Shipping Search - Archive

February 2015

image: MPHRP pirate hostage gang bulk freight container shipping fishing boat Somalia

Dead Colleagues However Will Never Return

SOMALIA – THAILAND – After almost five years in captivity in the hands of Somali pirates the four Thai crew of the fishing vessel Prantalay 12 have been released and are on their way home. The vessel was taken on 18 April 2010 and, according to the International Maritime Bureau, at 4 years, 10 months and 9 days this makes them the longest held hostages. Originally there were twenty five crew but fourteen Burmese crew were released in August 2011 leaving behind eleven, but it is believed that six or seven other crew have been either killed or have died through illness.

image: Trelleborg Sweden shipping port fender Venice Gina rubber seals tides

Giant Rubber Seals to Save Venice from the Waves

ITALY – The name Trelleborg is synonymous around the globe with the fender systems normally part of or suspended from the quays of major shipping ports in every continent. The details of the latest project for the Swedish headquartered group takes it into, dare one say, more romantic territory, with a bid to safeguard the historic lagoon in Venice, the city of light and water, from the ravages of the ever-higher tides that are threatening this Italian cultural showpiece.

image: Sweden Poland Ro-Pax methanol Stena Line ferry shipping

Imposition of New Sulphur Emission Rules Drives Shipping Line to Seek an Alternative Fuel Source

SWEDEN – POLAND – WORLDWIDE – There will be many interested onlookers amongst the ship owning community when the Stena Germanica returns to service next month after a six week conversion to enable her to operate on methanol. This will make the Ro-Pax vessel the first ferry in the world capable of using the liquid, produced in a catalytic industrial process directly from ingredients such as natural gas, coal, biomass, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen.

image: Volvo American trucking safety road freight truck award

Seventh Year for Volvo Recognition of Safer Truck Fleets

US – The American Trucking Associations’ Management Conference & Exhibition in October 2015 in Philadelphia will feature the seventh straight year that Volvo recognises the two road freight fleets with the safest driving records and top safety programmes with its Volvo Trucks Safety Awards.

image: UK road haulage freight transport new speed limits 40 mph

Revised Limits from April - but Not in Scotland or Northern Ireland

UK – Many people are still unaware that there are to be two important changes to the speed limit for HGVs above 7.5 tonnes in England and Wales which will be introduced from 6 April 2015. The speed limit on single-carriageway roads is raised from 40mph to 50mph (subject to any local speed restriction below 50mph). At the same time, the speed limit on dual-carriageway roads is raised from 50mph to 60mph (again, subject to any local speed restriction).

image: China Shanghai outsize cargo special projects Hansa heavy lift

New Shanghai Office Will Strengthen Special Projects Group Position

CHINA – The outsize and special projects cargo carrier Hansa Heavy Lift has extended its reach with the opening of a new representative office in Shanghai as part of an ongoing push to grow its Asian footprint. Headed by Wenhe Shi, Hansa says the office will strengthen the company’s position in the Chinese market and enable the team to further support customers in the region in real time.

image: Germany UK staff appointments HR supply chain logistics freight forwarding

HR Movements Within the Global Supply Chain

GERMANY – Freight forwarding and logistics group Geodis Wilson has announced the appointment of Matthias Hansen as the new Regional Vice President, EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) with immediate effect. Hansen has been acting as interim RVP for the last few months. He now replaces Alain Chimene on a permanent basis. Hansen will continue with his duties as Managing Director of North Europe until a successor has been found.

image: Ireland UK fuel laundering freight forwarder transport scam duty road haulage driver

More Stringent Prosecution Measures to be Applied and a New Indelible Marker Added This Year

IRELAND – UK – Any road haulage operator or freight forwarder with experience of Irish cross border trade will know something of the fuel laundering scams which have blighted the market for decades. Varying rates of duty across any border will encourage drivers and operators to fill their tanks on one side before working across the divide but laundering fuel, usually by filtering and bleaching agricultural diesel until it appears to be road fuel, is an entirely different proposition.

image: US Lauyans handling toxic waste hazardous medical logistics Kentucky

One US Company Solves the Problem with a Bespoke Automated Solution

US – The logistics involved in processing toxic waste is, and always will be, a delicate matter and the less human involvement in handling it the better. So when Kentucky based Lauyans & Company was asked to quote for a method of transferring large quantities of hazardous medical waste material from a conveyor to the hopper of an incinerator it required an innovative solution.

image: UK US Freightliner intermodal billion pounds railroad G&W rail freight Shari’ah container ports shipping

Freightliner Changes Hands for Almost Half a Billion Pounds

US – UK – Britain’s second largest rail freight operator and intermodal specialist, Freightliner, is to be bought by US based Genesee & Wyoming Inc (G&W) which owns short line and regional freight railroads in the United States, Canada, Australia, the Netherlands and Belgium. G&W has entered into an agreement to acquire 95% of the Freightliner Group shares from Shari’ah-aligned investment outfit Arcapita, which has been the majority shareholder since 2008, for a consideration of £490 million (currently $755 million).

