Monday, 03 March 2014 Dockworkers announced that they were ending their strike and lifting the overtime ban.
The workers met with officials from the finance and transport ministries to discuss their demands. Both sides reaffirmed their deal to meet next week to start a round of negotiations regarding their demands for a overtime increases on weekdays at a ratio of 1:1.3 and on weekends and holidays 1:1.75 from the previous 1:1 on weekdays and 1:1.3 on weekends. The dockworkers refused to work overtime since February 15, finishing all loading and unloading services at 1.30pm. Any ship arriving at port after that time could not depart, resulting in hundreds of thousands in lost income for shipping companies and import-export companies, according to Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry general secretary Marios Tsiakkis and Shipping Association general manager Lefteris Kouzapas. The dockworkers overtime ban was lifted on Wednesday after representatives of the workers union agreed with finance ministry officials to begin a new around of negotiations.
Although an agreement was reached, the port authority workers union backed down and declared a one-day strike for Thursday, joining workers from other semi-governmental organizations, EAC and CyTA, to protest the proposed privatisation plan.
The union, despite the previous deal, announced that dockworkers would reinstate the overtime ban and refuse to service ships that came in over the three-day weekend.
However on Friday they decided (with 30 votes in favour and three abstentions) that they would overrule the union’s decision and give ministry officials one week to come up with a counter-proposal.
The government was elated after the dockworkers decision. Transport Minister Tasos Mitsopoulos tweeted that “despite interventions, workers at the port authority decided to lift the ban. Cypriot ports are open”.
The decision to keep the overtime ban in place over the weekend was never very popular among dockworkers, with SEK union voicing its disagreement from the start.
Source: Cyprus Mail
Two of Manila's largest ports are struggling with backlog created by an expanded truck ban enforced by the government on Monday, and worsened by truckers' protests. The ban was put in place to stop trucks and other vehicles weighing over 4,500kg from entering and traversing the city between 5:00am and 9:00pm. Now, the government has agreed on a window period from 10:00am to 3:00pm when the trucks are allowed to enter for the next six to eight months.
Estonia, Finland sign accord on building joint LNG terminals
Estonia and Finland signed an agreement on building two new liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals on either side of the Gulf of Finland and a pipeline connecting the two countries.
The countries have competed for more than a year over a project to build a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal and the Estonian Economy Minister Juhan Parts made the compromise proposal in January this year.
"The intent of the signed Memorandum of Understanding is for cooperation between the Estonian and Finnish LNG terminal developers to build liquefied natural gas terminals on both sides of the Gulf of Finland," the Estonian economy ministry said in a statement.
The ministry added that by the end of May the project developers, Finland's Gasum and Estonia's Paldiski terminal developer, must present the joint project's technical and economic details to their respective countries' regulators and the European Commission.
Analysts say the region's gas demand only warrants one LNG import terminal, in terms of construction costs and gas import prices.
A single LNG terminal is estimated to cost around 500 million euros ($690.58 million) and provides an alternative to gas supplies from Russia. A pipeline that would allow Finland and Estonia to share imports would cost some 100 million euros.
The European Union could fund up to 40 percent of a regional terminal provided it serves the interests of more than one country, and there are several Baltic states vying for funds.
Finland and the three Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania consume about 10 billion cubic metres of gas per year, all currently supplied by Russia's Gazprom.
Hapag-Lloyd launches new service between Japan, Singapore and Jakarta
Hapag-Lloyd is launching the new Japan-Singapore-Jakarta service (JSJ) which will commence on March 12 from Singapore. The new service will further enhance Hapag-Lloyd’s service network between Japan and South East Asia, and offer fast and reliable transit between Japan, Singapore and Jakarta.
The JSJ service will be jointly operated by Hapag-Lloyd, NYK and “K” Line with four vessels with a nominal capacity of 4,200 TEU each. Hapag-Lloyd will deploy one vessel on this service.
