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RoPax ferry takes shape at Niron Staal

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  • As Total Joins SEA\LNG Coalition

Niron Staal, a vital part of Damen Shipyards Group, has performed a keel-laying ceremony of the hull of a passenger ferry, for an African client. On completion, the Damen Shipyards Hardinxveld will carry out the final outfitting work of the 5212 RoPax.

“We are very proud to be working on this hull fabrication – this project really displays the added value of the years’ of experience that we have here,” comments Niron Staal Director, Roland Berends, adding: “In practical terms, this results in a significant reduction in the time needed for preparatory work and engineering.”

By providing this ‘head-start’ in hull construction, Niron Staal is able to schedule the finished and painted hull to be delivered in just less than 70 days: on 10 January 2017.

Keel laying ceremony for RoPax Ferry

Keel laying ceremony for RoPax Ferry

The MARITIME FIRST was told that the timely start and smooth running of the project so far is due to the cooperation between all parties involved.

“We have all been working as one team with full transparency of information, costs and quality”, indicated Mr Berends.

“For example, the basic and detailed engineering phases have drawn on the expertise of both our own engineers and those from Damen Shipyards Hardinxveld. And the Hardinxveld Project Manager is just as involved in the build process as our own Project Manager.”

Keel laying ceremony for RoPax Ferry

Keel laying ceremony for RoPax Ferry

Although Niron Staal is part of Damen Shipyards Group, this RoPax hull actually marks the first new build contract between the two parties. “This is an important step in our relationship,” notes Mr Berends. “Our capacity to fabricate quality hulls forms a bridge between Damen’s new building and repair activities.”

Looking at the acquisition of future contracts, this latest project demonstrates Niron Staal’s growing position in the ferry market. Located in the harbour of Amsterdam, the company does not have to look far for potential customers. “Looking across the water, you can see that the City Council of Amsterdam has an extensive network of ferries. How fantastic would it be to have Amsterdam’s ferries built in Amsterdam.”

Damen Shipyards Group operates 32 shipbuilding and repair yards, employing 9,000 people worldwide. Damen has delivered more than 6,000 vessels in more than 100 countries and delivers some 180 vessels annually to customers worldwide.

In the meantime, oil and gas major Total has joined SEA\LNG, a multi-sector industry coalition created to accelerate the widespread adoption of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel.

Total is involved across the entire LNG chain, from extracting natural gas onshore and offshore to processing plants where it is liquefied, stored and shipped in a fleet of specially designed carriers to regasification terminals for delivery to business customers.

In 2015, the company’s LNG production was of 10.2 million tons. Total’s objective is to double its liquefaction capacity to around 20 Mt/y and increase its LNG trading portfolio to 15 Mt/y by 2020.

“Our mission, as an integrated oil company, is to offer global and compliant solutions to our customers to meet the 2020 Global Cap requirements recently set by the International Maritime Organization,” Olivier Jouny, Total Marine Fuels Managing Director, said.

”Total has a long historical activity in the bunker industry and is also a strong worldwide LNG player, thus providing the required conditions to position the company on this emerging LNG bunker market, with the objective to be a key player. Total’s ambition is to become the responsible energy major and the Group strongly supports the SEA\LNG drive to make LNG the preferred clean marine fuel of the future.”

SEA\LNG brings together players from across the supply chain, including shipping companies, classification societies, ports, major LNG suppliers, downstream companies, infrastructure providers and OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) to address market barriers and transform the use of LNG as a marine fuel.

The coalition members include ABS, Carnival Corporation, DNV GL, Eagle LNG Partners, ENGIE, GE, GTT, Keppel Gas Technology, Lloyd’s Register, Mitsubishi Corporation, NYK Line, Port of Rotterdam, Qatargas, Shell, Total, TOTE Inc., and Wärtsilä.

Additional report from World Maritime News

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WAIVER CESSATION: Igbokwe urges NIMASA to evolve stronger collaboration with Ships owners

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…Stresses the need for timely disbursement of N44.6billion CVFF***

Highly revered Nigerian Maritime Lawyer, and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mike Igbokwe has urged the Nigeria Maritime Administration and safety Agency (NIMASA) to partner with ship owners and relevant association in the industry to evolving a more vibrant merchant shipping and cabotage trade regime.

Igbokwe gave the counsel during his paper presentation at the just concluded two-day stakeholders’ meeting on Cabotage waiver restrictions, organized by NIMASA.

“NIMASA and shipowners should develop merchant shipping including cabotage trade. A good start is to partner with the relevant associations in this field, such as the Nigeria Indigenous Shipowners Association (NISA), Shipowners Association of Nigeria (SOAN), Oil Trade Group & Maritime Trade Group of the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA).

“A cursory look at their vision, mission and objectives, show that they are willing to improve the maritime sector, not just for their members but for stakeholders in the maritime economy and the country”.

Adding that it is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a through briefing and regular consultation with ships owners, in other to have insight on the challenges facing the ship owners.

