With confidence towards the next
Meriaura was celebrating its 30th
anniversary this year, and although a company of this age has already faced both
good and bad times, this year will be remembered as one of the more challenging
ones for the entire shipping industry.
In an open market the imbalance in supply and demand will over time
correct itself, and unfortunately this year we have seen several shipping
companies "throwing in the towel", which has caused anxiety and turbulence in the
market. However, even if the year did
not turn out as expected, I would like to quote the old saying “what doesn´t
kill you makes you stronger”, since I am convinced that the need for reliable
and well reputed shipping companies will remain and even grow in the coming
The delivery of our two newbuilt “EcoCoasters”
symbolizes our faith in the future. Both Eeva VG and Mirva VG have successfully
started trade this autumn and the high expectations on remarkably lower fuel
consumption and lower emissions have been met. Encouraged by this experience we
continue to stick to our long term strategy: setting the new standard for
Another delight this year has undoubtedly been the favorable
development in the project division. The return of MV Aura made it possible for
us to improve the services we offer, thereby expanding our clientele. I chose to see the increased demand for
project transports as a sign of better times ahead for the business in general.
With this I like to thank you for the cooperation over the past year, and on
behalf of the entire Meriaura team wish you a Merry Christmas and a successful
New Year 2017!
Vice Managing Director
First experiences with VG
EcoCoasters in traffic
Experiences with our EcoCoasters m/v ‘Eeva VG’ and ‘Mirva VG’ have been
very positive. The older sister, Eeva VG, has now been sailing for about 2,5
months, and the fuel consumption has proven to be in line with the test results,
that is, almost half compared to conventional cargo ships of same size and
type. Consumption and speed with biofuel
seem to be roughly the same as with MGO while sailing on ecospeed. Captain of
Mirva VG, Vidar Tollander is very pleased after the first two weeks of sailing:
“65% of the engine capacity, which so far seems to be the optimal ecospeed,
gives 10 knots with a total daily consumption of 3,7 tons. I was surprised that
speed and consumption were almost the same with a full cargo, when usually
consumption is a lot higher than in ballast conditions”, he says. Another
reason to rejoice was that speed did not drop much with adverse wind. Captain
of Eeva VG, Thord Vaenerberg,
tells that there have been very few problems that usually arise at the early
phase with a newbuilding. According to him the ship’s accommodation section is
quiet and there’s very little of trembling. “The shape of the
hull is excellent, at least in the conditions on the Baltic Sea. Even in
ballast the moves in swell are moderate and soft” both captains praise.
Shipping sector must do its
share in reducing fuel consumption and emissions. EcoCoasters have already proven how
energy efficiency can help achieve these goals. At
present oil price is rising and lower fuel consumption is becoming more
significant in maritime transport, not only from an environmental, but also
from an economical point of view.
Meriaura participates in building a sustainable ocean
liner demolition industry in Finland
is participating in a new
‘Ship Recycling’ project for starting ocean liner demolition industry in
Finland. The project has been launched by Tekes in cooperation with a
consortium of four Finnish companies. The first pilot demolition project is
currently under discussion and is planned to begin in late 2017.
So far most ocean liners are taken apart outside of the
EU, for example in India or Bangladesh, where working conditions are sometimes
questionable. The EU legislation will tighten, and in the future ships sailing
under an EU flag have to be dismantled inside the borders of the EU. At the
moment there is a lack of docks dismantling huge ocean liners within the EU
area. Turku repair yard in Naantali
that is participating in the project, would be suitable for ships up to 280 meters
Meriaura’s part in the project is to acquire the
ships to be demolished and bring them to the dry dock. Other partners, Delete and Industrial and Ship Cleaning Services Hans Langh will remove any hazardous waste
and dismantle the vessels, while Meriaura will sell and transport the steel
waste for recycling. A single ship weighs thousands of tons and up to 90
percent of this is recyclable material.
“It is unethical to dump vessels to Asia where
even lives are lost in the harsh working conditions. I believe that we can do
this better and much more sustainably. This would also create new jobs to Turku
area”, says Jussi Mälkiä, President of Meriaura Group.
New coworkers to the Meriaura team
Due to the
growth in project shipments and our increased capacity, the demand for planning
and surveillance services has grown accordingly. Therefore two of our
experienced ship officers have come ashore to strengthen our engineering
team. Supercargo Olli Keintola used to work as chief mate on MV Meri, and Marine
Superintendent Lassi Eloranta
recently served as Captain on MV Aura. Olli and Lassi bring years of highly
valuable skills and experience of handling demanding projects in practice. Juha Ylitalo who used to work for our
project department, has decided to resign for a career outside Meriaura Group.
Jutta Seppänen, who has been working part time for the Meriaura Group, has
signed up for a full time contract from the beginning of 2017. Prior to her
employment at Meriaura, Jutta worked as researcher in maritime law at the
University of Turku.
Minna Suuronen and Emilia Mustonen are returning from child care leave beginning of January. Emilia will continue with bio oil business and Minna concentrates on general administration.
Technical Manager Henri Tuominen will
return to VG-Shipping beginning of January. Later in the spring he
will start managing r/v Aranda's renovation Project.