COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 11 August 2023

COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 11 August 2023

COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 11 August 2023

COS Updates

100th anniversary gala and conference tickets, and sponsorship opportunities still available

This year is the 100th anniversary of the Chamber of Shipping and to honour the milestone we are hosting the Shipping 360 Conference on September 27 & 28 and a Centennial Gala on the evening of the 28th at Vancouver's Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel.

There are a variety of sponsorship opportunities still available, as well as limited trade show booths.

If you haven’t already registered to attend the conference or gala, tickets and tables are still available at member rates.

Sponsorship package

Conference program (new speakers being added)

Conference registration and gala tickets are sold separately, and available here.

Local News

Indigenous communities offered stake in Trans Mountain

Canada's Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland has initiated communication with Indigenous communities to offer them an equity stake in the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project. The federal government will provide a special-purpose vehicle that enables individual community buy-ins and access to capital to secure their stake.  The community stakeholders will jointly exercise governing rights.

Meanwhile, Canada’s energy regulator has rejected Trans Mountain’s request to fast-track a near-threefold hike in shipping fees to energy companies, meant to help the embattled pipeline offset its ballooning costs. Trans Mountain, a Crown corporation, had submitted an application to the Canada Energy Regulator in June that included toll rates that had increased from $4 a barrel, set in 2013, to close to $11 per barrel now. The increases are based on the latest cost estimate for the project, which has risen six-fold from around $5 billion to $30.9 billion.

Read more.

New directors appointed to Pacific Pilotage Authority's Board

The Pacific Pilotage Authority has announced recent changes to its Board of Directors. Katherine Bright, Vice-Chair was reappointed for another 4-year term, and both Billie Raptis and Capt. Allan Ranger were reappointed for a 3-year term. New to the Board are Marilyn Slett, Chief Councillor of the Heiltsuk Tribal Council, Guangbin Yan, and Joely Viveros, Associate Director at UBC’s First Nations House of Learning. The new directors replace Capt. Jamie Marshall, Victoria Withers, and Peter Bernard respectively following the expiry of their terms.

For more details, read more.

Vancouver Grain Exchange 2023 scholarship opportunities

The Vancouver Grain Exchange (VGE) 2023 scholarship application is now open. To apply for the VGE scholarship the applicant must be graduating, or have graduated, from secondary school and plan to attend, or are currently attending, full-time courses at an accredited Canadian university, College or Technical School. The VGE Member must be in good standing with the Vancouver Grain Exchange. The scholarship application package for 2023 can be found here and should be submitted no later than September 1, 2023.

Canadian News

Labour Minister initiates review of recent labour disputes affecting ports

Canada's Labour Minister, Seamus O'Regan has initiated a process under Section 106 of the Canada Labour Code to examine the structural issues underlying the recent dispute between the BC Maritime Employers Association and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) Canada, as well as similar disputes that have occurred at our ports across Canada. The process will begin with an immediate review of commissioned reports on past disputes and analysis on the issues already completed. The next steps will be determined in short order following the review.

Read full statement.

CCG awards seawater-lubricated bearings contract to Thordon Bearings

Thordon Bearings has secured a contract to provide seawater-lubricated bearings for the first two modified versions of Canada's Harry DeWolf-class Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS). These new vessels are being constructed for the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) at Irving Shipbuilding's Halifax Shipyard. The vessels will feature Thordon's seawater-lubricated bearings, with the first ship scheduled for delivery in 2027. Thordon's components have already been successfully used in three Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) AOPS vessels. Thordon's involvement aligns with efforts to ensure environmentally friendly and efficient propulsion for these vessels, in line with Canada's National Shipbuilding Strategy.

Read more.

International News

Humanitarian corridor established in the Black Sea

The Ukraine announced a "humanitarian corridor" in the Black Sea to release cargo ships trapped in its ports since the outbreak of war. This is a new test of Russia's de facto blockade since Moscow abandoned a deal last month to let Kyiv export grain. Shipping and insurance sources are expressing concerns about safety, and it is questionable whether many will leave. The Ukrainian navy said the routes had already been proposed by Ukraine directly to the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Around 60 commercial ships have been stuck in the Ukrainian ports since Russia's invasion, their fates unresolved by the deal that allowed grain exports to resume in July last year. Many of the ships' crews have been evacuated, leaving locally hired Ukrainian staff to help look after the vessels. Russia's lack of ships and Western grain traders' shrinking appetite for business with Moscow are adding to rising costs of moving Russian wheat.