The rotation will be: Tokyo – Yokohama – Nagoya – Kobe – Singapore – Jakarta –
Singapore – Ho Chi Minh/Cai Mep* – Tokyo (*First calls will be at Cai Mep, later Cai Mep will be replaced by Ho Chi Minh call)
Expansion of cargo facility in Portland (Maine) a giant step for port
State officials plan to expand the shipping-container terminal in Portland to more than double its current size and link it directly with a rail line, allowing the terminal to compete for business with other major ports along the East Coast. The expanded International Marine Terminal would significantly lower costs for its commercial customers, make shipping faster and more efficient, and attract new international and domestic cargo business to Maine, officials said. The expansion, whose cost has yet to be disclosed, would involve the taking of several acres of privately owned land by eminent domain because of a dispute over its value, the landowner and state officials said. State officials plan to put the project out for bids in June.
Fremantle Ports to develop and operate a dedicated bulk liquids berth at Kwinana
remantle Ports has invited expressions of interest to develop and operate a dedicated bulk liquids berth at Kwinana to handle cargoes such as petroleum products, chemicals and liquid fertilisers.
The port is also looking to use one of its planned new berths for wet bulk.
The decisions reflect the importance of the bulk liquids trade to industry and business in Western Australia and the need to ensure adequate common-user berth capacity to satisfy future needs.
Fremantle Ports chief executive Chris Leatt-Hayter said that the company was amending its existing environmental approval to permit the use of the proposed berth for bulk liquids, with the anticipation a long-term private commercial agreement can be finalised over the next year.
Mr Leatt-Hayter said that consolidating Fremantle’s bulk liquid trade to a dedicated, world-class berth would increase efficiency, safe handling and capacity.
The idea is to extend the Kwinana bulk jetty with an open-pile extension and onshore/offshore support infrastructure.
Source: Port Strategy
Explosion rocks INS Sindhuratna off Mumbai, 2 dead, 7 injured
Two officers were feared dead and seven other Navy personnel seriously injured in a mishap involving the Russian-origin Kilo Class submarine INS Sindhuratna off the coast of Mumbai on Wednesday, just months after a fire on the INS Sindhurakshak killed 18 personnel and destroyed the sub. The two INS Sindhuratna officers, a Lieutenant and a Lieutenant Commander, were initially declared missing. The result of the mishap is suspected to be an explosion in the battery compartment of the submarine. This is the tenth accident involving an Indian Navy warship and the third submarine mishap in the last seven months.
Shorepower for Charleston New Cruise Terminal Approved
The Charleston City Council has approved shoreside power for a planned new cruise terminal in the South Carolina City.
The terminal, however, has been held up in various court proceedings, and has been targeted by environmental groups who do not want regular cruise ships calling in Charleston.
The shorepower resolution was presented by Charleston’s Mayor, Joe Riley, a huge supporter of the cruise industry.
Reports put the shorepower installation at a cost of $5.6 million for the city of Charleston, and $1.5 million for Carnival Cruise Lines to retrofit the Fantasy, which sails weekly cruises from Charleston www.cruiseindustr...
Proposed Third Port Terminal at Port Klang Can Handle Up To 30 Mln TEUs
The third port terminal, which is still under the government's review, is expected to handle up to 30 million containers of twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) a year once it is completed.
Deputy Minister of Transport, Datuk Abdul Aziz Kaprawi, said the government was currently studying two locations within Port Klang to build the terminal to meet the demand and cater to the needs of shipping lines.
"The government is still conducting (feasibility) study on the proposed port where the study is expected to be completed by next year," he told a media briefing after launching Northport (M) Bhd's newly-expanded wharf, Wharf 8A, here today.
Abdul Aziz said local port operators must upgrade their facilities in view of Malaysia's position as a major sea route linking Far East to Asia, Europe and West Asia.
He said the government has always supported the development of the port as about 90 per cent of global trade was mainly by sea.
Chairman of NCB Holdings Bhd, Tun Ahmad Sarji Abdul Hamid, said Wharf 8 which was fully operational in December last year, could berth vessels with deep draft of up to 17 metres.