SPP urges South Korean president to save yard

Since imperiled SPP Shipbuilding’s urgent plea to its creditor to issue refund guarantees has fallen on deaf ears, management have taken their demand to the top, namely the president of South Korea.

SPP Shipbuilding, one of the world’s leading builders of MR tankers, could close by the end of next year unless its creditors allow it to take on orders. Management at the yard, which has been under a debt workout scheme for the past couple of years, has appealed to its creditors to allow it to receive new orders.

In a written statement last month, SPP employees claimed: “Since 2014, the company has received no new orders due to the control of creditors. The yard’s operation rate will be only 50% by H1 next year and the company will have to close the yard by the end of the year.”

Since this failed to garner any response from lead creditor, Woori Bank, management has now taken its appeal to Park Geun-hye, the South Korean president, among others. SPP is the only yard in Korea which while undergoing restructuring is making a profit. It has sent a letter to Park, plus a number of government organisations asking for help.

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.


  1. The ugly face of Korean corruption.
    The yard is sound and have numerous enquiries. Cant take the orders because of the bank. Century 21 tong yeong have same problem . The yard is idle.

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