Chinese shipbuilding conglomerate China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) held a ceremony in Beijing yesterday, celebrating the signing of up to 40 newbuilding contracts worth a total of around RMB10bn ($1.48bn), consisting of firm contracts for 36 ships and letters of intent for four vessels.
All the vessels will be financed by CSSC Shipping, the shipowning and financing unit of CSSC.
South Korean owner Sinokor has placed orders of 20 feedermax containerships at three CSSC yards, including four 2,400 teu containerships at Jiangnan Shipyard, eight 1,100 teu ships at Huangpu Wenchong Shipbuilding and eight 1,100 teu ships at CSSC Chengxi.
Japanese shipping major MOL has ordered two 174,000 cu m LNG carriers plus options for another two at Hudong Zhonghua Shipbuilding, the only Chinese shipbuilder with experience of large LNG carrier construction.
German breakbulk shipping specialist Zeamarine has placed orders for eight 13,000 dwt heavy lift vessels. Six vessels will be built at Hudong Zhonghua and the other two at Huangpu Wenchong.
CSSC Shipping itself placed an order at Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding for two plus two 300,000 dwt VLCCs.
In addition to the 36 firm contracts, US shipping and logistics firm Pangaea has signed a letter of intent for two 95,000 dwt bulk carriers at Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI), plus options for another two vessels.
The massive orders have given the Chinese shipbuilding industry a great start for the year, as competition intensifies with neighboring shipbuilding rival nations South Korea and Japan.
In November last year, CSSC Shipping applied for an IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.