Strategies in Uncertain Times: Singapore Shipping Association Conference 26/27 September 2013

As World Maritime Day approaches, the Singapore Shipping Association raises the curtain on its 2013 Conference and Exhibition.

The keynote speaker to the conference, held Sept 26th and 27th, Singapore’s High Commissioner to Malaysia, and former ASEAN Secretary General, Mr Ong Keng Yong, will provide an insight into the aims and objectives of establishing an ASEAN Economic Community by 2015 and he will give his latest assessment of the progress that has been made towards achieving this goal.

This year’s Conference theme, “Strategies in Uncertain Times”, will explore the challenges and potential benefits of shipping in the ASEAN region and offer delegates the insights needed to develop successful strategies to grow their shipping business in the current difficult economic climate.

The Conference will consist of three discussion panels with the following themes: ASEAN and Asian Shipping & Trade; Sustainable Shipping – Economic, Social and Environmental Factors; and Achieving Higher Standards. Speakers from around the world provide expertise in a wide range of disciplines – shipowning, government, ship financing, marine insurance , shipbuilding, classification societies, maritime law and port operations – and sharing their global perspective on the concerns, challenges and controls that are affecting the industry today.

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AtoBviaC’s LNG Review Sets New Industry Standards

With two major LNG conferences taking place this week on opposite sides of the world – the 3rd Annual LNG Global Congress in London and the World LNG Series Asia Pacific Summit in Singapore – AtoBviaC, the specialist maritime route provider, has carried out a thorough review of all LNG trades to ensure that key ports and vessel manoeuvres in this important sector remain covered.

LNG vessels are some of the most expensive in the industry, consistently attracting the highest charter rates, and consequently requiring absolute accuracy for voyage and capacity planning, if journeys are to prove financially viable.

“I have to say that I discovered the BP Shipping Distance Tables earlier this year and found a wonderful tool,” said Vincent Guillevic, Shipping Superintendent at Yemen LNG. “Vessels’ schedules are always being modified, and the tables are a perfect way to verify that voyage changes can be done on time. They are also very simple to use with an important list of specific LNG destinations – and options, like being able to manually modify or add waypoints on automatic routes, make this application a must have.”

AtoBviaC has a number of important LNG/LPG operators in its client portfolio; RasGas; GDF Suez; BW Gas; all have chosen
BP Shipping Marine Distance tables to guarantee accurate delivery schedules.

“This review is of importance not only to our LNG clients, but also to every vessel owner and operator we work with,” says Capt. Trevor Hall, Director of AtoBviaC. ”We have been able to make sure that our route tables continue to set the standards for routeing and distance information for the maritime industry, delivering high quality, realistic calculations of journey options.

AtoBviaC is the only company which offers routes calculated by Master Mariners. The BP Shipping Marine Distance Tables are widely used within the marine industry and contain all ports, offshore terminals and transhipment areas needed by its many users, particularly: Worldscale; oil tankers; gas carriers (LNG & LPG); the container trade and the bulk shipping of coal and ore.

New Ports and Pilots Catalogue from Videotel Launched at UKMPA Conference

A new catalogue from Videotel will be launched today at the UK Marine Pilots Association (UKMPA) Conference in London. With its 40 year commitment to the maritime industry, Videotel provides the range of high quality training materials demanded from those undertaking pilotage and port operations and has created a wide portfolio of specialist training which is covered in its new Ports and Pilots catalogue.

Ports and Pilots courses are delivered through continuous training assessment using Videotel’s cloud based Continuing Competency Manager (CCM). Navigation and ship handling; human elements and resource management; maritime security and environmental protection; personal safety; port facility, ship cargo operations and much more, are all covered in over 70 courses directly relevant to this complex area.

“A great deal is expected from personnel working in this specialist field,” explains Nigel Cleave, CEO of Videotel Marine International. “The breadth and depth of expertise required is vast, and Pilots and port workers operate in an area where human error can have very serious consequences, both financially and in terms of human life.

“It is almost unthinkable to those outside our industry to observe that the simple act of a Pilot or port worker joining or leaving a vessel can result in a risk of death or serious injury,” he says. “Weather conditions, behaviour of other vessels – even human factors such as fatigue – have a very significant effect on operations in this arena. Ultimately all those working in the sector must take action to ensure that in addition to technical skills, they fully understand the hazards of even relatively straightforward procedures such as the transfer process, take responsibility for their own safety and carry out the necessary steps to mitigate the risks involved.”

Videotel’s portfolio of related courses includes Pilot on Board, Pilot Transfer, Ship Call, Safe Gangway and Ladder Operations as well as its Boarding and Leaving a Vessel at Sea course. Its understanding of the demand for flexible training in the industry ensures that the courses are delivered via a range of mediums: video, interactive CBT (computer based training), booklets and interactive maritime training courses. This allows for a flexible and stimulating approach to training – whether in groups or by self-study, on board, on shore or online – mixing high drama, animation, tests and much more to build a package of top quality training products.

