2001 Maritime

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July 27, 2001

Pride gets platform rig contract
Pride International, Inc. announced today that it has entered into a contract with BP Exploration & Production Inc. for the engineering, procurement and construction, as well as the operation of the drilling facilities to be installed on a BP development project in the Gulf of Mexico.

Engineering of the rig will commence immediately, with delivery anticipated for December 2003. Pride will operate the drilling equipment for two years, with options for extension thereafter. The value of the contract totals approximately $80 million.

ITF declares São Tomé and Príncipe an FOC
As the number of countries peddling their flags to shipowners continues to blossom, The ITF has declared the naval registry of São Tomé and Príncipe a flag of convenience (FOC).

The decision was made by the Federation's Fair Practice Committee (FPC) - the body made up of dockers' and seafarers' unions that is charged with overseeing its FOC campaign.

Steve Cotton, Secretary of the ITF's Special Seafarers' Department, commented: "We have been monitoring São Tomé and Príncipe closely for the last year. I regret to say that the ninteenfold growth in the number of ships registered there in just five years is incompatible with its continuing to have the status of a true national flag."

He added: "We will be happy to meet with representatives of the country should they wish to discuss how they can return to being a genuine national register."

In 1997 the Central African country had five ships registered. This grew to 10 the following year, 23 in 1999, 72 in 2000, and 96 now. Currently São Tomé and Príncipe is listed as third from the bottom in the Very High Risk category of the Paris MOU.

Following investigations carried out at the request of affiliated French trade unions the FPC has also declared 18 vessels registered under the Kerguelen Register to be FOCs. These are: Algarve; Berge Enterprise; Berge Hélène; Berge Tokyo; Chaumont; Estoril; Goodwood; Hockenheim; Le Castellet; Lexembourg (sic); Lyria; Maido; Montlhéry; Once; Picardie; Port Isabelle; Provence; and Senje Berge.

The FPC takes into account the number of foreign owned vessels and the following additional criteria when declaring a register an FOC: the ability and willingness of the flag state to enforce international minimum social standards on its vessels, including respect for basic human and trade union rights, freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining with bona fide trade unions; the social record as determined by the degree of ratification and enforcement of ILO Conventions and Recommendations; and the safety and environmental record as revealed by the ratification and enforcement of IMO Conventions and by port state control inspections, deficiencies and detentions.