A major containership fire occurs every 60 days it has been estimated as insurer TT Club says the campaign for greater container safety must first focus on dangerous goods.

To the melancholy list of lives and ships lost and damaged by burning and exploding containers we can now add the 56,642 gross tonnes of Grimaldi’s Grande America, now settling into the mud of the deepest part of the Bay of Biscay.

Despite assurances from fuel suppliers over the availability of compliant fuel to meet IMO 2020 from 1 January next year, industry executives warn that logistics will be a mess and the majority of smaller bunkering ports will not have low sulphur fuel.

With just a small percentage of ships fitting scrubbers owners are warned they will need secure availability of high sulphur fuel oil (HFO) in 2020 as the supply chain will be geared to delivering compliant low sulphur fuel oil (LFSO).

Against a backdrop of a gloomy outlook for container trades Bimco analyst Peter Sand warns a failure by lines to pass increased fuel costs from the IMO 2020 sulphur cap could result in bankruptcies.

Wilhelmsen Ship Management (WSM) is re-entering the crude tanker segment a decade after it exited with the sale of ITM Ship Management.

In 2018 the value of the Greek fleet increased by over $5bn to break the $100bn milestone, ensuring Greek shipowners continue to run not only the world largest fleet but also the most valuable.

The expanded Panama Canal saw container trade switching from the US West Coast calls, with landbridge connections inland, to calls on the East Coast, however, higher fuel costs associated with the IMO’s 2020 sulphur cap could drive up to 1.2m teu of trade back to West Coast ports.

These days it is almost impossible to discuss or view anything taking place in the UK except through the Brexit prism. Truly, it’s hard to remember a time when it was otherwise. What on earth did we used to talk about?

Whilst many people believe that the IMO’s ambition to reduce shipping’s 2050 carbon emissions by at least 50% compared with 2008 levels appears to be an almost impossible target, shipping economist Martin Stopford does not agree.

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