“It is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a thorough briefing and regular consultations with shipowners, to receive insight on the challenges they face, and how the Agency can assist in solving them and encouraging them to invest and participate in the maritime sector, for its development. 

“NIMASA should see them as partners in progress because, if they do not invest in buying ships and registering them in Nigeria, there would be no Nigerian-owned ships in its Register and NIMASA would be unable to discharge its main objective.

The Maritime lawyer also urged NIMASA  to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF)that currently stands at about N44.6 billion.

“Lest it be forgotten, what is on the lips of almost every shipowner, is the need to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (the CVFF’), which was established by the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act, 2003. It was established to promote the development of indigenous ship acquisition capacity, by providing financial assistance to Nigerian citizens and shipping companies wholly owned by Nigerian operating in the domestic coastal shipping, to purchase and maintain vessels and build shipping capacity. 

“Research shows that this fund has grown to about N44.6billion; and that due to its non-disbursement, financial institutions have repossessed some vessels, resulting in a 43% reduction of the number of operational indigenous shipping companies in Nigeria, in the past few years. 

“Without beating around the bush, to promote indigenous maritime development, prompt action must be taken by NIMASA to commence the disbursement of this Fund to qualified shipowners pursuant to the extant Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (“CVFF”) Regulations.

Mike Igbokwe (SAN)

“Indeed, as part of its statutory functions, NIMASA is to enforce and administer the provisions of the Cabotage Act 2003 and develop and implement policies and programmes which will facilitate the growth of local capacity in ownership, manning and construction of ships and other maritime infrastructure. Disbursing the CVFF is one of the ways NIMASA can fulfill this mandate.

“To assist in this task, there must be collaboration between NIMASA, financial institutions, the Minister of Transportation, as contained in the CVFF Regulations that are yet to be implemented”, the legal guru highlighted further. 

He urged the agency to create the right environment for its stakeholders to build on and engender the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders.

“Lastly, which is the main reason why we are all here, cessation of ministerial waivers on some cabotage requirements, which I believe is worth applause in favour of NIMASA. 

“This is because it appears that the readiness to obtain/grant waivers had made some of the vessels and their owners engaged in cabotage trade, to become complacent and indifferent in quickly ensuring that they updated their capacities, so as not to require the waivers. 

“The cessation of waivers is a way of forcing the relevant stakeholders of the maritime sector, to find workable solutions within, for maritime development and fill the gaps in the local capacities in 100% Nigerian crewing, ship ownership, and ship building, that had necessitated the existence of the waivers since about 15 years ago, when the Cabotage Act came into being. 

“However, NIMASA must ensure that the right environment is provided for its stakeholders to build and possess the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders. Or better still, that they are solved within the next 5 years of its intention to stop granting waivers”, he further explained. 

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Breaking News: The Funeral Rites of Matriarch C. Ogbeifun is Live

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The Burial Ceremony of Engr. Greg Ogbeifun’s mother is live. Watch on the website: www.maritimefirstnewspaper.com and on Youtube: Maritimefirst Newspaper.

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Wind Farm Vessel Collision Leaves 15 Injured

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…As Valles Steamship Orders 112,000 dwt Tanker from South Korea***

A wind farm supply vessel and a cargo ship collided in the Baltic Sea on Tuesday leaving 15 injured.

The Cyprus-flagged 80-meter general cargo ship Raba collided with Denmark-flagged 31-meter wind farm supply vessel World Bora near Rügen Island, about three nautical miles off the coast of Hamburg. 

Many of those injured were service engineers on the wind farm vessel, and 10 were seriously hurt. 

They were headed to Iberdrola’s 350MW Wikinger wind farm. Nine of the people on board the World Bora were employees of Siemens Gamesa, two were employees of Iberdrola and four were crew.

The cause of the incident is not yet known, and no pollution has been reported.

After the collision, the two ships were able to proceed to Rügen under their own power, and the injured were then taken to hospital. 

Lifeboat crews from the German Maritime Search and Rescue Service tended to them prior to their transport to hospital via ambulance and helicopter.

“Iberdrola wishes to thank the rescue services for their diligence and professionalism,” the company said in a statement.

In the meantime, the Hong Kong-based shipowner Valles Steamship has ordered a new 112,000 dwt crude oil tanker from South Korea’s Sumitomo Heavy Industries Marine & Engineering.

Sumitomo is to deliver the Aframax to Valles Steamship by the end of 2020, according to data provided by Asiasis.

The newbuild Aframax will join seven other Aframaxes in Valles Steamship’s fleet. Other ships operated by the company include Panamax bulkers and medium and long range product tankers.

The company’s most-recently delivered unit is the 114,426 dwt Aframax tanker Seagalaxy. The naming and delivery of the tanker took place in February 2019, at Namura Shipbuilding’s yard in Japan.

Maritime Executive with additional report from World Maritime News

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