KOREA's Hanjin Shipping and China's Cosco, both the members of the CKYH-Green Alliance, have announced they will jointly launch a new Far East-Gulf of Mexico service from April 28.

Coded AWT by Hanjin or GME by Cosco, this string will be run by a total of eight 4,000-TEU vessels, comprising six ships from Hanjin and two units from Cosco. Featuring the feeder network, it covers the Gulf of Mexico and the southern part of the US in Houston area, including the Caribbean Sea region.

The port rotation of this service includes: Busan, Shanghai (Waigaoqiao Terminal), Ningbo, Xiamen, Shenzhen-Yantian, Panama Canal, Colon, Houston, Panama Canal and back to Busan.

This new loop is designated to offer one of the fastest transit times for the service of the like, said a Hanjin statement, adding it takes 24 days from Shenzhen-Yantian to Houston and 27 days from eastern China to Houston.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

NEW ZEALAND employment court in an closed session with the sacked dockers and the Ports of Auckland employer managed to un-sack the striking dockers and put hiring freeze on replacements until a judge determines the legalities involved.

In a judicial settlement conference the Ports of Auckland [PoA] has agreed to stop recruiting privately contracted non-union dockers until Thursday (today) March 22.

"They have adjourned for the day but are bound by confidentiality not to release anything outside of the judicial settlement conference," said a spokesman for the port.

Ports of Auckland also agreed following a telephone conference with the court and the union not to sack dockers or engage contractors before the proceedings.

Judge Barrie Travis will then hear an interim injunction plea to extend the recruiting half by the Maritime Union of New Zealand [MUNZ] before its case against the "unlawful" dismissal of 292 dockers is heard next week.

The dispute has diverted cargo to the Port of Tauranga that is said to have reached the "saturation point", reported Fairfax Media, adding that the smaller port had achieved a record of 20,200 container moves last week against its normal week of 12,000.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

GRAND Alliance shipping lines are increasing the allowable vessel size that calls at Charleston, South Carolina, starting with the docking of the 5,400-TEU OOCL California.

Grand Alliance members, Hapag-Lloyd, NYK and OOCL are now deploying larger vessels on their Atlantic Express Service (ATX), a North Europe service that calls at the North Charleston Terminal on a weekly basis.

The service is now deploying four larger, postpanamax ships with capacity of 5,400 TEU in place of the previously used panamax ships, according to the South Carolina Ports Authority.

Charleston is the last US port outbound on the service. "Charleston is a natural gateway to North Europe, given the businesses with European ties that have established in South Carolina," said Jim Newsome, president and CEO of the South Carolina Ports Authority.

Charleston said it leads the European market among US south Atlantic ports, with 36 per cent of the port's container volume associated with North Europe.

"Large vessels are not only being deployed in the trade between Asia and the US east coast," Mr Newsome said. "This represents the second carrier grouping to deploy postpanamax container vessels in the trade between the US and North Europe."

Following the Charleston port of call, the OOCL California is scheduled to make stops at Rotterdam, Hamburg, Le Havre and Southampton. Zim, ACL and Hamburg Sud also participate in the ATX service.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

GUANGZHOU Railway Group has signed a cooperation agreement with Hunan's port of Yueyang, and Guangdong's port of Guizhou and Guangzhou, on jointly developing water-rail intermodal services, Xinhua reports.

According to the agreement, Guangzhou Railway Group's business volume of water-rail intermodal to Yueyang, Huizhou and Guangzhou will increase 35 per cent, 23 per cent and 17 per cent.

Guangzhou Railway Group discussed with the three ports on increasing water-rail intermodal capacity and freight volume. The group will set up a workshop with the ports to strengthen their exchange and enhance operational efficiency.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

QINGDAO port's throughput is expected to increase to 400 million tonnes from last year's 370 million tonnes while its container movement to hit 14.5 million TEU over last year's 13 million TEU this year, the port group's president Chang Dechuang told Xinhua.

The port will put a 400,000-tonne ore terminal into operation this year with an annual capacity of more than 40 million tonnes. Moreover, the port will start construction of an oil terminal and coal terminal with a capacity of 300,000 tonnes.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

TRANSNET, South Africa's state-owned freight and logistics company, plans to invest a further ZAR10 billion (US$1.32 billion) in the development of Ngqura Port over the next decade.

The announcement comes as South African President Jacob Zuma opened the new deep water Port of Ngqura just outside Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape earlier this month.

The additional investment in the port would be used to raise the annual container handling capacity from 500,000 TEU at present to two million TEU. According to Port Technology International, this move would help ease the long-term problem of insufficient container handling capacity in Africa.

