Friday, September 6, 2019

Weekly Round Up of Logistics News Tells of Rising Cargo Theft Levels and Infrastructure Investment

Some of the Smaller Items on the Logistics Agenda in the Past Seven Days
Shipping News Feature

GERMANY – DENMARK – WORLDWIDE – With the news that according to the Transported Assets Protection Association (TAPA), cargo theft is at record levels, Danish headquartered maritime security information group Risk Intelligence A/S is expanding its products and services to cover land transportation. Announcing all new LandRisk, the company will offer companies involved in land-based logistics, by road, rail or in-land waterways a variety of sought after tools to mitigate risks to employees, assets and cargo.

The company will launch the new service at an event in Düsseldorf, Germany on 1 October 2019 and this will be the third module in the Risk Intelligence System product suite, which also includes MaRisk and PortRisk, covering all aspects of sea transportation. TAPA members alone reported losses of €154 million from supply chains in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) in 2018. This is the highest in TAPA EMEA’s 21-year history, and a peak likely to be mirrored in the broader European and national-level overall crime figures across both members and non-members of TAPA with the bulk of crimes going unreported in this way.

FINLAND – NETHERLANDS – Technology group Wärtsilä will supply a patent-pending LNG fuel storage and supply system for two new trailing suction hopper dredgers (TSHDs) being built by Singapore based Keppel Offshore & Marine for Van Oord, the Dutch marine contractor for delivery in 2020. The Wärtsilä system comprises two 640 m3, single-shell polyurethane insulated storage tanks, featuring a new ‘In Line Tank Connection Space (ILTCS)’ that contains the process equipment mounted in front of the tanks, instead of the usual on top installation.

For on-deck applications this significantly benefits the vessel’s view lines for better navigational safety, while also reducing the risk of damage to equipment that is typically installed on top of a single-shell tank. Furthermore for below deck installation, the ILTCS improves fuel storage volume efficiency by avoiding the need to have the process equipment on top of the tank, which simplifies installation of the LNG system.

MALAYSIA – The custodian of Malaysia’s national oil and gas resources has awarded GAC Malaysia the licence to provide bunkering, freight forwarding, shipping and non-bonded warehousing services. The Petroliam Nasional Berhard (Petronas) licence opens the way for GAC Malaysia to provide these services both to the oil & gas upstream sector in Malaysia and the downstream sector for the Petronas Group of Companies.

Petronas is the country’s fully integrated oil & gas multinational corporation and the authority responsible for the licensing of third-party contractors and services and equipment providers operating in the industry. GAC operates 11 offices in Malaysia including one in Labuan, the country’s main oil and gas supply base, one at Kemaman Supply Base and one in Bintulu.

NORWAY – WORLDWIDE – According to Stavanger based ballast water treatment (BWT) specialist Optimarin the recovery of the offshore shipping segment is playing a key role in driving the company’s revenues to new heights as it completes 25 years exclusively concentrating on that specific technology. Optimarin has just signed a number of fleet agreements, including a contract with Island Offshore for 19 systems, thus doubling its order intake year on year.

Tore Andersen, EVP Sales says however that the increased order flow is not confined to a single segment. The IMO D2 ballast water compliance deadline, coming into effect on 8 September, is, he says, pushing owners to make decisions on BWT, and pushing them faster than ever before, with the time from initial enquiries to final orders greatly decreasing. Optimarin has now sold around 850 of its USCG and IMO compliant Optimarin Ballast Systems (OBS), with over 600 worldwide, almost 50% as retrofits. The firm has also doubled its aftermarket sales year on year across the first half of 2019.

LUXEMBOURG – Freight forwarder Kuehne + Nagel has held the ground-breaking ceremony of a new contract logistics centre in Luxembourg. The event also marked the ten year contract extension between Kuehne + Nagel and On AG, a cooperation that started in 2010. The centre, due to open in the second half of 2020, will serve On as its advanced European distribution centre for both off and online channels and will play an important role in the rapid international expansion of the Swiss company, specialised in performance running shoes.

With 20 loading bays, the total warehouse capacity built will be 20,000 m2 and is extendable up to 30,000 m2. An advanced three-level storage and handling area will support the picking, packing and high-speed sorting of the shoes. Once opened the centre will be available to other customers, particularly in the ecommerce field.

UK – The Road Haulage Association (RHA) this week welcomed the news that Government plans to bolster a post Brexit situation with a £20 million investment in infrastructure in the county of Kent. CEO Richard Burnett said it was clear that Grant Shapps and his team have grasped the importance of a contingency plan to tackle congestion arising. He continued:

“The plans for Manston Airport and the implementation of border readiness checks to ensure drivers comply with Operation Brock are of course encouraging. However, we are still in the dark as regards clarity over the actual border crossing requirements. It’s absolutely vital to the UK economy, and in particular the people of Kent that lorries continue to flow freely both into and out of the UK after 31 October.”

UK – Despite setting new records for turnover, machine sales and earnings in 2018 as global markets for construction equipment and agricultural machinery remained strong, equipment maker JCB sounded a note of caution regarding future results, and this had little or nothing to do with Brexit. Group sales turnover in 2018 rose by 22% to £4.1 billion (2017: £3.35 billion), while machine sales increased to 96,246 (2017: 75,693). Earnings on an EBITDA basis rose by 31% to £447 million (2017: £341 million). JCB CEO Graeme Macdonald said:

“2018 was a very strong year for JCB during which the global construction equipment market grew by 18% to an all-time high of one million machines. JCB outpaced this growth by increasing its sales revenue by 22% last year, which was a very significant achievement. However, this growth has now stalled, with many markets softening this year, particularly the Middle East, Turkey, Latin America and India.”

UK – The Shipowners’ Club mutual marine liability insurer which has provided P&I for small and specialist vessels since 1855, has published figures showing, at the half year point, the Club’s free reserves stand at $330.2 million, up from $303.8 million at the beginning of the year. It says the impact of the soft insurance market is still prevalent and as such, the Club reports a combined ratio of 105.9% in line with expectations.

Despite improvement on the 2018 half year result, an underwriting deficit of $5.7 million remains. This can largely be attributed to continued difficult trading conditions as well as the cost of claims. A positive 20 February renewal resulted in a retention rate of 99% which, when included with new Member growth, pushed Member numbers to a new high.

UK – Supported by the British Exporters Association, DFDS, Strong & Herd LLP, Destin8, Vartan, Hull University Logistics Institute and the Port of Zeebrugge, Associated British Ports (ABP) has scheduled an event later this month in Birmingham to help customers prepare for a no deal Brexit. The event is intended to provide details of the Government's Brexit planning (including customs transitional arrangements that will impact on many businesses) as well as an opportunity to meet with a number of experts in shipping and customs.

As part of the event, Government officials will be delivering two short presentations on no deal preparations at 16.30 and 18.00, followed by an opportunity for Q&A. For registration to the event which will be held at The Council House, Victoria Square, Birmingham, B1 1BB on 25 September, from 16.00 to 20.00, click HERE.

Photo: Breaking Ground in Luxembourg. (L to R) Marc Maurer, COO of On AG; Tobias Jerschke, Managing Director of Kuehne + Nagel BeLu; Patrick Nickels, Director at the Ministry of Economy of Luxembourg; Walter Hellmich, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner of the Hellmich Group; Fernand Schiltz, Alderman of the City of Contern.