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Valenciaport detects a contraction in Spanish export activity in April

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Valenciaport detects a contraction in Spanish export activity in April. Image: Port Authority of Valencia
Valenciaport detects a contraction in Spanish export activity in April. Image: Port Authority of Valencia
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The geopolitical situation marked by the world crisis in the energy sector, the war in Ukraine, the price of fuel, the increase in the cost of energy and the shortage of raw materials are weighing down the activity of Spanish companies that use the docks of Valenciaport to sell their products abroad, while domestic demand continues to rise. Thus, in the first four months of the year, data from the Statistical Bulletin of the Port Authority of Valencia show that total traffic amounted to more than 27 million tonnes, which represents a decrease of 3.66% compared to the same period in 2021, while TEUs amounted to 1,702,236, with a drop of 7.99%. Regarding containers, full containers dedicated to foreign sales have decreased by 12.72%, while those dedicated to imports have grown by 6.96% during the first four months of the year. A situation that is also seen in the month of April, where full cargo containers fell by 19.87% while those for unloading grew by 35.5%.

This trend is shown in all sectors with generalised decreases in all of them such as vehicles and transport elements (-7.68%), agri-foodstuffs (-15.79%), construction materials (-10.55%), chemical products (-18.14%) and other goods (-21.5%). On the other hand, imports grew, especially natural gas arriving at the Port of Sagunto, which between January and April amounted to 1,305,445 tonnes, three times more than in the first four months of 2021.

If the year-on-year trend is compared, the overall figures for Valenciaport stand at 83.85 million tonnes handled, with a growth of 1.15% and a total of 5,456,592 containers handled, a figure 1.31% lower than the previous period. In annual terms, full containers of cargo dedicated to exports amounted to 1,036,499 with an increase of 2.83% and full containers for unloading (import), which stood at 856,049 containers with an increase of 16.28%. On the other hand, full transit containers fell by 8 per cent and empty containers fell by 1 per cent.

Vehicles and countries

In terms of ro-ro traffic, 4,075,945 tonnes were handled in the first four months of the year, a similar figure to the same period in 2021; while cars under the goods regime stood at 197,187 units, up 4.77%. On the other hand, passenger traffic amounted to 239,492 people (including regular lines and cruise passengers), with a total growth of 168%. During these months, 61 cruise ships have been received with nearly 68,000 passengers.

About total traffic by country, the United States has generated the most traffic with a total of 3,086,521 tonnes and a growth of 22.5%. A third of this traffic is imports, which increased by 200%, although this month the growth of products from the North American country has moderated. This was followed by Italy with 2,537,470 tonnes and an increase of 1.4%, while China, with a decrease of 4.9% and a total of 2,149,086. The number of containers handled with China was 189,710 (-6.95%), followed by the United States with 167,340 (-3.3%) and Turkey with 89,355 (-20.6%).

By geographical areas, the main container market is the Mediterranean-Black Sea with 300,144 and a drop of 10.84%; followed by the Far East with 258,637 (-4.59%); and West Africa with 107,207 TEUs (-7.66%). The most dynamic areas between January and March were Atlantic Europe with a growth of 50.7%, Australia (+18.45%) and South and East Africa (+18.43%).

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Maritime

ClassNK issues AiP for duel fuel generator engine using hydrogen gas

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ClassNK issues AiP for duel fuel generator engine using hydrogen gas. Image: ClassNK
ClassNK issues AiP for duel fuel generator engine using hydrogen gas. Image: ClassNK
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ClassNK has issued an Approval in Principle for a dual fuel generator engine using hydrogen gas as fuel and related machinery systems and arrangements for a 160,000m3 liquefied hydrogen carrier developed by Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. This marks ClassNK’s first AiP for a dual fuel generator engine using hydrogen gas as fuel.

As hydrogen is expected to be used as a clean energy source to realize a decarbonized society, ClassNK has worked on the establishment of necessary standards and certification to contribute to its maritime transportation and marine fuel use. For the 160,000m3 liquefied hydrogen carrier developed by KHI, ClassNK has so far issued AiPs for its integrated design as well as its Cargo Containment System, Cargo Handling Systems, and dual fuel main boilers that use hydrogen boil-off gas as fuel.

