China’s Qingdao Port has moved into the bulker shipowning sector with the port operator’s first owned bulker, Qingdaogang Dagang, making its debut voyage at the end of 2018.
The 2012-built 56,400 dwt supramax vessel, formerly known as Tron Legacy, was acquired by the company from Greek owner Oceanbulk in December.
The vessel, operated by Qingdao Port International Logistics, carried iron ore from Qingdao Port to Nantong Port on its first voyage.
According to Jiao Guangjun, president of Qingdao Port Group, the company has established a dedicated shipping operations unit and plans to expand the self-owned fleet and intermodal shipping service network to create synergies with the port’s iron ore terminal.
Qingdao Port operates one of China’s largest 400,000 dwt iron ore terminals in its Dongjiakou Port area. The port is in the process of kickstarting a $300m IPO in Shanghai.