New Commercial Director for Bibby Ship Management

Bibby Ship Management Group Ltd is delighted to announce the appointment of Mark Robertshaw as its new Commercial Director, joining the business on 23rd September 2013. His responsibilities will also include the role of new Managing Director for Bibby Ship Management’s Western Europe office, based in the Isle of Man.

Mr Robertshaw, a shipping and marine professional, is joining the business from Faststream Recruitment, where he set up its new Asian operation and took responsibility for sales performance for the region.

With over 20 years’ worldwide experience in the maritime industry, he has worked around the world in various senior client management roles within the chartering sector. He is looking forward to the challenge of applying his extensive experience to a new sector of the shipping industry.

Ed Rimmer, CEO of Bibby Ship Management, welcomes Mark onboard. “We have ambitious growth plans for the business and are delighted to welcome Mark to Bibby Ship Management. With his global experience and understanding of the market, we are very much looking forward to his contribution to the management team.”

Bibby Ship Management, part of the Bibby Line Group, has a long history within the shipping sector, as well as contributing its expertise within other industries, to provide effective business solutions to meet the needs of modern ship owners.

International Chamber Of Shipping Meets In London

The Board of Directors of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) representing national shipowners’ associations from the Americas, Asia and Europe met in London last week.

Issues discussed included: the development by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) of a global mechanism for the Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) of CO2 emissions; the entry into force of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Maritime Labour Convention (MLC); and ICS’s response with respect to important changes to global accounting rules being proposed by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB).

CO2 Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV)

The ICS Board reiterated ICS support for the development of a global system of MRV at IMO, provided that the mechanism is simple to administer, primarily based on fuel consumption and bunker delivery notes, and that the system itself will not be used for the development of a full blown Market Based Measure or a mandatory system of energy indexing for existing ships.

The ICS Board agreed that it will respond constructively to the proposal that has been submitted to IMO by the United States and which needs to be debated by all IMO Member States at the next meeting of the Marine Environment Protection Committee in April.

However, ICS Chairman, Masamichi Morooka, remarked that “ICS is very concerned by the recent proposal by the European Commission, to be put before the European Parliament, for a Regulation mandating a regional system of MRV.   While the Commission has stated that it would prefer to see the development of a global system by IMO, we are unclear whether the Commission is sincere in its intentions or how the development of a regional mechanism, which also seems overly complex, can be reconciled with what we hope can be developed and adopted internationally.”

Mr Morooka explained: “We agreed the immediate priority for ICS is to prepare a global industry position that can be taken by shipowners to IMO.   In order to support the maintenance of a global regulatory framework and the development of a mechanism that is acceptable to international shipping we want to help IMO make progress on MRV.”

He added: “Our members firmly believe that it is possible for IMO to develop a robust system of MRV whilst meeting the concerns of those developing nations that do not wish to compromise their positions at the high level climate change talks” in the context of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

In co-operation with ICS’s Regional Partner, the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA), ICS is also preparing detailed comments on the European Commission’s proposals, so that EU Member States will be clear where shipowners stand.

ILO Maritime Labour Convention

The ICS Board expressed satisfaction with the entry into force of the ILO MLC, noting that ICS had co-ordinated the employers’ group at the ILO diplomatic conference which adopted the new Convention in 2006.

While the IMO Secretary-General, Mr Koji Sekimizu, was again opening the ICS International Shipping Conference with a keynote speech, it was noted that the presence of the ILO Director General, Mr Guy Ryder, was also a great honour, signifying the importance of the ILO MLC and the model that it provides for other industrial sectors for the promotion of decent employment standards at the international level.

It was agreed that through its member national associations ICS would remain in close contact with Port State Control authorities around the world in order to avoid misunderstandings that might arise during the initial stages of enforcement.

ICS urged governments to take a pragmatic approach towards the enforcement of what were complicated new certification requirements until August 2014, in line with a Resolution adopted by the ILO Conference in 2006.

The ICS Board commended the advice that ICS has prepared for ship operators to help encourage compliance, and emphasised the vital need for ship operators to prepare a Declaration of Maritime Labour Compliance (DMLC) as required by the ILO Convention – see

International Accounting Standards

The ICS Board endorsed the position adopted by the ICS Maritime Law Committee with respect to the latest draft of the new international accounting standards proposed by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB).

It was agreed that ICS would continue to oppose the notion that operational arrangements such as time charters should be treated as financial leases for accounting purposes and that ICS would press for further clarity from the IASB with respect to the new definitions being proposed.

The ICS Board agreed that it was most important that national shipowner associations presented the IASB with consistent messages on this issue in dialogue with their national accounting authorities and with auditing firms.

ICS will be submitting its final comments to the IASB within the next few days.

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Elaborate Communications Expands And Restructures After Success Of London International Shipping Event

Maritime PR and publishing company Elaborate Communications is expanding its sales force and restructuring after the success of London International Shipping Week (LISW), its joint venture with Petrospot.

