2001 Maritime

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December 18, 2001

Carnival fires another shot
Carnival Corporation has made another move in its effort to thwart the proposed merger between P&O Princess Cruises and Royal Caribbean.

Besides making its own $456 billion proposal to acquire P&O Princess, Carnival has referred the Princess/Royal Caribbean merger proposal to Britain's Panel on Takeovers and Mergers. This is the regulatory body that administers the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers . Its central objective is to ensure equality of treatment and opportunity for all shareholders in takeover bids. It describes itself as "a non-statutory body that is supported by a number of organizations backed by statute"

According to the Financial Times, Carnival claims P&O contravened Takeover Panel rules by unfairly inserting a "poison pill" clause in its offer, against shareholders' best interests. The proposed Princess/ Royal Caribbean merger includes a $62.5 million break-clause. The deal also created a joint venture between Princess and Royal Caribbean which would trigger a $200 million payout if it is broken up. Carnival argues these sums exceed Takeover Panel rules that limit break-fees to 1 percent of the total market capitalization of the target company - in this case $31m. .

OMI cooperates in MARPOL probe

OMI Corporation said yesterday that it is cooperating with an investigation by the U.S. Attorney's office in Newark, N.J., of an allegation that crew members of one or more of its vessels had by-passed systems designed to prevent impermissible discharge of used wastes into the water and had presented false statements to the government.

As well as being violations of the MARPOL (Maritime Pollution) Convention and U.S. law, by-pass and false statements contravene OMI policies and directives, says the company. OMI is reviewing those policies and directives with a view toward implementing any additional safeguards as warranted under the circumstances. OMI says there is no indication that any of the company's office personnel were involved or had any knowledge of the actions. "At this time, the company cannot predict the scope or duration of this investigation but does not expect that its costs relating to the investigation will have a material effect," said an OMI statement.

OSV equipment orders for Rolls-Royce

Rolls-Royce has won contracts worth about $78.7 million to design and supply integrated equipment packages for nine offshore service vessels for owners in Brazil, France, Norway and the USA.

The packages will be supplied to shipyards in 2002 and 2003, and the vessels will be delivered in 2003 and 2004.

Rolls-Royce currently has 71 UT-Design offshore service vessels on order or under construction, worth a total of GBP 270 million. A total of 390 UT700 series vessels have been built or are under construction since they were first sold in the mid-1970s.

Six of the nine latest vessels will be UT712 and UT722 anchor handling tug supply vessels, which tow platforms and floating drilling rigs to location and can lay moorings and anchors. These vessels are popular as oil and gas exploration and production moves into deeper water.

The other three are UT755 platform supply vessels which transport fuel, stores and equipment from shore to rigs and platforms. These latest contracts take the total number of UT755s in service or on order to 41.
Rolls-Royce can integrate entire equipment systems with these designs through a range of products, including Bergen engines, Rauma Brattvaag winches, Kamewa Ulstein propulsion equipment, Ulstein Aquamaster thrusters, Tenfjord steering gear and UMAS automation systems.