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December 3, 2009

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Shipyards brace for order cuts

SHIPYARDS around the globe may see cancellations or delays in around 40 percent of new vessel orders this year and in 2010 as shipping companies still face overcapacity challenges, Wei Jiafu, chairman of China Ocean Shipping (Group) Company, said yesterday.

"The shipping industry has been seriously affected by the global financial crisis but the market is expected to be more stable after the turmoil," he told a Senior Maritime Forum in Shanghai.

The nation's largest shipping company has canceled a total of 126 bulk carriers since last year as it faces overcapacity pressure, Wei noted. Orders for container carriers were also delayed one to two years, but he didn't divulge the numbers.

He remained optimistic in the market though as globalization will continue to push demand for shipping.

Cosco Container Lines Co Ltd, the container arm of the shipping group, has slowed the speed of its container carriers since the start of this year to reduce fuel to save costs.


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