World Maritime News
A.P.Moller Foundation funds new zero-carbon fuel research center
The Maersk Mc-Kinney Center for Zero Carbon Shipping, which opened 25 June in Copenhagen, was launched with founding partners A.P.Moller-Maersk, ABS, Cargill, MAN Energy Solutions, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, NYK Lines and Siemens Energy. There is fast-growing pressure for the maritime industry to transition to more suitable power sources. It is widely accepted that meeting the IMO’s target of cutting annual emissions by at least 50% by 2050 from 2008 levels will only be possible if shipping can develop a viable non-carbon-based fuel and engines capable of running on that fuel.
CMA CGM launches decarbonization coalition
CMA CGM has teamed up with 10 partners to form a coalition to accelerate energy transition in transport and logistics. The coalition members would pool research and development efforts to achieve breakthroughs in clean energy, reduce per-kilometer energy consumption and eliminate a substantial proportion of transport and logistics emissions. The goal is to achieve “genuine technological breakthroughs” with tangible results by 2030. The other initial members of the group include Amazon Web Services, Carrefour, Cluster Maritime Français, Crédit Agricole Corporate Investment Banking, Engie, Faurecia, Michelin, Schneider Electric, Total and Wärtsilä.
Freight rates go up in Trans-Pacific and Asia-Europe
Trans-Pacific container lines successfully pushed up eastbound container spot rates with the third general rate increase in a month. Compared to a year ago, spot rates to the West and East coast are up 69% and 24% respectively. The China-North Europe rate is 32% up year over year, according to the Shanghai Containerized Freight Index (SCFI). The China-Mediterranean spot rate is up 38% compared with the first week of July 2019. Carriers say they are reluctant to add more capacity into the trade by reducing number of blank sailings because shippers can only provide a modicum of certainty on their volume needs over the next two months.
Pandemic accelerates change in box shipping
SeaIntelligence Consulting chief executive Lars Jensen said that the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the pace of change in container shipping rather than altered its direction. As the 12-month rolling average of global container demand growth had already been slowing down before the pandemic, the carriers have been practicing the art of removing capacity to manage an otherwise over-tonnage situation for the past two years. Carriers are still pulling capacity out with between 5% and 17% for the months ahead. Their responses to the coronavirus crisis are a continuation of work they have already been doing to manage capacity. Along with digitalization, those changes have been brought forward.
The world’s first post-COVID-19 cruise service from Taiwan
Taiwan, described as having the best COVID-19 response in Asia, with one of the region’s lowest infection and fatality rates, is keen to re-open its tourism industry, while governments worldwide have shut their ports to cruise ships to stem the spread of COVID-19. Genting Cruise Lines worked with the Taiwanese government to set safety and hygiene protocols for guests and crew on ‘Explore Dream’, which will be the first in the world to begin sailing after the global cruise industry was shut down due to the pandemic. Genting Cruise Lines is co-operating with DNV GL for the ship the world’s first certification in infection prevention for the maritime industry (CIP-M).
Read more: Safety at Sea
MSC unveils online freight booking tool
Mediterranean Shipping Co. unveiled 1 July its instant quoting and booking platform to freight buyers, joining the likes of CMA CGM, Evergreen, Hapag-Lloyd and Maersk in allowing cargo owners and forwarders to buy shipping services online. The service is available for the Asia to Europe and North America to Europe trades, and MSC plans to expand to other trades later this year. About half of all containers move under the spot market and the carriers have been developing online tools to capture a greater share of those boxes. The MSC solution offers real-time shipping rates for container bookings and is open to all shippers registered with the carrier.