August 18th – Upriver Ports & Draft

August 18th 2020

Upriver Ports & Draft

In view of the ongoing developing situation and different communications and instructions being issued by Sanitary Authorities of the Argentine Government we have chosen to send a consolidated daily report at the closing of working hours with an update of the day’s news.

National Holidays: Next National Holiday, Monday, October 12th.

Covid-19: Yesterday, Monday, August 17th was a National Holiday. It was also a day when, once again large protests were organized against Government policies, like the Covid-19 quarantine, now extending into it’s 150th day, with little to show for itself other that increased frustration. Restrictions remain in place yet the level of contagion is still too high. Borders are still closed, public long distance transport is banned (buses, trains, flights). Annoyance grows.

Citrus: The EU has blocked exports of citrus fruits from Argentina due to an outbreak of Citrus Black Spot in NW Argentina lemon farms. The block is on all products from Argentina and many producers in other areas, far from the outbreak in Tucuman are going to be affected. This will postpone the last shipments from Argentina which are normally shipped up to week 42, including the tangerine and orange from North Eastern province of Buenos Aires.

Upriver draft: The water flow continues to drop. The dams, upriver in Brazil and Paraguay have cooperated and released reserves. This surge will be reaching Upriver ports (San Lorenzo southwards) in about two weeks. After that moves on we will be back to the usual situation. The updated forecast table, below, was issued by the National Water Institute yesterday August 17th.
There have been rain storms in South Brazil, but these will basically stabilize the River Uruguay, not the River Parana.

Amount of Water in the River Parana


Discharge of Scrubbers in Argentina: A regulation was issued by the Argentine CoastGuard (PNA) that forbids the discharge of washing waters from scrubbers of National and Foreign vessels in Argentine waters detailed as:
*Internal Jurisdictional Waters (including River Parana, River Uruguay and River Plate)

*Territorial Waters (12 mile limit)

*Extended Territorial waters (24 mile limit)

*Argentine Exclusive Economic Zone (200 mile limit)

In order that the limits be properly explained we attach below a map, issued by the Government which explains the contour of the area covered by the regulation which colored light blue.

Scrubbers in Argentina.


Special care will have to be taken by vessels transiting the area, especially those on the open sea when proceeding southbound from Recalada to the Pacific and vice versa.

Export licenses: Maize is still the fashionable crop these days. Licenses were issued today 18th for 731,400 metric tons, also 680,000 metric tons of soyameal, 150,000 metric tons of soft wheat and 53,700 metric tons of soyoil.

Maize: Market reports indicate that Japan is in the market looking for December shipment of maize, also in Colombia and Japan looking for November dates. Let us hope it comes from Argentina!

Crew changes Uruguay: On and Off signing crew are allowed entry into the country under very strict restrictions. On signers must have a prior negative Covid 19 test 72 hours prior being allowed entry. Crew members boarding are not allowed to stop at any stage between landing at the airport (Montevideo) and boarding the vessel. Once onboard the vessel they must comply with a 14 day quarantine onboard before being allowed to work. Departing crew must proceed directly from the vessel to the airport. Considering that there are at the moment few international flights these requirements make it very difficult for crew members to enter or leave the country. Additionally to this before a boarding crew member is allowed permit of entry the agreement of Sanitary Authority, Immigration and CoastGuard must be obtained.
The best way of achieving a successful crew change at Uruguay is to have the vessel do this OUTBOUND at Recalada/Montevideo anchorage when the vessel’s schedule is not bound so much by weather and port congestions.

San Lorenzo: Cargill Quebracho berth will be closed for maintenance between August 20th and August 23rd.

Arroyo Seco-Lagos/Dreyfus berths: The CoastGuard have issued a regulation, valid as from August 06th, that the maximum sailing draft for both Dreyfus berths, Dry and Liquid, is to be calculated according to the following formula: 9.20 meters Depth Plus Average River level of Rosario and Villa Constitución Minus 0.60 meters under keel clearance.
For today, August 18th it is: 8.95 meters (29 feet 04 inches FW)

Recalada: Recalada closes often due to swell, fog and high winds.

Necochea: The port is still closed since August 15th at 1135 hours due to swell and high winds.

Bahia Blanca: Pilotage service is suspended for short periods time due to bad weather.

Bahia Blanca is imposing a 14 day quarantine on arriving vessels. This quarantine can be excepted if the terminal where the vessel will load produces proof that an earlier berthing is required. Also an agreement with the stevedores union that adequate precautionary measures will be taken to satisfy the workers attending onboard so as to avoid contagion.
Will keep you posted.

Best regards,
Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.

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