Triple tanker order salvation for STX

They might be small at just 6,600 dwt each, but in the big picture the three newbuild contracts announced from Jinhae in South Korea today could be crucial in saving a famous name in shipbuilding.

STX Offshore & Shipbuilding revealed today it has signed a deal with an unidentified local shipping line to build three small product tankers for delivery in 2022. The yard, which state-run banks put into restructuring seven years ago, was at risk of running out of business – its backlog of orders prior to today’s announcement stood at just seven ships, all to be delivered by the the first quarter of next year.

Workers at the hard-pressed yard have only just returned to work after a nearly two-month long strike in a bid to get management to stop the six-month unpaid furloughs, which half of about 500 unionised workers have taken in rotation since June 2018.

The yard is still seeking a buyer to take it over. As recently as eight years ago, STX was the world’s fourth largest shipbuilding group but financial scandals and a severe drop in orders plunged the yard into chaos in 2013 with many affiliates since sold off.

Formerly known as Ssangyong Heavy Industries, the yard was taken over and rebranded as STX in the year 2000.

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. Stupid South Korean government! STX is a zombie company. No matter what they do, this rubbish company cannot survive. It is just waste of money and time. Only the far-left union is happy.

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