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Australia’s Asciano’s ports division signs five-year terminal deal with Maersk

The new contract includes additional proforma 190,000 containers per annum Australian Ascianos ports division, Patrick has signed a new five-year container terminals contract with Maersk Line, Cargonewsasia reports. The new contract encompasses the movement of existing volume (about 503,000 containers) combined with an additional proforma 190,000 containers per annum.Asciano chief executive officer, John Mullen said, The successful execution of this contract with Maersk Line is a significant achievement for our business and is testament to the strength of Patricks Container Terminal operations. The agreement celebrates a new stage of a long-standing national partnership between Maersk Line and Patrick.Our renewed partnership will see Maersk Line Boomerang Service vessels delivering an additional estimated 190,000 containers at our Fremantle, Melbourne, and Brisbane terminals ensuring that Patrick retains its strong position within the Australian market.To assist in improving service for all Patrick customers, the company has ordered a total of five new cranes for its container terminals to be delivered over the next 18 months.Source: Portnews

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State governments urged to privatise ports

Aims to keep pace with growth in Australia's trade STATE governments should curb profit raids on their cargo ports so funds can instead be invested in expansion to capitalise on growing demand for commodities, new research finds.A paper by ANZ Research says governments should consider privatising ports or minimising political intervention in them as they "urgently" need reform after struggling to keep pace with growth in Australia's trade.Several bulk cargo ports, such as those in the mining states of Western Australia and Queensland, are not generating enough return on their assets to cover the cost of their capital, meaning they need to borrow to fund expansion, the report says.WA's parliament has been told that miners were paying just 7c a tonne to use Port Hedland, compared with 25c at nearby Port Dampier. "Moreover, even with these balance-sheet pressures, many ports continue to pay government a dividend," the report says."This capital would be better used within the business to either invest or pay back debt."The bulk ports are used to ship iron ore and coal, with exports of these forecast to more than double over the next 25 years.On top of that, the bulk cargo ports had shown "exceptionally strong growth" ...

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MUA wins victory for workers – Cars arriving in Australia will be screened for radiation

Ports of Australia and AMSA support the union's push for radiation testing The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) will this week screen cars arriving in Port Kembla from Japan.This batch test for radiation follows months of campaigning by the MUA to ensure Japanese cargo and cars were screened for radiation upon arrival in Australia."This is a win for workers, and also a win for the Australian public," said Assistant National Secretary Warren Smith."Any risk of radiation is too big a risk to take. Workers and consumers come into direct contact with these cars - the Government watchdog must ensure there is no health and safety risk."The Australian public has a right to know if there is a radiation threat."In early May, cars arriving in Chile from Japan were found to be contaminated with radiation. Despite this, ARPANSA refused to commit to scanning cargo until today, after long-running talks with Maritime Union officials."We know from the tragedy in Japan that people are feeling the effects of radiation hundreds of kilometers away from the destroyed nuclear plant. We can't take the risk of contaminating workers," said Mr Smith."All we have been asking is for cargo to be tested before ...

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Melbourne port will raise port fees and charges

From 1 July for completing a channel deepening project Australia's Melbourne port will raise port fees and charges from 1 July as part of its cost recovery after completing a channel deepening project.Under Port of Melbourne Corporation's (PoMC) new tariff schedule, wharfage charges for twenty-foot containers will increase by A$1.70 to A$40.10 including goods and services tax (GST), while empty container charges will increase by A$0.40 to A$10.00 plus GST.The infrastructure levy will increase by A$1 to A$34.10 plus GST with direct Bass Strait movements retaining their exemption. Foremost amongst our considerations is the need to adequately and prudently fund port infrastructure against the background of rising engineering costs to develop and maintain a level of service our customers rightly expect, said Stephen Bradford, chief executive officer of PoMC.The modest fee increases are generally in the range of 3.0% to 4.5% with minor reductions in concessionary rates which have been previously flagged with industry through consultation, he said.Source: Seatrade Asia

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Guidelines released for a deep sea port in South Australia

Needed more impact data Guidelines have been released for a deep sea port proposed for lower Eyre Peninsula in South Australia.Adelaide-based Centrex Metals is planning for iron ore exports to China and wants to build a port facility between Port Neil and Tumby Bay.Some locals fear it will destroy Lipson Cove and its island conservation park.The proposal includes a jetty extending more than 500 metres into Spencer Gulf.The Development Assessment Commission says the company will need to produce a public environmental report for the planned development, which was given major project status last January because, among other things, Centrex wants a large shipping terminal in a rural coastal location.It says visual and community impacts, especially on tourism and recreational use of Lipson Cove, must be considered.Centrex says another major iron ore deposit has now been confirmed on Eyre Peninsula.The Carrow prospect, north-east of Tumby Bay, has at least 159 million tonnes of magnetite along a 3.4-kilometre strike.Source: ABC News

