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Lighthouse - May, 2016.

DP World looking at US $2bn Russian Investment

Dubai-based port operator DP World is eyeing three sites in Russia as part of a $2 billion joint venture it signed in January, as per their group chairman.

The three sites are in Vladivostok in the east of Russia, the Baltic Sea and the Black Sea. Sultan Bin Ahmed bin Sulayem did not provide more specific details during a press conference in Dubai.

In January, DP World signed a JV agreement with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to develop ports, transportation and logistics infrastructure in Russia.

At the time, Vladivostok was one of the regions to be targeted by the Joint Venture – Bin Sulayem had met Russian president Vladimir Putin there several months earlier to discuss possible investments.

The eastern port of Vladivostok is considered crucial to boosting trade with China, as the Far East superpower increasingly looks to transport products more cheaply by land to Russia and Europe, rather than by sea.

Bin Sulayem told journalists on Sunday that the JV would seek to invest the planned $2 billion among the three areas over the next 20-30 years.

He said no financial commitments had yet been made, but explained that the RDIF Joint Venture “would be the vehicle through which will be invest”.

DP World is in various stages of negotiations for investments in 15 other markets, but Bin Sulayem declined to reveal full details while talks are still on going.

Among the targeted markets are, Senegal, where DP World is hoping to ink an agreement to operate the port to anchor a new free zone being planned by the Senegalese government.

There are also plans to invest circa $1.9 billion in China – it has several investments there already – Georgia, Somalia, Madagascar and Albania.

Bin Sulayem added that the lifting of sanctions in Iran presented new opportunities, particularly as DP World looks to tap into nearby markets such as Kazakhstan to open up inland transport gateways to China.

Emirates SkyCargo launches next-gen cool chain cover

Emirates SkyCargo has launched a next-generation version of its protection product for valuable temperature-sensitive cargo, including pharmaceuticals.

The new product, called White Cover Advanced, weighs just 3kg, and completely encloses the shipment allowing for cooling during transportation and cold storage.

Applying the sheet to a pallet takes two people no more than eight minutes, said the airline said in a statement.

White Cover Advanced uses DuPont’s patented Tyvek material made of high density polyethylene to form a tough protective barrier against varying external temperatures and direct sunlight.

The material is water resistant to prevent moisture damage while breathable, thereby reducing condensation and dryness. It is also 100% recyclable.

The White Cover is primarily used in the Middle East carrier’s cool chain solutions for perishables, such as vegetables and fresh fruits, but also offers additional protection for packaged pharmaceutical shipments in Controlled Room Temperature (CRT) range and in insulated packaging.

“The pharmaceutical industry moves products worth over $1trn annually. Temperature changes during transportation can pose a serious threat to the integrity of these sensitive products,” explained Henrik Ambak, senior vice president of Emirates’ cargo operations worldwide.

“They must be kept within different CRT bands in accordance with the revised European Union’s Good Distribution Practice. The White Cover Advanced, with its silver-coating technology, provides a reliable and affordable means of protecting these products from temperature spikes during air transportation,” he added.

The carrier’s range of advanced protective techniques and solutions in transporting perishable products include: Cool Chain Premium, Cool Chain Advanced and Cool Chain Standard, each of which is designed to meet specific requirements of customers.

CMA CGM, COSCO Container Lines, Evergreen Line and Orient Overseas Container Line to establish OCEAN Alliance

CMA CGM, COSCO Container Lines, Evergreen Line and Orient Overseas Container Line has signed a Memorandum of Understanding to form a new Alliance enabling each of them to offer competitive products and comprehensive service networks covering the Asia-Europe, Asia-Mediterranean, Asia-Red Sea, Asia-Middle East, Trans-Pacific, Asia-North America East Coast, and Trans-Atlantic trades.

This is a milestone agreement among four of the world’s leading container shipping lines. Each line will offer best-in-class services to customers with fast transit times, competitive sailing frequencies, and the most extensive Port coverage in the market.

“This new partnership will allow each of its members to bring significantly improved services to its respective customers,” member carriers said in a statement. “Shippers will have an attractive selection of frequent departures and direct calls to meet their supply chain needs, including access to a vast network with the largest number of sailings and port rotations connecting markets in Asia, Europe and the United States.”

“The Alliance will also bring service reliability and the most efficient integration of the latest vessels in a fleet of over 350 containerships.