image: Ceva Xiaomi logistics freight distribution Malaysia smartphone

Direct Selling Has Pushed Xiaomi to Third Largest in the World

MALAYSIA – Xiaomi may be a name unfamiliar to many but the company, founded in 2010, has grown rapidly, mainly by direct selling techniques, to become the third largest smartphone producer in the world. Now a new contract to undertake Xiaomi’s distribution and other logistics needs has been awarded to freight transport specialist Ceva.

image: Denmark Maersk Copenhagen shipping maritime fair

Week Long Event Has Something for Everyone in the Sector

DENMARK – Coming off the back of 2014’s successful inaugural event, the Danish Maritime Fair has announced that it will return for a second year, opening its gates to leaders from across the global shipping industry from 6th to 8th of October 2015. Taking place at the Train Workshop in Copenhagen, the Danish Maritime Fair will form part of a week-long event, Danish Maritime Days, which integrates a multitude of activities dedicated to the maritime sector, under the same umbrella.

image: UK freight transport road haulage driver crisis Treasury Budget March 18 logistics

Government Meeting Targets Funding for Assistance

UK – The meeting arranged between Treasury officials and representatives of Britain’s logistics industry took place as scheduled last Friday (February 20) when a team of eight staff and members from the Freight Transport Association (FTA) and Road Haulage Association (RHA) met senior policy officials from the Treasury and the Department for Transport, ahead of the Budget on 18 March.

image: Netherlands Pacorini Metals Liebherr mobile harbour crane shipping container bulk freight

Another First as Liebherr Delivers to Netherlands

NETHERLANDS – Crane maker Liebherr has reported another first with sale of one of the company’s LHM 420 mobile harbour cranes to Pacorini Metals Terminals B.V. in Vlissingen, the first time one of this particular model has been sold to a Netherlands based customer. The model is a general purpose machine, capable of handling shipping containers as well as bulk freight sited at a well situated multimodal centre.

image: US container freight west coast port dispute staff ILWU

At Last - My Truck Has Come Along (apologies to Etta James)

US – Tentative, that was the word used by both sides to explain the agreement reached on Friday to end the port labour dispute that has crippled the West Coast ports for months and damaged numerous US businesses, some probably fatally. As staff from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) started work moving the freight containers on Saturday there still seemed to be a degree of resentment on both sides as the deal awaited ratification from the workforce itself.

image: Singapore Shanghai Hong Kong maritime security pirate BIMCO Combined Forces

South East Asia Sees Three Pirate Conferences

UK – SINGAPORE – HONG KONG – SHANGHAI – There are few organisations with a greater interest in maritime security than the Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO), an outfit which represents around two thirds of the world’s commercial fleet, and few better qualified to advise on the subject than the Council’s own Chief Maritime Security Officer, Giles Noakes who, together with Captain William Nault, US Navy Chief of Staff for the Combined Maritime Forces in Bahrain, will head up a series of security workshops in the next few days.

image: Japan steel failure MOL Comfort freight container ship ClassNK vessel brittle crack arrest

New Steel Standard Failed the Only Real Test - Now Classification Society Studies the Problem

JAPAN – WORLDWIDE – Classification society ClassNK is to carry out a joint research project aimed at improving safety standards for ultra-large container ships, by working towards establishing safer brittle crack arrest design in the construction of the large vessels. The increasing size of containerships has naturally led to the use of ever larger and thicker steel plates and the preventative measures for brittle fracture has become even more important, especially in areas where higher stress occurs such as the upper deck and hatch side coaming of the cargo holds.

image: UKWA warehousing sprinklers logistics NEC multimodal deep water port London Gateway

Newly Installed CEO has a Crowded Schedule

UK – It’s a busy time of year for the United Kingdom Warehousing Association (UKWA) and its newly installed CEO Peter Ward. The Midlands seems to currently be the magnet for the former Commercial Director and Head of Cargo Supply Chain at the new deep water port of London Gateway, with an appearance on March 24 at the Health & Safety Event (March 24 – 26) at the NEC Birmingham where he speak in the Safer Logistics Seminars, rapidly followed by another engagement at the IntraLogisteX exhibition on March 25 in the Ricoh Stadium Coventry.

image: UK German HGV driver freight transport road haulage shortage Treasury

Meeting Today will Pressure Minister to Act Decisively as Germany Defends its Industry Professionals

UK – With representatives of the industry meeting Treasury officials today hopes are high that the alarming statistics which demonstrate a dearth of young talent entering the logistics sector as drivers will finally be addressed by government. Both the Freight Transport Association (FTA) and the Road Haulage Association (RHA) will set out the case why government funding for firms to train HGV drivers is essential and appropriate. RHA Chief Executive Richard Burnett said earlier this month:

image: US West coast ports Oakland freight container ships labour secretary dispute Tom Perez Obama

Veiled Threats from Presidential Negotiator May Finally Have Some Effect

US – Pressure is mounting on both sides in the West Coast dock labour dispute as the talks to end the crisis closed last night after a third straight day of discussions between the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) with Labour Secretary Tom Perez, installed by President Obama to assist federal arbitrators, hinting that failure to agree would be cause to involve Washington. The dispute has seen a backlog of dozens of ships moored outside the 29 ports waiting to discharge freight containers mostly from Asia.

