Freight News

Feb 19 - Dry bulk market prospects worsen after Brazil dam disaster - shipper Golden Ocean 

The prospects of dry bulk shippers carrying iron ore from mines to smelters have worsened due to the accident at Vale's Brumadinho dam in Brazil, Golden Ocean said on Tuesday as it presented forecast-beating quarterly earnings. The dam in the town of Brumadinho, which contained tailings, the mud-like byproducts of iron ore mining, burst on Jan. 25, killing at least 166 people and with almost 200 more still missing. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 15 - Ocean Freight Dry Bulk Report (CCShipbrokers)

- It appears the dry-bulk market has bottomed out, at least for the moment. Is it a “Dead Cat Bounce” or is the worst now behind us? Please keep in mind that the freight market is at a substantial carry going forward. Vessel owners are hopeful that things will improve once the Lunar New Year holiday week concludes. But, in truth, the market has more serious issues than just a brief holiday lull. Rates have been going down for the past three months. There remain structural issues regarding vessel supply and cargo demand in a global economy that is not expanding to the degree anticipated. We still need to curtail new vessel orders and economically encourage more vessel scrapping – and this will be painful to accomplish.
- If you think about the consequences of this situation, you will come to the realization that this is not a good scenario for the shipbuilding industry and the governments that depend on such for employment and foreign exchange. However, this industry will not go down without a fight. So, we truly have two strong forces with conflicting needs. We must expect further consolidation within the dry-bulk sector, but this will not solve the problem of a global fleet that is bigger than global cargo demand.
- It appears the dry-bulk market has bottomed out, at least for the moment. Is it a “Dead Cat Bounce” or is the worst now behind us? Please keep in mind that the freight market is at a substantial carry going forward. Vessel owners are hopeful that things will improve once the Lunar New Year holiday week concludes. But, in truth, the market has more serious issues than just a brief holiday lull. Rates have been going down for the past three months. There remain structural issues regarding vessel supply and cargo demand in a global economy that is not expanding to the degree anticipated. We still need to curtail new vessel orders and economically encourage more vessel scrapping – and this will be painful to accomplish.

- Handysize
A week of continuous improvement saw the Baltic Exchange Handysize Index (BHSI) climb over 300 points. Most of the routes remained in positive territory this week for both reporting sizes, with the US Gulf showing the strongest uptrend. A 38,000dwt vessel was fixed basis Cape Town delivery for a trip via Necochea to the Persian Gulf at $9,750. Large Handysize vessels were reportedly fixed at $8,000 for trips from East Coast South America to the Mediterranean. From the US Gulf, a 38,000-tonner was fixed to the Mediterranean at $9,500, while $8,000 was reported on a 34,000dwt ship for a similar run. Earlier in the week, a 33,000-tonner was concluded from Canakkale to Morocco with grain at $5,000. In the East, a 28,000-tonner was booked from Thailand to move sugar to Indonesia at $6,000, with another similar-sized vessel fixed from North China to Vietnam at a rate in the low $4,000s.

Feb 15 - Australia's Port Hedland iron ore shipments to China in Jan slip 6 pct on month 

Iron ore shipments to China from Australia's Port Hedland terminal fell 6 percent in January from a month earlier, port data released on Friday showed. Iron ore shipments to China from the world's biggest iron ore port totalled 35.1 million tonnes in January, compared with December's 37.4 million tonnes, the Pilbara Ports Authority said. A cyclone blew near the region in the month. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 15 - Libya dreams of mega port in history-laden east

A white foundation stone next to a deserted beach near the soporific Libyan port of Susah is all to show for a seven-year dream to build one of North Africa's biggest ports. Yet officials say Libya is now in final talks to award a U.S. firm a $1.5 billion deal to set up a "mega port" intended to transform the picturesque coast where families go for picnics into a vast container hub. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 15 - Port of Rotterdam braces for the consequences of Brexit

A no-deal Brexit could lead to serious problems in Rotterdam, Europe's largest port, which handles around 40 million tonnes of goods to and from Britain every year, port authorities said on Thursday. Britain's departure from the European Union without an agreement on the terms of its separation remains a possibility. That would create major traffic jams at Rotterdam as it scrambles to create parking for trucks lacking the right paperwork and for inspections of goods arriving from the UK. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 15 - Egypt's GASC buys 300,000 tonnes of wheat for late March shipment 

Egypt's state grains buyer, the General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC), bought 300,000 tonnes of wheat on Friday at an international purchase tender for shipment March 21-31, traders said. GASC said it booked 120,000 tonnes of U.S. soft red wheat, 120,000 tonnes of French wheat, and 60,000 tonnes of Ukrainian wheat. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 15 - South Korea's Posco Daewoo to take stake in Ukrainian grain terminal 

South Korean firm Posco Daewoo has agreed to buy a 75 percent stake in a new grain terminal in the Ukrainian Black Sea port of Mykolayiv, Ukraine's national investment council said on Wednesday. The terminal, which is due to start operations in July, has a grain loading capacity of 2.5 million tonnes per year, the council said on Facebook. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 15 - Three consortiums compete to build dry port west of Cairo

Three consortiums are competing to build a dry port west of Cairo worth $100 million, the Egyptian finance ministry said on Sunday. The project will be a public-private partnership between the General Authority For Ports and Dry Land and the winning consortium, to be built on roughly 104 acres in 6th of October City, a suburb west of the capital. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 15 - Russia's VTB builds up control of Black Sea grain export hub 

Russia's state-controlled VTB Bank said on Thursday it will buy a grain terminal from Novorossiysk Commercial Sea Port (NSCP), giving it more control over Russia's main deep-sea grain export hub. VTB, Russia's second-biggest bank, already owns a stake in another grain terminal at the Black Sea port of Novorossiisk, which ships a significant amount of Russia's grain exports. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 14 - Short sea operators also losing share on intra-Far East trade (AlphaLiner)
- Independent  short-sea  and  feeder  operators  on  the  intra-Far  East  routes  are also losing market share to Main Line Operators (MLOs), in what is becoming a global  trend  as  consolidation  amongst the  MLOs  and  the  attrition  of  smaller short-sea  carriers  have  seen  the  capacity  balance  tip  in  favour  of  the  larger main line operators. The total capacity operated on intra-Far East liner services, excluding cabotage trades,  has  more  than  doubled  over  the  last  decade  from  890,000  teu  at  the beginning of 2009 to 1,900,000 teu as at January 2019.
- Over the same period, the capacity share of MLOs on this route has increased from 50% to 56%. Although the capacity share of the independent short sea and feeder operators on  the  intra-Far  East  trade  has  shrunk,  these  carriers  have  still  managed  to grow  their  total capacity  operated  by  86% over  the  last  10  years,  with  the  five largest independent short sea operators (Wan Hai, SITC, KMTC, Sinokor and TS Lines) all managing to more than double their size on this trade.
- However, short sea carriers with significant SOC feeder operations such as RCL and  Samudera  have  been  less  successful in  growing  their  operations  as  their operated fleet size have remained largely stagnant. Despite this, the independ-ent intra-Far East carriers have remained remarkably resilient in the face of the challenge from MLOs, with attrition limited to only a handful of smaller carriers including  MISC  Berhad,  STX  Pan  Ocean,  New  Econ  Lines  and  EP  Carriers amongst  the  more  prominent  names  that  have  left  the  scene  in  the  last  decade.

Feb 08 - Australia's Port Hedland iron ore shipments to China in Jan slip 6 pct on month 

Iron ore shipments to China from Australia's Port Hedland terminal fell 6 percent in January from a month earlier, port data released on Friday showed. Iron ore shipments to China from the world's biggest iron ore port totalled 35.1 million tonnes in January, compared with December's 37.4 million tonnes, the Pilbara Ports Authority said. A cyclone blew near the region in the month. 

