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NYK's car carrier seized off Yemen, raising concerns on shipping routes changes

NYK announced on Monday that a car carrier "Galaxy Leader," chartered from the British company Galaxy Maritime Ltd, had been seized on Nov 19 off the coast of Hodeida, Yemen. The vessel was en-route to India from Istanbul, Turkey. NYK said the car carrier was not loaded with cargoes. The safety of the 25 crew members had not been confirmed, and the company would prioritize the safety of crew members. There were growing concerns about a supply of bunker fuel oil in many regions as some shipping companies started considering to change the route via the Cape of Good Hope and slow-steaming operations had been lifted.

Vessels operated by the Israeli shipping company ZIM were expected to change routes away from areas off the coast of Yemen. If sailing from Singapore to ARA at a speed of 18 knots, it takes approximately 26 days through the Suez Canal and around 36 days via the Cape of Good Hope, resulting a surge in charter rates.
Market players expected to increase bunker fuel oil demand in Singapore, ARA, and Gibraltar/Algeciras if vessels would choose shipping routes via the Cape of Good Hope. No bunker regulations or supply stagnation were reported in Fujairah port in the Persian Gulf. Moreover, there had been no impacts on bunker transportation in the Suez Canal region, and bunker operations proceeded as usual in all these areas.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) adopted the introduction of Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI) regulations and Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) ratings, aiming to reduce carbon intensity by 40% compared to 2008 levels by 2030 for outward-bound vessels of larger than 400 GT. However, exemptions were granted for emergencies such as adverse weather conditions or pirate attacks.

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