Shipbrokers, charterers and shipowners in Singapore are backing Mercy Ships, as the charity hospital ship operator steps up its activities ahead of its annual cargo day fundraiser.
Senior figures from Clarksons, BRS, Affinity,Clearlake, Eastern Pacific, ST Shipping, Thenamaris, Trafigura, Total, Vitol and others have formed a Singapore regional committee to encourage donations.
They join colleagues in the Geneva and Houston tanker and trading communities planning to raise money on 6 November, when players can pledge to give the charity a percentage of their commission on cargoes they fix.
Mercy Ships hopes to raise $1m from the day to go towards bringing state-of-the art surgery to some of the world’s poorest people.
Tim Webb, head of tanker chartering at BRS shipbrokers in Geneva who was one of cargo day’s founders said: “This is only going to get bigger with time and is a really cool charity to unite the shipping and trading industry.”
With tanker rates at their highest for a decade, he added: “I am sure we will make the target of $1m.”
Shipping brings ‘hope and healing’ to Africa’s poorest
Clarksons’ Debbie Hampton will chair the new Singapore committee with Luca De Besi from BRS as secretary.
Terence Soh from Clearlake, Cyril Ducau from Eastern Pacific, Trafigura’s Jonathan White, Anders Mogensen from ST Shipping and Elaine Choo from Lukoil Asia Pacific are also involved in Singapore.
Since the annual cargo day was launched in 2016, it has raised nearly $2m to support Mercy Ships’ medical programme in Africa, where the world’s largest civilian hospital ship, the 16,600-gt Africa Mercy (built 1980), is based.
About 2.5 million people are said to have benefited directly from the organisation’s free medical care.
Some 450 surgeons, nurses, catering, administration and other staff work onboard the converted Danish ferry as volunteers.
Aldo Marletta of United Maritime Logistics said: “I have been onboard the Africa Mercy and fortunate to witness at firsthand what an amazing impact Mercy Ships has on so many people’s lives. I am a big fan and would encourage as many people as I possibly can to support Cargo Day.”
Marc Lecoanet of Riverlake added: “Every penny will directly impact lives. Join us.”
Raphael de Guillebon of Total Trading & Shipping said: “We deeply feel it is our commitment and duty as a responsible oil major to support such an amazing organisation.”
Article published on 25 October 2019 7:52 GMT