Initially the deployment will cover more than 40 services globally mostly connected with Asia, including about 20 services each in the U.S. and Europe related trades.” Subject to regulatory approvals of competent authorities, the new Alliance plans to begin operations in April 2017.  The initial period of the Alliance shall be five years.

“The Ocean Alliance is a very ambitious operational agreement. CMA CGM, and its new partners, will offer more than 40 maritime loops, providing its customers with an enhanced network of services and fast transit times,” remarked Rodolphe Saade, Vice Chairman of CMA CGM Group.

“Today is a great day for COSCO Container Lines. OCEAN Alliance is a better match for our globalization strategy. We will provide customers with more selections and improved service world-wide,” remarked by COSCO Container Lines.

“Joint service cooperation is an essential part of our own strategic planning.  This new alliance enables us to optimize fleet deployment and offer competitive service to meet customers’ changing demand,” remarked by Lawrence Lee, CEO of Evergreen Marine Corporation.

Upon signing the MOU, Andy Tung, CEO of Orient Overseas Container Line remarked: “The extensive network and port coverage of the new alliance will offer our customers a wide range of choices and highly competitive services for their supply chains. The new alliance will also be a platform for our ongoing growth as well as improve our cost and efficiency.”

Cochin Shipyard signs MoU with Samsung Heavy Industries for LNG Ship Project

Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with South Korean second-largest shipbuilder, Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) to team up to bid for the GAIL tender to build LNG ships. Cochin Shipyard Chairman and Managing Director Madhu S Nair and Samsung CEO Park Dae-young has signed the MoU during the Maritime India Summit in Mumbai recently.

If Cochin Shipyard-Samsung wins the tender, the consortium is expected to secure orders for three ships, each costs around Rs. 1,500 crore. Under the MoU, Samsung Heavy Industries would receive around Rs. 2,656 crore ($400 million) for collaborating with Cochin Shipyard.

Three of the ships must be built locally and Cochin Shipyard is the only Indian yard to meet GAIL’s criteria. Cochin would supply the manpower and dock, while Samsung would advise on shipbuilding technology and equipment procurement.

All carriers will be operated by the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI).

GAIL has tied up 5.8 million tonnes per annum of LNG from the US which the newly built ships will ferry. South Korea’s largest shipbuilder, Hyundai Heavy Industries, had initially teamed with Indian engineering and construction firm Larsen and Toubro, which later withdrew from the tender.

Have You Got Good Mobile Phone Manners?

You’ve probably experienced it whilst shopping, the intrusive discourteous behaviour of some mobile phone users. They stroll along the aisles, looking at what to buy, whilst at the same time talking loudly into their mobile. They have an attitude that speaking on their mobile gives them some right to ignore other shoppers, allowing them to push past everyone regardless. They also force a way along pavements apparently believing that, clamping a phone to their ear, gives them some absolute right of way. Even worse they speak into an invisible aura, using Bluetooth, to connect to a hidden device. Some users even seek to increase their importance by juggling several mobiles. “Hey look how important I am, I have all these people wanting to speak to me – NOW!” Do they realise how idiotic the look?

Heads down, eyes staring downwards looking for obstructions on the ground, our feet, lampposts, potholes and rubbish, whilst keeping their phone as the focus of their world, – beware – , it’s the “walking texting twit”. Oblivious to the rest of the world, if they bump into us they’ll look incredibly annoyed because we have interpreted them!  The list is almost endless when it comes to the places that provide an opportunity for mobile users to talking loudly, or more probably “SHOUTING”. On the bus or train, in the theatre or restaurant, even whilst talking face to face with someone, mobile discourtesy seems to know few boundaries.

Well the good news for those who find such actions unacceptable, the fight-back to regain some tranquillity has started. What began as a joke became something of a viral Internet story. It was announced that in China a “phone lane”, where a phone painted onto the ground, similar to the painted bike which indicates a cycling lane, had been inaugurated. Whilst it turned out to be in a theme park, it addressed an issue which annoys many. Now, in other countries including American, ideas are being considered that explore and experiment with solutions to reduce mobile phone intrusion.

Of course what really needs to happen is for these annoying offenders to realise that their actions make them look less important, rather than being some influential mover and shaker. Being always “on call” underscores an inability to delegate or plan ahead and a lack of confidence in others and oneself.   Obviously there are occasions when we really do need to use our mobiles when others are around so, hopefully, these mobile phone etiquettes, dos and don’ts, will help.


Think about the choice and volume of your ringtone – your upbeat all dancing tune says more about you than you realise.

