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Container ship capacity delivered in April 1.1% of current global fleet

Photo: OOCL OOCL Turkiye megamax containership newbuilding in shipyard
The month of April set a new record for box ship deliveries as newbuildings continue to flood into the market.

April 2024 saw some 50 newbuilds delivered with what analyst Alphaliner described as a whopping 330,000 teu in capacity.

To put that number in perspective its higher than the entire capacity operated by the world’s 12th largest container Pacific International Lines, and equivalent to a 1.1% share of the entire global market today.

The April record follows deliveries of 41 newbuilds in March with 260,000 teu of capacity.

Cosco Shipping in the largest volume of deliveries with five ships and total capacity 58,700 teu, and MSC just behind with five ships totalling 58,600 teu, according to Alphaliner.

As Ocean Network Express noted in its annual results diversions via the Cape of Good Hope due to the Red Sea crisis have reversed a demand and supply picture that was deteriorating up to the end of 2023 as increasing numbers of newbuildings were delivered.

“A few years ago, many had predicted that liner shipping would run into a massive overcapacity situation in 2024, but so far the market has absorbed all the new capacity fairly well,” Alphaliner noted in its weekly report.

“Vessels diversions via the Cape of Good Hope and additional slow-steaming due to stricter environmental regulations have ‘artificially’ created fresh tonnage demand.”