March 13th 2022
Grain and Markets from Argentina
National Holidays: Thursday, March 24th, Memorial Day.
River Parana Draft:
We attach the updated River Paraná long term forecast based on data supplied by INA (National Water Institute). A small surge is causing a temporary improvement in River Parana water levels during this week and the following week. After that the water will return to present levels. As autumn commences there is expected to be a gradual increase in the amount of water in the River. Rainfall, as per the map graph below is still very short in the areas where it is required.
Grain and Markets from Argentina:
Very few grain purchases are reported. Prices remain high but the price of wheat has been falling because of the lack of demand (due to high prices). Similar situation with maize. All this due to the instability of supply from Russia and Ukraine. Tunisia will be issuing tenders for 125 thousand of wheat and 100 thousand of feed barley for prompt delivery. Iran has purchased 60 thousand tons of soya oil for close dates also. Added to this, final output forecasts for Argentine maize harvest (underway now) is expected to be lower. Maize could be below the 51 million tons forecast.
As reported previously, the Government have issued “short term” tender for maintenance of the dredging and buoying of the River Parana between Upriver and Recalada. This “short term” tender is to cover the period until the “longer term” tender is prepared and awarded. The first round of the awards for the “short term” tender left only Jan de Nul to follow on to the second round. This has now been appealed by two of the disqualified parties. A decision by the tendering board is still pending on whether the appeal will be allowed. In the meantime, the dredging and buoying remains with Jan de Nul based on a direct award system.
ACA Berth, San Lorenzo:
The ACA berth in San Lorenzo is limited to maximum 180 meters LOA due to a navigation accident during late February. Although work is underway to repair the damage it is not yet known when this expected to conclude.
Bahia Blanca labor conflicts:
The stevedore union in Bahia Blanca continues protests by stopping work for one hour each shift. The stevedores are wanting a wage increase and a bonus to be paid for work during Covid-19 pandemic.
Tugboat crews in Bahia Blanca are working on a similar pattern to Necochea. That is a 12-hour shift commencing with the first service of the day.
Argentina-Brazil Flag Waiver:
As from Saturday February 05th the requirement for flag-waivers on traffic between Argentina and Brazil has been lifted. Previously all traffic between the two countries had required either Argentine or Brazilian flag vessels. In case a third flagged vessel was used a waiver had to be obtained. The agreement or treaty that regulated this was not renewed by the Brazilian Government, and has expired so traffic is free for any other flagged vessel.
Bunkers in Argentina:
The bunker supply situation remains tight. The PAE refining plant at Campana is closed for scheduled maintenance and will not renew its usual production flow until end-March. Heavy fuels (VLSFO) are in very low supply. This refinery supplies approximately 20 to 25 per cent of the market demand. Add this to present very high bunker prices brought on by hostilities in the Black Sea area.
Crew changes in Argentina:
Crew will only be allowed to disembark when a serious medical issue occurs.
In such a case a medical board will evaluate the situation and decide.
PLEASE CONSULT US PRIOR COMMENCING PROCEDURES.
Crew changes made at foreign port/s 14 days prior arrival at Argentine ports: Besides many other documents and certificates, these below are of special concern:
-Owner’s Crew changes protocol at foreign countries.
-Owner’s note (with signature and stamp of the Captain and Owners company) clarifying that the crew change was carried out taking all due precautions, etc.
-Medical certificate issued by certified professional in the country where the crew joined, not the country of origin.
-Covid test, PCR, for on-signers at port of boarding (not country of origin).
Lacking any of above (besides all usual documents) pilots will not be allowed to board until a 14-day period is counted starting from the moment the last crew-member has boarded.
We invite you to visit our webpage which includes a gallery of pictures and videos https://antaresshipping.com/gallery of the ports and berths Upriver which we trust will provide better guidance where your vessels call.
Will keep you posted.
Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.
For more information