EuropeFinance and Insurance

Bank of Ireland exiting shipping

Banks yanking their shipping portfolios continue apace. Bank of Ireland has become the latest to announce it will exit the shipping sector, joining a host of other mainly European lenders backing away from the depressed industry.

At its peak, pre-Lehman collapse, Bank of Ireland had a ship finance portfolio of close to $2bn, according to Marine Money, a figure that has since quartered.

Meanwhile, South African bank Investec has told Reuters it has no intention of taking on any more shipping loans.


Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.


  1. Shipping banks have created their own downfall. most folks tend to blame the owners for over capacity, however, in my opinion it was only created by the lenders with a herd mentality and without assessing the asset valuation risks and on-balance leverage.
    Some how, the heads of shipping departments are still invited to panel events despite having lost billions through their judgement, so what do they know.

  2. ok 2bn is not meaningful by any token. Yet another indication that ship finance has turned intensely sour and is to become obsolete in the immediate future.

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