image: Ireland supply chain logistics skills shortage haulage government HGV transport driver freight distribution

Skills Shortage Affecting Irish Republic as Well as UK

IRELAND – Whilst UK road haulage interests and industry associations meet with government officials over the ever increasing worry of skill shortages affecting all aspects of the supply chain, Ireland’s Expert Group on Future Skills Needs (EGFSN) has released a report identifying the current state of the freight transport, distribution and logistics industry in Ireland, and setting out its recommendations to the Irish government, on ways to curb its own growing problem.

image: MSC Oscar Jotun Norway hull coating container shipping TEU

MSC Chooses Process After Rigorous Testing

NORWAY – SWITZERLAND – WORLDWIDE – Proving things often takes time, particularly when one is trying out a new system of hull coating which has the potential to produce better performance for one of the world’s biggest fleets. So it was with the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), the second largest container shipping line which operates a fleet of almost five hundred freight and passenger vessels, when in 2013 the company launched a pilot programme to evaluate hull performance and to test the impact of antifouling on vessel speed.

image: Sweden Denmark Concordia Maritime Norden charter Suezmax tanker crude oil shipping

Scandinavian Shipping Groups Go For Switch of Emphasis and Pay Now Discount

SWEDEN – DENMARK – WORLDWIDE – Concordia Maritime, by tradition a product carrier, is transferring some of its interest into crude oil transport after recording a loss in Q3 of 2014. Usually involved in the refined hydrocarbon sector the company has signed an agreement to charter 50% of a Suezmax tanker in a market it terms ‘attractive’. The charter period is one year from August 2015 with an option for an additional year and follows a similar charter taken out in 2014.

image: Chile Germany freight container Hamburg Süd Compańía Chilena de Navegación Interoceánica CCNI

Deal Announced Last Year Reaches Fruition

GERMANY – CHILE – Hamburg Süd has finally signed a Sale and Purchase Agreement to acquire the container liner activities of Compañía Chilena de Navegación Interoceánica (CCNI), including the related general agency functions of CCNI's sister company, Agunsa Agencias Universales (Agunsa), having put pen to paper on a preliminary agreement in July last year, when the Hamburg based freight company put in a bid of $160 million.

image: BIFA TTIP freight forwarding shipping trade deal US EU

Public Concerns Over US - EU Trade Deal Secrecy Merit Investigation

EUROPE – UK – US – The publically expressed resentment in the UK to the secrecy surrounding TTIP, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership which promises closer trade between the United States and the European Union has been acknowledged by the government this week. At a meeting on February 16, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Vince Cable and UK Trade Minister, Lord Livingston asked Commissioner Malmström to give senior UK parliamentarians access to TTIP treaty text as it is developed, so that they can monitor progress and ask questions on the public’s behalf, whilst British shipping and freight forwarding interests also expressed concerns.

image: Japan post Toll Australia logistics freight

Postal Group Decides to Ring the Bell on Over 200 Years of Native Ownership

JAPAN – AUSTRALIA – Government owned Japan Post is set to acquire 100% of the issued and outstanding shares in Australia’s largest freight and logistics outfit, Toll Holdings for around ¥620 billion (A$6.5 billion), subject to approvals from the shareholders and relevant regulatory bodies. With the transaction estimated to be completed in early June, Japan Post hopes to establish a solid position in the Australasian market and cultivate its global business, after Japan’s postal market continued to shrink due to a decreasing population and a growing reliance on the internet.

image: Norway staff changes shipping logistics supply chain death shipowner

Once Again We Start with Sad News

NORWAY – Our weekly round-up of staff changes in the shipping and logistics sectors starts with the death of veteran shipowner Jacob Stolt Nielsson, who passed away over the weekend, at the age of 83. Stolt Nielsen served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Stolt-Nielsen Limited since he founded the Company in 1959 until December 15, 2009 when he stepped down as Chairman, but remained as a Director until his retirement on December 15, 2014, formally concluding his career at the company 55 years from the day of its founding. He continued as Honorary Chairman until he passed away surrounded by loved ones at his home in Oslo. A biography of his remarkable career can be read here.

image: Hactl Hong Kong Longines masters freight forwarding shipping cargo handling horses

Even Having Three Years Experience of the Event Doesn't Make Life Easier for Hactl

HONG KONG – Nothing, but nothing, puts butterflies in the stomach of a conscientious shipping and forwarding agent or a cargo handler more than the transport concerns of sending or receiving large animals. All the expensive kit which is transported daily pales by comparison when handling someone else’s pet or prize stock. So imagine how the fear must multiply when there are sixty two of the beasts in question, and all are thoroughbred horses of incalculable value!

image: NOL Japan APL logistics freight forwarding Singapore supply chain cargo consolidation

NOL Parts with APLL in Billion Dollar Deal

SINGAPORE – JAPAN – Tokyo headquartered freight carrier, Kintetsu World Express (KWE) has reached an agreement with Singapore based container shipping line, Neptune Orient Lines Limited (NOL) to purchase all of the shares of the latter’s subsidiary APL Logistics, for US$1.2 billion, a figure to astound market analysts, some of which had valued the company at considerably less. The deal is subject to approval from shareholders and the relevant competition authorities. Rumours of NOL’s intent to sell its logistics arm have been circulating since August 2014 after it released poor half year results. Now as the Group reports a third consecutive year loss, NOL hopes to return to some sort of financial stability as a result of the sale.

