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BULK - Vale Ore Ship Plunges 36% in Value

55219 fcras 5/4 2012 12:28

Vale Ore Ship Plunges 36% in Value Before Loading First Cargo

Thursday, 05 April 2012 ' 00:00

A giant iron-ore ship delivered last month to Vale SA (VALE3) fell 36 percent in Value before loading its first cargo because prices for new dry-bulk commodity vessels collapsed after the carrier was ordered.

The Vale Malaysia is worth $68.8 million, according to, an online valuation service owned by London- based shipbroker Seasure Shipping Ltd.

Vale has said it paid about $107 million for the ship, the eighth in a fleet of 35 of the biggest-ever iron-ore carriers that the Rio de Janeiro-based company plans to build and operate.

A slump in values of dry-bulk ships that were ordered before returns plunged is getting worse as shipyards lower contract prices for new vessels, according to Adrian Economakis,'s lead research analyst.

New Capesize ships worth $69.9 million in April 2010 are assessed at $39.9 million today, the website's figures show.

"The driving force in the decline in Value is the Capesize market," Economakis said. "We have a huge number of new vessels on order and a supply-and-demand imbalance."

Vale, the world's largest iron-ore producer, declined to comment, a spokeswoman said yesterday by e-mail, remaining unnamed in line with company policy.

It's spending more than $8 billion on 35 of the ships to gain more control over costs to haul the steelmaking ingredient to China, the leading importer.

53% Decline
Earnings for Capesizes, the largest dry-bulk ships, slumped to the lowest level since at least 1999 this quarter after falling 53 percent in 2011 in terms of the annual average.

The vessels carry about 80 percent of the world's seaborne iron ore.

Each of the Vale ships, known as Very Large Ore Carriers, is 362 meters (1,187 feet) long and has a cargo capacity almost triple that of a conventional Capesize.

The first eight ships built for the company are too big to call at most of the world's ports and excluded from the Chinese ports at which they were designed to unload, Economakis said.

The vessels lacked port-entry permits, Jose Carlos Martins, Vale's head of iron ore and strategy, said in November.

China, Vale's fastest-growing market, tightened entry requirements for larger ships in January.

Vale paid $133.3 million each for another 12 ore carriers under construction in China that are now worth $63.7 million apiece, according to data.

The Vale Malaysia arrived in Singapore yesterday after completing sea trials on March 27, vessel-tracking data showed.

Source: Bloomberg


5/4 2012 12:32 fcras 155220

VLBC "Vale Malaysia" = VLBC"Vale Brasil"

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

'Vale Brasil' - 400,000 DWT Very Large Ore Carrier

For the followers of Capesize bulk carriers, the Brazilian iron ore giant Vale (formerly CVRD) has created waves with their game-changing 400,000 DWT Very Large Ore Carriers (VLOC).

In conjunction with traditional Ship Owners and Sovereign Wealth Funds, Vale has commissioned as many as 35 VLOC's of between 388,000 and 400,000 DWT to be built at Yards in China and Korea.

With Vale's freight penalty betwen Brazil and Australia to China currently running at $12.50 per tonne (and this is in an unsustainably low freight market), the Brazilian's strategy is to effectively remove their exposure to freight market fluctuations.

In the pre-GFC spot market, when Capes were earning $200,000 a day time-charter equivalent, the freight differential reached over $35 per tonne - all lost sales Margin again the better geographically positioned Australian exporters.

The impact of this rapid introduction of 14M DWT of capacity, or put another way the loss of over 380 Capesize cargoes annually from the freight market strikes fear into the heart of Capesize Owners who 'super-sized' at the peak of the shipbuilding boom.

Vale's first VLOC is the 'Vale Brasil', which takes over the 'Berge Stahl's (364,000 DWT) mantle of the largest dry bulk carrier afloat and in service.

Photos are of 'Vale Brasil' undergoing sea trials in Korea. Ironically, it has been South Korea's Daewoo Shipyard which has beaten China's Rongsheng to deliver the first vessel, despite over a year's headstart by Rongsheng. 'Vale Brasil' is scheduled to load her first Brazilian ore cargo in May 2011.

