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Merchant fleet hits 100,000-ship milestone

This month the global merchant fleet of vessels above 100 gt has reached the 100,000-ship milestone for the first time, according to data from Clarksons Research.

Across 100,001 ships in total, the average size of a vessel is 21,355 dwt, and the average age is 21.7 years.

The estimated total value of the world fleet is $976bn across 2.1bn dwt and 1.4bn gt. Asian owners account for 46% of the deadweight, with European owners controlling 30% of the fleet.

Shipping crossed the 70,000 mark in February 2006, 15 years ago almost to the day. The average vessel size has increased by 57% since then.

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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