image: Gefco UAE France India Canada freight forwarding logistics distribution pharmaceutical automotive Good Distribution Practice

European Standard Helps Logistics Group to a New Contract

UK – INDIA – CANADA – UAE – Gefco is a company known by many in the freight industry principally for the French based group’s involvement with the shipment of finished vehicles and automotive parts. Of late however the forwarding group has been expanding its operations into the pharmaceutical field and acquisition of Good Distribution Practice (GDP) has enabled it to compete for new business in the sector.

image: CKYHE Alliance container freight box TEU reefer ships vessel CMA CGM

French Line Sees Vessels Start Work as CKYHE Alliance Details Rotations

WORLDWIDE – With all the various vessel sharing agreements, box line alliances and newbuild container ships news at the moment, the day hardly passes without further announcements of changes to existing services. French giant CMA CGM has brought two more ships on line this week whilst the five Asian members of the CKYHE Alliance have revealed their revised and reorganised service network for the Asia-North Europe and Asia-Mediterranean trades in 2015.

image: Europe Dachser logistics freight forwarding Societas Europaea (SE) multimodal transport

Move to Become a 'European Company' May Become the Vogue

EUROPE – The family owned Dachser organisation, headquartered in Germany and dedicated to logistics, has made a significant move which may become more common in European based businesses as time moves on. The freight forwarding and multimodal transport outfit has changed the legal form of its business interests to a Societas Europaea (SE) or European Company as defined by the European Union.

image: Spain Barcelona Europe South Terminal BEST Hutchison Port Holdings TEU MSC container freight deep water port box ship

Largest TEU Capacity and a High in Terms of Box Turnaround

SPAIN – With the ever larger breed of container ships coming on stream at the moment, records for cargo handling are tumbling at the ports and freight terminals around the world. Earlier this month it was London Gateway announcing better statistics but now it is the turn of a longer established deep water port, the Barcelona Europe South Terminal (BEST) owned by Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) to claim a new personal best with the arrival of the Mediterranean Shipping Company vessel, MSC London.

image: Europe US Middle east container shipping line ocean freight alliance

Yet More Alliance Details Released as French, German and Middle Eastern Groups Sign Transatlantic Deal

EUROPE – US – Confirmation of another container shipping line alliance announced as the United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) has formally agreed a new partnership with CMA CGM and Hamburg Süd to enter the North Atlantic trade. UASC already allies with CMA CGM as part of the Ocean Three tie up and, as we mentioned earlier this month, had this agreement on the blocks awaiting ratification from regulatory authorities for this service whilst simultaneously entering into a general cooperation agreement with Hamburg Süd to secure entry to the South American freight trades for the first time, with services due to start in mid-April.

image: UK road haulage driver shortage government training freight transport Treasury

Track Record of Support However Indicates Government Incompetence When it Comes to Training Schemes

UK – Following a meeting earlier this month between executives from the Freight Transport Association (FTA) and Danny Alexander MP, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, when the subject of the current HGV driver shortage was raised, together with other matters, it seems it is now the turn of the Road Haulage Association (RHA).

image: UK Intermodal Logistics Software Solution multimodal freight shippers cargo rail road

Booking System Designed to Optimise Rail Cargo thus Saving Money

UK – FreightArranger, the group dedicated to optimising multimodal transport for shippers looking to utilise a larger percentage of rail freight has launched a new piece of software designed to assist intermodal logistics operators organise their rail routes more efficiently, and increase income, by selling leftover capacity. The booking system has been designed and produced by the company which developed the UK intermodal brokerage system linking road, water and rail freight to make journeys more financially and environmentally efficient.

image: Liebherr Subsea Cranes Germany South Korea Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) quay heavy lift

Repeat Far Eastern Orders for German Plant

GERMANY – SOUTH KOREA – Despite all the maritime associated large scale engineering which occurs these days in the Far East it was to the German base of crane manufacturer Liebherr to which Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) turned when it needed some particularly powerful heavy lifting equipment. After sitting on the quay at the Rostock factory since September the Liebherr RL-K 7500 subsea crane started its long journey to South Korea on the longest night of the year, just four days before Christmas.

image: Germany shipping private security pirates freight lines piracy go compare

Choice of Options Site is Free to Use for Ship Managers Fearing Piracy

GERMANY – WORLDWIDE – It surely had to happen, in a world of meerkats and talking robots the latest thing in comparison sites enables potential customers to select the best option for which Private Maritime Security Company (PMSC) to use to protect their vessel or convoy when shipping in dangerous, pirate infested waters. According to Marine Risk & Quality (MRQ), the company which came up with the idea, freight and passenger carriers can book vetted, top tier security services for their transits easily online.

image: UK freight shipping road haulage staff appointments personnel death air cargo Roy Bowles

