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China shipyards continue to see new orders rise in first four months

China shipyards continue to see new orders rise in first four months
China’s shipyards have continued to see newbuilding orders rise over the first four months of this year compared to year-ago level, but the new deals are virtually all concentrated in just 51 yards from among a few hundred in operation.

New shipbuilding orders received by Chinese shipyards came up to 13.8m dwt during January to April 2016, representing a jump of 108% compared to the same period of 2015, according to figures from China Association of the National Shipbuilding Industry (Cansi).

The latest four-month period’s new order increase followed the rise as well in the first quarter this year compared to the respective year-ago periods, as the year-on-year percentage hike in new deals was last seen in the January-September 2014 period, when new orders rose by 37.9% year-on-year.

Among the total of 13.8m dwt won by Chinese yards in the first four months, Cansi said 51 leading yards took 96.4% of the share, or 13.3m dwt. Industry observers said there are around 300 yards with active day-to-day operations at present, pointing to 500,000 dwt of new vessel tonnage shared by more than 250 other yards. In other words, most of these yards would have received zero new orders.

In completed jobs, Chinese shipyards produced 10.79m dwt of new vessel capacity in the first four months, down 13.5% compared to the previous corresponding period, Cansi figures showed.

As at end-April 2016, the orderbook backlog stood at 124.28m dwt, down 11.2% year-on-year but up 1% from the end of 2015.

Cansi also monitored 94 main yards, showing that their combined completed vessel tonnage during the January-April 2016 period was valued at around RMB135bn ($20.63bn), with shipbuilding taking up RMB65bn, ship equipment at RMB9.5bn and ship repair at RMB3.5bn.

The 94 main yards generated a total revenue of RMB89bn in the first four months, down 5% year-on-year while profit was reported at RMB1.14bn, a rather sharp fall of 35%.