The report said Transnet has already invested over ZAR10 billion in the development of the facility, which is said to have been in construction for the past 12 years. The port is a green fields project.

It said the extra investment of ZAR10 billion would finance the construction of two more berths at the port's container terminal, a liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility as well as a bulk and break-bulk berth. Furthermore, the funds would be used to relocate Transnet's manganese export facility to the port from its current location in the Port Elizabeth harbour.

The first two container berths at the Ngqura Container Terminal have been in operation for the last two years.

President Zuma was cited as saying the Ngqura Trade Port would boost South Africa's trade with other countries in the region while supporting the government's long-term economic development plan.

"The planning of the Ngqura has been integrated with that of the Coega Industrial Development Zone, and this will ensure increased benefits for the province and business," said President Zuma. "It has also made it possible for the province to participate in the country's minerals sector."

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

APM TERMINALS, the container port operator unit of AP Moller Group, is to open a EUR150 million (US$198 million) container terminal at Savona-Vado, Italy, west of Genoa and east of Monaco in the first half of 2016.

The public-funded EUR400 million project aims to boost annual capacity to over 800,000 TEU by building a 700-metre long berth with 20 metres alongside with 21 hectares of yard space, serviced by six super post-panamax cranes.

Despite delays caused by "bureaucratic process and public approvals" it has passed the necessary environmental hurdles, said the terminal operator's Vado Ligure manager, Cargo Merli.

Outside of a minor dredging test opposed by local municipality to be brought to court in May, the project will go ahead following test adjustment.

"There are definitely no more 'game-stoppers' at the legal level for the project. We are looking at the creation of 400 jobs when the terminal enters service, rising to around 600 when it reaches full capacity," said Mr Merli, according to UK's Port Technology International.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

GLOBAL supply chain provider, CEVA Logistics, has signed a five-year contract with specialist retailer of sports clothing and equipments, Forum Sport, to manage 18,000 products and handle about 10,000 orders annually for delivery to stores and homes in Spain.

Forum Sport sells its products through its own stores as well as online and has entrusted CEVA with the management of all its logistics activities. CEVA will be responsible for inbound and outbound logistics, warehouse management, shipment preparation and reverse logistics within Forum Sport's 6,000 square metre warehouse located in Basauri, close to Bilbao and their newly opened 13,000 square metre automated warehouse in Jundiz Business Park, in the city of Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain.

In order to manage growth in demand, the sporting equipment and clothing retailer has invested in expanding its warehousing capacity to better serve its customers in Iberia.

Diego Llorente, operational director of Forum Sport, said: "We have entrusted the development and management of our logistics activities to CEVA because of their solid experience in the Retail sector and their focus on continuous improvement. This makes CEVA the best partner to support us in making our logistics operations one of the cornerstones for business growth."

Antonio Fondevilla, business development director for CEVA in Iberia, said: "We are delighted that Forum Sport has awarded us the contract to manage their supply chain. Our collaboration with Forum Sport is based on a commitment to supporting their business growth by optimising their supply chain, through continuous improvement and operations excellence."

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

DB SCHENKER Rail has linked the greater Paris area more closely to its European network with the opening of another rail logistics centre on the outskirts of the city in Blanc Mesnil where the company now offers integrated rail logistics solutions for its customers in the steel processing industry.

The collection point for shipments from Germany is Saarbrucken, with services initially running twice a week to the DB Schenker Railport in Survilliers-Fosses, around 30 kilometres north of the centre of Paris. "It is only a short distance from here to the greater Paris area (Ile-de-France), with the final delivery by truck as required by the customer," the company said.

The new service makes use of DB Schenker Rail's European network and, with shipments through France handled by Euro Cargo Rail (ECR), a wholly owned subsidiary of DB Schenker Rail. "It is ideal for the shipment of paper, but also for palliated goods, such as consumer goods and construction materials. Numerous well-known companies from the paper industry and construction materials industry have already shown interest and are now using the new service," the company added.

DB Schenker Rail expects to carry up to 100,000 tonnes of rail freight on this corridor before the end of the year. As a result, the company is already planning to increase the number of trains per week.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

HONG KONG's Executive Council, the territory's appointed upper house, has endorsed a plan to construct a third runway at Hong Kong International Airport at a cost of HK$136 billion (US$17.5 billion).

The Airport Authority Hong Kong had sought permission to build a third runway in a bid to keep up with the rapid growth in air traffic. The airport's two existing runways are forecast to reach capacity by 2020.