News of the Death of Roy Bowles Leads This Weeks Personnel Changes in Shipping, Forwarding and Logistics

UK – We start this week’s staff changes in the freight and shipping world on a sombre note with the passing of Roy Bowles OBE, the founder and life Chairman of air cargo specialist, Roy Bowles Transport, after a short illness on January 22. He was also honoured with the OBE for service to the haulage industry in 1994, after serving as national chairman of the Road Haulage Association. Bowles was an original trustee of the RHA Benevolent Fund established to assist anyone in need within the industry. The company will continue under the management and control of Stephen and Julie Bowles, Roy’s son and daughter.

image: Switzerland Pieter Schelte Jewish groups vessel name change Allseas

Offshore Crane Ship to be Rechristened After Condemnation from All Sides

SWITZERLAND – Following our story earlier this month it appears that Swiss offshore pipeline installation and subsea construction group, Allseas has bowed down to the mounting international pressures from shipping industry associations and Jewish groups, to rename its newly built massive crane ship, Pieter Schelte. The Panamanian flagged vessel, which was named after Allseas Group's President, Edward Heerema’s father, will now be known as the Pioneering Spirit.

image: Turkey Scotland DHL Volga-Dnepr Airlines project freight forwarding tonne steel pipes

Speed is of the Essence in Oilwell Equipment Deliveries

UK – TURKEY – As anyone who has had to handle them will know large pipe sections can be most awkward to handle, even the sturdiest of steel tubes can be damaged by the slightest knock to its extremities, rendering it useless. So when a 35 tonne shipment from Scotland to Turkey was offered to Volga-Dnepr Airlines the company drew on its own team of experts in Ulyanovsk, Russia and London Stansted to coordinate another large project freight forwarding exercise.

image: DHL Belgium Brussels cargo hub distribution express freight

Expansion at Airport Needed to Keep Pace with Traffic Growth

BELGIUM – Express freight carrier DHL is expanding its Belgian operations with the planned construction of a new cargo distribution hub at Brussels Airport. The €114 million investment in the Brussels Hub will triple capacity from 12,000 to 39,500 shipments per hour thanks to the modernisation of the sorting technologies used and is expected to create 200 new jobs by 2020.

image: US west coast ILWU PMA vessel working slow down wages ports

No Working Over Holiday Weekend Saves Paying All Round Fifty Percent Wage Hikes

US – So it seems the two sides of the West Coast ports labour dispute are no closer to a deal after the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA), representing employers at twenty nine West Coast ports shut the docks yesterday for four days out of the next five, much to the chagrin of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) which has criticised the move as a cynical tactic to put a financial strain on its members. The four day suspension coincides with ‘premium-pay’ weekend for holiday vessel operations, which command a pay hike of at least 50% compared to the basic longshore wage rate.

image: Switzerland freight forwarding logistics air cargo wet lease Panalpina Atlas Air

Five Year Contract to Expand Cargo Operations Worldwide

SWITZERLAND – US – WORLDWIDE – Freight forwarding and third party logistics operator Panalpina has strengthened its long standing air cargo partnership with Atlas Air with the introduction of a new five year agreement which will see the Swiss group switch one of its wet-leased aircraft to more than 200 scheduled charters per year, thereby expanding its air freight network. As of March, Panalpina will operate flights from Hong Kong to Huntsville, Alabama with dedicated scheduled charters using Atlas Air 747-400 freighters.

image: Manila TT Club port container terminal freight logistics accidents risk management insurance

TT Club Analysis Shows Lessons Need to be Learnt

WORLDWIDE – The TT Club is the international transport and logistics industry's leading provider of insurance and related risk management services and, as such, when it speaks on a subject as crucial as safety, deserves full attention. Speaking this week at the Philippine Ports and Shipping Conference in Manila, TT Club’s Asia Pacific Regional Director, Phillip Emmanuel revealed some cold, hard statistical facts regarding the safe handling of freight in ports and container terminals worldwide.

image: Ashcroft Trailer Hire Ireland stolen trailer skeletal Maersk container

A Year On Comes Successful Recovery of the Vehicle Everyone in Northern Ireland Was Asked to Look For

NORTHERN IRELAND – It is almost a year to the day since we published an article about a Dennison tri-axle skeletal trailer carrying an empty Maersk container being stolen from the Antrim Business Park whilst on hire to a customer of owner, trailer-hire specialist Ashcroft Trailer Hire Ltd.

image: Combilift fork truck materials handling supply chain investment Irish Prime Minster Enda Kenny

Irish Supply Chain Company with US Links Looks to Expand

IRELAND – Combilift, the materials handling group headquartered in Greensboro, North Carolina since 2005, has announced a major investment putting $50 million over the next two years in a new manufacturing facility in Ireland, which the company predicts will also create 200 additional jobs over the next five years. This announcement was made by Irish Prime Minster Enda Kenny along with the Irish Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton on a visit to Combilift’s current Irish headquarters in Monaghan.

