Jamaica Aims To Ratify Ballast Water Management Convention

Potentially damaging effects of ballast water on sensitive marine environments takes centre stage tomorrow at an important Caribbean conference on the subject.

Bertrand Smith, The Maritime Authority of Jamaica’s Director of Legal Affairs, will deliver a presentation on the implications of ratifying the IMO’s Ballast Water Management Convention 2004 . Mr Smith chairs the 25-country task force on the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments in the Wider Caribbean Region.

The presentation will highlight the main features of the Ballast Water Management Convention as well as the legislative and policy steps being taken by Jamaica’s National Task Force, chaired by the Maritime Authority, to give full and proper effect to the Convention to which Jamaica expects to accede during 2011.

Delegates attending the Ballast Water Management and Marine Invasive Species in Jamaica conference at the Medallion Hall Hotel in Kingston on Tuesday January 25th will learn of the findings of a three-year study funded by the Environmental Foundation of Jamaica entitled “The impact of marine invasive species on Jamaica’s biological diversity through the release of ballast water.” The project analysed ballast water samples from international vessels coming into Jamaica to test their potential for marine invasive species.

Over recent months Mr Smith has been actively promoting the need for Jamaica to sign the IMO convention by hosting and attending numerous workshops and presentations throughout the region. He explained: “The MAJ believes it is vital for Jamaica and other Countries in the region to accede to the IMO’s Ballast Water Management Convention due to its strategic location as a marine hub for maritime traffic, including the accommodation of one third of the world’s oil traffic and the existence of highly sensitive marine ecosytems at risk of devastation by marine invasive species carried in ballast water.”

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Videotel Appoints New CEO

Videotel Marine International, the leading provider of maritime training systems, has appointed Nigel D. Cleave to the role of Chief Executive Officer.

Nigel has 35 years experience in the shipping industry and is already very familiar with Videotel’s work and comprehensive catalogue of training material having provided consultancy services to the company for the past two years.

In the new role of CEO at Videotel, Nigel will be responsible for the day to day running of the business as well as guiding future development. He will support Deputy Chairman Stephen Bond who will focus on the production of the company’s training materials which are as DVDs with workbooks and in various computer-based training formats, including on-line and on-demand.

Nigel said: “I am very pleased to be joining Videotel at such an exciting time. We have many interesting products planned and are developing what can only be described as some very exciting and innovative technology to meet tomorrow’s training challenges. Modern training today is no longer a matter of simply placing a video into a VCR but rather a combination of quality blended training solutions to meet our industry’s needs.”

Nigel Cleave began his maritime career at sea, serving with the Cunard Steamship Company plc and rising to the role of Second Officer prior to coming ashore in the early 1980s. He has senior management roles within the shipmanagement industry, working for PB Maritime Services Limited, Dobson Fleet Management and Hanseatic Shipping Company Limited. Most recently he was Chief Executive Officer of Elias Marine Consultants Limited, providing a broad range of professional services to the wider shipping industry.

Welcoming Nigel’s appointment, Stephen Bond said: “We are delighted to have Nigel on board. With his high calibre business thinking and maritime experience, particularly in shipmanagement, he is a welcome addition to Videotel. Nigel will take on the role of looking after our offices around the world and maximising business opportunities. He will also be the lynchpin in customer liaison as he is able to assist clients from a very knowledgeable point of view as he fully understands the business of managing ships as well as managing and retaining crew.
Notes to Editors:
• Videotel’s extensive international training catalogue includes more than 600 titles in a range of formats and various languages and is used on board almost 10,000 vessels worldwide.

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Thomas Gunn Heads Chart Supply League Table

Thomas Gunn Navigation Services Limited, the international chart supply specialist, has become the leading distributor of UKHO digital charts.

The UK Hydrographic Office, which has 140 distributors worldwide, has confirmed that Thomas Gunn is the most prolific distributor of digital charts. And the company itself reveals that sales of digital charts have doubled over the past two years with this trend set to continue.

