COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 27 October 2023

COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 27 October 2023

‍COS Weekly Newsletter - Friday, 27 October, 2023

‍‍West Coast News

Port of Vancouver investing in innovation and technology to support trade growth and strengthen supply chains

A new partnership between the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority and the federal and B.C. governments will support new programs to improve cargo movement through the Port of Vancouver.  Collaborating with the Integrated Marketplace program, this partnership will utilize innovation and technology to enhance reliability and efficiency of trade through the Port of Vancouver, improving competitiveness for Canadian businesses and access to essential goods.The focus is to develop digital tools that integrate with existing physical infrastructure, allowing for improved anticipation of demands on the marine-rail corridor, enhanced cargo forecasting, and real-time tracking of container movement to boost overall efficiency. The initiative falls under the Connect+ program, aligning various digitalization and optimization efforts to augment capacity and strengthen supply chains at the port.

Prince Rupert Port Authority funds awards for students pursuing careers vital to growth of Prince Rupert Gateway

The Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) has announced financial awards for Coast Mountain College students pursuing fields crucial to the sustainability and growth of the Prince Rupert Gateway and surrounding region. This includes the Prince Rupert Port Authority Academic Excellence Awards and the Supporting Trade Apprenticeships Award, each worth $1,500 annually. The awards are open to students studying Environmental Sciences, Sustainability, Engineering, Business, and various trades. Priority is given to Indigenous students, those with financial need, and those intending to contribute to the port-related industry in northern B.C. The PRPA's initiative reflects its commitment to fortifying the region's trade gateway and communities.

Applications are available on the CMTN website here.

Canada Place wins best cruise ship terminal

The annual World Travel Awards (WTA) has named Canada Place, the cruise ship terminal at the Port of Vancouver, as the “World’s Leading Cruise Port.”  The WTA previously named Canada Place as the “North America’s Leading Cruise Port” in 2021 and 2020. The Vancouver cruise industry has experienced a strong post-pandemic recovery in 2022 and 2023. So far this year, Canada Place saw more than 740,000 cruise passengers pass through the terminal from April to July. This exceeds the same period, in 2022, by 70%, or over 300,000 people. 

BCIT Marine campus course offerings

BCIT Marine campus is offering several courses this fall. The January 2024 schedule will be shared when available.

View the fall 2023 course offering schedule here.

‍Canadian News

Ontario and Quebec Governments press for quick resolution to St. Lawrence Seaway strike

Quebec Premier Francois Legault and Ontario Premier Doug Ford are pressing for a quick resolution to the St. Lawrence Seaway strike, citing potential harm to their provincial economies. The strike, initiated after failed negotiations between union representatives and the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp (SLSMC), has led to hundreds of workers picketing for more than a week. The striking workers are advocating for higher wages, citing the rising cost of living, while the SLSMC aims for a balanced agreement, highlighting that seaway worker wages have surpassed inflation over the past two decades.

An extended strike could have significant economic impacts, given that nearly $17 billion worth of goods were transported through the seaway in 2022. Concerns have been raised about a recurrence of the July port labour dispute in B.C., which stunted supply chains across the country for weeks. Both the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business have urged the federal government to intervene. The federal Labour Minister, Seamus O'Regan, pledged to join the discussions, acknowledging the urgency of the situation.

Minister O'Regan announces next steps on port dispute review under the Canada Labour Code

Minister O’Regan announced the next step in the review process under section 106 of the Canada Labour Code. The review is aimed at examining the structural issues underlying the recent long shoremen dispute at Canada’s West Coast ports, as well as similar disputes that have occurred in ports across Canada. In the Minister’s statement, he reaffirmed the government’s commitment to collective bargaining and the significance of port stability in the supply chain.

Anthony Giles, and Kevin Banks were appointed for the initial phase, tasked with identifying critical questions and proposing the review's terms of reference by December 31, 2023. Giles, an industrial relations expert, previously held roles in federal government and academia, while Banks, an arbitrator and mediator, holds positions at Queen’s University and has extensive experience in labour policy. The goal of the review is to ensure supply chain stability and demonstrate Canada's as a reliable global trading partner.

Please see Minister O’Regan’s statement here.

Virtual learning sessions for employers to learn about Canada’s economic immigration programs

The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is offering a virtual learning series late fall 2023, to show employers how to utilize Canada’s immigration programs and services. The session will focus on IRCC’s outreach and support services in addition to economic immigration programs that help with hiring and retaining global talent. More information on the sessions is available here.


