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GENEVA: November 15, 2018. A.P. Moller – Maersk, CMA CGM, Hapag-Lloyd, MSC and Ocean Network Express are to launch an association by early 2019 to create common IT standards for all stakeholders in the container shipping industry.

The five companies say they have identified a need for a neutral and non-profit body for ocean carriers driven by delivering benefits for the industry and its stakeholders.

MSC “It’s in the customers' and all stakeholders’ best interest if container shipping companies operate with a common set of information technology standards”, said André Simha, CIO of MSC and group spokesperson.

“The timing is right as emerging technologies create new customer-friendly opportunities. Together, we gain traction in delivering technological breakthroughs and services to our customers compared to working in our own closed silos”, he added.

“Hapag-Lloyd welcomes the creation of this association as we firmly believe that the challenges of the future can only be tackled with a common approach,” commented Martin Gnass, managing director Information Technology, Hapag-Lloyd.

Welcoming additional members “with open arms”, Simha said the five ocean carriers have no intention to develop or operate any digital platform and won’t discuss any commercial or operational matters.

Noriaki Yamaga, Ocean Network Express managing director of Corporate & Innovation said collaborating in IT development provided a “good opportunity” to establish common standards and governance for the industry. “In the end we believe this style of collaboration can bring value and opportunity to our customers as well as logistics companies, leading shipping and logistics industry to [a] new ecosystem of digital supply chain.”

SHANGHAI: November 06, 2018. Nine leading ocean carriers and terminal operators are to form a consortium to develop the Global Shipping Business Network (GSBN), an open digital platform based on blockchain technology.

They include ocean carriers CMA CGM, COSCO SHIPPING Lines, Evergreen Marine, OOCL, and Yang Ming; terminal operators DP World, Hutchison Ports, PSA International Pte Ltd, and Shanghai International Port; and software solutions provider CargoSmart.

The new platform will establish a digital baseline that aims to connect all stakeholders, including carriers, terminal operators, customs agencies, shippers, and logistics service providers to enable collaborative innovation and digital transformation in the supply chain.

“The GSBN blockchain consortium has the potential to enable faster, morCargosmart Blockchaine accurate processing of cargo information and more transparency of terminal operations to cargo owners,” said Yan Jun, president of Shanghai International Port. “We look forward to using the latest technologies for optimizing shipping processes and collaboration.”

Based on blockchain technology, the new platform will offer the following benefits: A cooperative network that enables members to develop applications and connect to other consortium networks to increase the speed of data integration and improve business performance; peer-to-peer networking that allows data owners to share immutable records to other shipment stakeholders, enabling them to take quick action regarding critical milestones and to keep cargo moving throughout the supply chain; and an industry-wide common, trusted, and expansive digital model to provide a foundation for highly collaborative initiatives and market intelligence.

CargoSmart initiated the formation of the blockchain consortium to revolutionize information exchange in the shipping industry. The first planned application will allow shippers to digitize and organize their dangerous goods documents and automatically connect with relevant parties to streamline the approval process from December 2018.

“With the vision of a truly open blockchain platform for the industry, the GSBN will be key to the success of establishing a sustainable blockchain ecosystem for all stakeholders in the supply chain. OOCL is very excited to be a part of this highly collaborative environment that can facilitate the cross-pollination of ideas towards even more innovative business models and solutions for our customers,” said Andy Tung, Co-CEO of Orient Overseas Container Line.

Pictured at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai on November 06: Rodolphe Saadé, chairman and CEO CMA CGM; Wang Haimin, managing director COSCO SHIPPING Lines; Matthew Leech, Chief Operating Officer Port and Terminals, DP World; Lawrence Lee, president Evergreen Marine Corporation; Ivor Chow, director Corporate Finance & Business Development Hutchison Ports; Andy Tung, Co-CEO Orient Overseas Container Line; Tan Chong Meng, Group CEO, PSA International; Yan Jun, president Shanghai International Port; Bronson Hsieh, chairman Yang Ming Marine Transport Corporation; and Steve Siu, CEO CargoSmart Ltd.

HAMBURG: October 30, 2018. Speaking at the annual Association of Bulk Terminal Operators conference, Frank Grone, director of brokerage company Frachtcontor said that while the ocean bulk carrier market is improving, the scrapping of 60 million deadweight tonnage in 2015 and 2016 had left owners with “a complete wipe out” of their invested capital.

He said the current recovery was due to a four percent rise in demand last year followed by an expected three percent this year, coupled with port congestion and slow -steaming that had kept tonnage off the market.

Dry Bulk CarrierIron ore remains a major market driver with an expected two percent increase this year as suppliers in Brazil and Australia expand production, while China and India coal imports should rise seven and six percent respectively.

