The An Yue Jiang may have been turned around and headed back to China, as reported by the Beeb and the NYT, but maybe they’re just headed out to sea to do a little “over-the-horizon” transfer work. Sokwanele/This is Zimbabwe says “Don’t celebrate just yet:”
But the following is invaluable information for activists in many countries:
Given the public interest in following the movements of the ship An Yue Jiang, which is reported to be carrying arms to Zimbabwe, Lloydâ€™s MIU (www.lloydsmiu.com) is tracking this vessel via satellites and agents covering all African ports.
The vessel may be hidden from satellite tracking at present, so our focus is on likely ports of call for discharging its cargo, potential re-fuelling stops (given it did not re-fuel at Durban), and all vessels in that coastal area that it could transfer its cargo onto while it is at sea, in particular, two vessels belonging to the same owner.
There are 32 ports in Africa, south of the equator, physically capable of accommodating An Yue Jiang. Given the intense media interest, and the fact this ship has six cranes on board, an increasingly likely scenario is the possibility of a ship-to-ship transfer of the controversial cargo â€œover the horizonâ€ while the vessel is at sea. It is also possible for the ship to be refuelled at sea, which would allow it to continue further afield and then continue the shipment via land.
Lloydâ€™s MIU data shows there are currently 311 vessels that in the area of a type and size capable of receiving this cargo, 2 of these vessels belong to COSCO (China Ocean Shipping Group Company), which has owned the An Yue Jiang since its launch over 21 years ago. COSCO owns around 700 vessels, 150 of which are of a general cargo designation.