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Panamax freight spikes in Pacific on Atlantic grain demand, US-China deal

Panamax freight rates on leading Pacific routes surged on Thursday on the back of Atlantic grain demand as well as on expectations of this segment benefiting from the signing of the US-China Phase 1 trade deal. S&P Global Platts assessed the key 75,000-mt (plus/minus 10%) metallurgical coal route from Hay Point on Australia’s east coast to Paradip on India’s east coast at $13.80/mt on Thursday, up $1.35/mt from Wednesday. This 10% spike is the highest single day jump since early January 2016. The corresponding time charter equivalent (TCE) rate for ...

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Baltic index dips on subdued demand for capesize vessels

The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index fell on Friday, as a fall in capesize vessel rates on weak demand outweighed gains in the other vessel segments. The Baltic index, which tracks rates for capesize, panamax and supramax vessels ferrying dry bulk commodities, dropped 14 points, or 1.8%, to 754. The index lost 0.5% this week, the sixth straight weekly loss. The capesize index dropped 72 points, or 9.2%, to 712 – its lowest since late-April. The index registered its 26th straight session of losses and declined 26% this week. ...

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BIMCO Expands Ice Information Service

Overview As part of its offering to members, BIMCO has updated and expanded its online database on ice information. Foremost, the web-resource reflects the recently amended Polar Code and the subsequently revised national rules, which regulates navigation in arctic waters. “A lot of national regulations have been changed to reflect the revisions to the international Polar Code that went into force in 2017. The guidance provided by the individual Arctic states applicable to their regions is now referenced in the ice information available on the BIMCO website, says Peter Lundahl ...

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VHSS New ConTex Container Ship Time Charter Assessment Index Week 03 2020

While Chinese New Year festivities are ahead of us the fixing activities in the container charter market remain slow for the smaller segments of

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Drewry: World Container Index Up 2.2%

The composite index increased marginally this week and, conversely 2.2% up when compared with same period of 2019. The average composite index of the WCI, assessed by Drewry for year-to-date, is US $1,801 per 40ft container, which is $406 higher than the five-year average of $1,395 per 40ft container. Drewry’s composite World Container Index as anticipated has remained stable with a marginal increase of 1% bringing the Index to $1791.34 per 40ft container. Spot rates from Shanghai to Genoa grew by 1 % or $32 to $2662 per feu and ...

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World seaborne coal trade rose 0.7% in 2019 – German importers

Seaborne coal trade around the world grew 0.7% last year, helped by higher output in China and Indonesia and more export activity by Indonesia, Australia, Russia and Canada, Germany’s VDKI coal importers lobby said. Imports and exports, counted together, rose to 1.218 billion tonnes from 1.210 billion tonnes in 2018, VDKI Managing Director Franz-Josef Wodopia said in an speech made available to Reuters, citing VDKI estimates. Within the 2019 total, trade in coking coal used for steelmaking dropped by 1% to 287 million tonnes as steel production declined, the Verein ...

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Trade deal better for shipping demand than for stocks

The signing of the Phase One trade pact between the U.S. and China on Wednesday is a clear positive for ocean shipping demand. But the sentiment overhang on shipping equities will likely linger. There’s still too much uncertainty on future trade relations between the two countries. China is committed to buying $77.8 billion in U.S. manufactured products over the next two years, which is good for the container sector; $32 billion in agricultural products, a plus for dry bulk shipping; and $52.4 billion in energy exports, which should support tankers ...

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China iron ore port stocks rose on greater arrivals

Inventories of seaborne iron ore across Chinese ports rose this week, after declining for two consecutive weeks, due to more arrivals. SMM data showed that iron ore stocks across 35 Chinese ports increased 650,000 mt in the week ended January 17 to 114.4 million mt, after a decline of 1.66 million mt in the previous week. This was 15.82 million mt lower than the same period last year. SMM estimates that there were 87 vessels carrying 14.18 million mt of iron ore arrived at major Chinese ports during January 5-11, ...

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Mental Health First Aid: a game changer to improve our seafarers’ lives?

I was manning the emergency phone when a call came in reporting that a seafarer had stabbed two other crew members on board a vessel in the middle of the ocean. We focused on handling the emergency and prioritised the evacuation of the two injured crew. Fortunately, they arrived at the hospital in time and were saved despite serious injuries and severe bleeding. Later, I learned that the man who committed the stabbing had presented signs of psychological instability days before the incident. This was several years ago but the ...

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Port of Los Angeles exec says U.S. tariff tiffs could be ‘new normal’

The executive overseeing the busiest U.S. gateway for ocean trade with China said the “weaponisation of tariffs” to advance U.S. policy interests may now be the “new normal.” The comments from Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka came just a day after U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese Vice Premier Liu signed a Phase 1 agreement to defuse their 18-month-long trade war. The partial pact will cut some U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods in exchange for Chinese pledges to purchase more American farm, energy and manufactured goods. “Even ...

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Rio Tinto targets 330 million-343 million mt of iron ore shipments in 2020

Rio Tinto is expecting its Australian iron ore operations to ship 330 million mt-343 million mt this year after seeing shipments of 327.4 million mt in 2019, the company said Friday. The 2019 result was down 3% from 2018 as the company dealt with weather and operational challenges in the first half of the year and a decision to protect the quality of its Pilbara Blend, it said. Iron ore production of 326.7 million mt in 2019 also was down 3% from 2018. “Performance in the second half of 2019 ...

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China launches fresh restrictions for thermal coal imports: sources

China has reportedly launched fresh restrictions on thermal coal imports this year, with tightened customs declarations at certain ports effective Friday, market sources said. Caofeidian port in northern China and Rizhao port in the eastern part of China were reported to have tightened custom declarations for coal imports effective January 17, which is being interpreted by the market as a sign that local ports are looking to regulate imports for local trading companies in 2020, market sources said. Certain market participants in China received notices from port agents that users ...

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Hapag-Lloyd signs space charter agreement with Maersk and MSC on the Asia – North Europe trade

Hapag-Lloyd will expand its product offering on the Asia-North Europe trade starting in March 2020. As a member of THE Alliance, Hapag-Lloyd already offers a comprehensive service portfolio. However, to strengthen it even further, Hapag-Lloyd has signed a space charter agreement with Maersk and MSC that will give us access to selected services of 2M. The addition of these services will enable Hapag-Lloyd to offer an even higher frequency of weekly departures and more routing options as well as to directly serve additional ports with high schedule reliability. In the ...

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China iron ore futures rise after Vale halts operations at Chile mine

Benchmark Dalian iron ore futures rose on Friday after Vale SA halted operations at a Chilean mine and Rio Tinto reported a drop in its full-year shipments of the metal. Brazilian miner Vale SA has halted the tailings operations at the Esperança mine, which can process about 1.2 million tonnes of iron ore per year, citing the need for a technical evaluation and to potentially carry out work to improve safety at the site. Meanwhile, Rio Tinto reported a 3% drop in iron ore shipments in 2019 as the Anglo-Australian ...

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China’s 2019 crude steel output rises 8% on year to almost 1 billion mt

China crude steel production rose 8.3% year on year to 996.34 million mt in 2019, accelerating from 6.6% year-on-year growth in 2018, National Bureau of Statistics data released Friday showed. The total was just shy of the 1 billion mt mark that iron ore producers BHP and Rio Tinto had earlier predicted would be reached mid- to late this decade. China’s pig iron output rose 5.3% on year to 809.37 million mt in 2019, increasing from 3% year-on-year growth in 2018, the data showed. For December, crude steel output was ...

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