Greek Shipping News Cuts
Week 34 - 2002


Superfast calls on Scots truckers

SUPERFAST, the Greek ferry operator, is seeking to drum up freight support for its three-month old service between Zeebrugge, Belgium and Rosyth, Scotland. Although the link has carried more than 80,000 passengers since its launch in May, the operator is warning that long-term survival is uncertain if road hauliers do not use it more often. Superfast director Yannis Criticos admitted it always takes time to generate cargo volumes and establish a presence on a new ferry route. The Superfast IX and Superfast X are currently operating on the route, offering ro-ro capacity for up to 110 freight units and 115 cars, while passenger capacity is little more than 626. They operate overnight crossings of 17 hours at a service speed of 30 kt. Phil Flanders, Scotland regional director of the UK's Road Haulage Association said there were a number of advantages of using the service, including the opportunity to avoid the long and expensive drive to ports in southern England. "Any time the drivers are on the ferry won't count towards their working time," he said, adding that drivers would find the service crucial in 2005 when the European Working Time directive tightens the rules for drivers.
Source: Fairplay, 22 August 2002

Price spike for Tsakos shares
Tsakos Energy Navigation shares on the New York Stock Exchange jumped from the previous close of $11.85 to an intraday high of $13.35 in early Tuesday trade. However, the price surge receded in the early afternoon, falling back down to about $12.99, up $1.14 from Monday's close. The 12.66% stock price hike on Tuesday was attributed to the thin trading volume. About 64,000 shares changed hands as of early Tuesday afternoon, and only 16,900 were traded on Monday.
US equity analysts said that the "buying spree" for Tsakos stock on Tuesday was made up of a series of small deals. "Most of the deals are about a few hundreds lots in volume...there might be only one block sale for the day," an analyst said. A block sale is defined as a sale worth 10,000 shares or more.
Another analyst cautioned against reading too much into the price hike. "There were no institutional selling and no news on the company," he said. The first analyst said that Tsakos stock was probably oversold at the $9 level, prompting some bargain buying by investors. "Some bearish institutional traders who wanted to liquidate their stocks and get out of the tanker market had contributed to the price plunge," he said. The tanker stock, which had an IPO price of $15, plunged a 52-week low of $9.42 on 15 August. The stock was mainly pressured down by the company's weak net income for the first half of this year and a bearish short-term market outlook. However, the stock has been climbing back up slowly in the past few trading sessions, reaching the $11.85 level on Monday. Tsakos Energy plans to spend $2.5m to buy back some of the company shares over the next few months, hoping to inject confidence into the weak stock.
Source: TradeWinds, 20 Aug 2002

US Coast Guard to transfer patrol boat to Greece
A US Coast Guard vessel has been approved for transfer to Greece's Coast Guard corps, it was announced on Wednesday. The 64-metre patrol boat will undergo a complete renovation and upgrade before being turned over to Greece in late 2002. Both the US Senate and House of Representatives approved of the transfer, following a relevant request by the Greek merchant marine ministry via US ambassador Thomas Miller. Merchant Marine Minister George Anomeritis added that the patrol boat will be fully operational on the day it is transferred. The vessel can reach a speed of up to 18 knots and carry a crew of 12 officers and 63 crewmembers.
Source: Robby News, 21 August 2002

Greek Ship Finance Forum
Leading Greek and international Shipowners will express thier views during the 4th annual Greek Ship Finance Forum, which will be held at the Athens Ledra Marriott Hotel, Thursday, 17 October 2002, announced Marine Money and Fortis Bank.
The forum attracts leading executives from shipping companies, financial community as well as legal and broking community.
This years forum will look at:
Source: Marine Money, 22 August 2002

Conference on ancient shipbuilding
An International conference featuring participants from twenty countries and looking into issues of shipbuilding, marine archaeological research and new technologies used in underwater archaeology will take place on the island of Hydra August 27-30. One of the event's highlights is the arrival on August 18 of an 8-metre long vessel, a model of an AD 2 rowing boat brought to light in 1998 following a series of digs in the suburbs of Pisa. The conference comes complete with a photography exhibition showcasing various types of Mediterranean ships which no longer exist from the Florence Archives and Haris Tzallas' collection of US newspaper clippings speaking favourably of the Greek War of Independence. Spanning the period from 1821 to 1826 Tzallas' collection was first displayed in New York on March 25.
Source: Athens News, 19 August 2002