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Lithuanian government's strategic committee to decide on future of Sventoji port
Decisions on a 70-million-euro project for the construction of the Sventoji port on the coast of the Baltic Sea, close to the border with Latvia, and its financing sources should be made by the government’s Strategic Committee, Transport Minister Rimantas Sinkevicius said on February 19th, informs LETA/BNS.
"Our next steps are to prepare the material, obtain feedback from all relevant government departments and submit this to the government's Strategic Committee so that it could find the funding and set out the obligations and a timeframe for the implementation of that project," the minister told reporters after a meeting of the Sventoji Port Development Council.
"The Transport Ministry and the Klaipeda port authority, which owns the Sventoji port, have spent a considerable amount of money to draw up a design plan both for the town (of Sventoji) and for the port. That plan has been approved and construction permits have been obtained. I think it has to be discussed at the government’s Strategic Committee and efforts should be made to mobilize funds from different government departments," he added.
According to Sinkevicius, the Transport Ministry cannot fund the project because the European Commission does not allow it to do so.
"The problem is that we can hardly expect the Sventoji state seaport to become in the near future, and even in the distant future, a logistic center for handling and warehousing cargoes or for international passenger transportation," the minister said.
"It will most probably not happen, and it will be a port for recreational, tourist and fishing needs. The European Commission does not allow the Transport Ministry to provide funds for maintaining or building such ports," he said.
A deepened and cleaned port in Sventoji was opened in June 2011, only to be closed a few days later due to sand being washed into the entrance channel.
Source: The Baltic Course
Sub-Committee on Human Element, Training and Watchkeeping (HTW), 3rd session, 1-5 February 2016: Passenger ship specific training amendments agreed
Draft amendments to extend emergency training for personnel on passenger ships were agreed by the Sub-Committee on Human Element, Training and Watchkeeping (HTW), when it met for its third session.
The Sub-Committee agreed draft amendments to the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW), and its related STCW Code, to require personnel serving on board passenger ships to have completed passenger ship emergency familiarization appropriate to their capacity, duties and responsibilities.
They would also require masters, officers, ratings and other personnel designated on the muster list to assist passengers in emergency situations on board passenger ships to undergo passenger ship crowd management training.
The draft amendments to regulation V/2 and section A-V/2 of the STCW Convention and Code, respectively, related to Mandatory minimum requirements for the training and qualifications of masters, officers, ratings and other personnel on passenger ships, will be submitted to the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC 96) for approval.
The STCW Code new section A-V/2 (Mandatory minimum requirements for the training and qualification of masters, officers, ratings and other personnel on passenger ships) covers "Passenger ship emergency familiarization" and "Safety training for personnel providing direct service to passengers in passenger spaces".
The review of the passenger ship training requirements was part of the long-term action plan on passenger ship safety agreed following the Costa Concordia incident in January 2012.
Damage control drills - draft SOLAS amendment agreed
The Sub-Committee agreed the draft of a new SOLAS regulation to require damage control drills to take place on all passenger ships from 2020.
The new regulation II-1/19-1 would require regular damage control drills to take place onboard the ship. Damage control drill scenarios would need to be varied for each drill so that emergency conditions are simulated for different damage conditions and, as far as practicable, they would be conducted as if there were an actual emergency.
The drill would include checking damage control information and the onboard damage stability computer, flood detections systems, communications, watertight doors; operation of bilge pumps and checking of bilge alarms; and damage survey.
Model courses validated
The Sub-Committee validated three revised model courses on: Radar Navigation at Operational Level; Personal safety and social responsibilities; and Advanced Training for Chemical Tanker Cargo Operations.
