AW Ship Management to Provide Marine Cargo Service to St Helena
AW Ship Management are pleased to announce that following contract negotiations with SHG, a contract for the provision of a sea freight service has now been signed. AWSM will provide a freight service to follow on from the RMS St Helena with cargo being shipped to and from the UK to St Helena via Cape Town as per the current arrangements.
It is the intention of AWSM for the new cargo service to continue on as seamlessly as possible from the St Helena Line service and as such the new service will run monthly from Cape Town with transhipment to and from the UK to St Helena. In addition, the ship will operate from St Helena to Ascension Island on a bi-monthly basis. A full schedule will be announced shortly.
AWSM will be making a small number of passenger cabins available on the new vessel so that passenger sea services can be maintained, particularly for St Helenians wishing to travel to and from Ascension.
At present it is the intention of AWSM for the first sailing from Cape Town to be on the 27th July, with arrival in St Helena on the 2nd August.
Cargo bookings for the new service are now being accepted. AWSM’s agents and contact details will remain the same as the current service for ease of transition.
Freight rates have been submitted to SHG for agreement. These will be published in due course and will be broadly the same as the rates for the RMS. It is inevitable that rates for certain types of cargo will have to rise given the loss of a subsidised service, however AWSM have worked hard to ensure that such increases are kept to a minimum.
AWSM have been involved in the shipping of cargo to and from St Helena for sixteen years and as such are fully aware of the importance placed on a regular, reliable, and above all direct service to the Island by St Helenians. As such, AWSM will be providing a dedicated ship for this service which will be owned by AWSM and operated with the same skill and dedication that has been applied to the RMS St Helena since 2001. The use of a dedicated ship on a direct service ensures that a reliable schedule will be maintained without the risk of delays incurred in various West African ports.
The ship selected for the operation of the service is a geared container ship capable of carrying 250 TEU or equivalent. The vessel is 100m long, with a breath of 18m and a summer draft of 4.5m. As such, AWSM should be able to discharge cargo alongside at Rupert’s Bay even in a fully loaded condition.