May 10th – Dredging, River Plate and River Paraná

May 10th 2022

Dredging, River Plate and River Paraná

National Holidays:

Wednesday May 18th CENSUS DAY and May 25th, May Revolution Day.

River Parana Draft Forecast as per INA Report:

DRAFT FORECAST (Calculated as per Current Shallowest Points Apr 28 2022)

San Lorenzo’s shallowest point now located at EP. BORGHI/BELLA VISTA 447,2 depth of 9.2 M at Zero datum
Rosario’s shallowest point now located at Emp Alvear/Canal Muelles Ros 410.3 depth of 9.4M at Zero datum
San Nicolas’ shallowest point now located at Arriba Obligado Km 311,6 depth of 9.9M at Zero datum

Under certain conditions, when Rosario and San Lorenzo are under a surge that does not reach San Nicolas, then the bar located near to San Nicolas will act as the bottleneck to all upriver ports (Rosario and San Lorenzo).

Necochea Bunkers Project:

There is a project by Trafigura to supply bunkers in Necochea. At the present time, the only possibility to supply bunkers at Necochea is by truck and only MGO. In this case the project is to use a tanker barge that will be loaded at the Trafigura refinery in Bahia Blanca and will then load vessels while they are alongside at berth in harbor alongside. Bunkers cannot be supplied at Necochea Roads due to environmental regulations.

Dredging, River Plate and River Paraná:

Pressure continues to grow to implement the new concession to dredge and buoy the River Parana and River Plate. At this moment the Rivers are being managed by AGP a State owned company that has sub contracted to Jan De Nul. The initial plan was to tender a “short” contract for approximately one year. During that period, a new longer-term contract was to be designed with improvements to the dredged areas to enable a better traffic flow and “hopefully” reduced tariffs. At this moment, the “short” contract tender has been declared null and void and all proceedings are back at the drawing board. Additionally, to this there is still noise and pressure to dredge and implement a new access canal into the River Plate. This is known as the Magdalena Canal. It will have its ocean entry point south of present day Recalada and the Banco Inglés, closer to the south coast of the River Plate. It is held that this Canal will require less maintenance and will stimulate traffic to the “Atlantic” ports (Mar del Plata, Necochea and Bahia Blanca). The costs to implement this are still very much up in the air and the alleged benefits of relocating the shore structure are unknown.

Grains and Markets:

South Korea (MFG) has purchased 137,000 metric tons of maize from ECSA origin. Arrival August 2022. Also NOFI buying 61,000 metric tons of meal for September.

Soya crushing in Argentina is increasing. March 2022 crush was 2.93 million tons versus 2.64 million tons during February 2022. Only b50 per cent of the crushing capacity is being used. Nevertheless the local oil crushers are cleaning the local market of beans.

Demand for grains is increasing as FAO report about 25 million tons of grains being held in Ukraine due to hostilities and pressure on the markets increasing.

Pilotage tariffs increase recap 2022:

As from February 1st, River Plate Pilots announced an increase of about 5% on transportation expenses (ground and boat services).

As from May 1st, Parana River Pilots announced an increase of about 5% on transportation expenses (ground and boat services).

As from May 1st, Port Pilots have announced an increase of about 17% on transportation expenses (ground and boat services).

Additionally Port pilots have now “interpreted” the regulations in the same light as other pilots, and they will start charging for dropping and weighing anchors. These additional “maneuvers”, when they take place, will involve extra charges of (usd 14 x vessel’s FU ((LOA x BEAM x DEPTH)/800)), about USD 2,000.00 for Supramax vessels and USD 2,500.00 for Panamax vessels. While port pilots will start applying it this year, River Plate and Parana River Pilots have been charging additional maneuvers for several years already.

Bahia Blanca stevedores:

Stevedores are stopping work for one to two hours during each six-hour shift in protest claiming a Covid-19 bonus. This action has now been ongoing for a few weeks.

ARGENTINA – Crew changes:

Regulations for Crew Changes are being relaxed in almost all major Ports (except Necochea),

ANTARES: We attach to this News a but for Nationals(*) needing VISA

the process is still quite long.

Process for Crew Change:

1.Prior boarding authorization must be obtained from the Sanitary Authority and afterwards from Immigration.
2.Joining and departing crew must have full vaccination scheme completed (two doses) 48 hours prior joining or departing vessel.
3.A sworn statement must be signed.
4.Joining and departing crew that do NOT have the full vaccination scheme must have an antigen test performed not more than 48 hours prior or a PCR test not more than 72 hours prior joining or departing the vessel.
5.Joiner/s must enter Argentina via a “designated safe corridor” (Buenos Aires International Airport).
6.Requests for visas to be issued at Consulates must be presented to Immigration offices, via Agents on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
7.Immigration will issue the requested visas three days after they were requested and deliver on Tuesday and Thursdays for forwarding to Consulates.
Estimated Time for On Signers without needing VISA: 5/7 (five/seven) days
Estimated Time for On Signers needing VISA: 10 (ten) days
Estimated Time for Off Signers: 5 (five) days


(*) Passport Required VISA Full List

Will keep you posted.

Best regards,

Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.

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