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100,000 TEU of new shipping capacity for 2014 has slipped into 2015

Mar 31, 2015
Drewry, the maritime information organisation has advised that some 100,000 TEU of new container ships scheduled for delivery in 2014 has slipped into 2015.

While this helped to narrow the gap between supply-demand last year it will only add to the supply pressure this year.  This includes to commissioning of the 19,000-teu CSCL Globe, the latest container ship in the world, which is unlikely to retain its top spot for long as new, even larger vessels make the short journey down the slipway. 

The move towards ever larger vessels makes sense for individual carriers as it lowers their slot costs, but it does present the wider industry with a problem of how to absorb the extra capacity. In the last 15 years the capacity of the world container fleet has ballooned from around five million TEU in 2000 to approaching 20 million today. 

The appetite for new ULCVs (Ultra Large Container Vessels) is making it much harder for carriers to match supply with demand as they diverged dramatically following an ordering frenzy in 2007-08, later compounded by the global financial crisis. 

Slippage in the delivery of vessels is not uncommon as ship owners and yards re-negotiate delivery terms, and the 100,000 TEU figure is lower than in recent years.  In fact the forecast figure for 2015 is around 250,000 however the tonnage still has to be delivered at some point and delays merely push the problem down the road. 

The scrapping of old ships along with further slippage of newbuilds into 2016 will lower the net addition to the fleet to around 1.35m TEU, but this would still represent the largest spike in annual capacity since 2007. Moreover, Drewry still sees the global fleet growth exceeding demand at 7.2% versus 5.3%.

 

More information from www.drewry.co.uk

Photo: CSCL Globe.

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