Thome expands in Indonesia on the back of a change in local cabotage laws



Singapore-based Thome Ship Management has opened its first office in Indonesia after the Indonesian government recently approved a law promoting internal seaborne trade.

“The new Indonesian cabotage law which will result in the increase in the number of Indonesian-flagged vessels trading in Indonesian waters is an opportunity for us to open our own office in Indonesia,” said Thome Group chairman and chief executive officer Olav Eek Thorstensen.

Thome Ship Management boosted its presence in the burgeoning Indonesian third party management market on the back of a change in the country’s cabotage laws which require Indonesian flag vessels trading in Indonesian waters to have nationals servings as officers and crew.

The company, which has built up a strong reputation in the South East Asian market, will continue to work closely with Indonesian manning agents in the area.

The new office will have a staff of six and will act as a general representative office in Jakarta with the purpose of liaising with current and potential customers in the shipping and offshore oil and gas sectors.

Later this year it is the group’s intention to open a fully fledged office of Timur Ship Management in Jakarta. Timur is a wholly-owned Thome Group subsidiary which will have an Indonesian partner in a joint venture arrangement. Timur Ship Management’s Jakarta office role will be to manage vessels operated by Indonesian owners, and through the local presence build up strong ties with these.

The Timur Jakarta office will manage vessels under Timur management contracts and also assist and attend vessels under Thome Ship Management and Thome Offshore Management vessels trading in Indonesian waters.

The representative office was opened at a ceremony in Jakarta attended by the Ambassadors to Indonesia of Norway and Singapore as well as Thome Group directors and senior managers, customers and long standing business associates.

Mr Thorstensen noted that Thome Group had been doing business in Indonesia for almost 50 years.

He said: “We want to be closer to the markets in which we operate. Indonesia is such a market and that is why we are taking this step today.
He noted that with Thome’s track record in the region and its long-standing relationships, the group understood the requirements for managing Indonesia’s growing merchant fleet.

He said Thome Group today had around 120 vessels, mainly tankers, under full technical management. The group also has an offshore industry unit, Thome Offshore Management, which manages offshore vessels such as anchor handlers, FPSOs and FSOs as well as undertaking newbuilding supervision.

“This step reflects Thome Group’s growth and also the significant growth and opportunities we can see in Indonesia today,” he added. “With the opening of the new office here, the Indonesian maritime markets will be able to have access to all the services Thome group offers right on their doorstep.

“This includes the services which Thome Ship Management offers in Singapore along with the skills and services which our other business units, Thome Offshore and Thome Marine Consultants, can offer,” he added.

Thome set up Timur Ship Management in Singapore in 2009 to service Indonesian owners in a more focused way. Timur will operate under the parent banner of Thome group and will offer exactly the same services with the same level of international standards as its fellow company in Singapore, Mr Thorstensen said.

As part of its growing commitment to Indonesia, Thome has recently appointed a full time Indonesian training manager who is tasked with building up training courses and the group has conducted training for around 100 Indonesian crew so far this year.