"The Executive Council has approved in principal the airport authority's recommendation to adopt the three-runway system as the future development option for its next stage of planning," said Secretary for Transport and Housing Eva Cheng, according to Reuters.

Ms Cheng said the airport authority has been granted permission to proceed with an environmental impact assessment and draw up plans for the design and financing of the project. The assessment is expected to take two years.

In response to public concerns about the impact of the third runway at Hong Kong International Airport, the Transport Secretary said the government has asked the airport authority to conduct the environmental study in a "strict and professional manner, looking at marine ecology, noise and air quality".

Ms Cheng said the government wants the authority to complete the assessment, design and financial options by the end of 2014, in order for the runway to be built by 2023.

A high-level steering committee will be set up to work with the authority on the project, along with a dedicated team led by the associated policy bureau.

Ms Cheng also emphasised the need for long-term planning for the airport, as air traffic last year already reached the forecast demand for 2013, as stated in the Master Plan 2030.

In response to the government announcement, Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited (Hactl), the major air cargo handler at the airport, has strongly welcomed the decision to build a third runway at the airport.

Hactl invested US$1 billion in the construction of its SuperTerminal 1 facility at the new airport in 1998 and now handles 70 per cent of general air cargo movement in Hong Kong. It said in a statement that its annual cargo throughput (three million tonnes) already exceeds SuperTerminal 1's original design capacity.

Hactl managing director Mark Whitehead said: "The global air freight market, and the market in this region in particular, is expected to grow in leaps and bounds in the next two decades. HKIA needs to grow to meet the increases in volumes, otherwise its status as the world's No 1 air cargo hub will be under threat."

Mr Whitehead said that the third runway at the airport would mean "airlines will have the room they need to grow here, bringing jobs and prosperity. The density of aircraft movements can be maintained at safe levels, and the avoidance of air traffic congestion will reduce the impact on the environment."

Hong Kong's Cathay Pacific has also praised the government's decision. "We firmly believe the third runway is of critical importance to the sustainability of the Hong Kong economy and, therefore, to the long-term prosperity and well-being of Hong Kong's people. Connectivity with the rest of the world has made Hong Kong what it is today so we must be clear on how we can maintain and grow these links to our future," said Cathay's CEO, John Slosar.

The airline has been making significant investments at its Hong Kong hub, including more than 90 new aircraft on order for delivery up to the end of the decade with a list price of HK$190 billion, a HK$5.7 billion cargo terminal that is scheduled to open in early 2013 and more than HK$3 billion on new products in the air and on the ground.

Sister airline Dragonair's CEO Patrick Yeung agreed: "We believe that Hong Kong as a whole will benefit from the enhanced capacity in our home hub, further boosting the development of the aviation industry which makes such a significant contribution to the city's economy."

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

HOLLYWOOD's biggest stars have chosen to fly with Virgin Atlantic ever since its first commercial flight over 27 years ago and now stars of the big screen of a different breed are being welcome onboard by Virgin Atlantic Cargo too.

Uggie, the 10-year-old Jack Russell Terrier and star of the Oscar-winning silent movie, The Artist, climbed aboard with Virgin Atlantic Cargo for a flying visit between Los Angeles and London to appear on several British television programmes including The Graham Norton Show, BBC News, Channel 5 News, Blue Peter and Newsround.

Since 2003, when Virgin Atlantic was the first airline to fly pets directly from the USA to London Heathrow under the Pet Travel Scheme, their dedicated team has successful managed the travel arrangements for over 14,000 dogs and cats to and from destinations across their international network, including the United States, Dubai, Hong Kong, South Africa, the Caribbean and Australia.

Helen Evans, shipping manager for Virgin Atlantic Cargo, said: "We treat pets with the same special care and attention we give to our passengers. We know how important our furry travellers are to their owners and we pride ourselves on offering a service second to none which is why we get many repeat bookings.

"My team ensure pets and their owners are looked after from start to finish, that is why we only fly pets within Virgin's own network and, in the UK, it's my team that take care of all documentation and customs clearance requirements to make sure pets are safely reunited with their owners as quickly as possible."

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

GLOBAL supply chain provider, CEVA Logistics, has acquired a 42,735 square-metre facility in Southern California and has signed on its first customer by inking a multi-year contract with Masco Corporation, one of the world's largest manufacturers of brand-name consumer products for the home and family.

The company said the facility is strategically located within three miles of the Ontario airport and one mile of major interstate arteries, making it an ideal hub for west coast distribution. It can currently handle 300 trailers with its 50 doors and there are plans for expansion.

As the first customer at this facility, Masco Corporation has signed a multi-year contract with CEVA to manage west coast distribution and logistics services for several Masco subsidiaries in the US.

