In view of the ongoing developing situation and different communications and instructions being issued by Sanitary Authorities of the Argentine Government we have chosen to send a consolidated daily report at the closing of working hours with an update of the day’s news.
-National Holidays: Friday, May 01st 2020, Labor day. Next Monday, May 25th, May Revolution.
-Covid-19 National Quarantine: The National Quarantine, with severe restrictions on people’s movements is to remain in force until May 07th. Some smaller cities are making circulation restrictions a little lighter. But large cities, Buenos Aires, Rosario, Santa Fé, Cordoba amongst others are maintaining restrictions as before.
-River Parana draft: A study commissioned by the Rosario Board of Trade estimates that the loss to the local economy brought on by the limited draft available on the River Paraná will be of about USD 224 million. The study points out that the level of the River Parana at Rosario is today at 0.55 meters, but that within a month it will be 0.40 meters. (This does not necessarily mean that vessels navigating will lose one meter draft!). The forecast also says that the river will not recover until the middle/end of June 2020 given the lack of rain in the basin (South-East Brazil, Paraguay, eastern Bolivia and North-East Argentina.
-Farmer’s Union call: The farmers, through their union, have called on the government to reduce the export taxes. They have explained to the Government that as per their estimates lowering of taxes would encourage production. According to their claim, if this is done in time the total grain production of Argentina could be increased to over 150 million tons.
It remains to be seen if the Government understand their message.
-River Parana dredging: Still active with four/five dredgers working on shallow passes. The dredger DASA I today, April 26th, commenced operating at San Nicolas. At the moment she is expected to have about 15 days dredging ahead. The work will be carried out for San Nicolas New Port, Elevator and Central Termica berths as well as the access channel. The contracted work does not include Puerto Buitrago, SIDERAR, since this port is on the River Parana main Canal. This dredger is not expected to interrupt traffic while performing her work.
-River Parana draft limitation: As reported before, the mv AG VALOR and the mv ROYAL HOPE are still anchored at Rosario Roads, both on more that 10.00 meters draft. Both vessel’s suffered mishaps and when they were free to continue the River draft had dropped so significantly that they cannot sail. From local reports picked up it seems that both vessels have opted for waiting until the River draft recovers usual levels.
-Buenos Aires Grain Exchange: The Buenos Aires Grain Exchange reports that 56 per cent of the soya bean harvest is completed. The expected overall amount is still maintained at 49.5 million tons.
The maize harvest is also underway and there 34.5 per cent has been harvested. The total overall is maintained at 50 million tons.
The wheat harvest (2019/2020) has been declared completed with a total of 18.8 million tons. Slightly down on last year and specially considering that the sown area was 6 per cent larger. The weather affected yields significantly. The 2020/2021 wheat is getting going with optimistic looks, a greater area being sown and rain showers making the ground better for sowing.
-Bahia Blanca: The mv TRITON HAWK completing cargo at Bahia Blanca, coming from Nueva Palmira, was exempted from the 14 day quarantine requirement after intense negotiations with port unions (Stevedores, grain surveyors, amongst others). The vessel had arrived at Bahia Blanca Roads, Buoy 11 on April 19th but was denied entry, considered coming from abroad. After the afore mentioned negotiations she berthed April 23rd evening. This is a good precedent, on Friday April 24th noontime, the mt BOW NEON was also allowed to waive the quarantine and will berth on arrival.
-Necochea: The port remains open since April 09th at 1615 hrs. The grain surveyor’s union has lifted their “work to rule” and grain vessel’s will now be able to work in overtime.
-Bahia Blanca: The grain surveyors’ union are still keeping a “work to rule” and will only attend vessels in normal working hours. Monday to Friday 0700/1900 hrs. Saturday 0700/1300 hrs.
Will keep you posted.
Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.
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