image: Ghana shipping transit import cargo customs clearance ASHI

Delays to Customs Clearance and Fines if Paperwork Not Lodged in Advance

GHANA – The Ghana Shippers’ Authority (GSA) will soon require an Advance Shipment Information (ASHI) document, validated at the loading port, covering each Bill of Lading for all maritime shipments, including transit cargoes, arriving at any Ghanaian port. The ASHI will be mandatory for all imports into Ghana effective Bill of Lading date March 1. The Ghana Shippers’ Authority, in a statement, said:

image: K Line US Japan Executive Jailed RoRo Freight Rate Fixing Cartel Scandal

Second Guilty Plea in Antitrust Case Sees General Manager Incarcerated

US – A second shipping Executive has pleaded guilty to a conspiracy stretching over fourteen years to fix rates, allocate customers, and rig bids of international ocean freight services for RoRo cargo, such as cars and trucks, to and from the United States and elsewhere. Former General Manager and Executive Officer in the Japanese based K Line car carrier division, Takashi Yamaguchi was sentenced to 14 months in a US prison for his involvement in the cartel.

image: Belgium France Liebherr mobile harbour crane logistics port vessel break bulk cargo

Substantial Increase in Lifting Capacity Will Mean Faster Vessel Turnaround Times

BELGIUM – FRANCE – Port services supplier Katoen Natie has increased its lifting capacity at the Port of Antwerp with an investment in three new Liebherr mobile harbour cranes; one LHM 550 and two LHM 600s. Additionally, the Belgian logistics giant has enforced its operations in Radicatel, France, with a new LHM 420. These cranes, which were manufactured by Liebherr Maritime Cranes in Rostock, Germany, will aim to increase Katoen Natie's competitiveness in break bulk cargo, including steel and forest products.

image: Nigeria pirates MEND freight merchantmen piracy security guards oil tanker ship vessel shipping armed

As Elections Loom Nigeria Looks to Take Control of Ships Carrying Munitions - Even Those with a Legitimate Purpose

NIGERIA – The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has apparently warned the international shipping community, that it will not hesitate to detain any vessel entering the Country's waters with security guards on board, whether or not they are armed, over fears that it could ‘threaten the peace and calm’ of Nigerian waters, a sentiment that has confused many especially after the recent attack on the Greek oil tanker Kalamos, which has seen three crewmembers taken hostage and the Deputy Captain killed, as she was waiting to load at the Qua Iboe Terminal in the south east of the country.

image: UK FTA freight road haulage transport logistics fuel oil price driver shortage

Government Invitation to Outline Effect of Oil Prices and Current Driver Shortage

UK – Last week Chief Executive Theo de Pencier and Director of Policy James Hookham from the Freight Transport Association (FTA) met by invitation with Danny Alexander MP, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, to talk openly regarding how falling oil prices are impacting the road haulage and other transport sectors on a day-to-day basis. Topics covered included both equalising the cost of fuel distribution in remote areas and the actual cost of the logistics in delivering services to these outlying districts.

image: UK freight container shipping port London Gateway DP World CMA CGM road Rail cargo

Cargo from West Africa Will Enter UK via Essex

UK – WORLDWIDE – Having confirmed Southampton as the UK port of choice for the Oceans Three container alliance cargo services FAL1 and FAL3, of which it forms part, CMA CGM have announced forthcoming freight services from West Africa to DP World’s London Gateway Port. The CMA CGM EURAF2 service is now calling direct to Nigeria, Ghana, and the Ivory Coast providing what the company describes as some of the fastest transit times in the market.

image: SCOP France UK MyFerryLink RoRo freight ferry Channel Eurotunnel SeaFrance merger

French Workers Still Fighting for Their Future in the British Courts

UK – FRANCE – Dead but simply won’t lie down, that’d probably the best description of Eurotunnel’s cross Channel ferry service MyFerryLink. Despite the company being put up for sale following the rejection last month by the British authorities as to the legality of the RoRo freight and passenger service, the seemingly endless claims from France that the company was built upon a bankrupt entity which had ceased trading, SeaFrance, are set to continue after the Société Coopérative de Production SeaFrance S.A. (SCOP) was this week granted permission for an expedited appeal by the Court.

image: UK safety truck cyclists pedestrians Boris

Cyclists and Pedestrians Need Protection says Boris

UK – The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, Transport for London (TfL) and London Councils have given the go-ahead for a London-wide ban on any truck over 3.5 tonnes (GVW) not fitted with the proper safety equipment to protect cyclists and pedestrians. The Safer Lorry Scheme, which received an overwhelming 90% support from last year’s public consultation, will come into force on September 1 and will cover all roads in Greater London, except motorways. Any road haulage operator found to be in breach of the Scheme will also face a maximum fine of £1,000 per offence, and be referred for consideration to the relevant Traffic Commissioner. Sir Peter Hendy CBE, London's Transport Commissioner, said:

image: UK multimodal freight deep water container port logistics park DP World Prologis London Gateway

Ground Breaking Ceremony Ushers in Start of Major Multimodal Accessible Development

UK – As foretold in our story earlier this week a ground-breaking ceremony has been held at DP World’s London Gateway Logistics Park to mark the start of construction on a 316,000 square foot distribution facility. With development of the deep water container port’s quayside activity now well under way this is a significant step forward for the infrastructure of the giant logistics park planned to sit directly behind the dockside freight handling facilities.

image: UK fork lift truck pallet Mentor materials handling freight supply chain

Less Than Half of Senior Supply Chain Staff Surveyed Know How to Safely Manage a Load with a Hand Pallet Truck!