Feb 07 - Dozens of coal, iron ore freighters stuck off China ports amid customs delays -data, sources 

Dozens of ships carrying coal and iron ore to China are stuck outside ports waiting to unload, according to shipping data, with traders saying harbour authorities are taking longer than usual to clear the imports with customs officials. Refinitiv data showed on Friday that more than 300 dry-bulk freighters in total are currently sitting idle, waiting to deliver into China. While dry-bulk ships carry many different commodities, most affected were those carrying coal and iron ore from Australia, according to the data and two bulk traders. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 06 - Australia's Pacific National says coal train derailed, service impacted

Australian coal haulier Pacific National said on Thursday that one of its trains derailed near the Hunter Valley in New South Wales and that some services would be affected while repair work was carried out. The Hunter Valley is Australia's top thermal coal-producing region and home to operations run by Yancoal, Glencore and Peabody Energy. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 06 - Croatia's troubled Uljanik shipyard picks partner to stay afloat

Croatia's troubled shipbuilder Uljanik said on Thursday it had chosen local rival Brodosplit as a strategic partner to restructure its operations. Uljanik, 25 percent owned by the state and with 3,500 employees, has been working to stave off bankruptcy due to liquidity problems that began in 2017. Workers staged strikes twice last year over unpaid wages. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 05 - South Africa's Transnet in talks to construct coal line link to Botswana 

South Africa's state owned logistics company Transnet said on Thursday it was in talks to construct a heavy haul railway line to export some of Botswana's 212 billion tonnes of coal reserves. Transnet said the agreement to construct the link will with Botswana Railways will see up to 80 million tonnes of coal transported annually from Botswana for export and domestic use. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 04 - Woodmac estimates 10 pct of marine fuel to be scrubbed of sulphur in 2020 

Research firm Woodmac sees a rise in the use on ships of "scrubbers", the equipment to clean up sulphur emissions, before the International Maritime Organization imposes new rules from Jan. 1 2020 to limit sulphur content in fuel. Woodmac forecasts that just over 10 percent of marine fuel will be scrubbed in 2020 when the regulations kick in. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 04 - Sri Lanka port strike ends with backlog of 6,000 containers

Sri Lankan customs officers on Tuesday called off a strike that left 6,000 containers stranded at the country's main port and put pressure on food prices, after the government agreed to reinstate their boss for three months. The strike by thousands of officials began a week ago in protest at the sacking of Director General P.S.M. Charles, who authorities blamed for a drop in customs revenue last year. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 04 - Three crew die in British Columbia Canadian Pacific grain trainderailment 

Three crew members died on Monday when a Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd grain train derailed in British Columbia, a Transportation Safety Board (TSB) spokesman said. The accident occurred at 2:10 a.m. local time (0910 GMT) when a train carrying 40 to 60 grain hopper cars derailed near Field, British Columbia, the TSB spokesman said. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 01 - CME Group reports first trade for low-sulphur marine fuel contract 

The first batch of derivative contracts for a cleaner type of marine fuel oil that complies with stricter emissions rules starting in 2020 traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX), the CME Group said on Friday. A trade for 10 lots of the Singapore free-on-board (FOB) marine fuel with 0.5 percent sulphur content mini futures contract was cleared on Jan. 31, a Singapore-based spokesman for the CME Group said in an e-mail on Friday. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 01 - Dozens of coal, iron ore freighters stuck off China ports amid customs delays - data, sources 

Dozens of ships carrying coal and iron ore to China are stuck outside ports waiting to unload, according to shipping data, with traders saying harbour authorities are taking longer than usual to clear the imports with customs officials. Refinitiv data showed on Friday that more than 300 dry-bulk freighters in total are currently sitting idle, waiting to deliver into China. While dry-bulk ships carry many different commodities, most affected were those carrying coal and iron ore from Australia, according to the data and two bulk traders. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 01 - Bolsanaro takes aim at freight rates, decries 'conspirator' truckers (AgriCensus)
- One month into his first term, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has taken his first swipe at the country’s minimum freight rates policy that was set up under the previous government to end an 11-day truckers strike in May of 2018. In an official letter from the Economy Ministry to the Supreme Court Justice Luiz Fux, who is overseeing legal challenges to the new freight rates law, the new government called last year’s strike an “abuse of the right to strike” on the part of the trucking companies and labeled the truckers as “conspirators”. The letter went on to say that former President Michel Temer was coerced into creating the policy of minimum freight rates to meet the truckers’ demands for them to end the strike last year.
“Fixing prices, protecting markets and guaranteeing economic benefits… for those in question in the process of price formation institutionalises a cartel,” the letter added.
- Bolsonaro was elected in October 2018 with strong support from Brazil’s agricultural sector, which has opposed the minimum freight rates, saying they raise the sector’s transport costs by 100% or more in many cases. The letter adds that “the legislation’s creation (of the minimum freight rates) was a private sector initiative, lacking public participation, to bring about the will of the conspirators.” The letter to the high court also addressed Brazil’s anti-trust agency CADE and the Public Prosecutor’s Office, calling on them to investigate the alleged illegal conduct of the trucking industry and to impose sanctions and criminal penalties when justified.
- Justice Fux is overseeing three principal appeals of the new freight rate law at the high court, which is due to decide on its constitutionality in the coming weeks to months. As part of former President Temer’s concessions to the truckers to end the strike last year, the government granted subsidized discounts on the price of diesel, since the high price of the fuel was the main complaint of the truckers during the strike. The new chief executive of the state-run oil company Petrobras, Castello Branco, also criticised the previous government’s decision to subsidise fuel prices saying it damaged the traded company’s image in investors’ eyes.
The subsidy ended on January 1.

Jan 31 - S.Korea to combine world's two biggest shipbuilders in $2 bln deal 

Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world's biggest shipbuilding group, has announced a share swap deal worth 2.1 trillion won ($1.98 billion) to take over second-ranked Daewoo and create a global heavyweight controlling over 20 percent of the market. The move comes as the worldwide shipbuilding sector recovers from a global economic downturn that led to massive losses, widespread job cuts and, in 2017, the $2.6 billion bailout of South Korea's Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co Ltd. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 31 - Global shipping rates slump in latest sign of economic slowdown 

Freight rates for dry-bulk and container ships, carriers of most of the world's raw materials and finished goods, have plunged over the last six months in the latest sign the global economy is slowing significantly. The Baltic Dry Index, measure of ship transport costs for materials like iron ore and coal, has fallen by 47 percent since mid-2018, when a trade dispute between the United States and China resulted in the world's two biggest economies slapping import tariffs on each other's goods. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 31 - New Indonesian insurance rules cause coal export backlogs in Kalimantan

Indonesian insurance rules that come into effect on Feb. 1 are causing huge coal supply backlogs, with dozens of ships held up outside ports unable to load as authorities start checking to see if vessels are in compliance with the new policy. A regulation issued in August last year requires Indonesian exporters of coal and palm oil to use local insurers from Feb. 1, and also requires them to use local shipping companies from May 2020. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 31 - Workers at Prodeco's Colombia coal port vote down proposed strike 

A small number of workers at Grupo Prodeco's port in Colombia have voted down a proposed strike, the union which held the vote said on Friday, adding that only eight out of 115 workers voted. Prodeco, a subsidiary of Switzerland's Glencore, is the third-largest producer of thermal coal in the Andean country. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 31 - Poor weather restricts grain loading in five Ukrainian ports 

Five large Ukrainian seaports have restricted cargo operations with grain due to poor weather conditions as of Jan. 31, Ukrainian state sea port administration said on Thursday. Black Sea ports of Chernomorsk, Odessa, Reni, Kherson and Yuzhny are among the affected ports. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 31 - Ocean Bunkering tops 2018 list of Singapore's largest marine fuel suppliers 

Singapore-based Ocean Bunkering Services (OBS) Pte Ltd topped the 2018 list of largest marine fuel suppliers operating in the world's biggest ship refuelling hub, data released from the Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) of Singapore showed on Friday. OBS, bunkering arm of Singapore oil trader and shipper Hin Leong Group, leapt to become Singapore's top marine fuels supplier by volume in 2018, after ranking eighth in the year before and 31st in 2016, the MPA data showed. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 31 - Rail moving fluidly through Vancouver after congestion ends - CN Rail 

Congestion at Port Metro Vancouver, Canada's busiest port, has been resolved and rail operations are now "fluid," Canadian National Railway Co said on Friday. Canadian National and rival Canadian Pacific Railway were rationing space on trains travelling in the Vancouver area and prioritized some commodities over others to deal with congestion, causing complaints from shippers. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 30 - CN Rail profit beats on higher crude, grain shipments, raises dividend 

Canadian National Railway Co beat analysts' estimates for quarterly profit on Tuesday, as it transported higher volumes of petroleum crude and Canadian grain. A lack of pipelines to the United States and oversupply have led Canadian energy producers to look for alternatives such as railroads to ship crude. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 28 - Rail moving fluidly through Vancouver after congestion ends - CN Rail 

Congestion at Port Metro Vancouver, Canada's busiest port, has been resolved and rail operations are now "fluid," Canadian National Railway Co said on Friday. Canadian National and rival Canadian Pacific Railway were rationing space on trains travelling in the Vancouver area and prioritized some commodities over others to deal with congestion, causing complaints from shippers.  Click here to read full stories.

