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BALTIC INDEX INCREASES ON IMPROVED CAPESIZE RATES

The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose for the second straight day on Tuesday, supported by higher demand for capesize vessels. The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax, supramax and handysize shipping vessels, was up 19 points, or 2.01 percent, at 965 points.

The capesize index gained 106 points, or 8.65 percent, to 1,331 points. Capesize rates are on the rise with average earnings increasing up to about $10,500/day as the market continues to gain some traction in the Pacific as well as the North Atlantic regions. Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 150,000-ton cargoes such as iron ore and coal, were up $765 to $10,540.

INTELLIGENT ALGORITHMS FOR SITUATION-BASED MAINTENANCE OF SHIP SYSTEMS

High cost pressure in the merchant shipping industry and increasing availability requirements from the charterer side require reliable maintenance of ships and their systems. This challenge can be met with optimized maintenance planning and more efficient maintenance processes. Now, mainly time-based preventive maintenance processes are carried out predominantly for different reasons. So far, condition-based maintenance (CBM) has been mainly used for ship propulsion systems. However, significant cost savings could be made on maintenance and spare parts procurement leading to roughly 25 percent of the ship‘s total operating cost.

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COMMERCIAL SHIPPING HIT BY SLOW PROGRESS, OVER CAPACITY

Commercial shipping is going through a tough phase due to slow growth, geographical events and over capacity, according to N Krishna Kumar, Vice-President, Mediterranean Shipping Company (India).

Students, who plan to pursue a career in maritime sector, need to be aware of the changes, he said at “Encore-August 2017- International Conference on Commercial Shipping- Changes and Challenges”, a conference organized by Amet Business School in collaboration with Regional Maritime University, Republic of Ghana. BusinessLine was the event’s media partner. Kumar said global container trade sank by 5.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015 after 4.5 percent growth per annum during 2010-2014.

SOHAR PORT’S Q2 BOX THROUGHPUT UP 11 PERCENT

Sohar Port in Oman saw its container throughput in the second quarter rise by 11 percent year on year, while dry bulk cargo volume was up 24 percent in the first half of the year. Container traffic at the Hutchison-managed terminal has grown threefold over the past five years, in line with significant investments to increase efficiency to the highest international standards.

The new Terminal C features remote-controlled quayside cranes to handle 20,000-TEU ships; an automated appointment system to reduce truck waiting times and increase turnaround speed; and new auto-gates that cut paperwork and delays for drivers entering and leaving the new terminal facilities in Sohar.

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PORT KEMBLA’S COAL SHIPMENT DOWN IN JULY

Australia’s Port Kembla Coal Terminal shipped 494,942 mt of coal in July, down by 12 percent from 562,890 mt in June, according to figures from the terminal operator, as production remains suspended at a South32 mine, which ships coal via the terminal.

The dominant metallurgical coal port’s July exports lagged behind the monthly average for fiscal 2016-17 (July-June) of 670,162 mt. If PKCT were to continue shipping at the June rate for the entire 2017-18 fiscal year, its exports would total 5.83 million mt, which falls significantly below its 15 million mt/year peak annual capacity.

Australian miner South32’s Illawarra Metallurgical Coal business — which manages PKCT, and exports via it — announced late in June that it was suspending underground operations at its Appin mine due to high gas levels. It remains suspended with South32 saying July 10 that it’s likely to be an “extended outage.”

DIRECT PORT DELIVERY PLAN THREATENS CONTAINER STATIONS

Top logistics firms, including listed entities that have invested thousands of crores to set up and run container freight stations (CFSs) near India’s container ports, face an uncertain future after the Central government introduced a program to speed up delivery of cargo containers to importers/consignees to check extra cost and time involved in the clearances. The so-called direct port delivery (DPD) scheme was introduced at the Jawaharlal Nehru Port and Chennai Port, spurred by a report from the World Bank on ease of doing business.

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