UK – WORLDWIDE – Compared to the obvious dangers of moving freight with a fork lift the innocuous hand pallet truck seems a comparatively benign instrument, unlikely to cause any injury to the operator. However as the accompanying short video demonstrates, this can be very far from the truth when the operator concerned is untrained and shows a basic lack of understanding of the potential dangers.

image: DP World UK Oceans Three 2M MSC Maersk freight vessels container shipping COSCO CSCL CMA CGM TEU

Southampton the Port of Choice for Revamped Services

UK – WORLDWIDE – The Ocean Three shipping alliance which we gave details of when it was first announced back in September 2014, will make its first UK service call on Monday 9 February arriving at the DP World facility in Southampton (DPWS). This will be followed shortly by a new service operated by 2M, the alliance of the world’s two largest shipping lines, Maersk and MSC on Tuesday 17 February. DPWS opened its new deep water berth, capable of handling the largest ships afloat and under construction, in March 2014. This was followed by a multimillion pound dredging program undertaken by Associated British Ports, the port authority. Both developments were required to ensure that these ocean giants can access the terminal all year round.

image: US Con-way trucking freight logistics Q4 revenue rates less then truckload

Outlook Generally Favourable After Strong Q4 Results

US – The Con-way Group, which includes both freight trucking subsidiaries and logistics company Menlo, has published Q4 and full 2014 accounts which show demonstrably higher returns than the previous year. Higher rates and margins, lower fuel costs, increased management services and lower state taxes all contributed to the increase whilst adverse effects came in the form of lower truckload tonnages and ‘Corporate and Eliminations’ including the company's trailer manufacturing unit as well as other corporate activities. These activities produced an operating loss of $13.2 million in 2014 Q4 compared to an operating loss of $2 million in Q4 of 2013.

image: CMA CGM Hamburg Süd freight container shipping lines

With Alliances the Fashion, Extension of Agreement Seems Natural Development

FRANCE – GERMANY – WORLDWIDE – Two of the world’s leading container shipping lines have agreed to further enhance their existing cooperation. The CMA CGM Group and Hamburg Süd have announced various new initiatives which they say are in the final stages of preparation to add to the pair’s existing joint freight services between North Europe and both East- and West coasts of South America. The completed new rota and future proposals are as follows:

image: UK supply chain fork lift truck materials handling awards

Impressive List of Technical Innovations Vie for Acknowledgement

UK – The end of this month will once again see the Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA) hosting its annual Awards for Excellence which it describes as a ‘glittering non-stop showcase of the most outstanding and innovative technical developments to hit the materials handling industry over the last year’. Saturday, 28 February, 2015 is the date and the International Centre in Telford, Shropshire the venue giving representatives from different factions of the supply chain to gather, network and possibly even collect an award.

image: US West Coast dock port dispute longshoremen labour go slow freight shipping PMA ILWU

Port Operators Issue Details of Longshoremens Wages and Attitude to Mediation to Gain Public Sympathy

US – The west coast port dispute continues despite the presence of federal mediation and the two sides have issued the usual contradictive statements we have come to expect in this bitter row. According to the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) has been trying to change the remit of mediators who rule against it, giving the union the right to unilaterally remove arbitrators as it wishes. Meanwhile the PMA has made what it says is a final offer ‘at this point’ whilst export and import freight remains gridlocked, shipping companies divert to other ports, and bad blood appears on both sides.

image: Maersk freight appointments logistics shipping and the supply chain staff

Who is Heading Where in the World of Shipping and the Extended Supply Chain

SINGAPORE – Staff changes in the freight and logistics industry this week, starts with Rickmers Maritime, which has named former Maersk man and current Head of Global Network & Alliance for APL, Soren Andersen as the new CEO of the shipping company’s trustee-manager Rickmers Trust Management, effective June 1, succeeding Thomas Preben Hansen who will stay on at the company until the end of May, in order to facilitate a smooth transition.

image: UK FTA HGV driver road haulage operator logistics sector City & Guilds summit Ricoh Stadium

FTA Demands Formal Qualifications Whilst Holding a Summit open to All to Review Lack of Capable Drivers

UK – With the skills shortage in the haulage and logistics sector an ever increasing concern across the supply chain, the Freight Transport Association (FTA) has been doing all it can to ‘fill the void’ of skills development in the industry. The organisation has launched a two pronged attack recently including a forthcoming summit for road haulage operators and a scheme the FTA hopes will attract young people to the logistics sector with the provision of a nationally recognised qualification across a range of professions, by partnering with vocational education organisation, City & Guilds.

image: IATA air freight volumes cargo revenue tonnes per kilometre

Many Complex Factors Affect Cargo Figures in What Eventually Proved a Reasonable Year

