Maersk Said Set to Order 10 Biggest Container Ships
A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S, the biggest container line, is set to order 10 of the worldâ€™s largest cargo- box ships, according to three people familiar with the situation. Friday, 18.Feb.2011, 23:54 (GMT+3)
Feb. 18-- A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S, the biggest container line, is set to order 10 of the worldâ€™s largest cargo- box ships, according to three people familiar with the situation.
The deal with Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. also includes options and rights for another 20 vessels, each able to carry 18,000 standard 20-foot containers, said two of the people who declined to be identified as they arenâ€™t authorized to release the information. The deal would be worth more than $4 billion if all 30 ships are ordered, they said.
The vessels, about 30 percent bigger than the largest afloat, may help Maersk benefit from rising exports of Asian- made clothes, furniture and other goods to Europe and the U.S. Neptune Orient Lines Ltd. and Zodiac Maritime Agencies Ltd. also ordered 10,000 container-plus vessels last year as shipping lines resumed fleet expansion plans following a two-year hiatus during the global recession.
â€śThis is going to prompt a lot of the bigger shipping lines to make orders for large ships,â€ť said Hur Sung Duck, an analyst at HI Investment & Securities Co. in Seoul. â€śLines have to order now if they want to avoid a shortage of ships in 2014 after the majority of on-order vessels are delivered.â€ť
Seoul-based Daewoo, the worldâ€™s third-largest shipbuilder, declined to comment in an e-mailed response to queries.
â€śI can say that we have not signed a deal for new ships,â€ť said Michael Storgaard, a spokesman for Copenhagen-based Maersk. He declined to comment further.
Daewoo gained 5.7 percent, the biggest increase in more than two months, to close at 34,200 won in Seoul trading. Maersk fell 1.6 percent to close at 52,850 kroner in Copenhagen. Reuters reported the order earlier today.
Mediterranean Shipping Co., the No. 2 container line after Maersk, is building up a fleet of 21 vessels able to carry about 14,000 boxes each, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The ships, including the largest in service worldwide, are being built by Daewoo and Samsung Heavy Industries Co.
Maersk forecast last month that the global container market may grow by more than 8 percent this year, exceeding the 6 percent expansion it predicted in November.
Maersk lifted its earnings forecast for 2010 on Nov. 10, saying freight rates and volumes will help the company record the highest profit in its 106-year history after posting a loss a year earlier when trade volumes contracted.
Chief Executive Officer Nils Smedegaard Andersen said Jan. 26 that Maersk will be able to keep its market share in 2011 without adding new ships if the container market grows by 6 percent to 8 percent.
Maersk has a global market share of 14.5 percent and Geneva, Switzerland-based Mediterranean has 12.8 percent, based on container-fleet capacity, according to Alphaliner. Twenty months ago, Maersk had 15 percent of the market while Mediterranean had 11.4 percent.
Daewooâ€™s previous biggest single order for container ships was in July 2008 when Maersk ordered 16 ships able to carry 7,450 boxes apiece for $2.3 billion. Ship orders usually take about three years to execute.
Neptune Orient, Singaporeâ€™s largest container line, ordered two ships capable of carrying 10,700 containers each last year from Daewoo, as part of a $1.2 billion deal. Zodiac Maritime ordered as many as 10 13,000-box ships, costing about $140 million each, from Jinhae, South Korea-based STX Offshore & Shipbuilding Co. in October, according to Clarkson Plc, the worldâ€™s biggest shipbroker.
Worldwide container-shipping demand may increase 9.7 percent this year as world trade rebounds from the global recession, according to Clarkson.