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Gulf of Guinea Focus: Week 3


Military Destroys 60 Illegal Refining Site In I Week
Military Destroys 60 Illegal Refining Site In I Week

Troops of Operation Delta Safe, in the last one week, uncovered and destroyed 60 illegal refining sites and apprehended 30 suspected oil thieves in the Niger Delta. The Director of Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. Edward Buba, made this known while briefing newsmen on the operations of the Nigerian Armed Forces in Abuja. Buba said the troops also discovered and destroyed 37 dugout pits, 65 boats, 71 storage tanks, 14 vehicles, 108 cooking ovens, four pump machines and one speedboat. He said the troops recovered 1.01 million litres of stolen crude oil, 299,169 litres of illegally refined AGO and 3,158 litres of DPK. According to him, troops raided suspected extremist militant hideout in Obot Akara Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom and Akuku-Toru and Okrika Local Government Areas of Rivers.


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Dangote Petroleum Refinery Begins Production Of Diesel, Aviation Fuel – Official
Dangote Petroleum Refinery Begins Production Of Diesel, Aviation Fuel – Official

Dangote Petroleum Refinery has commenced production of diesel and aviation fuel. Mr Anthony Chiejina, Group Head, Corporate Communications, Dangote Group, confirmed this in a statement in Lagos. Chiejina quoted the President of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, to have elatedly thanked President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for his support, encouragement and thoughtful advice towards the actualisation of this project. Dangote also thanked the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd., the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) and Nigerians for their support and belief in the historic project. According to him, “We thank President Tinubu for his support and for making our dream come true.


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IMB Expresses Concern Over Rising Piracy, Somali-Based Hijacking
IMB Expresses Concern Over Rising Piracy, Somali-Based Hijacking

The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) reported an increase in maritime piracy incidents in 2023, including the first successful Somali-based hijacking since 2017. The IMB’s annual report noted a rise in piracy and armed robbery against ships, with 120 incidents reported in 2023 compared to 115 in 2022. The report further revealed that 105 vessels were boarded, nine attacks were attempted, four vessels were hijacked, and two were fired upon worldwide in 2023. Of particular concern is the increase in the number of crew members taken hostage and kidnapped, which has jumped from 41 to 73 and from two to 14 in 2022 and 2023 respectively. Additionally, 10 crew members were threatened, four injured, and one assaulted in 2023. The successful hijacking of a handymax bulk carrier off the coast of Somalia on December 14, 2023, marked the first such incident since 2017.


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Global Shipping Recession Could End As Freight Rates Soar On Red Sea Troubles
Global Shipping Recession Could End As Freight Rates Soar On Red Sea Troubles

Embarking on longer detours around the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa have pushed ocean freight rates by up to $10,000 per 40-foot container, as container ships have diverted more than $200 billion of goods away from the Red Sea waterway to avoid strikes by Houthi militants. U.S.-owned commercial vessel, the Gibraltar Eagle, was struck by Houthi militants, the U.S. Central Command said. Some market watchers expect the disruptions could bring about a reversal in fortunes of an industry that was mired in a recession last year. “As to the higher rates in 2024, this could add multiple billions to the bottom line of the VOCC even if this lasts for just another two or three weeks,” Alan Baer, CEO of logistics company OL USA, told CNBC in an email.


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AMANO Expresses Concerns Over Decline In High Capacity Vessels
AMANO Expresses Concerns Over Decline In High Capacity Vessels

The Alumni of Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Oron (AMANO), has voiced deep concern over the marked decrease in the availability of what it called “Capacity Vessels.” Expressing apprehension over this, the President of AMANO Mr. Emmanuel Maiguwa at a press briefing in Lagos lamented a significant reduction in the availability of these crucial vessels for the advancement of the nation’s maritime industry. Maiguwa noted the pivotal role these vessels play in seafarers’ ongoing training and certification, underscoring the necessity for collaboration between industry practitioners and government agencies to overcome the challenges. He informed that currently only the Oil and Gas Maritime Offshore sector is providing some considerable number of platforms, he however noted that this sector alone cannot provide all the key elements needed to develop Nigeria’s potential due to the limitation of vessel size and trading areas it presents.


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Shippers Kick Against Maersk Line’s Unilateral $300 Peak Season Surcharge On Nigeria, Others
Shippers Kick Against Maersk Line’s Unilateral $300 Peak Season Surcharge On Nigeria, Others

Importers under the aegis of Shippers Association Lagos State (SALS) have appealed for clarification and intervention regarding Maersk Line’s unilateral imposition of a $300 Peak Season Surcharge (PSS) on Asian-Nigerian cargo routes. In a letter signed by the President of SALS, Mr. Leo Ezeani Ogamba and which was made available to our correspondent, it noted that members of the association recently read from a newspaper about an unsettling news of Maersk Line’s decision to levy a $300 Peak Season Surcharge on cargoes destined for Nigeria. Expressing deep concern, the President lamented that the surcharge is a deliberate disregard for Nigerian laws and a potential breach of due process, calling for immediate attention to rectify these issues.


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