorial Guinea and Spain also intervened in May 2019 when a Nigerian tug was hijacked 41 nautical miles off Luba, Equatorial Guinea. Soon after, the pirates used the tug to launch an attack on a Maltese heavy load carrier. The crew retreated into the ship’s citadel, a safe room for protection against attackers. When the navies responded, the pirates left the vessel and the crew were freed.

Despite the recent fall in Gulf of Guinea attacks, IMB is urging seafarers in the region to remain vigilant and report all suspicious activity to regional response centres and the IMB PRC…

…Meanwhile, in Malaysia, ten crew were kidnapped from two fishing boats off eastern Sabah in June. Of these, nine crew are reported to have been released.

Around Indonesia, ongoing information-sharing cooperation between the Indonesian Marine Police and the IMB PRC continues to show positive results. The 11 incidents reported in Indonesian waters remains the lowest Q2 figure since 2009 when three incidents were reported.

A vessel was fired upon in the Guayas River after departing from Guayaquil, Ecuador’s second largest city. This is the first time an incident involving the firing of weapons has been reported to the IMB PRC in Ecuador. Elsewhere in South America, incidents of violent armed theft against ships at anchor have been reported in Callao in Peru, Jose Terminal in Venezuela and Macapa in Brazil. On 2 May 2019, when armed robbers boarded a yacht in San Ignacio de Tupile, Panama, shooting and killing a family member and injuring another, the IMB PRC liaised with the victims and authorities. The surviving family members including two children were rescued by Panamanian Marine Police…

(For information about operations worldwide contact the respective GAC office. Details may be found at www.gac.com)

Source: Extracts from International Maritime Bureau (www.icc-ccs.org) update dated 8 July 2019

Proposal to modify tolls structure
Monday, July 8, 2019, Panama Canal, Panama

On June 14, 2019 the Panama Canal published a proposal to modify its current tolls structure for the dry bulk, passenger, containership, vehicle carrier, and RoRo segments, as well as tankers, chemical tankers, LPG and LNG vessels, the intra-maritime cluster (local tourism segment) and minimum tolls (small vessels).

Today’s announcement marks the beginning of a 30-day formal consultation period for industry feedback, which will close on July 15, 2019…

…For the dry bulk segment, the proposal offers matching the tolls charged to Neopanamax vessels carrying iron ore with the tolls assessed for grains and “other dry bulk” cargoes, as well as a tariff increase for Neopanamax dry bulkers transiting in ballast.

The proposal also aims to add transparency to the tolls structure for the passenger segment by charging based on the maximum passenger capacity that can be carried by each specific passenger vessel. To that end, the Canal is proposing to change the unit of measurement from a “per berth” to a “per passenger” basis, making it easier for cruise lines to transfer transit costs to their customers.

For the containership segment, the main user of the Neopanamax Locks, the proposed toll modifications will help retain and incentivize increased cargo volumes through the Panama Canal. Specifically, the proposal offers more attractive rates for customers who benefit from the Panama Canal Loyalty Program by adding new levels with reduced rates in the capacity charge for shipping lines deploying between 2 to 3 million TEUs, and additional reductions for lines deploying an incremental over 3 million TEUs. The incentive implemented in the last toll modification in fiscal year 2018 for total TEU loaded in the return voyage (TTLR) will remain in effect.

To add further transparency to the toll structure for the vehicle carrier and RoRo segment, the proposed modifications include, for the first time, a new tariff category or range precisely designed for Neopanamax vessels to account for vessels sizes and capacity. Additional modifications for this segment include slight increments in toll tariffs for Panamax-sized vessels, as well as minor adjustments based on vessel size ranges.

Toll structures for tankers, chemical tankers, LPG and LNG vessels remain unchanged, but toll adjustments are proposed to more closely align them with the value of the route.

Tolls for small vessels, minimum tolls and for the local tourism market are being revised upwards to take into account the resources used during the transit and the complexity of accommodating these vessels within the locks’ chambers. The last tariff adjustment for small vessels was implemented in 2012.

Lastly, and based on comments submitted by clients during the 2017 public consultation and hearing process, the Canal proposes to review the rates charged to vessels carrying containers on deck, which do not belong to the container shipping segment, to allow for differentiated charges for containers that are empty, dry or refrigerated.

The complete proposal is available at www.pancanal.com/peajes. All interested parties are invited to participate in the consultation process, as well as the public hearing to be held in Panama City, Panama, on July 24, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. (local time). In accordance with established rules, the Panama Canal will consider all correspondence received by 4:15 p.m. (local time) on July 15, 2019, as well as comments and opinions presented during the public hearing.

After a careful evaluation and analysis of the comments received, and once any pertinent changes are incorporated in the proposal, the Cabinet Council of the Republic of Panama will officially approve the modifications. The date for implementation of the modifications to the tolls structure is planned for January 1, 2020.

(For information about operations in the Panama Canal, contact GAC Panama at operations.panama@gac.com)

Extract from Panama Canal Authority (www.pancanal.com) Monthly Canal Operations Summary – June 2019 – dated 5 July 2019

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