Thomas Gunn, founder of the company and Managing Director, says: “We are delighted to have such strong confirmation that our services are so widely sought after. This news vindicates our business model and demonstrates that we have moved in the right direction to meet our customers’ needs and forthcoming ECDIS implementation.”

Over recent years Thomas Gunn Navigation Services Limited (TGNS) has invested heavily in technology and personnel to create its own in-house digital products department and has boosted its in-house IT resources to meet changing customer requirements and the modern demand for digital charts. In addition the firm has been very proactive in its customer support.

Thomas Gunn adds: “We regularly hold seminars for our existing customers, either in-house or at their offices wherever they are in the world, gathering their superintendants together and giving a two-hour presentation with a question and answer session following. It’s all about getting ahead of the ECDIS mandate. Forward-thinking shipping companies realise the benefits of making their officers familiar with the use of electronic charts and digital products ready for when they become compulsory so that they are trained and up to speed.”

Demand for digital chart supply is widespread throughout the shipping industry but TGNS reports it is particularly strong at present from the tanker, chemical and gas carrier markets.

A worldwide customer network also boosts TGNS’s sales figures. In addition to its own wholly owned offices in Aberdeen, London, Piraeus, Turkey and Vancouver, the company has formed global partnerships in strategic locations around the world.

Thomas Gunn says: “What it takes to hold on to that number one slot is continued focus, continued quality of advice and service to our customers, a high degree of market knowledge and knowledge of the impending needs of the market. We are fortunate to employ a number of highly-experienced former Masters and officers who help us to ensure that what we are delivering meets our customers’ needs. We are always striving to go forward and expand.”

Mike Robinson, UKHO Chief Executive says: “The success of the industry’s transition to digital navigation relies on its ability to navigate confidently with official ENCs. The UKHO has placed huge emphasis on delivering that coverage and today there is official berth-to-berth coverage between 2,165 trading ports worldwide and more than 10,600 charts. But the successful sale and implementation of those ENCs is down to our partners such as Thomas Gunn, who provide shipping companies with the insight and support they need to make every stage of navigation safer and more efficient.”

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KPI Project Gains Industry-Wide Endorsement

InterManager’s pioneering Key Performance Indicator (KPI) Project which is developing a pan-industry “standard measurement tool”, has received important endorsement from several leading organisations.

Letters of support have come from the European Commission, the International Federation of Shipmasters’ Associations (IFSMA) and the Nautical Institute.

Congratulating InterManager on the professionalism of its KPI work and “the active and constructive participation of so many important players from various sectors of the global shipping industry cluster”, the EU wrote: “The first real life application results of the KPI methodology look very promising to us. As you know, the European Commission’s aim in the regulatory area is to establish a comprehensive set of European rules (while also aiming for global harmonisation of rules), defining necessary minimum standards. We welcome very much industry’s effort such as the KPI project to voluntarily go beyond these minimum standards and help to further raise the overall quality of shipping. We are therefore looking forward to wide application of the KPI methodology within the industry”.

Pledging to take part in further stakeholder workshops, IFSMA declared it “is fully supportive of this project which we believe is making a great contribution in establishing and raising the quality of shipping.”

Looking forward to “wide application of the KPI methodology within the industry”, The Nautical Institute said: “The InterManager KPI project is one of the shipping industry’s major initiatives to globally raise the quality of shipping. This is an aim fully in line with The Nautical Institute’s constitutional objectives and longstanding drive to improve professional standards in the maritime sphere and drive up the quality of shipping to provide safe and efficient services. The active and constructive participation of so many important players from various sectors of the industry has added value and authority to the project which bodes well for the future.”

Welcoming the positive feedback, InterManager President Alastair Evitt said: “This is very encouraging. We are delighted that these organisations have taken the trouble to write to us and give us their endorsement. It confirms our strong belief that the KPI Project is a much-needed and welcome enterprise which will benefit the whole shipping industry.”

