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'Unmanned' ships in coastal areas?

2015-05-25

Greg Wight, President and CEO of Algoma Central Corporation since 2008  recently announced to employees his plan to retire from the Corporation during the 1st quarter of  2015.
Mr. Wight joined the Marine Division of Algoma Central Railway in January 1980 as the Division's Controller. At that time, Algoma's Marine Division owned and operated 12 Great Lakes vessels and had revenues of $66 million.
Today, as CEO, Greg heads an organization that owns and operates 33 Great Lakes vessels and has interests in ocean shipping and real estate. In 2013 the Corporation reported revenues of $500 million.
Mr. Wight  rose steadily in the Company, holding a variety of financial roles, eventually moving to St. Catharines in 1996 following the sale of the Algoma Central Railway and the consolidation of the Company's marine operations in the city.
In addition to his responsibilities at Algoma and a number of positions with industry related organizations
"Come January, I will have been with Algoma for 35 years," Mr. Wight said "and I could not have asked for a better Company or group of people to work with. Algoma has risen to be the largest owner and operator of Canadian flag vessels on the Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Waterway. The Company prides itself on its contribution to the Canadian economy and on the role it plays in the communities in which employees live and work."
Mr. Wight continued, "Algoma is a very strong company that has been recognized as one of Canada's Best Managed Companies in both 2012 and 2013."
"Greg deserves tremendous praise for his contributions to the company", said Duncan Jackman, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Algoma.  "His leadership and focus have been so important to the success of Algoma, particularly during a period of such economic uncertainty.  Greg's accomplishments extend to the fleet renewal program he championed, which leaves Algoma well positioned for future success."
The Board of Algoma has engaged an executive search firm to assist them in the process of selecting Mr. Wight's successor and will consider both internal and external candidates for the role.
(Photo ACC)Greg Wight soon retiring from Algoma

Automatic pilotage operations have long existed in passenger airplanes. In today's fast-changing world, self-driving trucks now exist under autonomous technology along with prototypes of self-driving cars. What about ships on the oceans? Peter Hinchcliffe, Secretary General of the London-based International Chamber of Shipping, suggests "there will be a time when there will be a mix of manned and unmanned ships in coastal areas" around the globe.

This will require major revisions in collision regulations, Mr. Hinchcliffe said while commenting on global technological changes at an annual conference (May 20-22) in Ottawa, Ontario of the Canadian Shipowners Association and the Lake Carriers Association of the United States.

Mr. Hinchcliffe acknowledged: "I would not personally like to be on the bridge of a manned ship waiting to know if the unmanned ship on my port bow will in fact give (right of) way."

He indicated that he was aware of at least one limited voyage undertaken by an unmanned prototype. While he does not see a firm trend towards all ocean ships operating without crews, he sees "an evolution toward unmanned or minimally manned ships on local voyages."

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North Atlantic container trade surging

2015-05-20

Regarded for a number of years as the "sleeping dog" of the global container trades, the North Atlantic is now waking up as robust westbound traffic attracts new services, according to London-based Drewry Maritime Research. Volumes on the head-haul westbound leg climbed by 8.4% in the first quarter from a year ago.

Commenting on the report, Tony Boemi, Vice-President Growth and Development, Port of Montreal, said : "We are up everywhere, including the North Atlantic. Containerships are full coming into Montreal."

Montreal is Canada's leading container port on the east coast, handling some 1.4 million TEUs annually.

Drewry said shipments to the US rose 10.3% in the first three months to 486,000 TEUs, with the strong US dollar attracting increased imports from Europe. On the other hand, the weakness of the euro against the US dollar hit eastbound North Atlantic box traffic, which slumped 5.8% in the first quarter compared to a year earlier. (Photo MPA)

 
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Baffinland Iron Ore Mines gearing up for summer shipments

2015-05-19

Greg Wight, President and CEO of Algoma Central Corporation since 2008  recently announced to employees his plan to retire from the Corporation during the 1st quarter of  2015.
Mr. Wight joined the Marine Division of Algoma Central Railway in January 1980 as the Division's Controller. At that time, Algoma's Marine Division owned and operated 12 Great Lakes vessels and had revenues of $66 million.
Today, as CEO, Greg heads an organization that owns and operates 33 Great Lakes vessels and has interests in ocean shipping and real estate. In 2013 the Corporation reported revenues of $500 million.
Mr. Wight  rose steadily in the Company, holding a variety of financial roles, eventually moving to St. Catharines in 1996 following the sale of the Algoma Central Railway and the consolidation of the Company's marine operations in the city.
In addition to his responsibilities at Algoma and a number of positions with industry related organizations
"Come January, I will have been with Algoma for 35 years," Mr. Wight said "and I could not have asked for a better Company or group of people to work with. Algoma has risen to be the largest owner and operator of Canadian flag vessels on the Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Waterway. The Company prides itself on its contribution to the Canadian economy and on the role it plays in the communities in which employees live and work."
Mr. Wight continued, "Algoma is a very strong company that has been recognized as one of Canada's Best Managed Companies in both 2012 and 2013."
"Greg deserves tremendous praise for his contributions to the company", said Duncan Jackman, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Algoma.  "His leadership and focus have been so important to the success of Algoma, particularly during a period of such economic uncertainty.  Greg's accomplishments extend to the fleet renewal program he championed, which leaves Algoma well positioned for future success."
The Board of Algoma has engaged an executive search firm to assist them in the process of selecting Mr. Wight's successor and will consider both internal and external candidates for the role.
(Photo ACC)Greg Wight soon retiring from Algoma

Baffinland Iron Ore Mines is approaching completion of the necessary infrastructure to ship 3.5 million tonnes of iron ore to Europe during the open water season between July and October from Milne Inlet on the northern shore of the Arctic island, Gregory Missal, Baffinland's Vice-President of Corporate Affairs, told Maritime Magazine. The iron ore deposits at the Mary River site 160 kms southwest of Pond Inlet boast an average grade of 67% iron and require little processing.

Industry sources indicated that some 52 voyages are planned across the Atlantic by a pool of vessel operators, including Fednav Ltd, whose ice-class ships will be chiefly deployed at the beginning and conclusion of the summer shipping season.

Earlier this month, Halifax-based Svitzer Canada, part of Denmark's powerful Maersk Group, landed the contract for two tugs to work during the shipping operations in Milne Inlet. The Océan Group of Québec City had also submitted a bid.

In the wake of the sharp decline in commodity prices, steel giant ArcelorMittal has reduced its share to 50% in the massive Mary River project. Baffinland has also scaled down indefinitely an original  Phase Two $4 billion vision involving construction of a railway to Steensby Inlet on the south coast to move up to 18 million tonnes of ore annually.

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