zoom Despite a surge in orders at South Korean shipyards in September which enabled them to overpower their Chinese counterparts, Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) seems to be suffering from acute lack of orders.According to HHI’s Vice Chairman Oh-Gap Kwon, cited by local media, the company managed to score orders for 30 vessels this year, which is only a third of the expected orders for over 100 ships.Speaking on Thursday at a review carried out by South Korea’s National Assembly, Kwon said that if orders don’t increase, the company might be forced to shut down operations at all its yards in the next eight months.Namely, the company’s order backlog comprises 75 ships which can be completed in eight months.Furthermore, newbuilding prices have been halved exerting further pressure on earnings for shipyards.Kwon added that the lack of ordering is also the reason why reopening of the Gunsan yard cannot take place, as such step would bring losses worth KRW 100 bn (USD 88.2 million) to the company.Hyundai Heavy Industries closed temporarily its Gunsan dockyard in July this year due to a lack of shipbuilding orders.In March 2017, HHI informed that it was looking to close another one of its dry docks at the Ulsan shipyard, the 380-meter-long Dock 5, which has a capacity to roll out 400,000 tons a year. The dock closure follows Hyundai Heavy’s decision to shut down the ops at its Dock 4 in June 2016.In addition, shortage of orders resulted in HHI’s introduction of leave rotation scheme for workers in September.The five-week program rotation would help resolve the issue of the idle workforce, HHI said, enabling the employees to keep their jobs.Wage cuts have also been among the measures implemented by the shipbuilder so as to cut costs and help improve the company’s liquidity.According to Kwon, he has not been paid for four years now.Last month, HHI finally secured a major order. Specifically, compatriot Polaris Shipping placed an order for ten very large ore carriers (VLOCs) of 325,000 DWT, worth USD 800 million.The delivery is slated for April 2021, HHI said in a regulatory filing.The contract is the largest single order for Hyundai in the last five years.World Maritime News Staff
APTN National NewsIGLOOLIK — Local RCMP have shot and killed a man at his residence in Igloolik, Nunavut.RCMP have said in a statement that they were “checking the well-being” of a man at his home when he advanced toward officers wielding a weapon and uttering threats. During the confrontation, he was shot by an RCMP officer, and later died of his injuries at the local health centre.The nature of the weapon the man was holding is unclear.RCMP said that an investigation will be launched into the incident, and that the Major Crimes Unit is en route from Iqaluit to secure the scene. They also say that it is “too early at this point” to determine what set off the confrontation.An officer sustained non-life-threatening injuries at the scene.
Jorge Barrera APTN National NewsThe Grand Chief of Treaty 6 in Alberta is calling for an independent investigator to review the RCMP’s data on murdered and missing Indigenous women in response to a decision by the Mounties to back a claim by Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt that Indigenous perpetrators are responsible for 70 per cent of the solved murders of Indigenous women.During a press conference in Edmonton Friday, Treaty 6 Grand Chief Bernice Martial said the RCMP’s decision to back the 70 per cent statistic has created the need for an independent review of the data on murdered and missing Indigenous women held by the RCMP.“We demand an independent investigator to collect all information and data of missing and murdered Indigenous women held by Statistics Canada and the RCMP,” said Martial, during the Edmonton press conference. “More questions have been raised than answered. We demand answers now.”On Thursday, Status of Women Minister Kellie Leitch’s office released to the media a letter written by RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson and addressed to Martial. In the letter, Paulson said “consolidated data” from about 300 police agencies produced the 70 per cent statistic.Paulson was responding to a letter from Martial who wrote the top Mountie asking for data to back up Valcourt’s claim. Valcourt mentioned the 70 per cent statistic during a closed-door meeting in Calgary last month which Martial attended.The RCMP initially refused to back Valcourt saying its “bias-free policing policy” prevented the federal force from releasing ethnically-based information on perpetrators. Paulson’s decision to confirm the statistic runs counter to the policy.APTN asked the RCMP to explain the decision to release that statistic. The RCMP did not respond.“Why did the RCMP, when for two weeks it stated that they have a bias-free policing policy…all of a sudden change their policy within this time frame?” said Martial.Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde on Friday added his voice to the ongoing controversy and called on the RCMP and Valcourt to share all its information on murdered and missing Indigenous women with First Nations.“It is absolutely unacceptable that important information on a priority issue is being withheld from First Nations,” said Bellegarde, in a statement. “The federal government and the RCMP must immediately release all the information they have to First Nations so we can better understand the current situation and work together toward solutions.”Bellegarde said he would be writing the RCMP to formally request the information.The national chief also took aim at Valcourt for his initial decision to use the statistic to counter public inquiry calls from chiefs during the March Calgary meeting.“Blaming the victim is no longer an option,” said Bellegarde.Martial has called for Valcourt’s resignation.It seems unlikely the RCMP would be willing to release all the information it gathered as part of its project on murdered and missing Indigenous women. While the RCMP released a report last spring and plans to release a second report in May, Paulson said in the letter existing agreements prevented it from releasing all its raw data.Paulson said the RCMP obtained data from Statistics Canada and individual police agencies across the country through signed agreements it would not be disclosing the raw information publicly.As part of its massive project to get a statistical handle on the high number of murdered and missing Indigenous women across the country, the RCMP obtained Statistic Canada’s annual homicide surveys ranging from1980 and 2012. In order to receive the information, the RCMP signed a confidentiality agreement with Stats Can. The RCMP also signed agreements with police departments across the country to obtain their information.Stats Can’s information, however, did not have completely accurate data on whether perpetrators were Aboriginal or not. The RCMP filled in the gaps found in the data by going back to individual police departments and manually reviewing the files.“The RCMP is currently the source of the most complete information on the Aboriginal identity of the accused,” said Stats Can in a statement.For the first time this coming December, Stats Can’s annual homicide survey will include the “Aboriginal identity” of victims and perpetrators.University of Ottawa criminology professor Ronald Melchers said the 70 per cent statistic that is causing so much controversy is likely accurate.“It is very consistent with everything I know,” said Melchers, who has extensive experience studying the intersection between criminal justice statistics and public policy. “A lot of people are saying we don’t know this, or we don’t know that, but we do know this very well.”Melchers said the RCMP was put in a complicated spot when Valcourt’s musings leaked into the public domain.“They did not want to do it, it violates their internal policy,” he said. “But they were forced into it…they did an assessment of what was the public interest, and the public interest was to release the information.”jbarrera[email protected]@JorgeBarrera