International News

Global container outlook predicts $15 billion dollar loss for 2024

According to Drewry’s latest container forecaster, the outlook for global container shipping trades is anticipating an industry-wide $15 billon loss for next year. Simon Heaney, the Senior Manager of Container Research at Drewry, forecasted a 60% reduction in global freight rates (spot and contract combined) for 2023. This significant decline is expected to be followed by a 33 percent drop in freight rates for the year 2024, and will likely be repeated in subsequent years.

Complaints to Federal Maritime Commission tripled in two years

The number of complaints  submitted to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) over the shipping industry’s business practices, mostly detention and demurrage (D&D) fees, have more than tripled in the past two years. The data from the FMC shows shippers have filed nearly 400 complaints in the 14 months since the Ocean Shipping Reform Act became law in July 2022. Complaints centered on D&D fees or congestion surcharges the carriers or terminals were imposing during the surge in volumes. The FMC has completed several investigations into claims over charges and have resolved many cases by working with shippers. The Commission has simplified the complaints process and worked to assist parties to settle smaller claims before launching lengthy investigations. This proactive stance reflects a broader global trend toward stricter oversight of the shipping industry, which has historically proven challenging to regulate due to its international nature. The heightened scrutiny follows a period of disruption for global trade.

Technology readiness for key zero-carbon fuels is increasing, but challenges remain

The Lloyd’s Register (LR) Maritime Decarbonization Hub's Zero Carbon Fuel Monitor Report provides an overview of trends, priorities and recommended actions to drive the adoption of zero-carbon fuels in the shipping industry. Key trends include technology advancements in ammonia, global growth in green hydrogen production, expanding ports and bunkering infrastructure, and increasing momentum for green methanol. Five key priority areas for driving the transition to zero-carbon fuels include developing demand profiles, sustainable resources, scale-up policy consistency, research, and education, as well as technology advancement.

The report emphasizes the need for collaboration, both within the shipping industry and across sectors. Technology readiness for crucial zero-carbon fuels is on the rise, although significant obstacles remain in terms of investment and community preparedness. These challenges likely pertain to the adoption and integration of zero-carbon fuels in various industries.

British cargo ship sinks in the North Sea

Earlier this week, a  British cargo ship collided with another vessel off the coast of Germany. The incident resulted in the ship sinking in the North Sea, with one person reported dead and several individuals declared missing. Germany’s Central Command for Maritime Emergencies (CCME) reported the British ship was travelling to Bremen to the port of Immingham carrying steel and had 1,300 cubic metres of diesel onboard. The search continues for the missing seafarers.

NGO plans to sue over spike in orca deaths caused by entanglement in trawl nets

In response to the recent deaths of 10 orcas in the Bering Sea caused by entanglement in trawl nets, the Centre for Biological Diversity, an environmental NGO, is planning to file a lawsuit against the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service. Trawl nets are known to inadvertently capture and harm marine life, and this incident has prompted the NGO to take legal action against the government agency responsible for marine resource management. The National Environmental Policy Act requires that the Fisheries Service complete a supplemental environmental impact statement (EIS). The Centre plans to pursue a court order to make the NMFS complete a supplemental EIS if it does not launch the process on its own within 60 days.



Nov 1 - Pacific Pilot age Authority Quarterly Operations Meeting @ 11am

Nov 1-3 - Oceans Protection Plan Dialogue Forum
Nov 2 - 
VMCC Green Ship 2023 Conference

Nov 13 - 14 - National Canadian Marine Advisory Committe Meeting, Ottawa

Nov 16 - ICS Dry Bulk and Commodities Conference, Pinnacle Hotel, Vancouver

Dec 6 - COS members reception, Vancouver Rowing Club @ 4 - 7 PM

Dec 7 - Vancouver Grain Exchange Holiday Lunch - Terminal City Club @ 12 pm 


Ship of the Week

One of the world's largest container ships, the MSC China, capable of carrying 24,000 containers, was delivered to China Shipbuilding Trading Corporation and Mediterranean Shipping Company one month ahead of schedule. The vessel, the 13th ultra-large container vessel with a capacity of 24,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU), was designed by Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group and constructed by China Shipbuilding Trading Corporation and Jiangnan Shipyard. It incorporates modern equipment to reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, including an air lubrication system to cut energy consumption and carbon emissions by 3 to 4 percent. The vessel has a molded width of 61.5 metres and a molded depth of 33.2 metre, and measures nearly 400 metres in length. It has been assigned a classification by Det Norske Veritas (DNV).