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UASC brings 18,000 TEU programme to 6 units, orderbook highest worldwide

UNITED Arab Shipping Company (UASC) is to increase its 18,000 TEU programme to six units by exercising an option with Hyundai Heavy industries (HHI) for the sixth unit, to add to five ordered in August 2013. 

UASC brings 18,000 TEU programme to 6 units, orderbook highest worldwide
17 March 2014 - 17:53

UASC brings 18,000 TEU programme to 6 units, orderbook highest worldwide

UNITED Arab Shipping Company (UASC) is to increase its 18,000 TEU programme to six units by exercising an option with Hyundai Heavy industries (HHI) for the sixth unit, to add to five ordered in August 2013. 

This will total 17 vessel worth US$2 billion, which includes five ships of 14,000 TEU, pushed last month to 11 units through exercising six options. 

These 17 units will add to UASC's current fleet of nine 13,100-TEU (A-13 class) ships built by Samsung HI in 2008. The first unit delivered in April 2011 and the remaining eight a year later in 2012. 

The six 18,000 TEUers will be operated on an Asia-Europe loop in tandem with five CSCL vessels of similar size. 

Additionally, UASC has chartered two wide beam neo-postpanamaxes of 9,000 TEU, Skyros and Symi, ordered in April 2013 and due spring 2014. The charter is to run over a three-year period by International Maritime Enterprises on a speculative basis. 

The vessels are expected to join the transpacific FE-PNW "ANW 1/AWN 1" service currently operated by CSCL and UASC, with PIL joining as a ship provider, bringing the 4,250-TEU Kota Lambai. The service is currently operated with six vessels of the 4,200-TEU class, to be replaced by larger ships for the peak season. 

UASC's latest orders bring its orderbook to 280,000 TEU. It is on a par with its current operated fleet of 274,000 TEU. According to Paris-based Alphaliner, its orderbook to fleet ratio of 102 per cent is currently the highest among all carriers.

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