Seaspan Ferries has announced that it will be adding two new LNG – Battery hybrid ferries to its fleet in 2021. With construction scheduled to begin in 2019 at the by Damen Shipyards Gorinchem B.V. Mangalia Shipyard in Romania. The new vessels will join the Seaspan Swift and the Seaspan Reliant, the company’s first hybrid ferries. Since introducing these vessels to their fleet, Seaspan Ferries has been able to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent compared to traditional vessels.
The Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) announced earlier this week the completion of a container terminal master plan that outlines the potential of future container terminal capacity and sequencing of development at the Port of Prince Rupert. The planning work identifies the long-term potential to develop 6 – 7 million TEUs of capacity through the development of multiple terminals at the Port of Prince Rupert. This includes further expansion of Fairview Terminal and the development of a second container terminal with a capacity of 2.5 million TEUs at the Port's South Kaien Island site. Both the current Fairview Terminal and South Kaien sites are in close proximity to expanding export logistics operations on Ridley Island, and will fully integrate with these operations following PRPA’s construction of the Fairview-Ridley Connector Corridor scheduled for the end of 2020.
CN is increasing its operations in Western Canada with two significant export supply chain projects: The AltaGas Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal, and The Vista Mining Complex. Both new projects aim to maximize the use of rail into the Port of Prince Rupert. The AltaGas Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal has been receiving propane since mid-April and will provide access to markets in Asia for the propane derived from the natural gas industry based in BC and Alberta. The Vista Mining Complex is a new surface mine operation expected to employ in excess of 350 people full-time. With committed rail and terminal capacity, the project is focused on the serving the growing demand for thermal coal in the Asian markets.
The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (Canada) has voted to strike if necessary, but union leaders have agreed to continue discussions with employers through to the end of May, providing some relief to shippers moving goods through the ports of Vancouver and Prince Rupert. The tone of negotiations has reportedly improved in recent weeks, though neither side will say what issues are holding up the negotiations.
Trade barriers, unrelated to tariffs, are impeding Canada’s grain industry from seeing the full benefits of the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement between Canada and the EU. A recent report from the Chamber of Commerce states that overcoming these non-tariff trade barriers will require improved communications between industry and government, as well as increased transparency and regulatory harmonization. Canada and the EU signed CETA on October 30, 2016 and the deal has been provisionally applied since September 2017. Prior to CETA, agricultural trade between Canada and Europe was valued at some $3.5 billion annually. Under CETA’s provisional application, almost 94 per cent of EU tariff lines are duty free.
The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast announced the Conservation Agreement today, which supports the continuation of the ECHO Program. The agreement brings together the Department of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard, Transport Canada, Vancouver Fraser Port Authority (VFPA), Pacific Pilotage Authority (PPA), and the commercial marine sector. It extends the voluntary measures designed to reduce the impact of large commercial vessels and hopes to attain an 80% participation rate. Since the Salish Sea is bi-national waters, shared between Canada and the USA, these voluntary measures can establish effective measures and guidelines in a way that traditional regulation cannot, as it would be outside the Government of Canada’s jurisdiction. This agreement is the first of its kind in Canada and may prove to be a model for future agreements/partnerships to protect Canadian Coasts.
On behalf of GCT Global Container Terminals Inc., Doron Grosman, President & CEO as GCT Canada announces a $160 M investment to densify and modernize its operations at GCT Vanterm. This investment will create 1186 new direct and indirect jobs and generating $77M in wages and $187M in GDP per year. The $160 million Vanterm upgrade will increase container handling capacity and allow it to handle larger container ships within its existing footprint while reducing emissions as a result of new equipment. This announcement demonstrates continued investments in the Western Trade Corridors which will support high paying port jobs in British Columbia.
DP World will be acquiring Fraser Surrey Docks terminal from a Macquarie Group fund. The deal is expected to close in the first half of 2019. The purchase consideration is below 2.5 percent of DP World’s net asset value as of December 31, 2018, which Reuters calculated to be under $300 million. DP World believes that the major steel terminal has the right location and infrastructure to service the increasing demand from their customers for a multi-purpose facility.
Two Holland America Line’s cruise ships collided at the Port of Vancouver’s Canada Place terminal on May 4. Just before 7:00am, the 82,820 GT Oosterdam collided with the 86,273 GT Nieuw Amsterdam while docking stern to stern. The collision did not result in any injuries, though both vessels sustained minor damage well above the waterline. There will be no impact to the future itineraries of either ship.
CN has announced that it is increasing its operations in Western Canada with two additional major export supply chain projects coming online. The new projects are focused on maximizing the use of rail into the Port of Prince Rupert. The first train of thermal coal from Coalspur’s Vista Mine in Hinton, Alberta has shipped to Ridley Terminals. CN is also delivering the first unit train of propane from Alberta for export via the new AltaGas Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal.
The Port of Halifax’s most recent economic impact report has found that the port’s economic output from operations in 2017/18 is $1.97 billion, up 15% from 2015/16. Combined Port of Halifax operations output and exporter output is $4.56 billion in economic output to Nova scotia (up 25%) In 2018, the total economic output for Halifax Cruise was $171.8 million (up 40%). The Port also supports 14,965 full-time equivalent jobs from port operations (up 20%).
Clear Seas has launched a new site to help Canadians access information about liquefied natural gas (LNG). The fuel is set to become the second leading energy source worldwide by 2040. The site will be a timely addition to the public policy discussion around energy and outlines a number of central issues relating to LNG as a cargo and a cleaner fuel source for the commercial marine shipping industry. Visit the site here: https://clearseas.org/en/lng/
Following a well-respected and distinguished 38-year career with Fraser Surrey Docks, Mike McLeod, Senior Manager Sales & Marketing, has announced his retirement effective May 31, 2019. Mike is the last management person remaining within Fraser Surrey Docks to be originally hired by Johnston Terminals - the original owners of Fraser Surrey Docks. Mike has always eagerly been involved in company and industry functions as well as community events. He is a past President of the Vancouver Transportation Club and still maintains a role on the scholarship and audit committee. The Chamber of Shipping wishes to congratulate Mike on his well-earned retirement.
Negotiations between the BC Maritime Employers Association and ILWU Canada with the conciliator appointed by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) were slated to end yesterday, May 2nd. With the 21-day cooling off period expiring May 4th, we are still hopeful that an agreement and or an extension can be reached. May 5th is the earliest that a work stoppage could occur, but there is no indication of an immediate disruption.
Watch the latest episode as Kevin Obermeyer, the CEO of the Pacific Pilotage Authority, and Robert Lewis-Manning, President of the Chamber of Shipping join Stu McNish for a Conversation That Matters. The dialogue focuses on questions that currently hang over the industry and the waters of the West Coast are an increase in oil tankers, Bill C-48 and the impact all of the ships have during the two plus months when the southern resident whale population visits the Salish Sea.
Seaspan has benefited from the merger of Japan’s K Line, MOL and NYK last year. A penalty contract payment of $227m from a ONE equity owner was paid to Seaspan due to the early termination of the charter parties related to seven vessels which were no longer required by the new entity. After finishing the charters on 31 March and being compensated, Seaspan was able to successfully fix all seven ships to other customers.