zoom The Hellenic (Greek) Coast Guard is searching for three missing crew members of the Togo-flagged cargo ship, Ag Marina that sank early on Thursday about 30 nautical miles off the western coast of the island of Crete.Thankfully the bulk carrier Princess Maria (IMO 8212087) managed to save four out of seven crew members, all Russian nationals, from the stricken vessel before it went down. Still missing are the captain, electrician and master of the vessel.According to the Coast Guard, the ship was en route from Montenegro to Odessa, loaded with six trucks and probably containers. Actively engaged in the rescue operation are four cargo ships, one Hellenic Coast Guard helicopter and one patrol vessel. World Maritime News Staff, April 25, 2014
zoom In light of a thriving tanker market, Oslo-listed Tanker Investments Ltd. has reported strong yearly results as its net income increased to USD 75.8 million in 2015, compared to a net loss of USD 3.1 million experienced a year earlier.TIL also said that its net revenues increased to USD 198.5 million in 2015 from USD 59.2 million in 2014, primarily due to an increased number of vessels and higher average time charter equivalent (TCE) rates in 2015.“The tanker market in 2015 was the strongest since 2008. The main catalyst for the strong freight market was continued high levels of global oil production,” TIL said.“Oil prices also fell to the lowest average price in 11 years in 2015, which was positive for the tanker market as it led to higher refinery throughput to take advantage of strong refining margins, increased commercial and strategic stockpiling of oil, and lower bunker fuel costs for ship owners. Finally, tanker fleet growth remained low with just 2 percent growth in the crude tanker fleet.”Looking ahead, the company said that 2016 will be a strong year for crude tanker rates driven by high levels of global oil supply, rising oil demand, low oil prices, changing trade routes, and a manageable level of fleet growth.TIL’s quarterly net income increased to USD 28.5 millionThe company said that its fourth quarter of 2015 was particularly strong, led by the large crude tanker sectors. TIL’s net income stood at USD 28.5 million, compared to a net income of USD 11.6 million in the third quarter of 2015, while the net revenues increased to USD 67.2 million from USD 46.4 million in the previous quarter.The increase was attributed mainly to a full quarter of revenue relating to the six new Suezmax vessels delivered during the third quarter and higher TCE rates earned by the larger vessels.“The fourth quarter of 2015 was a record for Tanker Investments as our 100 percent spot traded fleet benefitted from the strong tanker market fundamentals,” commented William Hung, Tanker Investments Chief Executive Officer. “In addition, we were able to return significant capital to long-term shareholders in the form of share repurchases and with the recent sale of our two VLCCs and subsequent announcement of a new USD 60 million repurchase plan, we intend to continue adding shareholder value by repurchasing our stock below net asset value.”“Tanker rates have remained firm into the first quarter which will allow the company to continue delevering its balance sheet while distributing excess capital to shareholders via share repurchases or dividends,” he added.