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Weekly Broker: Boxships in hot demand

The secondhand bulk S&P market has again seen a bullish week with plenty of en bloc deals completed despite a recent downward correction seen in the chartering market. The robust demand from China is expected to further boost investor confidence in the market.

“The dry bulk market entered 2021 on a high note supported by the broader inflection in commodity prices and increased congestion at discharging ports in China. China’s domestic thermal coal prices hit new record highs, while coal imports from all countries surged to record levels in December, lifting the annual total to its highest since 2013,” said Theodore Ntalakos, an S&P broker at Intermodal.

“Another factor to support panamax and supramax freight in 2021 is corn and soybean trade. Corn prices have hit multi-year highs on strong demand from China, which has been sourcing increasingly from the US in the context of the Phase 1 trade deal, while production prospects of major suppliers such as Ukraine and Argentina look weaker,” Ntalakos added.

Both Clarksons and Allied Shipbroking reported an en bloc deal in which German owner Gerd Ritscher sold two 2011-built 93,000 dwt post panamax bulkers Piet and Harm. The vessels are believed to have been sold to Singaporean buyers for a price of $22.6m in total.

Allied Shipbroking and Lorentzen & Stemoco reported that MX Bulk Management sold two newbuild 82,300 dwt kamsarmax bulk carriers to Chinese owner Shandong Shipping. The Ursula Manx and Una Manx, which were just delivered by Tsuneishi Zhoushan this year, were sold for $59m in total.

Intermodal, Lorentzen & Stemoco and Seasure Shipbroking all identified Chinese leasing house Minsheng Financial Leasing as the buyer of two 60,000 dwt ultramax bulkers Xing Xi Hai and Xing Shou Hai. The vessels were sold by Japan’s Itochu Group for $42m in total.

The tanker S&P market saw limited movement this week in great contrast to bulker sales.

Advanced Shipping & Trading, Intermodal and Lorentzen & Stemoco all listed the sale of two 2002-built VLCCs Eagle Virginia and Eagle Vermont. US firm Icon Capital sold the vessels to Chinese buyers for $25m each.

More than eight shipbroking houses reported that UAE-based Onex DMCC sold the 2000-built VLCC Zin Trader to Chinese buyers. The Japanese-built vessel has fetched a price of $21.7m.

The secondhand containership S&P market remains hot, according to Braemar ACM Shipbroking. There’s high demand for ships capable of providing relatively prompt charter free delivery continues with the market moving rapidly especially on post panamaxes.

Splash already reported this week that MSC has recently moved for up to eight secondhand boxships.

Braemar reported that Wan Hai Lines acquired the 2009-built 4,298 teu Harrier Hunter for a price of $21m, setting another benchmark in the baby-panamax market.

Additionally, Japanese owner Nagashiki Kisen sold its 2008-built 2,553 teu NSC Kingston to Southeast Asia-based buyers for a price in the region of $10m.

German owner Contships is also reported to have purchased the 2006-built 1,116 teu TCI Vijay from Indian owner TCI Seaways for an undisclosed price.

“Values on feeders are also appreciating with a number of modern geared 2,500 teu ships have also been committed on private terms well above the original ask,” Braemar said.

Jason Jiang

Jason is one of the most prolific writers on the diverse China shipping & logistics industry and his access to the major maritime players with business in China has proved an invaluable source of exclusives. Having been working at Asia Shipping Media since inception, Jason is the chief correspondent of Splash and associate editor of Maritime CEO magazine. Previously he had written for a host of titles including Supply Chain Asia, Cargo Facts and Air Cargo Week.
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