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OCEAN Alliance to upsize Transatlantic lane again

The OCEAN Alliance is upsizing its transatlantic service again by replacing four 8,500-10,000 TEU ships with four 11,000 to 14,000 TEU vessels.

COSCO Shipping Lines, CMA CGM and Evergreen Marine Corporation form the alliance.

On 9 December, the 14,000 TEU Tampa Triumph will become the largest vessel ever deployed in the North Europe – US East Coast trade when it replaces the 9,466 TEU Ever Lucky.

CMA CGM, meanwhile, will redeploy the 11,388 TEU sisters CMA CGM Columba and CMA CGM Cassiopeia to the loop to replace the 9,962 TEU CMA CGM Ganges and the 8,465 TEU CMA CGM Bianca.

These will join the 13,092 TEU sisters COSCO Harmony and COSCO Pride.

Even as freight rates on the Asia-North Europe and Transpacific routes are tanking, the Transatlantic market has held up, convincing the OCEAN Alliance to increase capacity into the Atlantic Basin.

On 23 December, COSCO will deploy the 13,092 TEU COSCO Faith on the TAT2 service, where it will join its aforementioned sisters. The ship will trade for COSCO’s sister carrier OOCL and replace the 8,501 TEU COSCO Malaysia.

At the end of the year, the nominal capacity of the TAT2 service will have increased to 12,675 TEU per week, compared to 8,500 TEU in September.

The upgraded service currently turns in six weeks with calls at Southampton, Antwerp, Rotterdam, Bremerhaven, Le Havre, New York, Norfolk, Savannah, Charleston, Southampton.

Forward schedules suggest that the OCEAN Alliance will increase the round trip to eight weeks from January. This will help enable the longer port stays of the bigger ships, while it will further reduce sailing speeds.

Source: Container News


COSCO delays investment in Hamburg terminal

COSCO Shipping Ports, the port division of China’s COSCO group, is delaying the expected completion of its proposed acquisition of a 35% stake in Hamburger Hafen und Logistik (HHLA)’s Container Terminal Tollerort (CTT) to year-end.

CTT is one of HHLA’s three container terminals in Hamburg, Germany and is now the hub of COSCO Shipping Lines’ European services. COSCO Shipping Ports made a bid to invest in CTT on 21 September 2021.

The pushing back of the expected date of completing the acquisition follows concerns raised by Germany’s Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology about the potential increased Chinese government’s influence in Europe.

COSCO Shipping Port’s move to acquire Greece’s Piraeus port in 2009, during the eurozone crisis, was also contentious.

German Vice-Chancellor and Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Action Robert Habeck was quoted by Reuters this month as saying that trade is “a new instrument of power”. Habeck signaled that he objected to COSCO Shipping Port investing in CTT, citing concerns about other Chinese takeovers in other industries.

In August, Chinese container manufacturer CIMC attempted to acquire Maersk Container Industry mixed by the US Department of Justice.

In a filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on 22 September, COSCO Shipping Ports said that the CTT acquisition is subject to all government and regulatory approvals being granted.

Prior to this development, HHLA and Hamburg mayor gave the go-ahead for the transaction.

Source: Container News


COSCO Shipping eyeing methanol for new round of ship orders

More newbuildings might be in the pipeline for COSCO Shipping Lines, as the fourth liner operator is thinking of adding 32 container ships that are already under construction.

The Chinese state-controlled shipping giant is said to be ordering six 23,000 TEU vessels and nine 15,000 TEU ships at its sister yard, Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry Yangzhou, which is currently building ten 16,000 TEU ships for the liner operator.

The 23,000 TEU ships will be dual-fuelled with methanol, while the 15,000 TEU vessels will be methanol-ready; the total contract value is estimated to be at least US$3 billion.

COSCO Shipping, including OOCL, has 32 ships of around 580,000 TEU on order at affiliated ship builders, and these will be delivered from 2023 to 2025.

The company’s parent, COSCO Ship Holding, said in its first half report that as the world moves towards achieving zero carbon emissions in 2050, green and low-carbon development has become the common direction of global economic and social development.

Due to this, COSCO Ship Holding is developing innovative technologies in green energy, low carbon and emission reduction, and accelerated the green and low-carbon development of the fleet and ports.

“The group will continue to improve the sustainable development framework, accelerate the building of green and low-carbon fleet and…promote application of renewable energy in the port and shipping logistics industries,” said COSCO Ship Holding.

The group also acknowledged challenges to its earnings as freight rates continue their downward trajectory, leading to talk that the party for liner operators is over.

The group said, “With the gradual return of the supply chain to normal, the group will focus on strengthening the management and control of major operating cost items such as empty container transportation, fuel costs, and cargo costs, strictly implement cost control, and improve its ability to respond to market changes and inflationary pressures”.

Source: Container News


COSCO launches electric container ship project

COSCO Shipping has unveiled plans for two 700 TEU electric container vessels, which are expected to operate on the Yangtze River mainline.

Earlier in March, the Chinese shipping company held a cloud-based project signing ceremony for its two electric boxships.

On 18 March, 51 enterprises and institutions were virtually connected to witness the signing of the 700 TEU electric container vessel building agreement and ship leasing agreement between COSCO Shipping Development, COSCO Shipping Heavy Industry Yangzhou and Shanghai PANASIA Shipping respectively.

The signing parties will jointly promote the green zero-carbon transformation of shipping on the Yangtze River, according to a statement.

“The successful development of the new 700 TEU electric container vessel and the signing of the project agreements are important steps taken by COSCO Shipping to implement the 14th  Five-Year Plan, practice the strategy of green development and promote the high-quality development of the enterprise,” said COSCO in a statement.

Source: Container News


COSCO opens new Wuhan terminal

COSCO Shipping Ports (CSP) has announced the launch of the operation of Wuhan Yangluo International Port Water-Rail Intermodal Container Transport Project (CSP Wuhan Terminal) on 1 August.

COSCO opens new Wuhan terminalCOSCO opens new Wuhan terminalOn the day of the event, the new “COSCO SHIPPING Blue” cranes lined up and the 1,140TEU vessel Han Hai No.2 docked at No. 3 berth in the terminal operation area, fully loaded with cargo, while driverless container vehicle (DCV) made a debut. Additionally, the first batch of containers assembled in the terminal railway operation area.

In the railway operation area of the terminal, a freight train with 50 containers headed to destination from the “Wuhan Port Station”, where water transportation and railway transportation were seamlessly connected. The whole process was completed in one go, according to a statement, as the port became automated and intelligent from horizontal transport to vertical loading and unloading.

The integrated layout of port and rail station, one-stop transportation, customs inspection and information sharing at the same yard developed by the project also demonstrated that CSP Wuhan Terminal has opened a new chapter of “water-rail intermodal transport” along the Yangtze River, which has built a modern logistics hub for the collection and distribution of containers, making it more determined and capable of transforming and upgrading the ports along the Yangtze River towards smart and green new ports, according to a CSP announcement.

Xu Lirong, Party Secretary and Chairman of China COSCO SHIPPING Corporation, said that the project is a major achievement of the deepening of strategic cooperation between Wuhan City, Hubei Province and COSCO SHIPPING Group and is also a major move of the Group to deepen the “Yangtze River Strategy”.

“We will increase the investment in port and shipping logistics resources in Hubei Province and Wuhan City, cooperate with Hubei Port Group, SIPG and other partners to help Wuhan build a central hub and regional shipping center, and contribute to accelerating to build our country as a strong power in maritime and shipping fields,” added Xu Lirong.

Source: Container News