Dry CargoGreater China

Chinese owners enter cheap cape market

Chinese owners have decided capes are now as cheap as they’re going to get and are diving into the market.

Baltic Exchange data shows secondhand capesizes are now 12.7% cheaper than a year ago, proving too tempting for some despite the ongoing awful cape trading conditions with the Baltic Capesize Index still in unprecedented negative territory.

Last week, 54-strong bulker outfit Seacon Shipping Group entered the cape sector after haggling with GoodBulk, adding the vintage 2003-built cape Aquajoy for $10.8m.

This week sources tip another Chinese shipowner to be entering the cape sector. Sources tell Splash Beijing-based Minsheng Finance Leasing has bought two modern capes and bareboated them back to Ningbo Zrich Shipping for $17m each. The deal involves two 177,000 dwt sisters, built in 2010, named Percival and Lancelot. In comparison, a one-year younger cape with a similar deadweight was sold in mid-January for $18m.

MFL has placed 10 young supramaxes and one handymax in the last year into the Zrich Shipping fleet.

Hans Thaulow

Hans Henrik Thaulow is an Oslo-based journalist who has been covering the shipping industry for the last 15 years. As well as some work for the Informa Group, Hans was the China correspondent for TradeWinds. He also contributes to Maritime CEO magazine. Hans’ shipping background extends to working as a shipbroker trainee with Simpson, Spence & Young in Hong Kong.
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