Jan 25 - Soufflet to expand Metz river terminal to boost EU grain trade

French grain group Soufflet said on Thursday it will build a new storage silo at the river port of Metz in eastern France to boost export trade with northern Europe. Privately owned Soufflet will invest 9 million euros ($10 million) to construct a silo by the summer 2020 harvest that will be able to hold 40,000 tonnes of grain, taking the group's total capacity at Metz to 144,000 tonnes, it said in a statement. Click here to read full stories

Jan 25 - P&O to change flag of UK ships to Cyprus ahead of Brexit

British ferry and shipping freight operator P&O will shift the registration of its UK vessels to Cyprus ahead of Britain's departure from the European Union, in part to keep its tax arrangements in the bloc, the company said on Tuesday. P&O currently has six UK-registered ships operating on the English Channel route to France, although it announced last month it was moving two of those to the Cyprus registry and one has already been transferred. Click here to read full stories

Jan 24 - Egypt's Suez Canal revenue rises to $5.7 bln in 2018

Egypt's Suez Canal revenue rose to $5.7 billion in 2018, from $5.3 billion in 2017, Reuters calculations based on data from a government website showed on Monday. The canal is the fastest shipping route between Europe and Asia and one of the government's main sources of foreign currency. Click here to read full stories

Jan 24 - Russia plans tougher grain export controls - reports

Russia's state agriculture watchdog is considering plans to strengthen controls on grain exports, Russian news agencies reported on Saturday. There has been speculation that the world's largest wheat exporter could limit grain exports later in the 2018/19 season which started on July 1, to keep a lid on domestic prices. Click here to read full stories

Jan 24 - Asian buyers purchased Moldovan feed wheat in containers - trade

Buyers in Malaysia and the Philippines have in past days purchased an unknown volume of feed wheat from Moldova in east Europe for delivery in ocean shipping containers, European traders said on Monday. Malaysian buyers made purchases at around $260 to $262 a tonne c&f for February/March shipment to the Malaysian port of Klang. Click here to read full stories

Jan 24 - India watchdog orders DP, Maersk units to withdraw some notices to clients at Mumbai port

India's antitrust watchdog has ordered Denmark's A.P. Moller-Maersk and Dubai's DP World to withdraw certain customer advisories which it said could hamper growth of the country's largest container port in Mumbai, a document seen by Reuters showed. The Competition Commission of India (CCI) last year ordered a probe into suspected antitrust violations by DP World and Maersk units at the terminals they operate at state-owned Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT). Click here to read full stories

Jan 24 - DP World to spend at least $250 mln building stake in Australia unit

Dubai's DP World will spend at least $250 million buying back some shares in its Australian port terminals business which it sold in 2010, a company spokeswoman said on Wednesday. DP World will buy the shares from Corsair Infrastructure Partners' Gateway Infrastructure Investments and other investors, it said in a bourse statement. Click here to read full stories

Jan 23 - Fujairah joins other ports, tightens exhaust rules ahead of 2020 regulations 

Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates has become the latest major port to ban a type of fuel exhaust cleaning system to comply with a coming tightening in rules regarding global sulphur emissions, mirroring similar moves in Singapore and China. Under International Maritime Organization (IMO) rules that come into effect from 2020, ships will have to reduce the sulphur content in their fuel to less than 0.5 percent, compared with 3.5 percent now, forcing huge changes upon global shippers and also oil refiners.  Click here to read full stories. 

 Jan 23 - Canadian railways ration space as commodity congestion problems worsen

Canada's two major railways are rationing space on trains traveling to the country's biggest port and recently prioritized some commodities over others to deal with congestion, the latest indication of their struggle to meet demand from new trade deals. That move prompted Canada's transport regulator last week to start an investigation into rail services around Port Metro Vancouver, after shippers complained of "discriminatory treatment of certain commodities" by Canadian National Railway (CN) and Canadian Pacific Railway (CP). Click here to read full stories.

Jan 19 - China lifts swine transport ban in key provinces amid vaccine project (AgriCensus)

China has lifted the transportation ban for pigs in two major pig-farming provinces - Liaoning and Sichuan - as the country has set up a project to potentially develop a vaccine for African Swine Fever (ASF). The transportation restriction that prevented pigs from being shipped out of Liaoning province was removed on Monday, according to a document released by the Liaoning provincial Department of African Swine Fever prevention and Control on Friday.

"Piglets with reports of negative African Swine Fever RNA within the last 30 days and that have been passed local quarantine inspections can be transported out of the province," the document stated.

Liaoning province has been one of the major pig-farming provinces in China that has been heavily impacted by the ongoing ASF incidents. Liaoning province had reported a total of 13 outbreaks of ASF since last August with the most recent one found on 17th of October last year, affecting at least 42,000 pigs.

"This is bullish [for market]. But the execution will not be easy," one Chinese-soymeal trader told AgriCensus.

Meanwhile, Sichuan province has also implemented similiar measure, market sources said. This largest pig-farming province in China had reported five outbreaks between mid-November and mid-December last year. China's ministry of Science and Technology said Friday it has started research to develop a vaccine for ASF, which is currently incurable. China is both a large pork producer and consumer, and has so far culled at least 916,000 pigs due to the ASF disease. The relaxation of rules in some provinces comes as infections continue to be reported. Gansu province in north-western China has reported its second outbreak of ASF in less than a week, which marks the 104th case since August last year. The ASF disease has been impacting the demand of soymeal in China as pig farmers are wary of replenishing their pig stocks. Crushers have seen demand from feed makers and the livestock industry drop significantly this year.

Jan 18 - Busiest U.S. port sets all-time cargo record in 2018 

The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach on Wednesday said they set all-time records for moving cargo in 2018, after U.S. retailers and manufacturers pulled forward imports to avoid higher tariffs on Chinese goods. The Port of Los Angeles, North America's busiest container port, handled 9.46 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) last year, the most in its 111-year history and 1.2 percent more than in 2017.Click here to read full stories.

Jan 17 - Egypt reopens five ports after weather improves 

Egypt reopened five ports on Thursday that it had shut due to bad weather as conditions improved and winds stabilised, the Red Sea Ports Authority said. Several Egyptian port cities and the capital Cairo were hit by a severe sandstorm on Wednesday, which prompted the closure of several ports. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 17 - Shipping delays in Turkish Straits hit record high on new rules, bad weather

Delays to ships in the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles reached a record of more than 30 days for a return journey this week, Refinitiv data showed on Friday, which traders said was due to bad weather and tougher regulation. A return journey in the waterway known as the Turkish Straits normally takes around 5 to 6 days, although this time last year delays rose to up to 18 days due to bad weather, Refinitiv Eikon data showed. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 16 - Bridge collapse blocks Brussels-Scheldt canal traffic

All traffic on Belgium's Brussels-Willebroek Canal, a freight link between the capital and the Scheldt estuary around Antwerp, was halted on Thursday until at least early Saturday and probably longer after a bridge accident. Officials were still assessing the damage to the Humbeek Bridge, which lifts on cables to let ships and barges pass beneath, a spokesman for the Port of Brussels authority said. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 15 - Rio Tinto calls force majeure on some iron ore shipments after fire in Australia 

Rio Tinto said on Monday it has declared force majeure on iron ore shipments to some customers following a fire at its Cape Lambert export terminal in Australia last week. The miner closed part of the terminal's operations after the fire on last Thursday. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 15 - Beetles halt U.S. distillers' grains exports to Thailand 

Exports of U.S. distillers' dried grains to Thailand have stopped due to new fumigation requirements installed after beetles were discovered in a shipment last year, American traders said on Friday. Thai government officials said U.S. shipments required certificates showing they had been "properly fumigated." Traders said sales had effectively been halted as the two governments negotiate which gas is best for the fumigation. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 10 - China bans discharge from open-loop scrubbers in coastal waters -official 

China's maritime authority has banned the discharge of "wash water" used in ships to strip hazardous sulphur emissions from engine exhaust gases from Jan. 1, in an effort to curb pollution of its coastal seas. The ban on discharges from so-called open-loop scrubbers affects all rivers and ports along China's coastline and includes the Bohai Sea, according to an official from the China's Maritime Safety Administration (MSA). Click here to read full stories.