China, India, Japan and Korea import 900 million tons of coal annually – compared to Britain and Germany that import 110 million. “The music,” said Grone, is “clearly being played in the Pacific Rim”.

Noting Germany now gets 36 percent of its energy from renewables, he suggested the move by Australian coal port Newcastle to build an ultra large container facility might be a straw in the wind for European bulk counterparts.

Grone also warned conference delegates that the implementation of a global sulphur cap due to come into force in 2020 will mean 66 percent of all fuel burned will have to be switched to comply with the IMO rules.

He said owners of an estimated 60,000 vessels face the option of continuing to burn high sulphur fuels and risk fines, port detentions or trade bans; install “expensive” scrubbing technology; or switch to gasoil and find a way to pass the cost on to ship charterers.

MARSEILLE/BASEL: October 20, 2018. As CMA CGM increased its stake in Ceva Logistics to 33 percent this week, the French box carrier also signed an agreement on sustainability with Panalpina.

CMA CGM Jules VerneThe two companies have committed to collaborate, innovate and improve in four key areas: the environment, ethics and compliance, social responsibility, and community. Specifically, occupational health and safety programmes, local sourcing, plus humanitarian aid relief and support.

CMA CGM's environmental approach includes the order of nine LNG-powered Ultra Large Container Vessels with a capacity of 22,000 TEUs for delivery in 2020.

“Compared to current fuel-powered vessels, our new LNG vessels will enable a reduction of up to 25 percent in CO2. They will also generate 99 percent less sulphur emissions, 99 percent less fine particles and 85 percent less nitrogen oxides emissions,” said Julien Topenot, head of environment and sustainability at CMA CGM.

In 2017 Panalpina transported 1.5 million TEUs as CMA CGM carried 19 million.

“Partnering with strategic partners such as CMA CGM that are technology driven and share a similar vision of sustainability, and using them to transport our customers’ cargo will help us achieve our ambitious sustainability goals,” added Lindsay Zingg, Panalpina’s global head of Quality, Health, Safety and Environment.

SINGAPORE: August 24, 2018. Heavy lift and project cargo carrier AAL is adding a second MPV vessel to establish a monthly service on its North & South East Asia to West Coast Australia Liner Service (AUWC).

AAL FremantleNext month the company will introduce a second S-Class vessel (19,000 DWT and featuring a combined maximum lifting capacity of 700 tonnes) on the route.

According to AAL the move is due to a 16 percent rise in Western Australia’s US$109 billion mineral and petroleum industry prompted by rising commodity prices, stronger than expected export demand and growing local production.

“The Australian economy and fortunes of many of our local customers are benefiting from a global recovery that began in 2017 [as a result of] increased spending in Asia, reviving commodity prices, strong steel exports to the US (worth roughly US$210 million a year) and low interest rates around the world,” explained AAL general manager Frank Mueller.

AAL has been in the market since 2006 and says it is the only MPV liner service between North Asia and the Australian West Coast offering regular sailings from Shanghai, Pusan and Kaohsiung to Fremantle as well as Port Headland.

Liner Services managing director Christophe Grammare added: ‘We are particularly delighted to be expanding the AUWC service, as Western Australian has taken its share of economic hits in the past few years. Unlike other carriers, who cancelled services during the tough times and left local shippers with few options, AAL has not wavered in its support of the region.”

ANTWERP: October 01, 2018. Samskip is to begin a twice-weekly container service on October 12 linking the ATO terminal in Antwerp and Associated British Port’s Hull with a 508 TEU capacity vessel.

The new operation adds to the company’s existing shortsea services connecting Rotterdam with Tilbury, Hull and Grangemouth (eight per week) and the three times weekly Amsterdam-Hull service.

September 2017 68Samskip UK & Eire Regional director Richard Beales said: “Manufacturers and logistics providers have a new efficient choice that offers an optimal routing, reduces their exposure to increasing road congestion and driver shortages, is cost effective and reduces CO2 in the supply chain.

“With the current Brexit uncertainty we believe that our spread of dedicated short sea services can offer robust options for companies wanting to prepare by de-risking their supply chain,” he added.

ATO is a certified Antwerp terminal operator (right) specialising in barge/truck transhipments including five times per week to both Antwerp’s deep-sea container terminals via the Scheldt and - via the Albert Canal – to and from the LCT Liège Container Terminal.

ATO managing director Johan Gemels noted: “Attracting a major multimodal operator such as Samskip very much aligns with the growth plans of ATO and fits perfectly with our services of handling ships, barges, trucks and trains.”

The UK is Antwerp’s third largest maritime trading partner, contributing around 15 million tonnes of freight every year.


