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By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

New Zealand State-owned KiwiRail is taking the next step to procure a new generation of Cook Strait ferries.

A Request for Proposal (RFP) to find a preferred shipyard to build two new ships for the Interislander is being issued today, the next step in the procurement process.

The NZD 400 million contribution in Budget 2020 has enabled KiwiRail to go out to international tender to build the new ships, which are intended to arrive for service in 2024 and 2025. When the ferries are delivered, it will be over 25 years since New Zealand last introduced a brand-new purpose-built ferry to its fleet.

KiwiRail’s iReX Project was established to replace the existing three ship fleet with two new, large, rail-capable ships to be brought into service during 2024 and 2025.

KiwiRail has engaged OSK ShipTech to design the ferries.

The two ferries will be able to carry twice as many passengers as the current three ship fleet, 300% more rail wagons and almost double the number of trucks and other vehicles.

The new ships will be much more fuel efficient and produce significantly lower CO2 emissions. They will be able to run on battery power at times. KiwiRail is also future proofing the design so new fuel sources can be adopted as they become available.

The RFP process to identify the successful shipyard is expected to be completed before the end of the year.


By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

Minoan To Launch A New Connection Between Patras, Igoumenitsa And Venice

From next June 4, and until the end of the summer season, Grimaldi Group will link Italy and Greece with a new ropax service calling at the ports of Patras, Igoumenitsa and Venice (Marghera).

This new service was revealed by some media in Greece and already on the website of Grimaldi Group-controlled Minoan Lines.

The Visentini ropax VENICE (former CIUDAD DE CADIZ) will be deployed on the route and the frequency will be twice a week, thus competing with the Greek ferry company Anek Lines.

Grimaldi has been serving the line between Venice, Bari and Patras since 2015 bust just for cargo shipments and currently there are two ro-ro ships serving this line (EUROCARGO GENOVA and EUROCARGO ALESSANDRIA).

Boreal Has Signed A Contract For Two New Electric Ferries

By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

Norwegian company Boreal, owned by Hong Kong-based company China Everbright Limited ordered two ferries in The Netherlands.

The Wärtsilä designed plug-in hybrid ferries will be built by the Holland Shipyards Group, and put into operation on the Abelnes-Andabeløy and Launes-Kvellandstrand routes.

Boreal signed a contract with Agder County Municipality on the operation of the two ferry connections in December last year. The 10+2 year contract starts on September 1, 2021.

Second Life For Ferry MÜNSTERLAND With LNG Conversion

By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

AG Ems and Royal Niestern Sander celebrated the official start of the section building for the LNG conversion of the passenger ferry MÜNSTERLAND (1986). Royal Niestern Sander will design and build a completely new aft ship for the passenger ship from 1986, including dual fuel engines, LNG storage tanks, propulsion systems, all LNG installations, pipelines and other systems.

The rendering below shows the conversion of sister vessel OSTFRIESLAND

Messina welcomes JOLLY EXPRESS’ sister ship JOLLY BLUE

By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

The Italian roro shipping company Ignazio Messina & C. has welcomed the latest entry in its fleet. JOLLY BLUE is the name of the vessel recently bought from Toll Group by MSC Group trough the subsidiary Conglomerate Maritime Ltd and has reached the sister ship JOLLY EXPRESS which was already subchartered to Messina line last year.

Both ConRo vessels, each with a 2,500 lane metres capacity, are deployed on the Tunisia – Italy routes. More specifically JOLLY BLUE is deployed on the Tunis-Gioia Tauro-Naples rotation while the JOLLY EXPRESS calls at the ports of Tunis, Naples and Genoa.

The last new entry in Ignazio Messina’s fleet will replace the veteran ro-ro CHODZIEZ (1988) whose charter is set to expire in the coming months.

Grandi Navi Veloci Will Repatriate French Passengers From Morocco

By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

One of Grandi Navi Veloci’s ferries will be used to repatriate French people which remained stuck in Morocco when the borders were closed due to the Coronavirus.

The announcement came from the French embassy in the North African country. They said that seven crossings will be done in June: Malaga (five voyages) and Sète (two voyages).

GNV confirmed to Ferry Shipping News that “two links will be operated on June 2nd and 9th from Tanger to Sète, in accordance with the authorities”.

The Genoa-based ferry company also strengthens that they have been operating the lines Sète-Tanger and Sète-Nador since 2012 Since March only the ro-ro cargo service with Tanger was active (Covid-19)”.


By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

Portsmouth: Thermal Scanner To Screen Passengers For Covid-19

Portsmouth International Port has become the first UK port to install a thermal scanner to allow ferry and cruise operators to screen their passengers for Covid-19 symptoms.

The temperature screening technology involves using a camera detection system to monitor the temperature of passengers.

In the beginning it will be trialled as an option for foot passengers joining ships to help support infection control onboard. If successful, the technology could then be used elsewhere in the port.


By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

Danish Companies Join Forces On An Ambitious Sustainable Fuel Project

DFDS has together with Copenhagen Airports, A.P. Moller – Maersk, DSV Panalpina, SAS and Ørsted formed the first partnership of its kind to develop an industrial-scale production of sustainable fuels for road, maritime and air transport.

The joint vision is to establish one of the world’s largest electrolyser and sustainable fuel production facilities

When fully scaled-up by 2030, the project could deliver more than 250,000 tonnes of sustainable fuel for busses, trucks, maritime vessels, and airplanes every year. Production would potentially be based on a total electrolyser capacity of 1.3 gigawatts, which would likely make it one of the world’s largest facilities of its kind. The production from the fully scaled facility can reduce annual carbon emissions by 850,000 tonnes.

Scrubber Conversions Progress At Perama And Malta

By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

Fast is the progress on Corsica Linea’s A. NEPITA, which is undergoing her small scale conversion at the Perama Repair Zone. So far, she had her livery and flag changed (Cyprus), and her scrubber installed.

The large ship is on long-term charter from STENA LINE

There is more progress on the Attica Group’s scrubber conversions. SUPERFAST XI) is undergoing -in tandem- her dry docking (Perama) since May 21, while BLUE STAR PATMOS is in Palumbo Shipyards –out of the dry dock- and had her new enlarged funnel back in place. She is expected to be back mid-June.


By | 2020 Newsletter week 22 | No Comments

In 1997 I travelled on several ferries between Italy, Elba, Corsica and Sardinia. Let’s look at some Corsica Ferries photographed during these journeys.


Built by Westamarin she was used by Elba Ferries between Piombino and Portferraio.

Now owned by Balearia, she is still in service as FORMENTERA DIRECT on the route Ibiza – Formentera.


At that time, she was one year old, serving the route Genoa-Bastia.

In 2015 she was sold to a Sea Jets company, as PAROS JET. She can still be activated for service.


One of four ferries built by Rickmers, she arrived in Italy in 1996, after years of operation for Canadian Marine Atlantic. For Sardinia Ferries she operated between Livorno, Civitavecchia and Golfo Aranci.

In 2001 she was chartered to Conseil General de Seine Maritime, Dieppe, France, for the Transmanche ferry service between Dieppe and Newhaven.

She is still operational in the Med and currently laid up in Piombino.