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MOL enters VLOC jv with IMC

Singapore: On the heels of its decision to launch independent LR1 product tanker operations this June, Japan's Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) has signed a joint venture agreement with IMC Shipping Limited to acquire, own and operate Very Large Ore Carriers (VLOCs).

Both companies are to contribute a converted VLOC (from a Very Large Crude Carrier - VLCC) to the project. One of the VLCC vessels is already undergoing conversion and expected to begin operations as a VLOC in the third quarter of 2008. The other vessel will enter the yard for conversion in May 2008.

In a statement, Singapore-based IMC Shipping said, "The joint-venture is expected to strengthen both parties' existing positions in this growing shipping segment and in key trading routes to support Asia's rapid industrialization especially in the ever-growing iron ore trade between Brazil and China. The robust trade in bulk cargoes in recent years has largely been driven by the increased demand from Asia for large dry bulk cargoes and this joint-venture is well positioned to tap on this growth."  [31/03/08]

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