Clay Maitland

On a quest for quality in shipping


Attend any given conference on shipping, particularly maritime finance, and you will hear, and see, many presentations, accompanied by PowerPoint, predicting a recovery some time in 2013. Read some articles in the trade press, and you will learn that “cash-rich Greek shipowners” are heavily invested in second-hand and newbuilding-resale purchases, notwithstanding ominous economic and market signs. Continue reading

Prosperity is not around the corner.

My eye was caught by a recent article: “Tanker Sector May Be Over the Worst”, quoting a Norwegian bank’s analysis that the tanker market, including VLCCs, suezmaxes, aframaxes, panamaxes and medium range clean product tankers, has bottomed out. Continue reading

The Greeks have a word for it……

“Cataclysm” is, like most words of its type, of Greek derivation. A Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, told us nearly 2,500 years ago that one thing above all was certain: “all things change”. Continue reading

Shipping, EMSA and the European Union

There is apprehension that the grim news from Brussels, Berlin, Rome, Paris and Athens could lead to a weakening, partition or breakup of the Eurozone, and perhaps the European Union itself. Continue reading

Why shipping stays offshore

A small article in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal brings back memories. In the article, John Coustas, CEO of container operator Danaos Corporation, reflects on the things that went wrong. Continue reading

What do oil spills, piracy and the Greek crisis have in common?

There are at least three “received truths”, as one of my college professors sarcastically called them, that, in the world of shipping, may be open to challenge. One is that last year’s Gulf of Mexico oil rig explosion had nothing to do with the rest of the shipping industry, being only about wells and rigs — and not ships Continue reading

POSIDONIA REFLECTIONS: The true meaning of ‘lingering doubts’

A visit to a Greek shipowner’s yacht is a characteristic feature of Posidonia, Greece’s iconic shipping jamboree, held every two years in what a local banker calls “the cradle of democracy and denial.” Continue reading

LIVE FROM POSIDONIA: When funding runs dry

Posidonia is famously a gathering place for those interested in taking the industry’s pulse. This year, in the face of the nation’s greatest economic crisis since the hungry 1940s, three questions are being asked: 1) will Greek shipowners leave Greece; 2) will Greece eventually default; and 3) will Greece go back to the drachma. The answers so far, based on a highly unscientific poll: 1) most will stay; 2) probably; and 3) no. Continue reading

LIVE FROM POSIDONIA: Will the EU bail-out be repaid?

Greek bankers here at Posidonia are so far shtum, silent and otherwise not talking, at least in my hearing, about repayment of the recent euroloan, or bail-out. Will it ever be repaid? Can it be repaid–ever? Should it even be repaid? Continue reading

Changes in climate

I’m taking a few days off before the stress of Posidonia, the biennale of shipping staged for the past 40-some years by Greece. Continue reading

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