Marine Link
Monday, September 25, 2017

Shipping Confidence Continues to Climb -Report

© weerasak / Adobe Stock

A recent survey found that shipping confidence reached its highest rating in the past three years in the three months to end-August 2017. According to the latest Shipping Confidence Survey from international accountant and shipping adviser Moore Stephens, the average confidence level expressed by respondents to the survey was up slightly from the 6.1 out of 10 recorded in the previous survey in May 2017 to a three-year high of 6.2. The improved rating was attributable mainly to increased confidence on the part of owners, up from 6.1 to 6.5.

IMC Envisages Singapore as Global Maritime Hub

Image: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA)

The International Maritime Centre (IMC) 2030 Advisory Committee, established by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) in August 2016, has submitted the IMC 2030 Strategic Review report to the Singapore Government. The Committee’s vision is for Maritime Singapore to be the Global Maritime Hub for Connectivity, Innovation and Talent. The Committee, chaired by Mr Andreas Sohmen-Pao, Chairman of BW Group, comprises 21 other global business leaders and experts from diverse sectors such as maritime, finance, commodities trading, logistics, finance and technology.

WFW Advises Berenberg on Shipping Loan

Photo by International Chamber of Shipping (ICS)

International law firm Watson Farley & Williams (WFW) has advised private bank Berenberg on its acquisition, jointly with a Japanese financial institution, of a circa US$460m performing shipping loan portfolio from the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). WFW previously advised Berenberg on the acquisition of a similar US$300m portfolio from RBS in February 2017. Hamburg-based international investment and private bank Berenberg was founded in 1590 and is the world’s oldest merchant bank and the world’s second oldest bank overall.

France Sees Quick Accord on STX, Sees Naval Deal Taking Longer

(File photo: STX France)

France hopes for agreement over the future of the STX France shipyards at a Franco-Italian summit on Sept. 27, but a separate deal on warship co-operation would take longer to negotiate, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Thursday. "I would like us to have an agreement between the French and Italian governments on STX for the summit on September 27," Le Maire told reporters after a meeting with suppliers in the aerospace sector. France clashed with Italy in July after ordering a "temporary" nationalisation of STX…

Seanergy Maritime Updates on Fleet

Photo: Seanergy Maritime Holdings Corp

Seanergy Maritime Holdings  said that it  took delivery of the 2012 Korean built Capesize M/V Partnership, which commenced its 12-18 months' time charter with a major European utilities company in June at a gross rate of $16,200 per day. "Our modern fleet now consists of nine Capesize vessels and two Supramax vessels with a combined cargo carrying capacity of 1.7 million dwt," said the company. Stamatis Tsantanis, the Company's Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, stated: "We are particularly pleased about expanding our fleet at a time of historical market weakness…

Braemar Acquires NAVES

Photo: Braemar Shipping Services

Braemar Shipping Services plc  announced the conditional acquisition of the entire issued share capital of NAVES Corporate Finance GmbH. Braemar is a leading international provider of broking, consultancy, technical and other services to the shipping, marine, energy, offshore and insurance industries. NAVES is a corporate finance advisory business focused on the maritime industry to create a new division within Braemar to be known as the Financial Division. The consideration payable…

American Society of Civil Engineers: Not Just a Tough Grader

(Credit: Captain Jim Fletcher & tidewater Transportation & Terminals)

Within the U.S. inland waterways industry, any mention of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) will almost certainly be in reference to the “Infrastructure Report Card” that ASCE prepares and issues every four years, describing the condition and performance of America’s infrastructure in 16 categories: aviation, bridges, dams, drinking water, energy, hazardous waste, inland waterways, levees, ports, public parks, rail, roads, schools, solid waste, transit and waste water.

Bureau Veritas Joins Global Industry Alliance

At a ceremony in Singapore Bureau Veritas formally joined the Global Industry Alliance (GIA). The GIA was officially inaugurated on June 29 by IMO Secretary General, Mr Kitack Lim. 17 companies have now signed up to join the GIA, which will work within a framework established by Global Maritime Energy Efficiency Partnership (GloMEEP) Project, a Global Environment Facility (GEF)-United Nations Development Program (UNDP) - IMO project. The GIA will support improving the energy efficiency of ships and shipping by collectively identifying and developing innovative solutions to address common barriers and promote the uptake of energy efficiency technologies and operational measures.

