Canadian transport provider Seaspan Ferries Corporation (SFC) has officially welcomed two new dual-fuelled/hybrid ferries at a double commissioning ceremony held at the company's Tilbury Terminal on April 9.
The two diesel, liquefied natural gas and battery-powered vessels, the Seaspan Swift and the Seaspan Reliant, are said to be the first eco-ferries of their kind in North America.
"The Seaspan Swift and Seaspan Reliant are the first of the next generation of vessels fuelled by B.C.'s clean-burning LNG," said Christy Clark, Premier of British Columbia.
Following their construction at Sedef Shipyard in Istanbul, Turkey, the Seaspan Swift arrived in British Columbia in December 2016 and entered operation in January 2017, while the Seaspan Reliant arrived in late February and is scheduled to begin service later this month, according to SFC.
The 148.9-meter-long ferries, which can accommodate up to 59, 53' trailers, mark the first new vessels added to SFC's fleet since 2002.
"The introduction of two new technologically advanced, LNG-fuelled vessels represents the beginning of the realization of a … vision to re-construct our marine terminals and modernize the vessels that service them," Steve Roth, SFC's President, pointed out.
Dutch shipbuilder Ferus Smit launched MV Arklow Clan, an open hatch single decker, at its Westerbroek yard on April 7.
The 5,200dwt Arklow Clan is the fourth in a series of ten ships that will be delivered to Ireland-based Arklow Shipping.
With a hold volume of 220,000 cft, the newbuilding features a length of 86.8 meters and a width of 15 meters.
The ship has one single hold and an 1A iceclass notation and is propelled by a 1740 kW MaK engine with a single ducted propeller.
Market value of Arklow Clan currently stands at US$5.97m, according to data from VesselsValue.
The vessel, which will fly the flag of the Netherlands, was ordered by Arklow Shipping in August 2014.
Arklow Castle, the third ship from the batch, was launched this January.
Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) has signed a letter of intent with Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) to build five 300,000dwt VLCCs with an option of five more vessels.
Chang-keun Yoo, CEO of HMM stated "We currently operate 12 VLCCs which have been foundational to stable profits and enhancing sales competitiveness. We thought this year is the right time to order new VLCCs at historically low newbuilding prices."
The Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) has announced it has signed an agreement with Liberian company Fidelity Shipping Corporation for the acquisition of a 158,710dwt Suezmax tanker at an undisclosed price.
State-run SCI has been rejuvenating its outdated fleet, and has cut its age by almost a half in 2017 so far.
"SCI has replaced most of its aged fleet and it has a modern and fuel efficient fleet with an average age of 9.5 years as on March 2017 compared to average Indian fleet age of 18.4 years," India's shipping minister Mansukh Lal Mandavya said in a press conference last month.
Commissioner of Canadian ferry owner and operator BC Ferries has approved the purchase of a secondhand vessel for new ferry service between Port Hardy and Bella Coola in British Columbia scheduled to start in the summer of 2018.
BC Ferries is now finalizing an agreement to buy the vessel that is operating in Greece. The purchase price for the vessel is EUR8.75m (US$9.29m).
The ferry, currently named Aqua Spirit, is able to accommodate a minimum of 35 vehicles and 150 passengers and crew.
The 2000-built ship, which features a length of 75.4 meters and a width of 15 meters, will be delivered to BC Ferries in August 2017.
Aqua Spirit will undergo major upgrades from the fall of 2017 through the spring of 2018.
The company's Port Hardy-Bella Coola service will run from mid-June through mid-September five times per week. The ship will also provide service to the other mid-coast ports of Bella Bella, Ocean Falls and Shearwater in the summer, as well as in the off-season, BC Ferries said.
In a separate announcement, BC Ferries informed that its vessel Spirit of Vancouver Island returned to service on the Metro Vancouver – Victoria (Tsawwassen – Swartz Bay) route on April 6 following mechanical repairs.
The 1994-built vessel was temporarily removed from service on March 22 due to a hydraulic issue with the port side controllable pitch propeller, which required drydocking the vessel to affect repairs.
Greek owner and operator of container and dry bulk vessels Navios Maritime Partners has inked an agreement to purchase two Panamax vessels for a total of US$27m.