Recently the port gave a preview of what the breakbulk sector can expect over the coming year with an evening of networking and entertainment for 400 industry executives, including an opera performance on the water and a sound and light show.

“The industry recognises that Antwerp has long been the home of the breakbreak sector,” commented Nicholas Powell, organiser of the upcoming Antwerp XL exhibition from May 07-09 next year. “Within the first few weeks we have already secured a large number of exhibitors and now it’s important that we are listening to what the breakbulk community is saying and providing a solution to their needs,” he added.

Antwerp XL is managed by Brussels-based Easyfairs, an exhibitions specialist for the oil & gas, cargo, maritime and logistics industries. More information: visit www.antwerpxl.com or event manager This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

HAMBURG: August 09, 2018. Arkon Allied Container (AAC), a group of feeder vessel owners and charterers who have formed AAC to jointly market their vessels and reduce costs, is now open for business following a successful antitrust audit.

Founded by Arkon Shipping, AAC shareholders also include Jüngerhans, Wessels, HS Schiffahrt, Nordic and Jebsen plus charter specialists Ole Gabs and Wolfgang Klodwig who say they are open to adding more shareholders to AAC if they have the right vessels.

Arkon Shipping“During times of general consolidation in the shipping world, Industry 4.0, increasing digitalisation and the endemic paradigm shift, where shipping is once again becoming part of an industrial supply chain, the formation of industrial partnerships makes sense and is a beneficial step,” commented Torsten Westphal, Arkon managing partner and a managing director of AAC.

In March last year the Rhenus Group acquired 40 percent of Arkon Shipping that manages a fleet of 120 vessels and specialises in European coastal and container feeder services plus global heavylift and project shipping.

“European short-sea shipping is part of the range of services provided by Rhenus. We’ve been able to gain a partner in the shape of Arkon to significantly expand this service and make it more flexible,” explained Thomas Maassen, a member of the Rhenus Port Logistics management team.

“Arkon’s experience in forming shipping pools has made the company one of the market leaders in European short-sea shipping. We want to jointly consolidate this position,” he added.

AAC members broker Torsten Westphal and shipowners Herm and Stefan Jüngerhans and Gerd Wessels are also shareholders in Arkon.

COPENHAGEN: September 19, 2018. A.P. Moller - Maersk is to combine its Damco supply chain services and Maersk Line's ocean product in a bid become a global, integrated container transport and logistics company.

The new organisation will operate with one management team and sales force headed by Vincent Clerc, Maersk chief commercial officer. Damco's freight forwarding operation will continue to run as a separate and independent business with current COO Saskia Groen In't Woud CEO of the new entity called Damco Freight Forwarding.

"Today we are taking further steps in the transformation of our business on a structural level and how we go to market, enabling us to offer more solutions to our customers in a simpler way,” declared Søren Skou, CEO of A.P. Moller – Maersk.

Maersk RotterdamSkou also announced that three of A.P. Moller - Maersk's regional carrier brands, MCC Transport, Sealand and Seago Line, will be known as ‘SeaLand - A Maersk Company’ from October 01.

"This integration marks a big milestone on Maersk's current growth journey towards operating as one integrated company. We are in a strong position to deliver solutions that meet our customers end-to-end supply chain management needs,” he added.

In a separate move Maersk Line has announced it will apply a Bunker Adjustment Factor (BAF) surcharge from January 2019. The shipping company says this is to compensate for the increased costs associated with a global sulphur cap of 0.5 percent adopted by the International Maritime Organisation that enters into force the following year.

Maersk says the cost of its compliance will be US$2 billion and the BAF will replace a current Standard Bunker Adjustment Factor surcharge. “The new BAF is a simple, fair and predictable mechanism that ensures clarity for our customers in planning their supply chains for this significant shift," claimed Clerc.

The British International Freight Association (BIFA), the trade association for UK freight forwarding and logistics companies, has described Maersk’s move as “unjustified and blatant profiteering”. Director general Robert Keen commented: “BIFA members are now faced with the task of explaining yet another surcharge to their customers, and what the rationale behind it is. The sulphur surcharge is bound to be extremely unpopular.”

Last month A.P. Moller - Maersk and Royal Vopak announced they would set up a 0.5 percent sulphur content bunker facility at Rotterdam to cater for 20 percent of Maersk Line’s global requirements. “We trust that this initiative will put to rest some of the concerns the industry has on fuel availability as well as secure our continued competitiveness in the market,” commented Niels Henrik Lindegaard, head of Maersk Oil Trading.

PHILADELPHIA, July 2, 2018: Matson named the largest containership ever built in the United States at the Philly Shipyard last weekend.