Jan 10 - Australia's Port Hedland iron ore shipments to China jump 14 pct in Dec 

Iron ore shipments to China from Australia's Port Hedland terminal rose 14 percent in December from a month earlier, port data released on Thursday showed. Iron ore shipments to China from the world's biggest iron ore port totalled 37.4 million tonnes in December, compared with November's 32.9 million tonnes, the Pilbara Ports Authority said. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 10 - Blaze damages Rio Tinto's Cape Lambert iron-ore export facility 

Rio Tinto Ltd closed part of its Cape Lambert iron-ore export terminal in Western Australia after a fire caused damage, the company said on Thursday. The blaze occurred early on Thursday and was extinguished with no injuries, the company said in an emailed statement. Cape Lambert is located about 1,250 km (780 miles) north of the Western Australian capital of Perth. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 10 - Egypt reopens 5 ports shut by bad weather, 2 remain closed 

Egyptian authorities reopened five ports on the Red Sea on Monday, a day after they were closed due to bad weather conditions, the Red Sea Ports Authority said. The two major ports of Alexandria and Dekheila on the Mediterranean Sea remained closed, said Reda al-Ghandour, spokesman for the Alexandria Port Authority. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 10 - Mexican ports see bottlenecks as fuel distribution slows -traders

Bottlenecks for offloading imported fuel are forming at some Mexican oil ports following government orders to shut pipelines to limit losses from widespread fuel theft, according to traders and Refinitiv Eikon data. With storage limited in Mexico, the move by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to shut pipelines and move fuel mostly by rail and truck has slowed transport, causing long lines for consumers and slowed deliveries at ports, where more than 7 million barrels of fuel - enough for several days of use in Mexico - languish. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 03 - Cyclone threatens Australian mining port 

A cyclone is expected to hit the northern Australian port of Weipa on Tuesday, disrupting shipping and lashing the coast with wind gusts of up to 100 km per hour (62 miles per hour), the weather bureau said. The Port of Weipa, which handles bauxite from Rio Tinto's, Weipa mine as well as general cargo, fuel and live cattle, remained shut for a third day as Cyclone Penny moved towards it across the Gulf of Carpentaria. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 02 - Ukraine sea port grain exports fall 21 pct in Dec. 15-21 week 

Ukrainian grain exports from sea ports fell to 536,000 tonnes in the Dec. 15-21 week from 680,000 tonnes a week earlier, analyst APK-Inform said on Wednesday. The consultancy said in a statement that smaller shipments of wheat and corn were the main reason for the drop. Click here to read full stories.

dec 28 - Morocco maintains suspension of soft wheat duty until April 30, 2019 - govt official 

Morocco will suspend the customs duty on soft wheat for four more months until April 30, 2019, to maintain price stability and ensure regular supply, a government spokesperson said on Thursday. The government has acted to maintain the import price of soft wheat at 260 Moroccan dirhams per quintal and as a social measure, Mustapha El Khalfi said at a weekly press briefing. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 20 - Turkish steel production, exports seen contracting some 30 pct, industry says 

Turkish steel production and exports are seen falling by some 30 percent in 2019, hit by weak domestic demand, protectionist measures in international markets and an increase in China's steel exports, the head of the steelexporters association said. Turkey, the world's eighth-largest steel producer and tenth-biggest exporter, has been battered by a currency crisis this year that saw the lira plunge more than 47 percent against the dollar and sent inflation to 25 percent. The crisis has knocked economic growth and hit domestic demand. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 20 - Maersk announces tender offer 

Danish shipping company AP Moller-Maersk announced a tender offer for three sets of bonds on Monday. The company kicked off any-and-all tender offers for its €130m floating-rate bond due March 2019 and its €620m 3.375% August 2019 (outstanding amounts), along with a maximum €750m of its €1bn 1.75% 2021s. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 16 - Port strike turns violent in Chile, complicates fruit exports 

A month-long worker's strike and protests in Chile's flagship port of Valparaiso turned increasingly violent and spread to other ports along the nation's Pacific coast early on Tuesday, complicating fruit exports at the start of summer. Workers in Valparaiso, a key port for fruit shipments, first walked off the job in mid-November, demanding a bonus, more formal contracts and improved working conditions. Workers' representatives and Terminal Pacifico Sur (TPS), which operates Valparaiso's port, have met several times over the 32-day strike but have yet to reach agreement. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 14 - Ocean Freight Comments (Dry Bulk) - week 50 (CCShipbrokers)

Capesize

A positive end to last week after a somewhat uncertain start as some gains made were eroded. Rates recovered later for West Australia/China, nudging the high $8.00s with rumours of $9.00 for prompt positions. In addition, there was finally action from Brazil, with a few cargoes fixed for China as the week closed out with some early ships covered in the mid-high $16.00s and $17.25 paid for early January. Brokers said there were fewer ships in ballast. Atlantic trading also perked up, with fresh business increasingly evident and rates beginning to move, with the odd weaker rate appearing. On the key Puerto Bolivar/Rotterdam run there were reports that charterers were now bidding in the low-mid $9.00s, but so far unfixed. A Narvik/El Dekheila cargo allegedly went at $7.90 and was said to show a timecharter equivalent of over $20,000. Much of the fronthaul fixed was largely breaching business from St. Lawrence, and on voyage, but rates were assessed around $30,000 daily.

Panamax

A very flat week for the indices with rates mostly hovering at the same levels, however, news of fresh concluded sales into China boosted sentiment greatly, with much more period activity evident as a result. A Panamax open South China early January covered for a year at $12,000. Multiple short period trades were also reported. The Pacific continued to be propped up by impressive Indonesian volume. The news of thirty cargoes sold from the NoPac to China, was coupled with improving rates in the North, with Kamsarmaxes fixing at $11,000 or more for round voyages again. South American trades for December slowed, as most stems have been covered now. However, rates remained steady, to slightly better, at around $15,750 plus $575,000 ballast bonus for Kamsarmaxes. In the North, period interest helped increase demand and spot rates saw a slight improvement at the end of the week.

Supramax

It was a more positive week than of late for the Baltic Supramax Index (BSI). The Index showed some strong gains, with China buying US soybeans helping to support the market. Period activity remained across both basins. A 66,000dwt open Indian Ocean fixing at around $14,000 for four to six months trading. As the week came to a close a more positive sentiment appeared across some areas;  The US Gulf showing improved activity. Brokers suggested this was due to increased enquiry from East Coast South America. A 60,000dwt was rumoured fixed from the Gulf for a trip to the Continent in the upper $17,000s. The Asian market made gains, with better flows for NoPac and Australian cargoes. A 63,000 tonner fixed delivery Surabaya trip, via West Australia, redelivery China at $13,500. There was stronger demand from SouthEast Asia, with more coal being shipped. A 63,000dwt vessel was booked delivery Gresik trip, via Indonesia, redelivery CJK in the low $14,000s.

Handysize

The overall Baltic Handysize Index (BHSI) recorded a similar level as it achieved in December 2017. Rates from East Coast South America improved, but negative sentiment from the US Gulf market became more evident last week with limited cargoes. The Pacific market was again less active as Christmas approached. On the period front, a 37,000dwt vessel open North Coast South America went for four to six months at $12,000, with redelivery within the Atlantic.

A 32,000dwt open Canakkale fixed for a trip to the Spanish Mediterranean at $13,750, while another 34,000dwt open Otranto did a similar run at $12,500. A 37,000dwt was booked for woodpellets from US East Coast to the Continent at $14,000 in mid-week, and later, a 38,000 tonner went for a similar trip in the mid $12,000s. A 32,000dwt open Singapore went for a trip via Indonesia to Thailand early last week in the East. A 38,000dwt in Vietnam fixed via Indonesia to China at the same rate.