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Maritime Union of Australia has recommended industrial action at container ports

The union should guarantee no further strikes, bans or limitations of any kind The Maritime Union of Australia has recommended that industrial action at container ports in Sydney, Brisbane and Fremantle be called off, the union said in a statement, citing concerns in the farming community, Reuters reports.The union, fighting for arbitration to be included in their new pay agreement with ports operator Patrick, owned by Asciano , imposed limited work bans and no overtime at some Patrick's operations this week.Patrick responded on Wednesday by standing down workers."Patrick has chosen to escalate this dispute by unilaterally closing down its container terminals, which was never intended by the MUA," National Secretary of the MUA Paddy Crumlin said."We've listened to the concerns of the rural community and responded accordingly," he added.Asciano shaved its full-year earnings forecast by up to 0.7 percent on Thursday due to the dispute with dockers.It said its revenue outlook would fall by up to A$8 million and its earnings before interest and tax would be up to A$4 million lower than its March forecast of full-year EBIT between A$530 million and A$540 million.Patrick welcomed the decision by the union to lift its industrial action but said that the ...

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Strike disrupts trade at four Australian box terminals

Affects the ports of Brisbane, Fremantle, Melbourne and Sydney A seven-day strike by industrial workers has started at four Australian container terminals, where containerised trade has been temporarily disrupted. The strike led by Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) from Wednesday has affected the ports of Brisbane, Fremantle, Melbourne and Sydney.The strike is the result of a wage dispute between the workers and stevedoring firm Patrick. Patrick has requested that MUA enter voluntary conciliation, which would end the strike and allow the terminals to resume operations.A Patrick spokesperson said its shipping line customers warned that the cumulative loss for them will be over A$15m ($15.9m), while the disuprtion to the cotton industry will be over A$56m in lost revenue. The protest in the form of bans and limitations will stop the movement of approximately 50% of Australia's containerised trade, expected to directly impact 32 vessels and 35,000 shipping containers.Source: Seatrade Asia

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Australia fights new cabotage rules

New rules discourage the use of coastal shipping and inflate international trading costs Australias Labour government will decide how to proceed on a raft of cabotage law reform proposals in the next two months.Although designed to boost Australias maritime industry, forwarders and carriers claim they will instead discourage the use of coastal shipping and inflate international trading costs.Jason Wong, APL Vice-President for intra-Asia and Australia, said changes to the system for loading and unloading domestic cargo could lead to higher labour costs for carriers and force them to reduce port calls or introduce surcharges.Fritz Heinzmann, a senior consultant with DB Schenker Australia, said any reform that discouraged container vessel calls beyond the key ports of Fremantle, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane would not be in the interest of forwarders and definitely not in the interest of the public.He predicted the planned reforms would also push coastal container traffic on to roads.Brian Lovell, CEO of the Australian Federation of International Forwarders, argued that if carriers began to reduce port calls, shippers would ultimately pay the price.Any additional transit time or increase in costs will impact shippers and or consignees, although it will not affect the international forwarder directly.Llew Russell, CEO of Shipping ...

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Sea levels will rise by up to a metre within a century due to global warming

Global average sea-level rise in 2100 will be in range of 0.5 to 1.0 m Sea levels are set to rise by up to a metre within a century due to global warming, a new Australian report said on Monday, as it warned this could make "once-a-century" coastal flooding much more common.The government's first Climate Commission report said the evidence that the Earth's surface was warming rapidly was beyond doubt.Drawn from the most up-to-date climate science from around the world, the report said greenhouse gas emissions created by human industry was the likely culprit behind rising temperatures, warming oceans, and rising sea levels.Its author Will Steffen said while the report had been reviewed by climate scientists from Australian science body the CSIRO, the Bureau of Meteorology and academics, some judgments, including on sea levels, were his own."I expect the magnitude of global average sea-level rise in 2100 compared to 1990 to be in the range of 0.5 to 1.0 metre," Steffen said in his preface to "The Critical Decade".He said while this assessment was higher than that of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change in 2007, which was under 0.8m, it was not inconsistent with the UN body which had ...

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