Anglo American renews shipping contract with Vuka Marine

Date: Mar 9, 2018
Global miner Anglo American has renewed its various full-time ocean freight contracts with local maritime company Vuka Marine.

Under these freight contracts, Anglo American will transport bulk iron-ore and coal products, primarily from the Saldanha Bay port to its customers around the world.

“A vast majority of the cargo that is loaded on Vuka Marine’s two capesize bulkers, the Cape Enterprise and the Cape Orchid, are loaded at Saldanha,” said Anglo American marketing CEO Peter Whitcutt in an interview.

The contracts will “really invigorate” the maritime industry in South Africa – “something that is needed”, he said, adding that it was encouraging to see merchant ships being put back on the South African register for the “first time in many years”.

In 2015, the Cape Orchid became the first merchant vessel to be brought onto the South African register in 30 years.

Meanwhile, Whitcutt said it was also encouraging to see employment in the maritime industry picking up. Signalling a clear commitment to youth empowerment, Vuka Marine has committed to deploying and training 25 local cadets on these vessels.

“It’s a path of employment that has really kind of disappeared in recent times, so we’ll be able to reinvigorate that, which is an added bonus. This can now be repeated on-board while also creating employment opportunities onshore,” said Whitcutt.

The Anglo American Vuka Marine partnership currently accounts for about $30-million of the mining company’s yearly freight spend, with Whitcutt highlighting that Anglo American ships around 60-million tonnes of cargo a year on about 400 to 450 voyages on a fleet of 15 contracted ships.

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