Dec 13 - Singapore marine fuel sales drop to 17-month low in November 

Sales of marine fuels in Singapore, Asia's biggest ship fuelling port, fell 9.5 percent in November from a year earlier to a 17-month low of 3.906 million tonnes, data from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) showed on Thursday. The November volume was 5.3 percent lower than October when 4.125 million tonnes were sold. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 13 - China's COSCO Shipping considers London listing - sources 

China's largest shipping group, COSCO Shipping, is considering raising capital for the first time on the London Stock Exchange through a new initiative with Shanghai's bourse, two finance sources familiar with the matter said. The Shanghai-London Stock Connect will enable Chinese companies to raise fresh money on the LSE through issuing global depository receipts (GDR), which could boost momentum amid concerns that Brexit could dent the City of London's leading position in financial markets. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 13 - China's Zhoushan to go after Singapore marine hub's top billing 

China's port city of Zhoushan is planning to challenge Singapore's dominance of the multi-billion dollar shipping fuel industry, relying on proximity to some of the world's biggest ports and Beijing's support to give it an edge. It will be steep going. The port facilities in the cluster of islands around Zhoushan have annual marine fuel sales of 3.6 million tonnes, less than a tenth of the record 50.6 million tonnes of shipping or bunker fuel Singapore sold in 2017. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 07 - Ocean Freight Comments (Dry Bulk) - week 49 (CCShipbroker)

Panamax

The Atlantic remained fairly quiet all week. South American rates have held at around the low $15,000s plus low $500,000s on modern Kamsarmaxes. Sources suggested this is mainly due to a large clear out for December dates.. That said, some ballasters were also competing on North Coast South American stems as well as Kamsarmax cargoes. Further north, rates appeared fairly flat in limited trading volume, although the tonnage profile appears to be lengthening now. The Pacific began to look like a two-tier market, with constant Indonesian stems supporting the South, whilst the North was under pressure due to a lack of NoPac and East Australian enquiry. This was despite some weather delays for vessels in parts of China. Owners began turning their attentions to Indian cargoes in order to obtain cover into 2019 rather than remain in the Pacific. More period interest was evident, with several ships covered for a short period this week.

Supramax

The Baltic Exchange Supramax Index (BSI) remained in positive territory this week. This was mainly due to better activity levels from the Asian market. Period cover continued, with a 55,600dwt open Spain fixing at $12,500 for three to five months trading redelivery in the Atlantic at $12,500. It was a mixed bag in the Atlantic basins. The East Mediterranean was slow, with a gradual build-up of tonnage. The market was flat from East Coast South America, whilst rates varied from the US Gulf depending on position. An Ultramax open US East Coast was covered in the mid $23,000s for a US Gulf trip to the Mediterranean, whilst a prompt vessel in the US Gulf fixed at around $22,000. There was better activity than of late from Asia, with a 61,000dwt open North China fixed for a round via Indonesia at $10,000. Limited action was heard for Pacific rounds. Some said the Indian Ocean was trading sideways, however, rates remained stable. A 57,200dwt fixed at $12,500 plus $200,000 ballast bonus delivery South Africa redelivery Arabian Gulf/West Coast India range.

Handysize

It was a relatively inactive week in both basins, with the rates relatively stable. The Pacific market continued to weaken, whilst the US Gulf and East Coast South America markets showed some promise, with rates slightly improving. A 34,000dwt open Brunswick next week was fixed for a trip to UK/Continent with woodpellets at $15,000. A 33,000dwt open El Ferrol mid-December was booked for a trip to Algeria at $12,500 basis Rouen delivery. A 34,000dwt open Casablanca was fixed for a trip to the Black Sea at $9,850. A similiarly-sized vessel was booked from the Black Sea to Spain at $13,750. In the East, a 39,000dwt open Surabaya was fixed via Australia, redelivery in South Korea at $11,500. A metcoke cargo from North China paid around $8,000 on a 36,000dwt delivery mid China. A 38,000dwt open Fujairah was taken for an inter-PG run with steels at a rate in the high $10,000s.

Dec 06 - World's largest container shipper Maersk aims to be CO2 neutral by 2050

Maersk, the world's biggest container shipper, aims to be carbon neutral by 2050, in a challenge to the rest of the world's fossil fuel-dependent fleet. Denmark's Maersk said on Wednesday it aimed to have carbon neutral vessels commercially viable by 2030 by using energy sources such as biofuels and would cut its net carbon emissions to zero by 2050. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 06 - Winter to keep Russian grain exports safe from Ukraine tensions for now

Grain trade from Russia's ports on the Azov Sea will slow sharply as winter freezes the bulk of port operations, leaving the Black Sea as its main shipment route and easing the potential impact of any export curbs that could hit the region amid Russia-Ukraine tensions. Should tensions between Moscow and Kiev mount in future, leading to new incidents in the Kerch Strait, some shipowners could refuse to do business in the Azov Sea, traders said. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 05 - Ship line MSC sees over $2 bln in annual fuel costs from IMO rules

Swiss-headquartered MSC expects to pay over $2 billion a year in fuel costs due to tougher global marine fuel rules and will introduce a bunker charge next year to recoup expenses, the world's number two container line said. UN agency the International Maritime Organization (IMO) will prohibit ships from using fuels with sulphur content above 0.5 percent from Jan. 1, 2020, compared with 3.5 percent today, unless they are equipped with exhaust gas cleaning systems, known as scrubbers, to clean up sulphur emissions. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 04 - Ukraine resumes grain shipments from Azov Sea

Ukraine said on Tuesday it had resumed grain shipments from the Azov Sea, blocked for around 10 days after a military standoff with Russia in the Kerch Strait off Crimea. Russia seized three Ukrainian naval ships and their crews on Nov. 25 after opening fire on them, accusing them of illegally entering its territorial waters.  Click here to read full stories.

Dec 03 - Singapore to ban 'wash water' discharge at top ship refuelling port from 2020

Singapore's Maritime Port Authority (MPA) will ban the discharge of "wash water" used in ships to scrub engine exhaust from Jan. 1, 2020, the MPA said on Friday. The ban of so-called open-loop scrubbers is part of an effort to prepare one of the world's busiest ports for International Maritime Organization (IMO) rules that come into force in 2020 and oblige ships to use cleaner fuels. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 03 - S.Africa's average port tariffs to fall 6 pct next year - regulator

South Africa's Ports Regulator said its average tariffs for the 2019/20 financial year will decrease by 6.27 percent, although coal export charges will rise, a statement seen by Reuters on Wednesday said. The coal dry bulk export cargo dues will increase by 10 percent from April 1 next year to March 31 in 2020, while the RoRo or "roll on, roll off" cargo dues, which include the automotive sector, will decrease by a similar amount. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 30 - Ocean Freight Comments (Dry Bulk) - week 48

Panamax

Last week ended slowly in the Pacific with sources suggesting the Chinese were awaiting a positive outcome to the US-China trade war at the weekend. Rates definitely stabilized during the week, with various reports of higher fixtures concluded, although many questioned the validity of the stronger rumours as some suggested the rates had been timecharter equivalents of voyage fixtures.  Generally, there was plentiful enquiry, but many charterers had been holding back. The Atlantic also proved difficult to read: South American rates remained fairly flat, although the list of ballasters was a cause for concern, whilst the north Continent continued to appear the tightest area for tonnage supply, but without fresh enquiry this too may come under pressure soon.

Supramax

As the week closed Asia saw improvement, which led to the BSI moving into positive mode. Period talk included a 56,000dwt, fixed delivery Singapore, three to five months trading in the mid $10,000s. There were increased trading from the US Gulf and Ultramax, fixed in the mid $20,000s, for a petcoke run to the Mediterranean. Trading slowed from the Mediterranean and rates eased slightly. Asia activity increased as the week ended with a 55,000dwt, fixed delivery Makassar via Australia, redelivery Singapore-Japan at $10,750. And Indonesia coal business a Supramax, fixed delivery Kalimantan to West Coast India, at $11,000. From the Indian Ocean, levels remained static and a 55,000dwt, agreed $13,500 from Pipavav via Mina Saqr to Bangladesh. And further south a 56,000dwt, fixed delivery South Africa, for a trip to Arabian Gulf/West Coast India at approximately $12,000 plus $200,000 ballast bonus.

Handysize

There were no significant changes in the Handy market with limited activity reported. The BHSI recorded a further drop on Wednesday to 629, the same number the index achieved two months ago. The market remained slow overall but some brokers saw the rates for handy vessels from the US Gulf picking up, especially for the bigger sizes. Early last week, a 35,000dwt, open north Brazil, was fixed at $14,900 for moving sugar to the western Mediterranean. A 28,000dwtwas booked to ARAG range at $11,500, basis Jamaica delivery. A 31,000dwt agreed $10,000, basis Guayaquil, for a trip via North Coast South America to redeliver in West Africa towards the weekend. From the US Gulf, a 32,000dwt was booked from the Mississippi River, delivery to the Caribbean, with grain at $14,000. In the East, a 28,000dwt open Port Kelang was fixed with an early December date for a run via Malaysia and redelivery southeast Asia at $8,000. A 43,000dwt open, redelivery South Korea, was booked for a trip to CJK with clinker at $7,000.

Nov 29 - Australia's Fortescue readies first shipment of new mid-grade iron ore 

Australia's Fortescue Metals Group is set to ship the first cargo of its new mid-grade iron orenext month just as a rout in Chinese steel prices helps it improve its margins in competition with higher grade products. The world's fourth-largest iron ore miner will make the first shipment of its 60.1 percent West Pilbara Fines product to customers in China, in a step that is set to bolster its margins, Chief Executive Elizabeth Gaines said. Click here to read full stories

Nov 29 - Kremlin denies Ukrainian charge it is restricting shipping near Crimea

The Kremlin on Thursday denied a Ukrainian allegation that Russia was restricting shipping near Crimea as part of what Kiev said was a de facto blockade of its ports on the Sea of Azov. Ukraine's infrastructure minister, Volodymyr Omelyan, earlier on Thursday accused Russia of barring ships from leaving and entering the sea, days after Moscow seized three Ukrainian naval vessels and their crews. Click here to read full stories

Nov 29 - EU finds no aid given to container terminals by Antwerp port 

The European Commission said on Friday it had concluded that deals struck between the state-owned Port of Antwerp and two container terminals operating there did not involve state aid. The port, which is fully owned by the city of Antwerp, concluded 42-year concession agreements with operators PSA Antwerp NV and Antwerp Gateway NV in 2004 for container shipments. Click here to read full stories

Nov 29 - Shipping group CMA CGM's volumes rise, sees no trade war hit 

French container shipping group CMA CGM said its third-quarter volumes had outperformed the industry, supported by brisk trans-Pacific activity that suggested no negative impact so far from U.S.-Chinese trade tensions. CMA CGM's quarterly volumes reached 5.26 million twenty-foot equivalent (TEU) containers, up 5.5 percent from the same period last year and compared with overall sector growth of 2.5-3 percent, the company said in a statement on Friday. Click here to read full stories

Nov 29 - South Africa's Transnet halts Durban port berths project over tender probe 

South Africa's Transnet said on Friday it would stop a 7 billion rand ($505 million) project to deepen berths at Africa's biggest container terminal in the port city of Durban until a dispute over the awarding of a contract is resolved. Transnet, which operates nearly three-quarters of the African rail network, said one of the unsuccessful bidders for the project had filed a court challenge against the decision to award the contract to CMI Emtateni Joint Venture, which includes Italian construction company CMC Di Ravenna and local firms. Click here to read full stories

Nov 29 - Russia blocks Ukrainian Azov Sea ports - minister 

Two Ukrainian Azov Sea ports, Berdyansk and Mariupol, are effectively under blockade by Russia as vessels are being barred from leaving and entering, Ukraine's infrastructure minister, Volodymyr Omelyan, said on Thursday. Overall, 35 vessels have been prevented from carrying out normal operations and only vessels moving towards Russian ports on the Azov Sea are permitted entry, he said on Facebook. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 29 - Vicentin to import nearly 1 million mt of US soybean: executive (AgriCensus)
- Argentine crusher Vicentin played down the impact of delays to discharging US soybeans at its crushing facilities on Wednesday, saying that the congestion in the line-up would not represent a challenge as the logistics and the timeline of arrivals had been planned in advance.
- On Tuesday it emerged that almost 20 vessels were queueing in the Atlantic to wait to discharge soybeans at Argentinian crushers more than 100 kilometers up the River Plate.
- According to the line-up of local maritime agencies, a total of 14 bulk carriers are in the process of discharging nearly 440,000 mt of soybean at the Vicentin berth in San Lorenzo.
And other bulk carriers are in the process of discharging US soybean at the Renova berth in San Lorenzo port.
- “Sometime ships arrive later, some others arrive earlier than expected. However, we expect to see some delays, but this was planned and will not generate major problems,” the company’s logistics director, Gustavo Nardelli, told Agricensus. Nardelli added that the company had already imported over 500,000 mt of US soybeans so far this year and expected to do the same volume over the next few months.
- Nardelli said that during November and December the company will experience a peak period in terms of the arrival of bulk carriers with US soybean. “In March, we will start to receive soybean from Paraguay and Brazil and in April we expect to start receiving local soybeans,” he said.

Nov 28 - Brazil oil tanker collision reveals offshore regulatory gaps 

Brazil has more than doubled the number of risky ship-to-ship oil transfers this year, but its monitoring of such offshore maneuvers is lax, to a point where a July 2017 collision between two tankers was not reported, according to a Reuters review of government and shipping records. Transfers are projected to keep rising as the country's deep-water discoveries have lured major companies including Exxon Mobil Corp and Royal Dutch Shell Plc to recent offshore auctions. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 27 - Vessels full of US soybeans queue off coast of Argentina (Agricensus)
- Soymeal and soyoil exports from Argentina - the world’s biggest exporting nation - may face delays and trading houses that have exported soybeans to Argentina could incur substantial demurrage bills as almost two dozen boats face lengthy waits to unload US soybeans into the Up River port complex. According to lineup data, a queue of 20 vessels full of US-produced soybeans is expected to start to build 100 kilometres out into the Atlantic, waiting to sail up the River Plate to discharge at terminals and crushers at the Rosario and Santa Fe port complex.
- Until this year, Argentina had not imported soybeans in any meaningful size from any other country bar neighbouring Paraguay. However, a drought that baked its soybean crop last year has seen Argentinian crushers purchase “at least 2 million mt” of US beans over the past few months as they seek to keep their plants running, according to brokers.
- And the slow discharge rates mean their arrival may start to hit production at crushers such as the Renova plant at Timbues, which has been the most active buyer of US soybeans. “There’s a big mess with US soybean line ups here. The discharge is slower than expected,” said one market source.
- Line up data shows the 20 handysize vessels carrying more than 650,000 mt of mainly US soybeans is either queueing at the entry point known as La Recalada, or about to join the queue in the next few days. With crushers such as the Renova plant reliant on the supply to keep running, any prolonged delay may have an impact on crush rates, soymeal or soyoil exports and biodiesel production.
- Two separate sources quoting maritime reports told Agricensus that the waiting time at the Renova port to discharge is about 27 days, while the wait for loading soymeal and soyoil at the plant is seven days. Neither figure could be confirmed and Vicentin, which part owns the plant, declined to comment.

Nov 23 - NYMEX to list 11 marine fuel 0.5% futures contracts ahead of IMO sulphur cap
- New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) will launch trading for 11 marine fuel 0.5% futures contracts on the CME Globex electronic platform from 9 December this year, roughly one year ahead of IMO’s 2020 fuel sulphur cap regulation.
- The futures contracts will be cleared via CME ClearPort and will settle against S&P Global Platts physical marine fuel 0.5% assessments, announced CME Group, owner and operator of NYMEX.
- The futures contracts to be launched are: USGC Marine Fuel 0.5%; European FOB Rotterdam Marine Fuel 0.5% barges; Singapore FOB Marine Fuel 0.5%; Mini European FOB Rotterdam Marine Fuel 0.5% barges; Micro European FOB Rotterdam Marine Fuel 0.5% barges; Mini Singapore FOB Marine Fuel 0.5%; Micro Singapore FOB Marine Fuel 0.5%; Singapore FOB Marine Fuel 0.5% vs European FOB Rotterdam Marine Fuel 0.5% Barges; USGC Marine Fuel 0.5% vs Gulf Coast HSFO; Singapore FOB Marine Fuel 0.5% vs Singapore 380 CST Fuel Oil; and European FOB Rotterdam Marine Fuel 0.5% vs European 3.5% FOB Barges.
- Back in September 2017, Platts had proposed to publish daily cargo and barge assessments for marine fuels with a maximum sulphur content limit of 0.5% across key global ports from 2 January 2019. The new assessments are to be named ‘Marine Fuel 0.5%’.
- The new futures contracts mean bunker traders will be able to hedge a 0.5% instrument against a potential price fluctuation ahead of the IMO 0.5% global marine fuel sulphur content cap in 2020.
- Platts reported that liquidity on the 0.5% swap contracts is as yet unknown, but traders believed in increased activity through 2019 as demand for 0.5% low sulphur fuel picks up towards the fourth quarter of 2019.

Nov 22 - India to probe alleged antitrust behaviour by Maersk, DP World at Mumbai port-sources

India's antitrust regulator has ordered a probe into alleged anti-competitive practices by Denmark's A.P. Moller-Maersk and Dubai's DP World at the terminals they operate at the country's largest container port in Mumbai, five sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. The decision by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to investigate follows a complaint by Singapore's PSA International Pte Ltd, which alleged that Maersk and DP World created entry barriers to hinder the growth of PSA's terminal by colluding on certain charges they levy at the state-owned Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT). Click here to read full stories

Nov 22 - Northern French ports ready to ease congestion from any Brexit fallout

Smaller ports in northern France are ready to absorb more shipping traffic from Britain if congestion builds up due to any fallout from Brexit, a top French official said on Wednesday. The Ports of Normandy Authority (PNA) currently owns and operates Cherbourg and Caen-Ouistreham terminals and will take on operating Dieppe nearby in 2019. Click here to read full stories

Nov 21 - China's Datong Coal Mine to move shipments to Caofeidian - local media

Chinese coal miner Datong Coal Mine Group will gradually move its coal shipments to Caofeidian port from Qinhuangdao Port in the north, an official media platform of the Tangshan city government reported on Tuesday. The move comes as Qinhuangdao city in Hebei province, the country's current busiest coal transport hub, aims to adjust its business structure by abandoning dirty commodities and boosting tourism and container shipments. Click here to read full stories

Nov 20 - Ukraine sea port grain exports fall 53 pct in Nov. 10-16 week

Ukrainian grain exports from sea ports fell to 665,000 tonnes in the Nov. 10-16 week from 1.4 million tonnes a week earlier, analyst APK-Inform said on Monday. The consultancy said in a statement that smaller shipments of wheat and barley were the main reason for the drop. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 14 -In APEC host Papua New Guinea, China and the West grapple over strategic port 

When Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O'Neill flagged the possibility of China bankrolling a port development off his country's northern coast in June, the consternation in neighbouring Australia set off a lightening-fast response. Despite a change in leadership in Australia's government in August, a rival offer was swiftly formulated, government and diplomatic sources told Reuters, amid concern the strategically-located Manus Island port could regularly host Chinese military vessels. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 13 -Three Asian groups vie for Brazilian ports owned by Wilson Sons - report 

Three Asian groups are interested in acquiring two container terminals up for sale by Brazilian private port operator Wilson Sons, Brazilian newspaper Valor Economico reported on Thursday. Singapore's PSA, China's Hutchison Port Holding and China Merchant Port Holdings have delivered non-binding proposals for terminals in Salvador, in the northeastern state of Bahia, and Rio Grande, in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul, the paper said, without disclosing its source. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 12 -China's 2018/19 soybean imports seen dropping to 91 mln T - Informa Economics 

China's soybean imports in 2018/19 are expected to drop to 91 million tonnes from 94 million tonnes a year ago, an official of private analytics firm Informa Economics said on Wednesday. China, which buys 60 percent of soybeans traded worldwide, is locked in a bitter trade dispute with the United States. It has curbed the country's purchases of U.S. beans. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 08 - Australia's Port Hedland iron ore shipments to China fall 12 pct in October 

Iron ore shipments to China from Australia's Port Hedland terminal fell 12 percent in October from a month earlier, port data released on Tuesday showed. Iron ore shipments to China from the world's biggest iron ore port totalled 32.8 million tonnes in October, compared with September's 37.4 million tonnes, according to the Pilbara Ports Authority. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 08 - BHP expects derailed train to impact its Australian iron ore exports 

Mining giant BHP Billiton, expects some interruption to its Australian iron ore exports after a nearly 3-km-long train loaded with the commodity was forcibly derailed this week after running away en route to a key shipping hub. BHP said in a statement on Wednesday that its reserves of the steelmaking ingredient at the Port Hedland hub were not expected to cover the entire period of disruption following the incident, and that it would be liaising with its customers about its contractual commitments over that time. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 07 - Myanmar agrees smaller deal for China-backed port after 'debt-trap' concern 

Myanmar on Thursday signed an agreement with China's state-run CITIC Group to begin work on a deep-sea port in the west of the country, after negotiations that saw the initial phase of the project scaled back over fears of a "debt trap". Myanmar Deputy Minister of Planning and Finance Set Aung said Myanmar and CITIC signed a "framework agreement" for the port in Kyauk Pyu, in conflict-hit coastal Rakhine State. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 06 - India plans to export 2 mln T of sugar to China from next year - govt statement 

India plans to export 2 million tonnes of raw sugar to China from next year, the trade ministry said on Thursday, as part of efforts to trim bulging stocks of the sweetener and bridge a widening trade deficit. Producers' body Indian Sugar Mills Association and China's state trader COFCO have already signed an initial deal for 15,000 tonnes of sugar, the ministry said in a statement. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 02 - Russian watchdog to apply for suspension of five grain loading points - RIA  

Russia's agriculture safety watchdog plans to ask a court to temporarily suspend operations at five grain loading points in the country's Rostov region, the RIA news agency quoted it as saying on Thursday. The regulator, Rosselkhoznadzor, has beefed up quality controls on grain exports since mid-September. Along with a stronger rouble, this has slowed Russian grain exports, though the watchdog said that was not its intention.  Click here to read full stories.

Nov 01 - U.N. shipping agency pushes ahead with tougher marine fuel rules 

The United Nations shipping agency pushed back this week on any phased entry for tougher marine fuel rules and further tightened regulations that will come into force in 2020. The International Maritime Organization will prohibit ships from using fuels with sulphur content above 0.5 percent from Jan. 1, 2020, compared with 3.5 percent today, unless they are equipped with so-called scrubbers to clean up sulphur emissions. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 01 - China slashes Sept U.S. scrap copper imports; sends alumina to Iceland, 

Chinese imports of scrap metal from the United States fell in September, according to customs data on Thursday, spelling out the impact of tariffs imposed by Beijing, while India and Iceland benefited from a boom in Chinese alumina exports. China's General Administration of Customs said in a statement posted on its website on Thursday that it was making available to the public monthly data on the import and export of commodities, including the country of origin for imports and destination for exports. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 31 - U.S. seeks 'pragmatic' approach to new marine fuel standards 

The United States is looking for a "pragmatic" approach to the implementation of new marine fuel emission rules that go into effect in 2020, a U.S. Coast Guard official said on Thursday. The United States will seek to develop a proposal or proposals with like-minded countries for a May 2019 meeting of the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) environmental body, Rear Admiral John Nadeau, assistant commandant for prevention policy for the Coast Guard, said on the sidelines of a conference in New York. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 26 - Red flag warnings: Global shipping freight rates slump as trade slows 

The cost of hiring container ships has plunged 24 percent from a multi-year peak while raw material vessel rates have slumped 10 percent from a five-year high, adding to signs of slowing global trade with dangerous implications for the economy. While much of world is focused on the stock market losses this week, the drop in shipping rates as trade declines because of the trade dispute between the United States and China, emerging market currency weakness and tighter credit conditions is an omen of slowing global economic growth. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 25 - Piraeus Port urges Greece to speed up investment plan approval 

Piraeus Port Authority (PPA), operator of Greece's largest port, wants the Greek government to speed up the approval of an investment plan that aims to attract more business to one of Europe's largest harbours, executives said on Friday. PPA, majority owned by China's COSCO Shipping, is awaiting the green light from Greece's shipping ministry to proceed with mandatory investments based on its concession agreement with the Greek state. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 24 - Egypt cuts fees for ships arriving at East Port Said 

Egypt will reduce the tariffs on container ships and ferries coming from foreign ports to East Port Said for a period of one year, the Suez Canal Authority said in a statement on Thursday. A 30 percent discount on port, docking and guiding fees will apply for vessels carrying less than 80,000 tonnes while those carrying more than that will receive a 40 percent discount, the statement said. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 23 - Ship financiers back tougher action to cut CO2 emissions at sea 

Leading shipping finance banks have joined industry players in support of faster action to cut carbon emissions by the sector. In April, the United Nations shipping agency reached an agreement to reduce CO2 emissions by at least 50 percent by 2050 compared with 2008 levels, which fell short of more ambitious targets. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 19 - Argentina transport union announces strike; could impact grain shipments 

Argentina's transportation union announced late on Wednesday night that it would go on strike next week to call for an increase in hauling rates, in a move that could disrupt the nation's grain shipments. More than 80 percent of the country's agriculture production is shipped by truck to ports. As a result, the strike could also impact some port activity, although it is currently the low season for grains. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 18 - EU Commission authorises expansion of Denmark's shipping tax 

The European Commission approved on Friday the expansion of a Danish scheme to tax shipping companies on their tonnage, the EU executive said in a statement. Under the so-called tonnage tax schemes, shipping companies pay taxes on the basis of the size of the shipping fleet rather than on their actual taxable profits. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 18 - Rhine water levels at record low, hampering barge trade 

Water levels on the Rhine River fell to a record low on Thursday and were forecast to fall even further, hampering oil product barge trading in northwest Europe. Water levels at the Kaub point of the river fell to 31 cm, according to Refinitiv Eikon data, the lowest level in data available since September 1995. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 18 - Global carbon emissions to hit new record in 2018 - IEA's Birol

Global carbon emissions will rise to a new record level in 2018, making the chances of reaching a target to keep temperature increases to 1.5 or 2 degrees Celsius remote, the head of the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Wednesday. IEA's Fatih Birol told a conference in Paris that data for the first nine months of the years was already pointing to a record increase in carbon emissions. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 17 - Shippers scramble to install sulphur filters ahead of rule change

Ship owners accelerated installations of engine cleaning systems this year ahead of stringent new rules in 2020 which sharply reduce the amount of sulphur ships can emit from the 3.5 percent in current bunker fuel to 0.5 percent, according to a report. Vessel operators can either switch to cleaner, but more expensive, marine gasoil or install scrubbers to filter sulphur from dirtier fuel oil. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 16 - U.S. eyes West Coast military bases to export coal, gas - report

President Donald Trump's administration is considering using West Coast military facilities to export coal and natural gas to Asia, according to an Associated Press report on Monday, citing U.S. Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. The move would help fossil fuel producers ship their products to Asia and circumvent environmental concerns in Democratic-leaning states like Washington, Oregon and California that have rejected efforts to build new coal ports. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 12 - Glencore wins cut to coal carrying costs out of Newcastle 

Australia's competition regulator said on Monday the Port of Newcastle must reduce its charges for ships entering the port to carry coal for Glencore, in a big win for the global miner. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission said Port of Newcastle Operations Pty Ltd (PNO) should cut its current rate by about 20 percent to A$0.61 per gross tonne, backdated to 2016. The port said it would contest the decision. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 12 - Singapore plans to tighten controls in maritime fuel industry 

Singapore plans to apply stricter control measures to the marine fuels sector, a move that industry sources say could boost transparency in a notoriously opaque industry. Singapore was the first port to mandate the use of mass flow meters (MFMs) in 2017 for marine, or bunker, fuel oil sales from barges to the end-user vessels. The proposed measures would extend the use of MFMs to fuel transfers from oil terminals to the bunker barges. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 12 - Maersk Oil Trading leases Singapore storage ahead of 2020 ship fuel changes 

Maersk Oil Trading has leased oil storage space in Singapore, signalling a push by one of the world's biggest ship fuel buyers into the Asian bunkering hub ahead of changes to global fuel standards from 2020, trade sources said. Maersk Oil has taken storage at the Tankstore oil terminal in Singapore, a spokesman for parent A.P. Moller-Maersk told Reuters, without giving further details. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 12 - LOOP suspends operations at Marine Terminal ahead of Hurricane Michael 

The Louisiana Offshore Oil Port (LOOP) on Tuesday said it has suspended operations at its marine terminal ahead of Hurricane Michael. "There are no other interruptions in receipts or deliveries at the Clovelly Hub," the company said on its website. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 11 - Brazil's coffee exports rise; lack of space in ships hits trade 

Brazilian coffee exporters shipped 2.73 million 60-kg bags of coffee abroad in September, 27 percent more than a year earlier, but a lack of container space in ships prevented larger volumes as the country sells a record crop. Coffee exporters association Cecafé said on Wednesday that some exporters had to delay loading of coffee at ports because they could not find cargo space in container ships. Cecafé said it had asked Brazil's government for help to solve the problem. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 11 - Traders say U.S. to be big winner of new IMO shipping rules

The United States is set to be the big winner from new marine fuel rules, trading house Gunvor Group predicted on Wednesday, while rival merchants said the world would not face a shortage of distillates as a result of new rules to cut pollution. The UN's International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has set new rules that will ban ships from using fuels with a sulphur content above 0.5 percent from 2020, compared with 3.5 percent now, unless they are equipped with so-called scrubbers to clean up sulphur emissions. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 11 - Rain slows U.S. corn, soy harvest; disrupts river barge traffic

Excessive rains across the central United States over the past week have slowed the harvest of corn and soybeans, while rising water levels closed at least three locks on the Upper Mississippi River, a key artery for shipping Midwest grain to U.S. Gulf exporters. Cash bids for corn shipped by barge to the Gulf firmed on Tuesday, reflecting exporter demand and dwindling pipeline supplies as rising river levels slowed barge traffic. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 10 - Australia's Port Hedland iron ore shipments to China rise 5 pct in Sept 

Iron ore shipments to China from Australia's Port Hedland terminal rose 5.3 percent in September from a month earlier, port data released on Wednesday showed. Iron ore shipments to China from the world's biggest iron ore port totalled 37.4 million tonnes in September, up from August's 35.5 million tonnes, according to the Pilbara Ports Authority. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 4 - Singapore bunkering hub ready for IMO 2020, expands LNG bunkering group - minister 

Singapore authorities are taking measures to ensure the availability of low-sulphur marine fuels ahead of upcoming emissions regulations in 2020, Singapore's Senior Minister of State for Transport and Health Lam Pin Min said on Wednesday. "(The) MPA is working closely with the industry to ensure that Singapore is ready to supply low-sulphur compliant fuels ahead of 1 January, 2020," said Lam at the Singapore International Bunkering Conference and Exhibition. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 4 - Russia has no immediate plans to suspend grain loading points in Krasnodar - RIA 

Russia's agriculture safety watchdog has no immediate plans to suspend the operation of grain loading points in Black Sea ports near the city of Krasnodar, a regional office of the watchdog was quoted as saying by RIA news agency on Wednesday. Chicago wheat prices rose on Wednesday after the watchdog said on Tuesday it could temporarily suspend operations of 30 inland grain loading points in two of Russia's top grain exporting regions - Krasnodar and Rostov. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 4 - Singapore's port authority has invested $19 mln to date for LNG marine fuels 

Singapore's port authority has so far invested S$26 million ($19 million) into developing cleaner-burning liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel at the city-state, the world's largest marine refuelling hub, an executive at the port authority said. "We've been working to develop LNG-bunkering in Singapore since about late-2015," said Alan Lim, deputy director at the Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) of Singapore, told Reuters at the sidelines of the Singapore International Bunkering Conference and Exhibition on Tuesday. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 3 - Singapore bunkering hub ready for IMO 2020, expands LNG bunkering group - minister

Singapore authorities are taking measures to ensure the availability of low-sulphur marine fuels ahead of upcoming emissions regulations in 2020, Singapore's Senior Minister of State for Transport and Health Lam Pin Min said on Wednesday. "(The) MPA is working closely with the industry to ensure that Singapore is ready to supply low-sulphur compliant fuels ahead of 1 January, 2020," said Lam at the Singapore International Bunkering Conference and Exhibition. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 1 - Shippers cut Ghana cocoa export freight by 9.4 pct - Body 

Shippers ferrying Ghana's cocoa exports to Europe will cut their freight charges by 9.4 percent for the October-September season to compensate the country for recent global bean price falls, the head of the Ghana shippers authority said on Friday. Benonita Bismarck said that from Monday, shippers will charge 35 pounds per tonne for cocoa shipments to Europe, compared with the 39 pounds its members received in the previous season. Click here to read full stories.