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Good news at last for shipowners in the container charter market

Date: Friday, March 17, 2017
Source: The Loadstar

Brokers are reporting good news for embattled containership owners this week in the container charter market, with a big rise in enquiries and improving daily hire rates.

Shipping consultant Alphaliner said that, after recent increases in interest in larger vessel  sizes, “demand is now filtering down to the medium-sizes, suggesting that a more sustainable recovery could be on the way”.

Indeed, one London broker told The Loadstar this week: “For the first time in months, owners have the upper hand”.

Much of the surge in chartering activity of 7,500-11,000 teu, very large containerships (VLCSs) has been attributed to ocean carriers preparing for the launch of the new east-west alliances next month.

Alphaliner reports that OOCL, which is leaving the disbanding G6 alliance to join CMA CGM, Cosco and Evergreen in the Ocean Alliance, has been especially active in that sector.

The carrier chartered eight units in February, including two former Hanjin-chartered ships of 10,114 teu from Greek owner Danaos – for four months, with options, at $13,000 a day – three newbuild 11,000 teu vessels from Costamare and another ex-Hanjin-operated 10,000 teu ship from Seaspan.

Alphaliner understands that four will be deployed with OOCL’s own 8,000 teu tonnage on the Ocean Alliance’s NEU1 Asia-North Europe loop, until the carrier receives its 21,000 teu newbuilds later in the year.

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