Rick Thomas, CEVA's senior director of business development, said: "This facility is really top-notch and our partnership with Masco signifies a true win-win for all who are involved. The solution our teams have come up with provides Masco with the best combination of service, capability and cost."

"Our team has worked diligently to ensure that we're providing Masco a unique value proposition and the level of service Masco was looking for. This opportunity builds a strong footprint for CEVA providing a significant growth opportunity in consumer and retail goods distribution," said Andy Allen, director of business development for CEVA.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

With vessel designs for 22,000 TEU capacity vessels now drawn up, Crane & Engineering Services Managing Director Halfdan Ross suggests quay solutions at TOC Asia Conference.


Hong Kong - APM Terminals Crane & Engineering Services’ Managing Director, Halfdan Ross, discussed solutions to the challenges presented by the latest and future generation of Ultra-Large Container Vessels (ULCV) that confront port and terminal operation and design at the TOC Container Supply Chain Asia Conference in Hong Kong.

Addressing the topic “Terminal Planning & Operations: Driving New Performance Efficiencies”, Mr. Ross examined issues and solutions applicable to quay cranes intended to accommodate the larger vessels entering into service in the global container fleet, as well as the design or reinforcement of the quays themselves.

“While none have been ordered yet, studies have been completed on the feasibility of constructing containerships with a 22,000 TEU capacity” noted Mr. Ross, adding “so planning for crane and other infrastructure support to accommodate such vessels and their container volumes is a very necessary exercise for any major hub port”.

As of February 1st there were 153 containerships on order with capacities in excess of 10,000 TEUs, including 20 of the 18,000 TEU capacity EEE Class vessels ordered by Maersk Line, the first of which is expected for delivery next year. There are currently 121 vessels of 10,000 TEU capacity and above in service.

“There are issues of structural stiffness, weight, visibility and wind load which all must be taken into account with cranes of such dimensions, along with the question of upgrading existing equipment or installing new cranes entirely” explained Mr. Ross.

Improved engineering, camera-assisted and remote control of the crane operations were some of the solutions presented, though increased power requirements may also pose obstacles, particularly in emerging market areas with power generation or supply issues.

CES has been playing a major role in maintaining the readiness of the APM Terminals Global Port and Terminal Network for handling ULCVs such as the EEE Class vessels at key load centers and hub facilities.

“The point is that ultra-large vessels are already in service, and even larger vessels will follow, and so the time to prepare the necessary terminal and quay infrastructure is now” said Mr. Ross.

Source APM Terminals

Following record profits in 2010, the year 2011 began initially very positively. In the course of the year, however, demand declined significantly. The airlines struggled against eroding demand, especially in the major airfreight markets in China and India. “Lufthansa Cargo turned in an outstanding result in a demanding market environment,“ emphasised Chairman Karl Ulrich Garnadt. That success is chiefly attributable to cost discipline, a broad product range and flexible capacity steering dictated by demand. In the past business year, Lufthansa Cargo increasingly switched capacities from Asia to North America and included new and attractive destinations in its route network. On the back of those measures, the cargo carrier significantly boosted revenues and tonnage. Earnings rose by 5.3 per cent to 2.9 billion euros. The operating profit amounted to 249 million euros, the second-best in company history.

Chairman Karl Ulrich Garnadt pointed out that investment in new products and a strong focus on quality had also contributed to company success. “We raised our quality level markedly again during the year and attained top marks anew in all areas. We will stay on that path and further expand our quality lead.“ That is evidenced for example by our investment in the Lufthansa Cargo Cool Center for temperature-controlled shipments at Frankfurt Airport, he said.

With the “Lufthansa Cargo 2020“ programme launched last year, the company has clearly defined its long-term strategy, explained the Chairman. With orders for new Boeing 777 freighters, the upgrading of the IT platform, plans for a new logistics center in Frankfurt to replace the existing 30 year-old facility as well as other long-term projects, the key markers are in place to ensure that the company remains industry leader also in 2020.

At the same time, Lufthansa Cargo CEO Karl Ulrich Garnadt was emphatic about huge challenges confronting the airfreight industry in the coming years. The EU’s unilateral stance on emissions trading is notably hitting European airlines and distorting competition. The continuing lack of uniformity in global security standards in the air cargo business as well as the slow certification of known consignors in Germany are threatening to inhibit growth.