IMO Number 9488918
DWT 400,000 tonnes
GRT 200,000
Speed (knots) 14.8
Draught (m) 23.00 (75.46 ft)
Depth Moulded (m) 30.40 (99.74 ft)
Breadth (m) 65.00 (213.25 ft)
Length 362.00 (1,187.66 ft) (LO)
Class Society Det Norske Veritas
Engine MAN-B&W 7S80ME-C8
Power 27,162 (Kw)


5/4 2012 12:36 fcras 155222

Vale says giant ore ships to win China OK in months

Thursday, 05 April 2012 ' 11:00

Brazil's Vale, the world's No. 2 mining company, expects to win permission "within months" to unload its big, new iron-ore ships at Chinese ports, a move that will help ensure efficient delivery of raw materials to China's growing economy, a senior executive told Reuters.

The ships, known as very large ore carriers (VLOCs), or "Valemax" class vessels, are needed to meet soaring demand for iron ore, the main ingredient in steel, Tito Martins, Vale's chief financial officer, said in an interview at the Reuters Global Mining and Metals Summit.

China's economy expanded by $2 trillion in the last decade as growth averaged about 11 percent, he said.

In the next decade, he predicted, it will expand by $4 trillion, even if growth slows by more than a third.

The huge gains of the past decade, Martins added, mean that even a slower pace of growth translates into huge demand.

"Even if they grow at 7 percent, taking into account the size of the gross domestic production today, this growth in the next five to 10 years will be much bigger than before," he said.

Vale is the world's largest iron-ore producer and supplies more than a quarter of the world's approximately 1 billion metric tonnes (1.102 billion tons) a year of sea-borne iron-ore exports.

To supply better the raw materials necessary for China's growth, Vale has bet on the new class of larger, more-efficient ships, which use less fuel per tonne carried.

Bigger than three soccer or American football fields, the Valemaxes are some of the largest ships afloat.

They can carry enough iron ore to make steel for 3-1/2 Golden Gate bridges.

But China's government has been reluctant to grant the ships access to the country's ports.

Chinese ship-owners consider the Valemaxes a "Trojan Horse" whose foreign ownership and huge volumes will undermine the country's control of imports.

Many are hurting after shipping rates .BADI plunged by more than half to about $900 a tonne since December.

The first such carrier suffered a hull crack on its maiden voyage last year, also raising concerns the giant ships are unsafe.

Vale has said it needs the ships to compete with Australian ore producers such as BHP Billiton (BHP.AX) and Rio Tinto (RIO.L), which are closer to China and pay about half the transport fees to move their product to the world's largest ore market as Brazilian producers do.

"The big vessels are here to stay, this is a technical thing and we are just waiting for the ports to be adapted to receive our ships," Martins said.

"It's going to happen soon."

The first of the as much as 400,000-deadweight-tonne Valemaxes began operating late last year.

Vale hopes to build 35 by the end of 2013, at a cost of about $4.2 billion.

While Vale operates several of the vessels itself, most are operated by third parties under long-term transport contracts.

The company is in talks to sell even those ships it operates.

"We are in the mining business, not the shipping business," Martins said.

So far, only one Valemax has been granted permission to unload at a Chinese port.

Since the December visit of the Berge Everest to the port of Dalian, all ships of more than 300,000 deadweight tonnes have been banned from Chinese ports.

Even with slower annual growth, Martins said, economic expansion is penetrating into the western reaches of China and the government is committed to the steel-intensive business of building new housing.

He expects China to build 8 million new "social" housing units in 2012, about the same as in 2011.

Over the next several years, China will need to build 70 million housing units.

"A slowdown in China doesn't necessarily mean a recession," Martins said, adding that the steel business has been growing at rates faster than the overall economy.

Iron ore prices are likely to remain above $120 a tonne in the next several years, he said, because demand remains strong and at prices below that, Chinese producers of low-quality ore begin to lose money.

"Any time it falls to $120 a tonne or below, it bounces back," he said.

"The $100 to $120 a tonne level is a level where many marginal producers start having difficulty."

Ore with 62 percent iron content .IO62-CNI=SI rose for a sixth day in seven on Wednesday, gaining 0.4 percent to $147.70 a tonne, its highest in more than five months.

A similar level for nickel, for which Vale expects to become the world's largest producer this year, is $16,000 a metric tonne.

Below that, Chinese nickel-pig-iron producers begin losing money, he said.

Nickel for delivery in three months fell for a fifth day in six on Wednesday, slipping 1.2 percent to $17,575 a tonne in London.

