Korean shipbuilding news site Asiasis reports that Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) and South Korea’s SPP Shipbuilding are discussing dusting off negotiations that date back to 2008 over a series of bulkers.
IRISL ordered ten 35,000 dwt bulkers at SPP eight years ago, and even paid an initial deposit, before sanctions hit the line and the ships never materialised. IRISL officials met with SPP and a number of other Korean and Chinese yards at the end of last year as they gear up for a spree of ship orders when sanctions are lifted shortly.
SPP and IRISL executives discussed renewing the eight-year old contract, albeit at vastly cut prices. IRISL initially ordered the bulkers when prices were at near record highs, pre-Lehman Brothers decline. Since then prices for handysizes have dropped by more than 50%. IRISL is set to return to South Korea to firm up orders towards the end of this month or in early February.
Speaking with Splash last October Dr Mohammad Saeedi, IRISL’s managing director, said his company was gearing up for a massive newbuild spree when sanctions are lifted.
The news will come as a huge boost to financially struggling SPP, which is set to be sold off soon.