Monthly Maritime News Roundup: March, 2015

By March 31, 2015 Uncategorized No Comments

The maritime industry is always filled with exciting happenings and earth-shaking developments. Kemplon Engineering rounds up some of the biggest stories taking over the headlines these past 30 days, in this month’s Maritime News Roundup:

Cruise Shipping Miami made a big splash in its 31st year. Held over the 16th to the 19th of March at the Miami Beach Convention Center, it lived up to expectations as one of the most anticipated cruise events of the year. Features included an international exhibition hall, the Cruise Trends Theater, F&B Pavilion, Travel Agent Training seminars, and a star-studded Conference jam-packed with industry information. A big highlight was the State of the Global Cruise Industry session moderated by CNN business correspondent Richard Quest, featuring top executives from Carnival, MSC, Norwegian, and Royal Caribbean.

Maritime Industry Opportunities in Cuba was one of the exciting points of discussion during Cruise Shipping Miami 2015; not surprising, given it was a hot news item for many media outlets this February and March. The recent thawing of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba is giving businessmen plenty of ideas on reviving tourism to Cuba, from cruise stops to ferries plying a Florida-Havana route ceased over 50 years ago.

As one international security situation loosens, however, another one emerges. How safe is the maritime industry in this age of terrorism? ISIS is gaining a foothold in coastal territories of Libya, making them a more immediate threat to Mediterranean shipping, cruising, coast guards and to Europe in general. The seemingly ever-present danger of terrorism was brought home most cruelly in another destination, however, as 21 people were shot down in a museum in Tunisia. Included in the list of fatalities and injured are a number of passengers from Costa Cruises and MSC Cruises vessels on call in the country. Ships from these lines and a few other companies who have scheduled stops in Tunisia have since dropped the destination. The attack ultimately leaves a lot of people dead and injured, their loved ones at a loss, companies scrambling for alternatives, and a country deprived of vital tourism revenues.

Finding Lost Warship Musashi. One of maritime history’s great engineering marvels was, unfortunately, a weapon of war. The HIJMS Musashi, a 900-foot, 73,000-ton battleship was a symbol of Japanese naval might during World War II. All who saw it were awed by its size, and it reportedly took a bombardment of 20 torpedoes and 17 bombs to sink it in 1944. As big and unmistakable as it was over the water, however, the ship’s exact location beneath it remained a mystery until just recently, when Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen and his team claimed to have found it, at a depth of over 3,000 feet. They shared images of their findings publicly early this month.

These are just a few of the big developments this March, 2015. What will April bring? Check in with us again next month for the Maritime News Roundup!

For Further Reading:

Cruise Shipping Miami:
UBM plc. “2015 Conference.” Web. Accessed 26 Mar 2015.
“CLIA Releases Asia Cruise Trends Study at Cruise Shipping Miami.” Travel Agent Central, 18 Mar 2015. Web. 21 Mar 2015.
“Hong Kong to tap China cruise boom.” TTR Weekly, 18 Mar 2015. Web. 21 Mar 2015.
Reiser, Emon. “5 things we learned at Cruise Shipping Miami 2015.” South Florida Business Journal, 16 Mar 2015. Web. 21 Mar 2015.

Cave, Anthony. “Keys-Cuba flights to resume mid-March.” Miami Herald, 05 Mar 2015. Web. 13 Mar 2015.
Miller, Daniel. “Ferries to sail between Florida and Havana for first time in 52 years… after they were stopped at height of Cuban Missile Crisis.” Mail Online, 01 Mar 2015. Web. 13 Mar 2015.

Maritime Security:
Roberts, Hannah. “ISIS could become the pirates of the Mediterranean and bring havoc to European waters after taking coastal towns in Libya.” Mail Online, 02 Mar 2015. Web. 13 Mar 2015.
Sloan, Gene. “Cruise lines cancel Tunisia calls in wake of attack.” USA Today, 19 Mar 2015. Web. 26 Mar 2015.
“Tunis museum attack: Costa and MSC Cruises shun ports.”, 19 Mar 2015. Web. 26 Mar 2015.
Williams, Thomas D. “ITALIAN COASTGUARD ARMS ITSELF TO DEFEND AGAINST ISIS.” Breitbart, 01 Mar 2015. Web. 13 Mar 2015.

Warship Musashi:
Farley, Robert. “Imperial Japan’s Musashi: The Greatest Battleship Ever Built?.” The Diplomat, 06 Mar 2015. Web. 13 Mar 2015.
Henley, Jon. “US billionaire Paul Allen discovers wreck of Japan’s biggest warship Musashi.” The Guardian, 04 Mar 2015. Web. 13 Mar 2015.
McCoy, Terrence. “‘Huge’ WWII Japanese battleship Musashi has been found, billionaire Paul Allen says.” The Washington Post, 04 Mar 2015. Web. 13 Mar 2015.