The newbuilding market has strengthened considerably over the course of the past week. In its latest weekly report, shipbroker Allied Shipbroking commented that “March finished with a strong show for new contracting, with 22 firm orders coming to light last week. Although this number is slightly lower than the week before, if all options are declared, last week will provide a greater boost to the orderbook than the week prior. Considering the slew of container deliveries expected, we unsurprisingly had another week without new orders. Four more VLGCs have been added to the orderbook, in what has become a regular occurrence over the past year. With a sharp decline in earnings witnessed last week, the confidence with which owners invest in the sector could be knocked off balance in the near term, although long term fundamentals are still broadly viewed as positive. The extended period of tanker earnings has allowed newbuilding prices to hold their ground not far from the highs seen last year, with MR prices actually rising due to an anticipated squeeze due to low numbers of scheduled deliveries, limited newbuilding slots and a fair number of overage vessels, following limited scrapping activity”.
In a similar note, shipbroker Banchero Costa added that “very strong activity reported during the week. In the bulker market, Cosco Shipping ordered 20 x open hatch, wood pulp carrier, 85,000 dwt priced around $50 mln each. Chengxi Shipyard will built 10 units, Shanhuaiguan and Cosco Dalian shipyards 5 each. Deliveries will begin in March 2025 and all the vessels will be delivered within 2027. Furthermore, Chengxi Shipyard has been awarded an order of 2 x 82,000 dwt Kamsarmaxes by Greek buyer Neda Maritime Agency for a price around $33.5 mln each with delivery in 2026. Cosco Yangzhou received an order for 2 x 210,000 dwt VLOCs from Greek buyer Cardiff Marine, the price reported was $64 mln apiece, deliveriesin 2025.
The Chinese shipyard J.N.H. was chosen by European buyers for the construction of 4 x 62,000 dwt Ultramax units while Nantong COSCO KHI was awarded 2 x 64,000 dwt by Japanese Buyers. The Canadian Algoma Central Corp placed an order for 4 x 77,260 dwt self unloading, methanol ready bulkers at the Yangzijiang Shipbuilding. In the tanker sector, Eastern Pacific ordered 2 x 115,000 dwt LR2 product carriers at Shanghai Waigaoqiao with delivery 2025. Wuchang has received an order for 4 x 18,500 dwt by Athenian Tankers tankers, price in the region of $30 mln apiece, deliveries in 2025. Capital Gas of Greece added 2 x 174,000 cbm at Hyundai Samho for a top price of $259.5 mln each. The Kuwait company AMPTC booked 2 x 91,000 cbm from Hyundai, the price reported was $103.6 mln each and deliveries in 2026”.
Meanwhile, in the S&P market, Allied said that ‘the secondhand sales market remained relatively stable week-on -week, with minimal changes in both the dry bulk and tanker markets. In the dry bulk sector, the number of transactions barely changed, with a drop in the Panamaxes being countered by an equal increase in the Handysize segment. With dry bulk rates gradually stabilizing, buying appetite in the sector remains steady. Last week’s vintage of vessels sold increased to 14 years, slightly higher than the 12-month average noted. The tanker market remained steady too, with buying appetite refocusing in the product tankers sector, after a small plunge last week. The vessels changing hands also averaged at 14 years of age, in line with the average of the last year”.
Banchero Costa added that “there was quite an appetite for eco type and modern dry bulk tonnage, prices were on the rise and we noticed more and more competition on the tonnage proposed for sale. Activity remains lively also for more vintage units. Norden kept on purchasing eco type Capesizes and agreed to pay region $32/32.5 mln each for the STAR BOREALIS & STAR POLARIS 180,000 dwt built 2011 Hanjin Subic (eco type / bwts / scrubber). Offers were called last week for a few eco type Ultramax: the chinese controlled ARIES CONFIDENCE & TAURUS CONFIDENCE 63,000 dwt built 2018 New Dayang saw a large number of parties indicating and offering with price up to/over $27 mln. We understand the Sellers are calling for a 2nd round of offers to the top bidders. The SUN 64,000 dwt built 2013 Jinling (eco type / bwts) was under negotiation last week, allegedly she is reported committed region $23.5 mln.
In the Handy sector the DAIWAN CHAMPION 34,000 dwt built 2015 Namura (eco type / bwts) was rumored sold for region $19.8 mln basis TC attached (details not available) and the MAESTRO PEARL 37,000 dwt built 2015 Saiki (open hatch boxed shaped / bwts / eco type) was sold to Turkish Buyer Devbulk at level close to $22 mln. The Tanker market remained strong. An interesting rumour (yet to be confirmed) came up at the end of the week with 2 x 2017 MR built at GSI (ME Engine, SS/DD passed & BWTS fitted), IMO 2 (18 tanks) WISBY ATLANTIC & WISBY PACIFIC which were rumoured committed region $43.5 mln each. Vitol sold 2 x MR sister vessels ELANDRA CORALLO & ELANDRA BLU around 50,000 dwt built 2008 SPP for region $22 mln each whilst the Handy tanker NORVIKEN 38,000 dwt built 2010 Hyundai Mipo was reported sold for around $22 mln to Trafigura”, the shipbroker concluded.
Nikos Roussanoglou, Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide