Greek Shipping News Cuts
Week 07 - 2011
---Friday February 18, 2011 (21:18)
Revenues from the shipping sector, a crucial source of income for the Greek economy, rebounded in 2010, while the tourism sector had another bad year, according to data from the Bank of Greece released on Friday.
Revenues from Greek ship-owners, who control about a fifth of the global fleet, rose 13 percent to 15.4 billion euros after dipping by 30 percent to 13.5 billion in the previous year, the data showed.
Improving global trade created better conditions for Greek shipowners that have been doing more business with China and India.
Tourism revenues in 2010 fell 7 percent to 9.6 billion euros after dipping 10.6 percent in 2009 to 10.4 billion euros, Bank of Greece said.
In a bid to help boost the sector, the government announced recently that it will lower the tax applicable on hotels to 6.5 percent from 11 percent.
The sector is also seen as getting a boost this season from the civil unrest that recently shook Egypt.
For the month of December, the drop in the current account deficit was sharper, falling by 38.5 percent to 1.89 billion euros.
Greek Maritime Affairs minister leaving for China on Saturday
---Maritime Affairs, Islands and Fisheries Minister Yiannis Diamantidis will be leaving for Beijing at noon on Saturday and will be holding meetings with representatives of Chinese banks, maritime company officials and the president of the Cosco group, Jiafu Wei.
The minister will be accompanied by about 20 shipowners and representatives of maritime companies, since the action plan includes the activation of funding by the biggest Chinese banks amounting to 5 billion dollars to the Greek shipowners for the building of ships of theirs in Chinese shipyards.
Diamantidis on Monday cited what he called the significant presence of Greek shipping representatives in the group he will lead on an official visit to China.
Diamantidis was responding to a tabled question by main opposition New Democracy (ND) MP Yiannis Plakiotakis.
The minister said the purpose of the trip is to promote Greek ocean-going shipping interests in what is now the world's second largest economy, prospects for more shipbuilding contracts in China and implementing bilateral cooperation, as envisioned in a relevant Sino-Greek memorandum.
Greek shipowner wants four tankers from Brodosplit
Karnessis is a long-time client of Brodosplit and his technical director is said to be visiting the shipyard to set up the new jobs, the daily Vecernji List writes.
Although officials have not confirmed these rumours, sources close to the daily say that the Greek entrepreneur is interested in building four tankers.
It is also rumoured that another four contracts from different clients are underway, the daily writes.
The workers are hopeful that the ban on new contracts is going to be lifted in the next few days. The European Union (EU) has banned state-funded shipyards from taking new orders until the plans for their reconstruction and/or privatization are finalized.
The EU does not permit the Croatian state to continue to support the shipyards as this could lead to a more advantageous position on the market for some state subsidized firms.
The unions remain ready to protest should the ban continue, but are hopeful that there will be no need for such action.
London Greeks reiterate backing for Imo managed fuel levy
---The London-based Greek Shipping Co-operation CommitteeEbacks a fuel levy "as the most suitable mechanism" among market-based mechanisms for cutting carbon emissions from the world's shipping fleet. The shipowners have also said any mechanism should be designed and implemented by Imo, and be purely for the benefit of the environment.
By contrast, an emissions trading scheme (ETS) would become "a disastrous burden on the shipping industry without significant compensatory environmental benefit", GSCC said in a recently issued position paper on emission reductions for shipping.
It is not the first time the GSCC, seen by many as an industry think-tank, has expressed its views in the on-going debate regarding emissions and GHG, having previously issued a paper on the subject in April 2008. This latest position paper reiterates its earlier position.
The GSCC said any measure, particularly a Market Based Mechanism (MBM), must be based on the "reduction in carbon emissions" rather than on the "revenue generated". It expresses concern the UN High-Level Advisory Group on Climate Change Financing "has identified maritime transportation as a significant source of revenue". The GSCC says it agrees with "most other national and international shipping associations that the industry must not be targeted as the source of funding for the climate change agenda of the world's politicians" and in particular, "the flow of funds for environmental development or other purposes from developed to developing nations".
"The shipping industry must not be considered a 'cash-cow'," the GSCC declared.
To preserve a "competitive level playing field" within the industry, the GSCC contends measures should be applied globally, regardless of the flag of the vessel or the country of the loading or discharge port. In view of the mobility of the flag state registration with the maritime sector, the GSCC "does not believe any solution, which gives certain flag states advantages over others, is appropriate for the shipping industry".
The owners, though not in favour of an MBM for the shipping industry, say they would nevertheless "support a solution agreed at Imo", including an MBM, provided "it was applied uniformly to all ships trading worldwide", and that "any revenue contributed by or derived from the maritime sector would be directed by Imo purely towards environmental benefit, in a completely transparent manner".
The GSCC is particularly opposed to an ETS, "or any scheme" requirying shipowners to purchase emissions trading permits in order to continue to trade. The GSCC believes such scheme is unsuitable for shipping, especially "if third parties outside the maritime sector, such as financial institutions and / or futures trading houses, were permitted to engage in the emissions trading process". Such trading would make profits for some and losses for others, while "providing no benefit whatsoever to the environment".
The GSCC notes that according to the analysis made by the US Congressional Budget Office for land-based manufacturing businesses "which are fewer and therefore capable of being administered more cost effectively than the international maritime transportation sector, a fuel oil levy would be much more cost effective than an ETS".
Backing a fuel levy as the more suitable mechanism, the GSCC says "it would be applied to all ships worldwide on the basis of their fuel oil consumption". "It would be consistent with the aim of reducing fuel oil consumption and, thus, carbon emissions. Moreover, only a levy would produce certainty with respect to the price of carbon," argue the London-based Greeks.
-- Filed: 2011-02-14
---Related-party ship management is now a red flag
The business model is entrenched, particularly among Greeks, but there is a plausible answer to the criticism.
The company most commonly associated with related-party excess is DryShips, given its intertwined relationship with manager Cardiff, owned by DryShips CEO George Economou. In an interview with Fairplay, DryShips COO Pankaj Khanna rebutted those charges.
Nevertheless, other sources have told Fairplay that institutional investors who will decide the fate of future IPOs have definitely soured on the insider ship management model. What worked during the 2004-07 IPO bonanza is unlikely to fly in the next round of flotations, after freight rates recover.
Source: Fairplay - Trade 17 Feb 2011
Values on verge of a big plunge
---The potential sale of a 2004-built supramax bulker could signal a major drop in bulker values.
Harbor Shipping of Greece is negotiating the purchase price of a bulker that could see a significant fall in ship values.
The bulker has been repeatedly reported sold since December with the price lowered each time. The ship was first said to have gone to new owners for $28m, then in January the price was reported at $26.5m and then $24m. In the past week, brokers have mentioned a price of between $22.8m and $23m.
TradeWinds understands that Harbor is looking to buy at lower levels.
The would represent a significant fall in values. Secondhand prices for 50,000-dwt bulkers of this age have averaged at around $31m over the past year. The last comparable deal in the segment was for the 52,000-dwt Gecon I (built 2005) last month at $31m. Both the Saffron and Gecon I are Japanese built.
The anticipation of a fall in bulker values led to a prediction this week from investment bank Arctic Securities of a fall of 20% as a deluge of newbuildings hit a market scarred by the near collapse of Korea Line Corp (KLC) (see page 4). The prediction means some asset values in the sector will fall to levels not seen since before the bulker boom.
If a deal is sealed, the purchase signals yet another growth spurt for Harbor, which bought two bulkers just before the shipping market collapsed in September 2008 and another two after ship values dramatically fell.
It took the 30,000-dwt Chios Voyager (built 1984) for a reported $21m and 43,000-dwt Chios Star (built 1984) for $29m. Both were delivered during the first months of the shipping crisis.
But in early 2009, Harbor reportedly paid a dramatically lower $4.25m for the 40,700-dwt bulker Chios Wind (built 1984) and $3.4m for the 38,800-dwt Chios Liberty (built 1984).
Harbor is well known in Piraeus for choosing its ships based on construction specifications rather than age. Three of its bulkers are Japanese built and the Chios Voyager was built at Sunderland Ship Building, another yard for which Harbor has shown preference in the past.
Harbor also manages another two bulkers aged between 10 and 15 years for third parties.
By Yiota Gousas Athens
Published: 23:01 GMT, 17 Feb 11 | updated: 21:52 GMT, 16 Feb 11
Cost cuts help Piraeus return to profit
--- * Tuesday 15 February 2011, 16:46 * by Nigel Lowry
Port set to enjoy positive year in 2011 after loss-making 2009
Mr Anomeritis gave few financial details but said the port had bounced back from a loss-making year in 2009 after axing its costs.
Third-party fees were slashed by 31% in 2010 while services to third parties were reduced by 17%.
The third main source of cost-trimming was the reduction of Piraeus port staff by 253 during the year, which brought down the wage bill by 11%, said the PPA.
NewLead charters out LR1s
---(Feb 18 2011)
NewLead Holdings has entered into two new long-term timecharter contracts for two LR1 product tankers.
The net daily rate for each vessel will be $11,700 for the first year, $13,650 for the second, third and fourth years and $15,600 for the fifth year.
In addition, Newlead has signed a profit-sharing agreement equal to 50% of the actual earnings up to $26,000 per day and 30% above that amount.
Michael Zolotas, NewLead's president and chief executive officer, said, "We believe the combination of long-term coverage with a quality counterparty, escalating rates and profit sharing provides an overall excellent transaction for Newlead.
"We have established an attractive and increasing base rate that secures our downside and can participate in our upside through the profit sharing mechanism throughout the term of the charter," he explained.
As a result of these charters, Newlead expects to have 73% of its operating days covered for 2011, 56% for 2012 and 46% for 2013, the company said.
Athens Shipbuilding Conference - 6 April 2011, Ledra Marriott
---Interest on the part of shipowners in new builds has again perked up with Hellenic shipowners especially booking a considerable number of ships as 2010 progressed mainly in Chinese and Korean yards. Seemingly they considered that the new building prices were offering certain advantages to them and they had cash available to cover their requirements and were able to secure the necessary financing.
The shipbuilders of China and South Korea are no longer newcomers, their shipbuilding industry is now two and four decades old respectively. How are the ships produced bearing up? What are the new trends in shipbuilding? How important will be the effect of new Environmental regulations? Will the new ships be much more efficient than the ships of the current decade? Will this accelerate scrapping and increase shipbuilding demand?
Further, are ship owners ordering the right ships? And what are the costs involved in order to comply with the ever increasing library of regulations, often formulated by people who have little practical knowledge of the maritime industry and are less than willing to listen to those that do have the knowledge? Will Regulators, Yards and Ship owners be able to cooperate in an efficient way and produce results that will keep all involved in business and happy?
Analysts are divided over the supply and demand equation, as well as over the cost equation, but as more ships are daily set to be delivered into the market in the coming months, there is no doubt ship owners have contracted and are building a fleet ready for the future.
The Summit: Building for the Future, to be held in Athens, April 6, 2011, where interaction between shipyards, classification societies, ship owners and the panels drawn from the shipbuilders of the Far East and most importantly the audience (Members of the Hellenic and the International shipping communities), with whom they work, aims to provide the answers.
For more, go to http://www.diorama.gr/conference/
Athens Seminar - Ship to Ship Transfer Operations - 3rd March 2011, Piraeus Marine Club
---Risks and regulations of ship to ship transfer operations become more onerous
The UK P&I Club and UK Defence Club are hosting a seminar on Ship to Ship Transfer Operations (STS) in conjunction with OnlineSTS.net and FenderCare on the 3rd March at the Piraeus Marine Club.
A growing trend in collision incidents in maritime areas allowing STS transfers has highlighted some of the complexities of liability and contractual arrangements associated with this practice as well as the potential for serious pollution or personal injury claims.
This seminar is particularly topical as amendments to MARPOL Annex I for the prevention of marine pollution during some ship-to-ship oil transfer operations entered into force on 1st January 2011.
The seminar programme will address the new IMO regulations and the necessary preparations to ensure ships, their equipment, crews and chosen docking master are appropriate. Practical insights into the actual STS operation will be provided by a qualified docking master.
The social reception that follows the seminar provides an opportunity for those attending to discuss points of interest with the speakers and other representatives of the companies involved.
If you wish to attend this seminar, please contact Ms Marinella Makarona at the Thomas Miller Hellas office in Piraeus either by telephone (+30 210 458 5218) or email ([email protected]).
Source: press Release