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WFW Advises MPC On Green Container Vessel Order

Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) has advised MPC Capital (“MPC”), together with partners, on an order for the construction of four state-of-the-art container vessels at South Korean shipyard Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction Group, now known as HJ Shipbuilding and Construction (“HJSC”). The 5,500 TEU vessels will have a new eco-friendly design allowing for a 40% reduction in fuel consumption compared to the existing fleet and are ready for conversion to carbon-neutral operations based on green methanol. The vessels, which will be delivered beginning from the second quarter of 2023, ...

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S. Korea: FTC fines shipping companies $80.7 million

Korea’s antitrust regulator said Tuesday it is imposing a combined fine of 96.2 billion won $80.7 million) on 23 Korean and foreign shippers for 15 years of collusion to fix freight rates. Since 2018, the Fair Trade Commission (FTC) has been looking into allegations that the country’s top shipper, HMM, and 22 local and foreign shipping lines colluded to fix freight rates for Southeast Asian sea routes. The shippers — 12 South Korean and 11 foreign — colluded to set the shipping costs of container cargo services 120 times between ...

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WFW advises Nordea on US$1.5bn Prosafe restructuring

Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) has advised Nordea Bank (“Nordea”) as agent and a syndicate of banks and funds as lenders, under export credit-supported finance for units built in China, to Prosafe SE (“Prosafe”) in relation to the comprehensive restructuring of c. US$1.5bn of its debt, including equitisation of c. US$1.1bn of debt. Completion of the restructuring was announced on 20 December 2021. Prosafe is the leading Norwegian headquartered owner/operator of semi-submersible accommodation vessels. The restructuring involved significant cross-border elements under English, Norwegian and Singapore law and was implemented through ...

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George Macheras named new WFW Global Maritime Sector Co-Head

Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) is delighted to announce that Partner George Macheras has been named as the firm’s new Global Maritime Sector Co-Head, replacing Lindsey Keeble as she takes up the role of WFW Managing Partner as of 1 February 2022. George Paleokrassas, who takes on the role of WFW Senior Partner on the same date, will remain in his role as Global Maritime Sector Co-Head. Macheras, who made partner in 2018, advises on all aspects of ship financing as well as on commercial matters relating to the sale, ...

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WFW advises Citibank and HSBC on first of their kind ECA-backed JOLCOs for Seaspan

Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) has advised Citibank N.A., London Branch (“Citibank”) and HSBC Bank (“HSBC”) respectively on two separate ECA-backed JOLCOs (Japanese Operating Lease with Call Options) arranged for Seaspan Corporation (“Seaspan”). These pioneering transactions were developed simultaneously and are firsts of their kind, combining two tried and tested ship financing structures, ECA-backed loans and sale-leaseback arrangements under JOLCOs, and represent the first time the ECAs involved have supported JOLCO structures in shipping. A subsidiary of NYSE-listed Atlas Corp., Seaspan is a leading container leasing company. On the Sinosure ...

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Ship Inspection Campaign At Australian Ports

Between the 15th January and 30th March 2022, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) will hold a Focused Inspection Campaign (FIC), which will apply to all non-Australian flagged ships calling Australian ports in conjunction with a normal Port State Control Inspection. This will therefore apply to Maltese flagged ships arriving at any Australian port. The FIC will verify that Ship Operators, Masters and crew are carrying out appropriate maintenance planning, performance and record keeping, in accordance with the ship’s Safety Management System (SMS) and with the provisions of the relevant ...

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Demurrage an exclusive remedy: the Court of Appeal gives judgment in The Eternal Bliss – Simon Rainey QC & Tom Bird

In the recent case of The “Eternal Bliss” the High Court decision changed the landscape for owners and voyage charterers by establishing that damages in excess of demurrage can be claimed by owners, even where the only breach was the failure to load and discharge within the laytime. Previously, demurrage had been thought to be a complete code for damages caused by that breach. Then the Court took opposite approach allowing to claim costs on the top of demurrage for the Charterers’ failure to complete cargo operations in time. However, ...