With all that, the principal challenge facing Lufthansa Cargo is still the possibility of a permanent ban on night flights at Frankfurt Airport. “There is a real danger of Frankfurt losing its position as the best and most attractive airfreight hub in Europe,” emphasised Garnadt. A blanket
night-flight ban of six hours, daily, would severely disadvantage the competitive standing of companies operating at the Frankfurt base. Round-the-clock handling of express cargo is imperative for those companies. A permanent night-flight ban would deprive Lufthansa Cargo alone of major express connections and cost the company a yearly 40 million euros. “Germany and the Rhine-Main region around the airport live from exports and international trade,“ Garnadt remarked. “Severing the world’s seventh biggest air cargo airport and major express hub for a quarter of a day from international goods flows would have a drastic impact on producing companies and the entire logistics industry. The victims are companies based in Frankfurt and thousands of employees.”

Moreover, Peter Gerber, Lufthansa Cargo Board Member Finance and Human Resources, pointed out that only financially healthy operators are in a position to invest in new technologies, such as quieter aircraft. “The prerequisite for that are commensurate operating conditions, allowing companies to plan long-term on a reliable basis.” Lufthansa Cargo has done its homework and is not resting on the laurels of past success. The SCORE earnings improvement programme, now underway across the entire Lufthansa Group, is also an essential lever underpinning Lufthansa Cargo’s efforts to improve the company’s cost base. “Our aim is to raise earnings by a minimum of 70 million euros yearly from 2015, Gerber announced. That will furnish the foundations for Lufthansa Cargo’s ambitious future plans.

In the initial months of the present year, Lufthansa Cargo has also found – in the Chinese Unitop logistics group – a partner for restructuring the Chinese joint-venture carrier, Jade Cargo International, in which Lufthansa Cargo holds a 25 per-cent stake, Gerber noted.

In the current year, Lufthansa Cargo will continue to concentrate on its core business, Gerber told the press conference in Frankfurt. Last year, the cargo carrier divested its stakes, among others, in Traxon Europe, a provider of electronic solutions for airlines, and LifeConEx, an expert in temperature-controlled logistics.

For the year as a whole in 2012, Lufthansa Cargo is assuming that business will develop on a positive note and is again anticipating an operating result in the region of thee-digit millions. However, it will in all probability not replicate the very strong results attained in 2011.

Key figures in fiscal 2011:

Lufthansa Cargo         2011    2010    Change in %    
Revenues        In €m   2,943   2,795   +5.3   
Operating result        In €m   249     310     -19.7  
Operating margin        %       8.5     11.1%   -2.6 pp
Employees as of 31.12.  Number  4,624   4,517   +2.4   
Freight and mail (tonnes)       In thousands    1,885   1,795   +5.0   
Available tonne-kilometres      In millions.    13,647  12,564  +8.6   
Revenue tonne-kilometres        In millions     9,487   8,905   +6.5   
Cargo load factor       %       69.5    70.9    -1.4 pp

Source Lufthansa Cargo AG


Cargo carrier offers flights to 303 destinations in 99 countries


Lufthansa Cargo is offering customers flights to 303 destinations in 99 countries in the summer flight schedules, beginning on 25 March. New in the cargo carrier’s global network is Chongqing. The Chinese metropolis will be served with four flights weekly operated by Lufthansa Cargo’s MD-11 freighters. Other newcomers in the timetable - also thanks to the expansion of the network of Lufthansa passenger services - are Shenyang in northeastern China and Qingdao (Tsingtao) in Shandong province.

Flights to Detroit are to be stepped up to twice-weekly connections. Services to the US automotive capital commenced initially in January with a once-weekly flight in the Lufthansa Cargo freighter network.

In South America as well, Lufthansa Cargo customers will have a wider choice of destinations and freighter connections. Twice-weekly MD-11 flights ex Frankfurt will be available to Montevideo, capital of Uruguay.

Back in the timetable is Kolkata (Calcutta). Flights were operated to the Indian metropolis last summer but were discontinued in recent months. Once-weekly direct flights from Frankfurt are now available again in the summer flight schedules.

“We have selectively extended our route network and brought new and attractive growth markets into the timetable,“ noted Lufthansa Board Member Product and Sales Dr. Andreas Otto. “We are expanding our presence in China, the world’s biggest airfreight market, and now laying on freighter connections to a total of six Chinese destinations.”

Lufthansa Cargo is furnishing customers with around 9,000 flights weekly to choose from in the summer flight schedules. The cargo carrier’s freighters will be serving a total of 51 destinations, 25 of them in Asia alone and eight in North America.

All freighter flights out of Germany will be operated from Frankfurt. The flights to North America and Asia, which were relocated to Cologne/Bonn temporarily in the winter timetable, will also depart from Frankfurt.

Source Lufthansa Cargo AG

 

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