"In the period 1980-2010, the registration of container vessel tonnage favoured a shift towards countries labelled as tax havens," said SeaIntel CEO Alan Murphy.
The study made use of "Tax Havens: International Tax Avoidance and Evasion", published by the US Congressional Research Service.
It cites 50 countries on various tax haven lists with 26 of these having containership tonnage registered, said the SeaIntel press release.
A revised list, which no longer considers some countries as tax havens, shortens the roster to 17 countries which register container tonnage.
"If at first, we analyse the full list, and see there has been a constant shift towards tax havens from 1980 to 2017," Mr Murphy said.
"From 12 per cent of tonnage flagged in tax havens in 1980, grew to 74 per cent in 2017, most of which were registered in Liberia and Panama," he said.
"If we then use the reduced list of tax haven countries to re-calculate the share of container vessel tonnage registered in a tax haven, we can see a break in the trend, with the peak being in 2013 where 58 per cent of the tonnage is registered in tax havens, now down to 53 per cent in 2017," said Mr Murphy.