Abu Dhabi Ports has zoomed into the dry bulk shipping sector, sealing its first bulk carrier acquisition with remote closing via video conference.
The Middle Eastern organisation sealed the deal for the 14-year-old 101,648 dwt ship Niki with Piraeus-based Larus with participants logging in from 11 different locations. All documents were signed electronically, presented and exchanged by video and email in a significant coronavirus-altered departure to how sale and purchase deals are normally concluded. No price for the ship has been revealed.
The Global Lockdown – as the International Monetary Fund has termed this year’s recession – has put the brakes on secondhand purchases. It’s not just that shipowners want to hold on to their cash in this economically uncertain period, it’s also been the difficulties of sealing a deal in these quarantined times – how to inspect a ship, how to get crew in place with April shaping up to be one of the most quiet months on record for concluded ship sales.