The 75,000dwt vessels, which were built in 2007 by an undisclosed South Korean shipbuilder, are expected to be delivered to Navios Partners' owned fleet in June and July 2017, respectively.
Following this acquisition, Navios Partners will control a fleet of 33 vessels with a carrying capacity of over 3.4 million dwt.
JP Morgan Global Maritime has taken over five ultramax bulk carriers from French dry bulk shipping operator Setaf Saget.
Vesselsvalue data show that the five ships, JS Columbia, JS Danube, JS Colorado, JS Amazon, JS Sanaga, all built by China's Dayang Shipbuilding, were sold en bloc to JP Morgan Global Maritime for US$85.8m in total.
Finland-based ferry company Viking Line inked a conditional shipbuilding contract with China's Xiamen Shipbuilding Industry for a new passenger cruise ship, with an option for an additional vessel.
A final agreement is subject to the approval of the Board of Directors of both the buyer and the seller, as well as financial arrangements entered.
The total contract amount is about EUR194m (US$207m). If the agreement is approved, the first cruise ship will be delivered in 2020 and will be employed on the Turku (Finland)–Åland Islands–Stockholm (Sweden) route.
The new vessel will be a collaborative project, and the plan is to engage several Finnish and other European suppliers, according to Viking Line.
The vessel will be 218 metres in length and have a gross registered tonnage of about 63,000 tonnes.
Passenger capacity will be 2,800 people, and the length of its cargo lanes will be 1,500 metres.
Hong Kong-based Jinhui Shipping and Transportation Limited has sold its last Handysize dry bulk carrier, Jin Yu, to Tokyo-listed Inui Global Logistics for US$15m.
The vessel will be delivered to Inui between May 15, 2017 and June 15, 2017.
The 38,462dwt dry bulker was built in 2012 at Naikai Zosen and is registered in Hong Kong.
Jinhui intends to use approximately 75% of the net sale proceeds received pursuant to the agreement for the repayment of vessel mortgage loan and the remaining portion of the net sale proceeds will be kept as general working capital of the group.
Back in February, Jinhui sold four Supramax bulk carriers to Minyi (Tianjin) Ship Leasing, which are expected to be delivered throughout April.
The dry bulk owner and operator decided to sell the vessels to enhance its working capital and strengthen its liquidity ahead of expected volatility in the market due to continued uncertainty with respect to the global economic outlook, particularly the freight market.
Excluding the vessels sold and scheduled to be delivered to the new owners, Jinhui operates a fleet of two Post-Panamaxes and 21 Supramaxes.
German shipping trust Marenave Schiffahrts AG has agreed with its financing banks upon the company's restructuring. The condition for the restructuring is the sale of the entire Marenave fleet.
On March 31, the company entered into an agreement on restructuring and release of liability, and a waiver and liquidation agreement with its financing banks.
Under the terms of the agreement, Marenave will be released from all liability in connection with the obligations taken on to secure the ship financing loans and will receive a certain amount to finance its business as a going concern.
As part of the sale of the ships at a single-ship company level, the banks are set to waive under certain conditions the outstanding claims resulting from the ship financing loans to the extent that is necessary to allow for a solvent liquidation of each relevant single-ship company, Marenave said.
In part, the validity of the agreements is still subject to conditions which include the withdrawal of one financing bank, that is not a party to the agreements, as a lender.
The agreements also grant various rights of termination such as the inability to achieve certain milestones until a given deadline.
Under the investment agreement already entered into by Marenave, the release of liability is itself a key condition for bringing investors on board by way of capital measures and the conclusion of the agreements stated above now represents a major milestone to do that.
The shipping trust started its negotiations with the financing banks in late 2016 in order to avoid insolvency after it received notice from two banks financing the Marenave-fleet stating that Marenave's restructuring concept will not be supported.
In February 2017, Marenave reached an investment agreement with Offen Group and DEVK insurance firm within its restructuring efforts.
Under the deal with CPO Investments and DEVK Allgemeine Versicherungs-Aktiengesellschaft, the investors will provide an initial financing in the minimum amount of EUR2m (US$2.1m) to be effected by way of capital measures.