In the latest examination, ClassNK carried out the design review of the dual fuel generator engines using hydrogen gas as fuel and related machinery systems and arrangements based on its Part N of Rules for the Survey and Construction of Steel Ships incorporating the IGC Code, and its Guidelines for Liquefied Hydrogen Carriers incorporating the IMO’s interim recommendations for Carriage of Liquefied Hydrogen in Bulk. In addition, a comprehensive safety assessment was conducted based on the HAZID risk assessment results, which has led to the issuance of the AiP.

According to KHI, the dual fuel generator engine is capable of switching between hydrogen and low-sulfur fuel oil flexibly, and when hydrogen fuel is selected, boil-off gas naturally evaporated from the ship’s liquefied hydrogen cargo tanks is used as the main fuel at a calorie – based mixed ratio of 95% or higher to generate and supply electricity in board, which is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the ship significantly.

ClassNK will actively continue to take part in advanced initiatives toward decarbonization and also support the decarbonization of the entire maritime industry by incorporating the knowledge gained through collaboration with front runners into rules and guidelines.

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Logistics & Supply Chain

Maersk to withdraw the TradeLens offerings and discontinue the platform

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Maersk to withdraw the TradeLens offerings and discontinue the platform. Image: Maersk
Maersk to withdraw the TradeLens offerings and discontinue the platform. Image: Maersk
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A.P. Moller – Maersk and IBM announced the decision to withdraw the TradeLens offerings and discontinue the platform.

“TradeLens was founded on the bold vision to make a leap in global supply chain digitization as an open and neutral industry platform. Unfortunately, while we successfully developed a viable platform, the need for full global industry collaboration has not been achieved. As a result, TradeLens has not reached the level of commercial viability necessary to continue work and meet the financial expectations as an independent business.” said Rotem Hershko, Head of Business Platforms at A.P. Moller – Maersk.

The TradeLens team is taking action to withdraw the offerings and discontinue the platform, and the intent is that the platform will go offline by end of quarter one, 2023. During this process all parties involved will ensure that customers are attended to without disruptions to their businesses.

Maersk will continue its efforts to digitise the supply chain and increase industry innovation through other solutions to reduce trade friction and promote more global trade.

“We are deeply grateful for the relentless efforts of our committed industry members and many tech talents, who together have worked diligently to advance the digitalisation of the industry through the TradeLens platform. We will leverage the work of TradeLens as a steppingstone to further push our digitisation agenda and look forward to harnessing the energy and ability of our technology talent in new ways,” said Rotem Hershko.

The TradeLens platform was announced in 2018 and jointly developed by IBM and GTD Solution, a division of Maersk, as a blockchain-enabled shipping solution designed to promote more efficient and secure global trade.

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Maritime

Container volume at Port Houston continues to grow in October 2022

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Container volume at Port Houston continues to grow in October 2022. Image: Port Houston
Container volume at Port Houston continues to grow in October 2022. Image: Port Houston
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In October container volume at Port Houston once again grew by double digits, continuing the trend seen throughout 2022. A total of 371,994 TEUs were handled during the month, a 13% increase compared to October 2021. Loaded container TEUs reached the highest volume ever and were up 21% compared to the same month last year. Overall, container volume is up 18% year-to-date at Port Houston’s terminals and has surpassed the 3M mark thus far, with 3,333,924 TEUs.

“Although the import demand in the U.S. appears to be softening, we have not seen any slowing in Houston in recent months,” said Roger Guenther, Port Houston Executive Director. “We are handling record amounts of cargo and remain focused on aggressive infrastructure development to optimize capacity and efficiently handle current and future demand through our port.”

One change that was announced last month is the addition of new dwell fees. A sustained import dwell fee is expected to be implemented early next year to address long-term container dwell. “The additional dwell fees are intended to minimize storage of containers on terminal. Boxes need to move through the terminal quickly to maintain a fluid environment and superior level of service for our customers,” Guenther said.

Total tonnage across Port Houston’s facilities was up 18% in October and 25% for the year as compared to last year. Goods with significant increases for the month included bagged goods, at 239% up, and plywood at 73%. Auto imports were up 61% for the month in October 2022 and 9% year-to-date. Steel imports were down this month for the first time since June 2021. Steel volume has been strong this year, and annual steel tonnage could reach the highest quantities seen at Port Houston in more than five years.

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