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EEXI and CII – shipping’s next environmental challenge

There cannot be many people left in the shipping sector unaware that the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has set a target of reducing annual greenhouse gas emissions in shipping by at least 40% by 2030 and pursuing a 70% reduction by 2050. As a key means of achieving this, the IMO, through the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) has adopted amendments to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) Annex VI. These changes will implement major new technical rules called the Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index ...

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What impact will COP26 have on the shipping sector?

COP26 – the UN’s climate change conference – was held in Scotland in October/November 2021. Reviews of the global gathering have been mixed with some observers, including many environmental lobbyists, believing there was an overall failure to set sustainable climate goals. From our perspective here at ParrisWhittaker, a leading shipping law firm in the Bahamas, it was notable that shipping featured high on the agenda at COP26. Many shipping industry commentators believe the initiatives taken both at COP26 and at the subsequent IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) in London ...

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Höegh LNG Partners LP Investors with Substantial Losses Have Opportunity to Lead Class Action

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP announces that purchasers of Höegh LNG Partners LP (NYSE: HMLP) securities between August 22, 2019 and July 27, 2021, inclusive (the “Class Period”) have until this upcoming Monday, December 27, 2021 to seek appointment as lead plaintiff in Sanchez v. Höegh LNG Partners LP, No. 21-cv-19374 (D.N.J.). Filed on October 27, 2021, the Höegh LNG Partners class action lawsuit charges Höegh LNG Partners LP and certain of its top executives with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. A similar lawsuit (Roizman v. ...

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WFW advises Maas Capital on investment into BW LPG India

Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) has advised Maas Capital Shipping B.V. (“Maas Capital”) in relation to the due diligence, deal structuring and legal documentation required to acquire a minority stake in BW LPG India, a subsidiary of BW LPG Limited (OSE Ticker Code “BWLPG.OL”). Maas Capital is one of the world’s leading institutional shipping equity investors. Its portfolio includes controlling and non-controlling stakes in shipping, intermodal and offshore services related assets. BW LPG India is the largest owner and operator of India-flagged Very Large Gas Carriers (VLGCs). The fleet comprises ...

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Norton Rose Fulbright LLP : Paris team advises on the financing of one of the world’s largest LNG Bunkering Vessel

Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised Société Générale and SMBC Bank EU AG on a sustainability-linked loan for the financing of one of the world’s largest LNG Bunkering Vessels. The loan is supported by a transition framework, relying on the Climate Transition Finance Handbook and the Sustainability-Linked Loan Principles, for the purpose of assisting Emerald Blue Maritime S.A.S. (100% subsidiary of Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd.) to finance the acquisition of one of the world’s largest LNG Bunkering Vessels – m.v. ‘Gas Vitality.’ The vessel has been chartered to ...

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WFW announces new Athens Office Head

Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) is delighted to announce that, following the election of George Paleokrassas as the firm’s Senior Partner, highly respected Partner Alexia Hatzimichalis will be taking over as Athens Office Head. Alexia, who joined the firm in 2001 and made Partner in 2014, also heads the Assets & Structured Finance team in Athens. Qualified in England & Wales, originally as a barrister and then as a solicitor, Alexia advises on a wide range of ship finance matters for clients including Greek and international banks, other financial institutions ...

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WFW advises HCOB on US$180m bank facility for MPCC

Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) has advised Hamburg Commercial Bank (“HCOB”) on a new US$180m bank facility provided to an intermediate holding company of MPC Container Ships ASA (“MPCC”). HCOB has agreed a five-year senior secured credit facility with MPCC comprising a US$130m term loan and a revolving credit facility of US$50m. The facility is one of various measures intending to increase MPCC’s balance sheet flexibility in order to execute on its plan to commence returning capital to its investors. HCOB is a private commercial bank that ranks among the ...

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Interpreting see-to-it and on-demand guarantees

A see-to-it guarantee is an undertaking by an entity to be answerable for the debt or obligation of another if the other party defaults. The essential feature is that liability under the guarantee depends on the defaulting party’s liability under the underlying contract. The liability of the guarantor is therefore only secondary. In contrast, a demand guarantee (also sometimes known as a demand bond or performance bond) is payable simply when a demand is made which complies with the requirements of the contract. The defaulting party’s liability is irrelevant and ...

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