At the InterManager AGM in November last year, the KPI Project steering group announced that it has now finalised 66 relevant performance indicators (which can be viewed via the KPI link on the InterManager website: www.intermanager.org)

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Make 2011 A Record Year, Says Videotel

Make record keeping your New Year’s Resolution with Videotel’s updated online records management tool which simplifies training records between ship and shore.

As 2011 dawns Videotel is delighted to announce that more than 52,000 crew and 1,600 ships are now using its webFTA (Fleet Training Administrator) system which offers an on-line, custom-made solution for keeping track of all training records.

Stephen Bond, Videotel Deputy Chairman, said: “In today’s litigious climate with seafarers so easily criminalised for perceived infractions, it is even more important to ensure that crew receive the most relevant and necessary training for their roles and for companies to have comprehensive records to demonstrate that appropriate training and qualifications have been achieved. Our webFTA system simplifies the process of monitoring individual employees’ training to help crew and ship managers to be certain that their staff are up to the job.”

WebFTA, is the latest in records management systems, offering an online solution which enables access to seafarer’s results and performance from anywhere there is internet access. It allows access to all training records across the fleet and offers a variety of data assessments tools to make life easier. It provides an effective way to schedule rank-specific, statutory and non-statutory training, create reports, upload certificates and on-shore data.

With Videotel’s webFTA system training administrators and managers can:
• Track training on board
• View a crew member’s individual training record to see what training is missing
• Receive alerts when training has not been received
• Add certificates and on-shore data
• Set rank-related pass rates
• Schedule frequency of rank-specific training and export to ships
• Schedule statutory and non-statutory on-board task
• Create more than 20 styles of reports
• Export reports for further analysis within other software packages
• Works in harmony with its partner program Onboard Training Manager Plus (OTM+)

The software works from a centralised database which makes operations run smoother for everyone. This simple-to-use system not only saves time tracking crew training and processes audits quickly but also helps show adherence to the ISM Code. WebFTA also allows on-shore training managers to view all ships and see what training is being done and, importantly, what is not being done.

So make good record keeping your New Year’s Resolution for 2011!

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Quality Manager Joins InterManager

InterManager, the international trade association for the ship management industry, is pleased to welcome DOCMAP as a new Associate Member.

Norwegian-based DOCMAP is an independent quality management company employing 10 employees at its Oslo headquarters and Stavanger development department. Formed in 2005, the company was initially developed under the auspices of ErgoGroup as far back as 1997with the aim of developing a suitable system for quality management and document control for Statoil.

The architecture and user functionality of DOCMAP’s system were designed from scratch to ensure effective quality and safety management.

InterManager Secretary General Captain Kuba Szymanski said: “I am delighted to welcome a new member at the very start of 2011. InterManager has a wide range of Associate Members and all of them contribute to the high quality networking and debate within our Association. We look forward to a very productive new year with further exciting developments on the KPI Project and with InterManager firmly at the heart of key maritime decision-making, representing our many international members and associate members.”

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Elaborate Strengthens Its Management Team

Elaborate Communications, the UK-based PR, marketing and publishing expert in the marine industry, has strengthened its management team with the promotion of a joint-managing director.

Jean Winfield, formerly Media Director, now becomes joint Managing Director alongside Sean Moloney. Jean is co-founder of the company and heads up the advertising sales team, encompassing leading titles Ship Management International, Maritime Medical International and The Ship Supplier magazines.

Sean Moloney said: “I am delighted that Jean has taken on this new role within the company. We are both totally committed to Elaborate Communications and are pleased that the company continues to go from strength to strength. We look forward to another successful year in 2011.”

In addition, Elaborate Communications is pleased to welcome new members of staff. Graphic designer Mike Argles joined recently and brings a range of design skills to boost our in-house art department. Meanwhile Gabriella Napoli joins the company this month as a sales representative, working primarily on Maritime Medical International as well as providing sales support to the other titles.

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