Smaller containerlines to go the same way as the dinosaurs

Smaller and mid-sized container shipping lines could become extinct, just like the dinosaurs, suggested South Korea’s minister of oceans and fisheries at today’s Danish Maritime Forum.

Yoo Kijune said the rush to order ever larger boxships had brought overtonnaging and made it hard for many to operate. The leading container companies will drive out small and mid-sized ones, he said.

Yoo was one of a number of shipping-related ministers speaking at the event. Denmark’s minister for business and growth, Troels Lund Poulsen had three main messages: to cooperate to ensure open markets and free trade; to ensure that the burdens we put on the maritime industry are not greater than the benefits; and to cooperate to ensure relevant global regulations and enforcement.

The latter point was picked up by Robert Goodwill, the British shipping minister, who said: “Radically different rules across the world rarely make sense.” Rival regulatory regimes create increased costs, he warned.

The Danish Maritime Forum continues through to tomorrow.

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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