The new dry bulk operating platform launched by US-listed shipowner Costamare at the end of November has been a busy player in chartering markets. According to Costamare’s financial earnings released on Wednesday, Costamare Bulkers has already fixed 23 bulkers. Secured income from long-term chartering agreements helped Costamare cope with slowing container ship and bulker markets.

It’s just a question of time before falling container ship markets lead to a revision of charters concluded during the coronavirus bonanza, a senior shipping banker said at a Capital Link forum in Athens on Thursday. Christos Tsakonas, head of global shipping at DNB, said renegotiations with charterers were “inevitable”.

Dozens of ships have been forced by global sanctions regimes to stop trading in cases that have flown below the radar, according to an influential group of London lawyers. The invasion of Ukraine has prompted owners to look to break fixtures for fear of being tainted by association with Russians facing economic sanctions, according to Poonam Melwani, the head of the UK-based commercial barristers firm Quadrant Chambers.

Two new non-European operators — Gatik Ship Management and Hennesea Tankers Corp — were behind the first tankers to load at Russia’s busiest oil products terminal on Monday following the start of a new European export ban and price caps, according to cargo and tracking data. The operators’ ships were loading fuel oil at the Baltic port of Ust-Luga, according to shipping databases.

There have been developments in the China graft probe this week. The Chinese Communist Party crackdown on ship finance has resumed with the reported airport detention of a former team leader at ICBC Financial Leasing. Sources told TradeWinds that Zhang Siliang, also known as Stacy Zhang, was detained by officials at Shanghai’s Pudong Airport. Meanwhile, the Shanghai-based ship lease specialists of Smarine Advisors are partly splitting up and starting over, more than a year after Chinese Communist Party officials detained the company founder.

Trafigura could lose more than a half a billion dollars after being hit with what it described as a containerised nickel fraud scheme. The Swiss commodities trading giant said on Thursday that it had set aside $577m in the first half to offset the potential losses while suing UD Trading Group, TMT Metals and Prateek Gupta.

In this week’s Green Seas newsletter, Eric Priante Martin explores an OECD report urging state action to make fuels produced by renewable electricity more cost competitive for shipping.