Page 49: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (May 2004)

The Propulsion Technology Yearbook

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The Shipbuilding Report

Is it Time to Hit the

Panic Button?

Panic buying is putting further pres- sure on future steel supplies as prices continue to spiral. Reports indicate a substantial leap in hot rolled steel plate prices during March and further signifi- cant increases, not yet quantified, through April. According to MEPS, a

UK-based steel industry analyst, its

Asian hot rolled plate index rose by almost 14% during March. Further increases are inevitable in the second quarter as steel producers wrestle with roaring demand and increasingly tight raw material supplies. It is a Catch 22: spiraling steel consumption is generat- ing unprecedented demand for iron ore and coal which, in turn, is fueling ocean freight rates and leading to congestion, port delays and pressure on landward distribution systems. Higher raw materi- al prices filter through directly to steel prices which, in turn, lead to panic buy- ing and stockpiling. Analysts are not expecting any let-up in the second or third quarter.

New VLCC Company

Mitsui OSK Lines has teamed with

Emirates Trading Agency LLC, Dubai (ETA) to establish a joint venture com- pany providing operating services for very large crude carriers (VLCCs).

New LNG Terminal for

Port Arthur, Texas

Sempra Energy LNG announced plans to develop and construct a new $600 million LNG receiving terminal near

Port Arthur, Texas, capable of process- ing 1.5 billion cu. ft. (Bcf) of natural gas per day. The facility would be construct- ed on part of a 3,000-acre parcel of land along the Port Arthur Ship Canal. The announcement coincides with a pre-fil- ing notification the company submitted to the Federal Energy Regulatory

Commission (FERC). This notification begins the process of securing the required FERC approval for Sempra

Energy LNG's third state-of-the-art receiving terminal. The Port Arthur

LNG project is expected to begin oper- ating in 2009.

ACL Makes Changes

American Commercial Lines (ACL) announced that Stephen A. Frasher stepped down as President and CEO effective April 30, 2004. Richard L.

Huber assumed the position of CEO of

ACL. W. Norb Whitlock will become

President and COO of American

Commercial Barge Line LLC, Louisiana

Dock Company LLC and American

Commercial Terminals LLC and will join the ACL Board of Managers.

VT Halter Launches LSV

VT Halter Marine Inc., a subsidiary of

Vision Technologies Systems Inc., launched the US Army Tank-automotive and Armament Command's (TACOM) newest Logistic Support Vessel (LSV) the MG Robert Smalls.

Valued at approximately $25 m, the

LSV-8 has an overall length of 313 ft., a beam of 60 ft. and a molded depth of 19 ft. Designed and built to carry over 2,000 tons of deck cargo, that could include combat vehicles or armament cargo, the vessel is capable of support- ing logistic efforts worldwide.

This is the first Army ship named after an African American and a Civil War hero.




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Maritime Reporter

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