Read more.

China's food security threatened by floods

The condition of China's winter wheat crop could be the "worst in history", the agriculture minister said on Saturday, raising concerns about grain supplies in the world's biggest wheat consumer. As of Monday, approximately 972,100 hectares (2.4 million acres) of crop fields have been affected by the floods in Henan province, raising concerns over food inflation and security. Henan province accounts for almost a third of the national wheat supply and around a tenth of the nation’s corn, vegetable and pork production. Heavy rain will make it difficult to drain inundated fields, raising the risk of disease and infestations that will compound crop losses. Beijing has increased aid to storm-affected areas as fatalities and evacuations have mounted.

Read more.

Houston bunker contamination issue reaches Singapore

A fuel contamination issue initially reported in Houston has now extended to Singapore, the world's largest bunkering hub. VPS, a fuel checker, identified a case of VLSFO (Very Low Sulphur Fuel Oil) contamination at the Texas Port on July 11. High levels of dicyclopentadiene (DCPD) and related compounds were found in VLSFO bunker fuel supplied by a single supplier in Houston over three months (March to May). DCPDs can make bunker fuel thicker and stickier, leading to power and propulsion problems for ships. VPS revealed that 14 ships have been affected by the contaminated fuel, with 12 having purchased bunkers in Houston and two topping up in Singapore.

Read more.

Historic Panama Canal drought leads to vessel congestion

Due to an "unprecedented" drought, the Panama Canal is experiencing delays of 15 to 19 days per vessel, with restricted water levels in Gatun Lake. The Panama Canal Authority has reduced maximum draft levels by two meters for neopanamax locks and cut daily transits by 20 percent to 32 voyages due to these challenging conditions. Ships across segments are facing delays, resulting in queues on both sides of the waterway. Climate change's impact on the shipping industry is highlighted, with a potential earnings loss of up to $200 million for the canal authority. Despite recent rain, authorities are cautious due to the El Niño weather phenomenon. The largest container ship to transit recently had to unload containers due to draught restrictions, underscoring the challenge. These changes are affecting freight rates and trade routes significantly.

Read more.

Singapore aces first ship-to-ship Methanol bunkering for Maersk

Maersk's first methanol dual-fuel containership, a 2,100 TEU vessel, underwent its second green methanol bunkering operation. This ship was built in Korea and is en route to Copenhagen for a naming ceremony. The bunkering involved 300 tonnes of bio-methanol from OCI Global, carried out by Hong Lam Marine using the chemical tanker Agility. The Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) led the effort to ensure bunkering safety, collaborating with various agencies and conducting exercises and workshops. Singapore, the world's largest bunkering port, aims to further develop methanol bunkering operations, with two to three more expected this year.

Read more.


Aug 24 - COS Operations Committee Meeting @ 1200
Aug 24 - 
Plimsoll Club Summer Social, Cold Tea Room, Vancouver @ 1630 

Aug 26 - 16th Annual Cycle for Seafarers , Vancouver, BC 
Sept 7 - COS Board of Directors Meeting @ 1200

Sept 11-13 - Ports Canada Conference - Trois-Rivieres, QC 
Sept 20 - WMCC PACMAR/NANS Meeting @ 1000
Sept 20-24 - Fraser Riverfest Activities and Lucille Johnstone Workboat Parade
Sept 24 - Port of Vancouver celebrates World Maritime Day @ Canada Place @ 1100
Sept 25 - BCIT Marine Campus and Industry Open House, North Vancouver, BC

Sept 28 - World Maritime Day - "MARPOL at 50 - Our commitment goes on." 

Ship of the Week

Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) is reinforcing its fleet of ships by introducing an additional 24,188 TEU container vessel called OOCL Felixstowe, built at the Dalian COSCO KHI Ship Engineering (DACKS) shipyard.

This new vessel marks the fourth environmentally friendly 24,188 TEU vessel to join the fleet of the COSCO-owned shipping company as part of a set of 12 vessels. It is intended to operate on the Asia-Europe LL3 route encompassing the following ports: Shanghai (China), Xiamen (China), Nansha (China), Hong Kong, Yantian (China), Cai Mep (Vietnam), Singapore / Piraeus (Greece), Hamburg (Germany), Rotterdam (Netherlands), Zeebrugge (Belgium), Valencia (Spain), Piraeus (Greece), Abu Dhabi (UAE), Singapore, and then back to Shanghai (China).