GOGL Sells 6 Vessels

Photo: Golden Ocean Group Ltd

Golden Ocean Group has  announced that it has entered into agreements to sell six Ultramax vessels built at Chengxi between 2015 and 2017 en bloc for USD 142.5 million to an unrelated third party. The net cash proceeds from the sale after the repayment of $39.2 million of associated debt will be slightly in excess of $100 million. All vessels are expected to be delivered to their new owner during the fourth quarter of 2017. Separately, the Company has agreed to take early delivery of the Golden Nimbus, a Capesize vessel under construction at New Times Shipbuilding.

Brookfield Completes Acquisition of Teekay

Image: Teekay Corporation

Teekay Corporation and Teekay Offshore Partners announced that they have completed their previously announced comprehensive transaction with Brookfield Business, together with its institutional partners (collectively Brookfield). “With this comprehensive transaction now completed, Teekay looks forward to working with Brookfield as co-sponsors of Teekay Offshore to support the Partnership’s continued growth,” commented Kenneth Hvid, Teekay’s President and CEO. “With our existing in-progress growth projects now fully financed and nearing completion…

India's Essar Plans Four LNG Terminals

Photo: Essar Ports Limited

Ruias-owned Essar Ports Ltd is exploring the possibility of setting up four Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminals in joint ventures with other companies, reported Economic Times. Rajiv Agarwal, managing director and chief executive of Essar Ports, told PTI at a company-run facility here. He said the company is looking at a cluster of small ports which will be closer to potential customers, adding that Hazira and Salaya, where it already operates ports, could be the sites where it can set up the LNG terminals.

Giaever to Take Over as CFO at NAT, NAO

 Bjorn Giaever will take up his position as the new chief financial officer (CFO) at Nordic American Tankers Limited (NAT) and Nordic American Offshore Ltd. (NAO) from October 16, 2017.   Giaever joins NAT/NAO from maritime focused investment bank Fearnley Securities AS, where he served as a director and partner in the Corporate Finance division. Giaever has served as a corporate advisor in the John Fredriksen group in London, top rated Senior Shipping Analyst in DNB Markets and partner in Inge Steensland AS, specializing in gas related maritime matters.    Outgoing NAT/NAO CFO, Turid M. Sorensen, will leave her administrative duties before the end of 2017. She will be suggested as board member of NAT.

Global Trade Set To Benefit From ICC Report

Released yesterday, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Trade Register Report 2014 provides empirical evidence that, in all forms, trade and export finance is a low risk bank financing technique – further supporting ICC’s advocacy of trade finance as a strong contribution to economic recovery and growth. This evidence has the potential to alter attitudes towards trade finance, and therefore contribute to the growth of both global trade and the global economy. Based on data contributed by the major global commercial banks and reflecting more than 4.5 million transactions totalling an exposure in excess of US$2.4 trillion, the ICC Trade Register Report 2014 (“the Trade Register”) empirically demonstrates that trade finance is lower risk than many other types of financing and assets.

MPC Containerships to Use USD 100mln Bond Proceeds for Fleet

Image: MPC Container Ships Invest B.V

MPC Container Ships Invest B.V., a wholly owned subsidiary of Oslo-listed MPC Container Ships AS, has successfully completed the issuance of a new senior secured bond issue of USD 100 million. The bond issue has a 5 year tenor, carries a floating interest rate of 3m LIBOR + 4.75% and has a borrowing limit of USD 200 million. The bond issue received strong demand and was oversubscribed. The net proceeds from the bond issue will be used to finance acquisitions of additional container vessels and for general corporate purposes.

SMM Hamburg Ready for a New Beginning

At the SMM Ship Finance Forum just ahead of SMM, the leading international maritime trade fair hamburg, experts will discuss the potential and prospects for new ship financing models. In spite of low newbuilding prices, the total number of ship orders is declining around the world. Financing difficulties are part of the problem, and new concepts are in demand to revitalise the market. "In ship finance we have to address two separate issues: On the one hand, we need to put the fleet in service on a more solid financial basis. After a five-year double crisis – one affecting the financial, the other the shipping markets – that may be a tall order. On the other hand we need to finance new tonnage to be commissioned over the next few years.

