Dry CargoEurope

Castor Maritime fixes panamax bulker to Comerge, eyes further fleet growth

Nasdaq-listed panamax bulker owner Castor Maritime has announced that 2004-built bulker Magic P has completed its scheduled dry-docking and special survey and has immediately commences a new charter contract.

The vessel was fixed to Comerge, a Chinese commodity trader and logistics firm, for a period of 90 to 105 days at a rate of $7,000 per day.

Comerge has been an active player in the bulker charter market of late, having just fixed MC Shipping’s kamsarmax Luke Dawn on a one-year charter. It also has several ships on charter from Navios.

Petros Panagiotidis, chief executive officer of Castor, commenting on this latest charter, said: “The novel COVID-19 virus is causing unprecedented uncertainty, affecting the global economy and the majority of business activities, including the shipping sector. In this environment, we have been able to continue our operations with minimal disruption. Although it is very difficult to reasonably predict the estimated length or severity of the COVID-19 pandemic on future operating results, we are working very hard to ensure that we insulate our company, as much as possible, from the, hopefully, short-term volatility and weakness in rates. In this context, we are pleased that the M/V Magic P has successfully finished its scheduled dry-dock and has been promptly fixed for trading at a competitive rate in this market. This new fixture, together with the existing fixtures for our other two vessels, allows us to operate in a cash flow positive basis. In addition, our healthy cash position provides us a further cushion to withstand a weaker market.”

Castor currently has three panamaxes in its fleet, having listed on the Nasdaq early last year.

Hinting at further fleet growth, Panagiotidis added: “At the same time, it also provides us with the ability to take advantage of any attractive opportunities presented to us in the current market conditions.”

Grant Rowles

Grant spent nine years at Informa Group based in London, Sydney, Hong Kong and Singapore. He gained strong management experience in publishing, conferences and awards schemes in the shipping and legal areas, working on a number of titles including Lloyd's List. In 2009 Grant joined Seatrade responsible for the commercial development of Seatrade’s Asia products. In 2012, with Sam Chambers, he co-founded Asia Shipping Media.
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