As the container port industry in Asia develops rapidly, some of the opportunities may be in unexpected places and some port operators could benefit from a refocussing of their ambitions.

Apparently in response to market demand, the end of 2017 and the first couple of weeks of the year have seen the launch of a flurry of new and enhanced services from several key lines on intra-Asia and China-Southeast and South Asia routes in particular.

Sapura Energy has picked up a bounty of about MYR905m ($231.2m) in new contracts.

Despite the challenging state the Malaysian maritime industry is currently in, players still see opportunities ahead, especially in the Asean market and even further afield.

Regional Container Lines (RCL) is splitting its service from Singapore to Palembang and Pasir Gudang into two increasing the frequency of calls.

Financially strapped Malaysian offshore vessel builder and owner Nam Cheong has survived to fight another day.

Wilhelmsen Ship Management (WSM) is relocated its global headquarters from the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur to neighbouring Singapore.

A Japan Coast Guard (JCG) vessel will leave Hakodate on 28 December for joint anti-piracy exercises in India and Malaysia.

Barakah Offshore Petroleum is making further inroads into the Sarawak oil and gas (O&G) market with its unit, PBJV Group sealing a deal to work with Sarawak-based parties on projects in the state.

Malaysia’s Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP) became the first Southeast Asian port to operate super post-panamax cranes, with the delivery of the first four of a series of eight.

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