AsiaContainersDry Cargo

Charterers to take $1.2bn hit as Hanjin pushes plans to become an intra-Asia operator

Hanjin Shipping is trying to reposition itself as a small intra-Asia player if it gets the nod to survive from a court in Seoul in December exiting all east-west main tradelanes.

Hanjin’s early drafts of its restructuring, due to be released in two months time, includes plans to sell half of its fleet, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) is reporting. The newspaper is reporting that despite this desperate action liquidation still looks the most likely outcome for the world’s seventh largest container shipping line. All of Hanjin’s chartered in tonnage will be returned, according to the restructuring plans seen by the WSJ. This will mean the likes of Danaos, Navios and Seaspan will take a combined hit of more than $1.2bn.

Meanwhile, Korean Air, the biggest shareholder of Hanjin Shipping, is struggling to expedite a promised KRW60bn ($54m) capital injection. The board of the airline has failed to reach agreement on when to deliver the cash, which is needed urgently so that Hanjin’s stranded ships across the world can unload their cargoes.

About 30% of Hanjin’s containerships have now completed unloading, according to Hanjin’s website, while 34 are still stranded at sea and 35 will return to South Korea.

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.
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