LISW founder and Elaborate Managing Director Sean Moloney said: “It was absolutely fantastic to see years of planning come to fruition in such a successful and well-attended week. When I first mooted the idea more than a year ago I could never have anticipated that so many maritime organisations and companies would get involved. And to have the Government fully support this London showcase event was the ultimate endorsement.”

He added: “I am grateful to my fantastic team here at Elaborate and looking forward to the next London International Shipping Week.”

Elaborate Communications has added to its management team and is recruiting additional sales staff for its leading maritime publications Ship Management International and The Ship Supplier to cope with the expanded business. Joint Managing Director Jean Winfield has stepped down to pursue her personal business interests.

Mr Moloney said: “We are grateful to Jean for her contribution to the company and wish her well in her new venture. Meanwhile Elaborate is going from strength to strength and we are very excited about our future expansion plans.”

London is Still the Shipping Capital of the World

London is, without doubt, “still the shipping capital of the world,” according to the Chairman of the International Chamber of Shipping, Masamichi Morooka.  But he also suggested that London should not rest on its laurels and that a truly world class centre would wish to retain its position for the very long term and have an ambitious strategy for achieving this.

Speaking on behalf of the world’s shipowners at the London International Shipping Week conference in the UK capital, Mr Morooka outlined what he felt as an employee of a major non-UK shipping company, was needed for a city to be a first class maritime centre.

He remarked that London’s continuing success suggested that a large concentration of beneficial ship ownership was not in fact necessary to be successful, as was also the case with its merchant banks, or indeed the British car industry.  But in the long term this strategy would only work so long as the foreign companies concerned were committed to stay.

Highlighting the need for a critical mass of shipping people, a trustworthy legal system, a sound infrastructure, good communications and genuinely international outlook, Mr Morooka said a pre-eminent worldwide maritime centre need to be a ‘one stop shop’ providing immediate access to the expertise and support services required to conduct international operations on a twenty-four-seven basis.

London is the inventor of marine insurance, is home to one of the largest and oldest classification societies, houses the Baltic Exchange, is the financial capital of the world, and has a commitment to open markets and free trade principals, he pointed out.

“As a centre for maritime business services, London still truly lacks a comparable rival,” he said.

He concluded by pointing out the need for any great maritime centre to enjoy strong support from its national government and city authorities and to have policy makers who treat the maritime sector “as being vital to the health of the rest of the economy.”

Boris Johnson Applauds London International Shipping Week Initiative

Sean Moloney, Managing Director of Elaborate Communications and Chairman of the London International Shipping Week Steering Group, met London Mayor Boris Johnson at Tuesday’s government reception at Lancaster House.

LH-0190The Mayor told Moloney how supportive he was of London’ role as a maritime hub and said he wanted LISW to happen ‘at least every year’. He also expressed a keen interest in speaking at the next event.

Over 350 shipping industry movers and shakers, ambassadors, as well as top government ministers and officials attended the government event. UK Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin welcomed everyone to the reception and talked about the important role London was playing in propelling world trade.

Videotel Addresses MLC Requirements with Launch of New On Board Catering Series

For the seafarer often spending long periods at sea, meals frequently act as a linchpin to the day’s activities. When crews eat a balanced and nutritious diet, they are more contented, more productive and less likely to have accidents. In recognition of this Videotel has partnered with Garrets International Ltd. to launch an important new MLC focused training series, Catering On Board Ship, which aims to help improve the standard of catering on board every class of vessel – from yacht to ocean-going vessel.

“Healthy food is a vital part of all seafarers’ welfare on board,” says Nigel Cleave, CEO of Videotel Marine International. ”Yet research has shown that many seafarers exhibit poor health almost certainly caused by diet and lifestyle.”

“This demonstrates the need for the recently ratified MLC 2006 regulations which lay down new catering standards for food and drinking water on board vessels, ensuring food is of suitable quantity, quality, nutritional value and variety and is prepared and served in hygienic conditions.”

The Catering on Board Ship Series – one of the most comprehensive programs produced to date – addresses the new MLC 2006 regulations emphasising the importance of food safety, the relationship between diet and health, and by motivating cooks to plan and produce healthier and more varied meals, while making good use of the provisioning budget.

Targeted at catering staff on board and also suitable for Masters, senior officers and other crew, the series fully prepares those on board for port state inspections. It covers galley inspections; menu planning and cost control; management and record-keeping; healthy eating; product knowledge; kitchen equipment and cooking techniques.

”Garrets has established the benchmark for providing fresh quality, nutritious and wholesome food produce to shipping,” adds Mr Cleave. “This, coupled with their understanding of the difficulties and logistics in ship supply, has made them the ideal choice to partner Videotel in this project.”

The training series is available in DVD, Videotel on Demand (VOD), VOD online and Computer Based Training (CBT). All are accompanied by an electronic workbook which highlights key learning points and contains information on further resources as well as assessment questions, and where appropriate providing printable recipes.

Catering On Board Ship is launched at midday, September 5th,on board the HQS Wellington.