MATSON NamingThe 3,600 TEU containership Daniel K. Inouye, in honor of Hawaii's late senior US Senator, is the first of two new ships being built for Honolulu-based Matson by Philly Shipyard for a total of US$418 million, and is the first of four new vessels the Pacific trades specialist will put into its Hawaii service during the next two years.

"This is a proud day for all of us at Matson," said Matt Cox, company chairman and CEO. "Over our first 136 years, Matson's fleet has evolved from sailing ships to larger steamers to diesel power, consistent with changes in technology and always evolving in step with the needs of a growing Hawaii economy.

"This new vessel, designed specifically to serve Hawaii and built with LNG-compatible engines, is the next generation of vessel and sets a new standard for cargo transportation in Hawaii. It also symbolizes Matson's continuing commitment to serving our Island home in the most efficient, effective and environmentally sound way into the future," he added.

Matson invited Irene Hirano Inouye, Sen. Inouye's wife, to officially name the vessel by breaking a bottle of champagne against its hull.

At 51,400 tonnes, the 850-foot long containership is Matson's largest vessel and will enter service in September this year.

LJUBLJANA, Slovenia: August 27, 2018. CargoX, a provider of blockchain-based Bills of Lading (‘Smart B/L’), says it has successfully tested the delivery of an ocean container discharging at the Port of Koper, Slovenia.

Last month the company announced a partnership with Fracht AG to use its Smart B/L that allows shippers to issue and transfer original B/L documents on the Ethereum blockchain network.

Evergreen Ever Ready“One of the very best uses (for blockchain), if not the best, is the use for Bill of Lading,” said Fracht CEO Ruedi Reisdorf. “We teamed up with, in our opinion, the best start-up to bring blockchain to shipping and Bill of Lading.”

The 20ft. container of garments was shipped from Shanghai on the Evergreen containership Ever Ready on behalf of Hangzhou Doko Garments, one of 1,000-plus manufacturing plants in the Hangzhou region, and imported into the EU by Metro d.d. for its network of 200 MANA clothing stores.

"We are extremely happy to be able to confirm that all went well with the new blockchain-based electronic Bill of Lading,” said Metro d.d. Logistics manager Miloš Košir. “We import hundreds of TEU from the Far East, and we are always trying hard to optimize our supply chain. If it raises the safety and reliability of the document transfer, that is an added value for us as well!"

According to CargoX, the blockchain-based B/L costs US$15, “approximately 15 percent of the estimated usual price for a paper document to be transferred through courier services across the globe”.

Hangzhou Doko Garments CEO Mr. Lin said his company was happy to be part of the test shipment: “The new process was really easy and swift to implement and the possibility to oversee where the B/L currently is, and always have the archive accessible, are advantages that we really think could bring a great benefit to us,” he added.

CargoX, founder and CEO Stefan Kukman said his company’s approach was not to solve all the shipping industry’s problems but to start by focusing on the B/L that will now be available to all potential users.

SHANGHAI: June 2, 2018. Evergreen is adding capacity to its East Africa Service (AEF) with three direct calls from ports in Central and southern China to Mombasa to support increased Chinese investment in East Africa.

Evergreen Line and COSCO are adding one vessel each to five 4,200 TEU vessels currently deployed by the two carriers plus X-Press Feeders on a seven-week service rotation that also includes Singapore, Port Klang (West) and Colombo.

A 2017 report by Ernst and Young predicts that Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia will all grow at an annual rate of more than 6.0 percent for the next 10 years.

MombasaA similar report by McKinsey last year says Africa–China trade has been growing at approximately 20 percent per year since 2000 and foreign direct investment has risen 40 percent over the past decade.

In 2015 the value of the two-way trade was US$188 billion, according to the consultant, followed by India (US$59 billion), France (US$57 billion), US (US$53 billion) and Germany (US$46 billion). China invested US$21 billion in infrastructure that year while the next highest investor, France, spent US$3 billion.

Evergreen says its AEF service extension “is an appropriate reaction to customer demands within the China - East Africa trade”. McKinsey estimates there are 10,000 Chinese companies operating throughout the continent with nearly a third involved in manufacturing, 25 percent in services and around 20 percent each in trade, construction and real estate.

“In manufacturing, we estimate that 12 percent of Africa’s industrial production—valued at some US$500 billion a year in total—is already handled by Chinese firms. In infrastructure, Chinese firms’ dominance is even more pronounced, and they claim nearly 50 percent of Africa’s internationally contracted construction market," according to the report.

In late June the Port of Mombasa reported a new record in container operations with the discharge of 3,872 TEUs in less than eight hours. Head of Container Operations Edward Opiyo said every vessel at the port now finishes at an average of 40 gross moves per hour.

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