Maersk reportedly about to order 11 20,000-teu ships
Maersk Line is close to finalising an order for up to 11 mega container ships larger than its Triple E class, according to media reports in South Korea.
The 11 vessels will be built at South Korean yard Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering and will each have a capacity of 20,000-teu, according to The Korean Economic Daily.
These reports came after the shipyard on Monday confirmed in a brief to the stock exchange that it is currently negotiating a major ship order with a “European customer”.
This is not the first time there have been rumours that the Danish shipping giant is planning to expand its fleet beyond its current Triple E class Very Large Container Ships (VLCS).
However, this is the first time that more detailed information has emerged, such as the possible shipyard and the fact that Daewoo stands to win the contract ahead of another bidder, Hyundai Heavy Industries.
The newspaper further reported that Daewoo will build four vessels initially, with an option included for the remaining seven.
The deal will be worth an estimated US $1.7-billion, with a source quoting the unit cost per vessel at US $151-million.
Maersk refused to comment on the rumours when contacted by Arabian Supply Chain.com, the online home of Maritime & Ports Middle East, but in September last year Maersk Line CEO, Søren Skou indicated that newbuilds would be needed to meet expected growth in demand of more than 425,000-teu over the next four to five years.
Maersk Line’s Triple E container ships, each with a capacity of 18,300-teu, were the largest VLCSs in the world in 2013, but have since been surpassed by new ships from competitors MSC and CSCL of more than 19,000-teu.