"We are confident we will not see prices (fall) to levels we saw 10 years ago," Martins said.

Source: Reuters

5/4 2012 13:02 fcras 155223

VLBC "Vale Beijing" på vej tilbage til Sydkorea

Torsdag 5. april 2012 kl: 10:00

Vale Beijing, der sammen med sine søsterskibe er
verdens største bulkcarrier, er nu på vej til Sydkorea for at blive undersøgt på det skibsværft, hvor det blev bygget for kun et halvt år siden

Det 404.389 DWT store skib kom galt af sted allerede på sin jomfrutur i december sidste år, hvor det skulle laste jernmalm i den brasilianske havn Ponta da Madeira. Under lastningen blev det opdaget at skibet tog vand ind, og kun kraftige pumper forhindrede at det gik til bunds i havnen.

Senere undersøgelser har vist, at vandet trængte ind gennem revner ved skibets ballasttanke. Det er fortsat uklart om revnerne skyldes en konstruktionsfejl, eller om de er opstået i forbindelse med en forkert lastning af skibet. Det skal undersøgelser på STX værftet i Jinhae - hvor skibet blev bygget - nu kaste lys over.

Efter at have gennemgået en foreløbig reparation, forlod Vale Beijing Brasilien den 19. februar for at sejle sin første last til Oman, hvortil det ankom den 28. marts.

Skibet, der er ejet af STX Pan Ocean, er klasset af Det Norske Veritas, der efter en grundig gennemgang af skibet sagde god for, at det kunne sejle til Mellemøsten og derefter tilbage til Sydkorea.

Kilde: Bloomberg


6/4 2012 14:35 fcras 055247

Vale's Biggest Ships, Orders Idled as Asian Iron-Ore Trade Slows Friday,

06 April 2012 ' 00:00

Vale SA (VALE3), the biggest producer of iron-ore, idled two of the world's largest carriers of the steel making raw material for as much as a month and delayed delivery of two new ships as exports of the commodity to Asia slowed.

Vale Brasil and Vale China, each able to carry 400,000 metric tons, stayed at Subic Bay in the Philippines after unloading at a floating transshipment station, according to vessel tracking data compiled by Bloomberg.

Vale China, which began trading in November, arrived at Subic Bay on Feb. 27 to unload its first cargo, and next signaled its departure from the region on March 31, data show.

Vale Brasil arrived at Subic Bay on Feb. 11 and left March 2. Each costs nearly $40,000 a day to operate, according to estimates from German transportation lender DVB Bank SE.

A spokeswoman for Vale declined to comment.

Eight of the 35 so-called Valemax class of ships being built by Vale were delivered from three different shipyards in the past 11 months to the company, which controls 26 percent of the seaborne iron-ore trade.

Vale is spending more than $8 billion on the Valemaxes to lower freight costs to Asia from Brazil and allow it to compete with Australian mine operators.

Valemaxes are excluded from calling in China, the company's biggest customer, because local shipowners say the carriers are unsafe and add to an oversupply of dry-bulk ships.

The company has held talks with the government to try to negotiate access.

Daily operating costs for the Valemax fleet are $33,956 to $39,691, including fuel and loan repayments, DVB said in a November 2010 report.

The estimates are based on fuel costs at $500 a metric ton and a contract price of $130 million a ship.

Delivery Stalled
The delivery of two more Valemaxes ordered by Vale from China Rongsheng Heavy Industries Group Holdings Ltd. has been delayed, a spokesman for the Chinese shipbuilder said today by phone from Hong Kong.

Vale, which placed an order for 12 ships worth $1.6 billion in 2008, requested delays last year because of technical issues relating to port access, the spokesman said.

The second ship, Vale Dongjiakou, will be handed over "fairly soon," he said, declining to elaborate on a date.

Brazil's first quarter ore exports plunged 27 percent from the previous three months to the lowest level since June 2009 as rains and flooding in January delayed production, data show.

About 45 percent of Vale's ore sales are to China, and shipments take 45 days to reach there, according to the company.

Vale shipped 26 percent of the world's seaborne ore trade in 2010 of 995 million tons, the latest figures available from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development show.

Source: Bloomberg


7/4 2012 10:50 fcras 055261

VIDEO:VLBC "Vale Brasil" - The largest Ore Carrier in the WORLD