WORLDWIDE – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has released its full-year air cargo data for 2014 which shows a 4.5% growth in global freight tonne kilometres (FTKs) as compared to 2013 (a significant improvement on growth of just 1.4% in 2013 versus 2012). The year finished on a particularly positive note, with growth in December accelerating to 4.9%, compared to December 2013. Most of the improvement in air freight in 2014 was carried by airlines in Asia Pacific and the Middle East which respectively contributed 46% and 29% of the expansion in FTKs. Though these figures set the stage for a promising 2015, IATA has taken a more cautious view with Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO, saying:

image: US Chile cartel antitrust freight ocean cargo shipping Sherman Act RoRo rates

Antitrust Activity, Cartels, Rate Rigging - Scandals Go On and On

US – CHILE – As the US jails a shipping executive for his involvement in a conspiracy stretching over fourteen years to fix rates on certain cargo services, Chile has fined several ocean freight carriers a total of $75 million over allegations that the companies colluded to prevent competition on RoRo routes bound for Chile from Europe, Asia and the US.

image: UK Netherlands Pieter Schelte Heerema Nazi death camps Shell Auschwitz largest ship maritime and transport union RMT

What's in a Name? Quite a Lot as it Turns Out

UK – NETHERLANDS – SWITZERLAND – The storm of protest raised by Jewish groups across Europe has been echoed by British maritime and transport union RMT following the confirmation that Swiss-based Allseas Group SA has been awarded a contract by Shell UK Ltd for the removal, transportation and load-in to shore of the topsides of three of its Brent platforms that are situated on the UK Continental Shelf using the company's newest, and the world’s largest, vessel, the Pieter Schelte. Nothing wrong there you may think. When however accusers say the ship is named after a leading Nazi jailed for war crimes at the end of WWll, whilst the horrors of the death camps are fresh in the mind after the recent 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, one may wish to reconsider.

image: FORS Transport for London Fleet Operators Recognition Scheme accreditation

However There is a Price to Pay for Success of What Started as a Local Project

UK – Big news for all reputable road haulage operators carrying freight in the capital and beyond as the FORS Community Project (FCP) has released the details of the new pricing structure it plans to implement ahead of its official takeover of the award winning Fleet Operators Recognition Scheme (FORS) accreditation, later in the month from Transport for London (TfL). Comprised of AECOM, the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) and Fleet Source, the FCP will take over the management of FORS from TfL which decided that the operation had ‘grown beyond its remit’ with plans to roll out the scheme across the country.

image: UK Prologis Tilbury port freight logistics warehouse Thurrock London Gateway

Whilst Shadow Chancellor Visits Tilbury, London Gateway Development Steps Up a Gear

UK – It is a busy time for London’s two major Thames side ports with a visit this week from Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rt Hon Ed Balls MP, accompanied by local Thurrock Labour candidate Polly Billington, both of whom were visiting the Port of Tilbury to be briefed on the role Tilbury plays in both local and national economy and the significant investments being made at the port by the port and its tenants, that will this year (2015), amounts to over £75 million, creating over 300 long term jobs as well as a number of short term construction jobs.

image: UK 2015 FTA everywoman in Transport and Logistics Awards nominations Freight Association

Transport Nominations About to Close - Why Not Tell the World Just How Good You Are (or Get a Colleague to Do It)

UK – With the 2015 FTA everywoman in Transport and Logistics Awards nominations now closing at midnight (GMT) on Monday 9th February, those who consider themselves (or a female colleague) worthy of recognition need to get their skates on and complete the online form which will get the ball rolling. Supported by lead sponsor the Freight Transport Association (FTA) winning one of these gives the victor real kudos within the industry.

image: Schmitz Cargobull DSV A/S semi trailer road haulage freight forwarding multimodal

All Units Have Multimodal and Adjustable Height Capability

GERMANY – DENMARK – EUROPE – Horstmar, Germany headquartered trailer maker Schmitz Cargobull last week delivered the first unit from a huge order received from Danish road haulage and freight forwarding outfit DSV A/S. The first rail-transportable curtain sided semi-trailer from a total order of 3,000 units ordered was delivered in person by Ulrich Schöpker and Josef Warmeling, both key Schmitz Cargobull AG executives.

image: Cronos Seaco global shipping container leasing TEU

Amalgamation of Two Companies Leaves 2,179 Million TEU under Single Management

CHINA – WORLDWIDE – Steady as she goes is the message given out to customers after the news Bohai Leasing has purchased Cronos Limited, the Bermuda based shipping container leasing group which it intends to eventually integrate into the Chinese company’s own box lease division Seaco. Despite the deal Cronos says all management currently in place will remain for the foreseeable future.

image: Liebherr post Panamax container crane freight handling ship to shore mobile harbour box cargo

Two More Units Arrive to Boost Cargo Turn Around Times as Manufacturer Sets a Personal Record

AUSTRALIA – This month saw the arrival of two new ship to shore Post-Panamax cranes at Flinders Adelaide Container Terminal from materials handling manufacturer Liebherr in Ireland. The order is yet another step forward for the crane maker following a return to the Australian market in 2012 after an absence of 35 years. The giant 65 metre high units are capable of lifting up to 80 tonnes using a hook beam and offer the ability to turn around 35 containers per hour, which should eventually see vessels on the berths for up to 25% less time than at present.

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