Expect more bankers to be in attendance at next month’s Posidonia than at any time since the start of the global financial crisis 10 years ago.
With all data pointing to the rapid growth of the national merchant fleet – the Union of Greek Shipowners puts the Greek fleet at 20% of the world total – local analysts at Petrofin Bank Research are reporting how many new names in ship finance are engaging Greek owners for business.
New banks on the scene in Greece include Bank of Cyprus, Hellenic, Amsterdam Trade Bank, M&M, Corner Bank, as well as a number of local banks while Petrofin also noted increasing numbers of bankers heading west to the Greek market from Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Dubai. Also noteworthy, Orix, which has until recently been a leasing financier has commenced, selectively, to lend to top Greek names, on a traditional bank loan basis, Petrofin reports.
“Whilst it remains difficult to forecast future Greek ship finance numbers, it is safe to say that a slowdown in the rate of decline in Greek ship finance lending is expected to commence in the next couple of years,” Petrofin noted, adding: “Bank lending terms continue to be strict and lending criteria high. Still, traditional bank lending represents the least expensive source of finance (except for export finance, in most cases).”
Splash, which this year is sponsoring Posidonia, will be bringing readers unrivalled coverage of the Greek show in the coming days.