Keep your conversations about family, relationships, money and work private – you never know who may overhear.

Watch where you are walking when texting or emailing on the go – bumping into others is a “no-no” and it may just be your boss.

Turn off your phone when at important social occasions such as weddings, religious services and at the theatre, cinema or restaurant.

Watch your language when in a public space – you can be heard by everyone.

Realise where you are calling from – a train announcement or a bathroom echo is a dead giveaway. 


Use your mobile when your attention needs to be 100% focused elsewhere. Even hands-free, in the car, adversely interferes with driving.

Carry on mobile conversations or check your phone constantly when you are supposed to be giving your full attention to others. Such actions are dismissive and ignorant.

Become an over-demanding attention seeker selfie addict.

Carry on phone conversations when making a transaction in a shop, bank or restaurant.

Use your mobile when eating with family or friends.

Texting while talking or during a discussion

Send more than two texts without a reply – it looks very insecure.

Leave caps lock on when texting or emailing – it’s shouting!

Use acronyms like ‘LOL’ – laugh out loud, ‘ATM’ – at the moment, for example – others might not understand the real meaning.

Allow anyone else to use your mobile, especially when you or they are drunk.

Finish any relationship, work or friends, by text – it’s cowardly.

So the overall message, when it comes to good mobile phone manners, is basically, “Think before using your mobile”, although it is often easy to forget this. Like the wife sending a text, to her husband, whilst out at lunch with her lady friends. “Darling I am sending you my lunch-time love thoughts. If you are sleeping, send me your dreams. If you are laughing, send me your smile. I love you.”

Everyone wanted to know what her husband texted back to her: –

“I’m on the toilet. Please advice.”

Container Shipping – Celebrating its 60th Year!!!

This year, celebrates the 60th anniversary of the Container Shipping on 26th April, 2016.

Even before inventing the Container Shipping, for many thousand years, mankind has shipped goods across the sea, from one land to another. But the process was not easy, as on today. The goods were loaded and unloaded by the individuals, in barrels, sacks and wooden crates from the land transport to the ship and back again on arrival of the vessel were a real slow process. However, this was the only known way to transport the goods in ship until the second half of the 20th Century.

However, 60 years ago, back in 1956, Mr. Malcolm Mclean used a converted tanker to move the first containerised cargo by Sea, from Port of New Jersey to Port of Houston. It opened to a land mark invention by connecting each and every corner of the world and increased the trade and commerce via sea route.

One year later, M/s Matson Navigation Shipping began its container shipping in the Pacific, carrying 20 containers from Alameda to Honolulu. The First Ship specifically designed for transporting containers, The Gateway City, made is maiden voyage on 4th of October, 1957 from Port Newark to Miami. It required only two gangs of dockworkers to load and unload, and could move the cargo at the rate of 264 tons an hour. Short later, The  Santa Eliana  operated by Grace line, became the first fully containerised ship to enter the foreign trade when she set her sail for Venezuela in January 1960.

It was between 1968 – 70, that an ISO regulation for the shipping containers was decided. It shall be interesting to the people outside the marine sector to know that all commercially used shipping containers have a serial number, just like a number plate’s identification for the Motor Vehicles. The Serial number for the shipping container is made up of 4 letter prefix and a seven digital number. The first three letters signifies the owner, the next letter is the category of the Container which is followed by a six digit serial number and finally a check digit. And there is a mathematical formula that works out the check digit for each shipping containers.

The two most important and most commonly used container sizes today, are the 20 foot and 40 foot lengths. The container sizes need to be standardised so that the containers can be most efficiently stacked, one on top of the other and that the  ships, trains, cranes at the port can be specifically fitted or built to a single size specification. As above said, ISO works to set the standard sizes for all the containers, globally. Shipping containers are also available in variety of types in addition to the standard dry cargo containers often referred to as the special equipment. These special containers include open end, reefer, flat rack and many more.

Let us all celebrate together the 60th Year of Container Shipping!!

Lucky Winner

As part of our continuous commitment to the freight forwarding fraternity, CSS initiated a thank you scheme over 8 years ago, whereby one lucky name out of the scores of business cards that are dropped into the raffle bowls placed at the Delivery Order Counter will be rewarded with a gift.

The winner picked selected and rewarded for the months of February- March 2016 was Ali from Diamond shipping services who walked away with gift vouchers worth AED 200 from Lulu Hyper Market, presented by Sasikala, Senior Executive- Corporate communications, CSS Dubai

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