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CSCL returns to profit in H1

CSCL returns to profit in H1
China Shipping Container Lines (CSCL) returned to profit in the first half ended 30 June 2014 as demand for global container transportation increased steadily on the back of slow recovery of the world’s major economies, it said in its financial report.

First half net profit rose to RMB431.64m ($70.27m) as against a deficit of RMB1.26bn in the previous corresponding period.

Revenue during the period, however, dropped 8.5% year-on-year to RMB17.41bn.

CSCL, a division of state-owned China Shipping Group, pointed out that while there has been a gradual increase in shipping capacity of containers, freight rates of main trade lanes showed no substantial recovery and the pace of recovery of the box shipping market was still fragile.

CSCL noted that the imbalance between supply and demand was still profound and suppressed freight rate rising. “The freight rate of international trade lanes bumped up and down and towards a downward trend,” it said.

In the first half, average freight rate per teu for international trade lanes amounted to RMB5,141, representing a decrease of 2.8% year-on-year.

CSCL is looking forward to a continued steady recovery of container transportation demand in the second half of this year.

“However, due to the imbalance in the overall supply and demand in the industry, whether freight rate will be able to maintain at a reasonable level is still unknown and faces tremendous challenges and resistance,” it commented.

“The shipping transportation market is subject to the influence of the global economic recovery pace, fuel price fluctuation, regional political situation as well as changes in strategic alliance among the container lines and other factors. In view of the numerous uncertainties, it is too early to say that the overall situation is optimistic for the shipping industry.”