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How will technology shape the shipping industry in 2020?

The impact of technology on the shipping industry will grow in 2020, as companies increasingly introduce cloud-based software and apps in their businesses. The increased availability, reliability and reduced cost of the internet at sea will be the key drivers for this growth, says Alexander Buchmann, Managing Director, Hanseaticsoft. He says, “Shipping companies globally are realizing the many business advantages of technology to drive down costs, automate tasks, reduce administration and improving efficiencies. “The cloud facilitates the access of business data and applications from anywhere at any time and with any mobile device. Companies investing in cloud technology are improving the collaboration between teams on shore and at sea and creating a connected workplace culture that supports their strategic business goals. “We are finally seeing paper-based systems being replaced by digital processes. Cloud-solutions are being introduced in areas including document management, managing crews and resources, logistics and supply chain management, communicating with third parties and improving the wellbeing of seafarers, enabling them to communicate with their families and friends while at sea for long periods, reducing their isolation.”

Bulgaria to buy 20pc stake in greek LNG terminal

Bulgaria will buy a 20 percent stake in a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal off northern Greece as it works to move away from its almost complete dependence on gas from Russia, the government said on Wednesday. The United States and Qatar are expected to be the main suppliers of LNG for the facility.

“The diversification is not just words,” Prime Minister Boyko Borissov quoted saying to reporters at the opening of the first session of the US-Bulgaria strategic dialogue. He said Bulgaria’s stake in the gas terminal would be the same as that of Greece’s state energy company DEPA.

Under the deal, state-owned gas company Bulgartransgaz will buy 20 percent of Gastrade, part of Greek energy company Copelouzos, which is developing a floating LNG facility off the Greek city of Alexandroupolis. The LNG terminal, which will have an estimated annual capacity of about 6.1 billion cubic metres (bcm), will aim to supply gas to southeastern Europe via the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) natural gas pipeline.

Drewry launches new fuel advisory services for shippers and forwarders

Drewry Supply Chain Advisors, the ocean freight cost benchmarking and procurement support division of Drewry, is pleased to announce the launch of a new range of fuel advisory and management services designed exclusively for shippers and forwarders. The new services extend Drewry’s advisory capability at a time when fuel is becoming an increasingly important part of transport costs and increasingly subject to regulations.

 

“Following implementation of the IMO 2020 low-sulphur rule change we have already seen extreme variations in fuel charges between carriers on the same tradelane, for similar ship sizes – even shared vessels,” Philip Damas, head of Drewry Supply Chain Advisors quoted as saying. “On the Asia-to-US East Coast route, for example, across a sample of five carriers, we saw some had increased their BAFs by as much as 40 percent in 1Q 2020, whereas others by just 15 percent.”

Shipbreaking expected to roar ahead in 2020, as more ships could head for demolition

2019 could be characterized as an underwhelming year in terms of demolition activity, at least in terms of the comparison between the initial expectations and the end result. However, 2020 could be the year of redemption. In its first report of the year, shipbroker Clarkson Platou Hellas said that “as we enter a new decade, it is interesting to recall the vast change to the ship recycling industry over the last 10 years and the positive resolution from India that all recycling yards will be Hong Kong Convention compliant (adopted 2009) within the next 2 years and the expectation that Bangladesh could closely follow suit.”

Incredible strides have occurred over the last decade by many of the actual ship recyclers themselves to upgrade their yards to a standard that provides a safe and environmentally friendly workplace for the labourers and the local habitat where the yards are located, obtaining plaudits from many along the way (although still attracting continued negative press from environmentalists) and relevant approvals from varied classification societies. The future is certainly looking greener for the recycling industry.

How will technology shape the shipping industry in 2020?

The impact of technology on the shipping industry will grow in 2020, as companies increasingly introduce cloud-based software and apps in their businesses. The increased availability, reliability and reduced cost of the internet at sea will be the key drivers for this growth, says Alexander Buchmann, Managing Director, Hanseaticsoft. He says, “Shipping companies globally are realizing the many business advantages of technology to drive down costs, automate tasks, reduce administration and improving efficiencies. “The cloud facilitates the access of business data and applications from anywhere at any time and with any mobile device. Companies investing in cloud technology are improving the collaboration between teams on shore and at sea and creating a connected workplace culture that supports their strategic business goals. “We are finally seeing paper-based systems being replaced by digital processes. Cloud-solutions are being introduced in areas including document management, managing crews and resources, logistics and supply chain management, communicating with third parties and improving the wellbeing of seafarers, enabling them to communicate with their families and friends while at sea for long periods, reducing their isolation.”

Newbuilding activity starts the year on strong note

While 2020 isn’t expected to be a strong year in terms of newbuilding activity, these first few days suggest otherwise. In its latest weekly report, shipbroker Allied Shipbroking noted that “buying interest seems to have still held during the last few days of the year, as we witnessed several new orders placed across all sectors.

In the dry bulk market, attention was focused on the Panamax segment, a size class that overall held minimum interest during the rest of the year. With the freight market now on a declining spiral, it is expected that buyers will take a step back if the market doesn’t manage a rebound quicker than expected. On the tankers side, we witnessed considerable interest as well this past week, with bigger size classes such as VLCC units being at the center of attention. The positive prospects and the bullish sentiment that prevails in the whole tanker market has retained buying appetite high, a fact that is expected to continue in the coming weeks. Finally, significant orders were placed this past week as well in other sectors such as containerships and LNG.

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