The Sub-Committee agreed terms of reference to develop 11 draft new or updated model courses:
• Ratings as able seafarer in a manned engine room or designated to perform duties in a periodically unmanned engine room;
• Ratings forming part of a watch in a manned engine room or designated to perform duties in a periodically unmanned engine room;
• Assessment, Examination and Certification of Seafarers;
• Training course for Instructors;
• Onboard assessment (model course 1.30);
• Basic training for ships subject to the IGF Code;
• Advanced training for ships subject to the IGF Code;
• Basic training for ships operating in polar waters;
• Advanced training for ships operating in polar waters;
• Ratings as able seafarer deck; and
• The use of Engine-room Simulation for training and assessment of seafarers in the engine department (model course 2.07).
Review of STCW-F initiated
The Sub-Committee endorsed provisional principles and scope for the review of the 1995 International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Fishing Vessel Personnel (STCW-F), 1995, which entered into force in 2012. The review would aim to update and revise the treaty, taking into account the unique nature of the fishing industry, the fishing working environment and prevention of damage to the marine environment. The MSC will be invited to approve the proposed provisional principles and scope for the review.
The STCW-F Convention sets the certification and minimum training requirements for crews of seagoing fishing vessels of 24 metres in length and above.
Revised ISM implementation guidelines agreed
The Sub-Committee agreed draft amendments to the Revised guidelines on the implementation of the International Safety Management (ISM) Code by Administrations (resolution A.1071(28)). The revisions update the guidelines, including a new section on practical training for performing verification, including a requirement for a person authorized to carry out ISM audits to have completed at least four training audits.
Revision of fatigue guidance continued
The review of the Guidelines on fatigue continued. The Sub-Committee established a correspondence group to review proposed amendments and further develop the revised guidelines.
IMO adopted Assembly resolution A.772(18) on fatigue factors in manning and safety, in 1993. This was followed with the development of comprehensive guidance on fatigue mitigation and management, including guidelines on fatigue in nine modules, which was issued in 2001. The MSC in 2014 agreed on the need to review and update the guidelines.
CME Group Announces the Launch of LNG DES Japan (Rim) Futures Contract
CME Group, the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, announced that it has expanded its suite of energy product offerings with the introduction of a new LNG DES Japan (Rim) futures contract to begin trading effective today. The new contract is now available for trading through Japan OTC Exchange and other OTC brokers, and for submission to CME Clearing through CME ClearPort. It is listed with and subject to the rules and regulations of NYMEX.
"This new LNG DES Japan (Rim) futures contract will provide the markets an additional tool in managing LNG price risk, as the deregulation of the Japanese energy markets continues to pick up pace," said Alan Bannister, Executive Director of Energy Products, Asia Pacific, CME Group. "At the same time, market participants trading this particular contract will now have greater flexibility in managing counterparty risk through submitting their trades to CME Clearing via the Japan OTC Exchange as well as through OTC brokers."
"This is an exciting development for the energy markets in Asia, and specifically for the Japan LNG markets," said Christopher Fix, Managing Director and Head of Asia-Pacific of CME Group. "Together with our partners Rim Intelligence, we are committed to continuously creating relevant risk management products to cater to the needs of our clients and the markets."
"We hope that the launch of the LNG DES Japan (Rim) futures, the first of its kind in the world, will provide players involved in the LNG business with a wider range of trading options, including risk hedging opportunities," said Hisako Mori, President of Rim Intelligence. "As Japan is the largest LNG importer in the world, DES Japan as a price index could well play an essential role in LNG trading going forward."
"Japan OTC Exchange, Inc. (JOE) welcomes this development, as the new LNG DES Japan (Rim) futures contract opens the gateway for LNG transactions on JOE with a world-class clearing service," said Takamichi Hamada, President & CEO of Tokyo Commodity Exchange (TOCOM) and Member of the Management Committee of JOE. "Thanks to the clearing service provided by CME Clearing, JOE can now provide its members with a risk management tool with improved safety, which I believe will lead to the further development of the LNG market in Asia."
The LNG DES Japan (Rim) futures contract will be 10,000 MMBtu in size, and will be cash-settled referencing the Spot LNG Price Assessment - DES Japan (DJ) by Rim Intelligence.
Source: CME Group