Financing Structure for Canal Expansion Program

Panamanian President Martín Torrijos announced the final financing structure for the historic Panama Canal Expansion Program. Five major multilateral agencies from Europe, Asia and offered to finance the Canal expansion project. The Panama Canal Authority, after months of extensive negotiations, has accepted the banks’ offers. The $2.3 billion financing package will cover a portion of the $5.25 billion total cost of the project. Financing agencies are the European Investment Bank (EIB)…

Mercury Marine Launches Repower Financing

Randy Caruana

Mercury Marine launched a new repower finance program that aims to make it easier for consumers to get the engine performance they want with flexible financing for a broad range of buyers. The Mercury Repower Finance program is funded by Medallion Bank, a marine industry leader that specializes in accepting buyers with a wide range of credit histories. Program administration is handled by Brunswick Financial Services, a fully owned subsidiary of Brunswick Corporation, the worldwide marine manufacturing leader.

Golar Acquires Financing for GoFLNG

Golar LNG

Golar LNG Limited announced today that it has received an underwritten financing commitment for its first GoFLNG project from CSSC (Hong Kong) Shipping Co. Ltd ("CSSCL") in relation to a conversion financing and sale and leaseback transaction for the GoFLNG Hilli. The financing structure will fund up to 80% of the project cost and will be split into two phases. The first phase enables Golar to drawdown up to $700m from the facility to fund the ongoing conversion cost, once Golar…

Golar Receives Financing Commitment for GoFLNG Hilli

Golar LNG Limited has received an underwritten financing commitment for its first GoFLNG project from CSSC (Hong Kong) Shipping Co. Ltd (CSSCL) in relation to a conversion financing and sale and leaseback transaction for the GoFLNG Hilli, the company announced today. The financing structure will fund up to 80 percent of the project cost and will be split into two phases. The first phase enables Golar to drawdown up to $700 million from the facility to fund the ongoing conversion cost, once Golar has spent $400 million of the estimated $1.2 billion conversion cost and the tolling contract with Perenco and SNH have been ratified by the Cameroon government, expected during the third quarter of 2015.

Signet Closes $209m Financing Facility

Wells Fargo Equipment Finance, through its Energy and Marine and Capital Markets Groups, acting in the capacity of lead arranger, closed a $209 million financing facility today for Signet Maritime Corporation, a global marine transportation company based in Houston. The new facility refinances Signet’s existing bank debt and provides acquisition financing for the purchase of Harvey Gulf International Marine’s ocean towing vessel (OTV) fleet, which includes eight OTVs. Signet will also use proceeds of the financing facility to complete the construction and purchase of three newbuild escort ASD reverse tractor tugs, and the purchase of three existing bareboat chartered vessels.

SMM Finance Forum: ‘Banks are Lending Again’

Dr. Carsten Wiebers

For Dr. Carsten Wiebers, Global Head of Maritime Industries at KfW IPEX-Bank, and member of the SMM Advisory Board, innovative financing solutions are key to Europe's continued international competitiveness in maritime high technology. On September 8, 2014, or SMM Finance Day, the SMM Ship Finance Forum will be held for the second time in conjunction with international maritime trade fair SMM. The forum, which will answer questions revolving around financing solutions for global shipbuilding and shipping, will be subdivided into three overarching topics.

Laborde Marine Get Necessary Finance for Expansion

GE Capital, Corporate Finance has announced that it provided US$22.5-million in equipment financing to Laborde Marine. The funds refinance existing debt used to purchase five new crew boats. Founded in 1995 and headquartered in New Orleans, LA, Laborde Marine is a privately held supplier that provides marine support to the offshore oil and gas industry internationally. They operate more than 20 vessels in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and have two international offices in Brazil. “GE Capital delivered the financing we need to fund the ongoing expansion of our fleet and customer base,” said Cliffe Laborde, managing member of Laborde Marine.

ICC Releases its Latest Trade Finance Survey

Image: ICC

According to this year's Global Survey - which received 357 responses from 109 countries worldwide - 61% of respondents reported a global shortage of trade finance. Only 52% of respondents reported an increase in trade finance activity, compared to 63% in 2015 and 80% in 2012. Furthermore, the perceived shortfall came predominantly from regional and global banks - 78% and 56% respectively, compared to 41% of national banks. ICC Secretary General John Danilovich said: " We must emphasise the importance of trade finance.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Sep 2017 - Maritime Port & Ship Security Edition

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