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Run on containership orders in Korea predicted

Run on containership orders in Korea predicted

Seoul: Maersk's recent massive orders for containerships could signal a new round of boxship ordering at Korean yards in the second half of this year, analysts are predicting.

On the one hand, container lines have weathered the initial few months of global economic slowdown fears are now betting that trade will rebound by the time new vessels are delivered. On the other, growing delivery delays at Chinese yards caused by shortages of equipment, coupled with the effects of the collapse in May of two cranes at Hudong-Zhonghua, one of only two large containership builders in China, are serving to make the placing of new boxship orders in that country less attractive.

As a result, lines could start scrambling to secure large containership slots in Korea, especially after market leader Maersk in the past month is believed to have ordered 16 vessels of 7,450teu worth $2.3bn from Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering and 18 of 4,500teu from Hyundai Heavy Industries.  [07/07/08]