Friday, March 30, 2012

Hellenic orders hit $1bn

Greeks continue to place newbuilding orders with bulk carriers holding the lion share of their newbuilding appetite, 62% of the total number of orders placed in the first three months of the year, Golden Destiny’s Annual Newbuilding Report shows.

Preliminary statistics data show that Greek owners, before the end of the first quarter of the year, have spent about $1 billion for 21 newbuilding contracts, 13 bulk carriers, 6 tankers and 2 gas tankers.

Overall, Greek newbuilding activity represents 7.4% of the total number of orders placed in January-March 2012, in contrast with Chinese players holding 5.3% for 15 orders in total.

Greek investors’ interest for the construction of newbuilding units remain intense in the bulk carrier segment, despite the fragile sentiment of dry market in the first quarter of the year, as the BDI hovered below the psychological barrier of 1,000 points.

However, foreign owners appear to be keener in the placement of more specialized units, LNG and offshore, which seem to be the healthiest segments in terms of growth opportunities for trade and vessel earnings. Offshore support vessels attracted 36% share of the total newbuilding activity versus 27% for bulk carriers and 17% for tankers.

During the first three months, January-March, owners have spent more than $15.6 billion for 283 newbuilding contracts, with the gas tanker segment being still in the spotlight from last year’s record activity and containers being out of the newbuilding scene.

Currently, new fuel efficient designs seem to be the key for shipyards winning some fresh orders in the already oversupplied segments, mainly bulk carriers and tankers. Overall, Greek newbuilding activity showed strong volumes of business from the beginning of 2010 till the first three quarters of 2011, with the placement of 250 orders in 2010 and 182 in 2011. The LNG segment attracted their interest from 2011 with the placement of 24 orders in contrast with only 2 orders during 2010.

Bulk carriers are still attracting most of their interest, 77 units ordered in 2011, with 2010 being the record year, 160 bulk carriers had been ordered from 28 in 2009. Apart from LNG units, intense newbuilding interest emerged also for boxship units with 46 contracts in 2011, from 17 in 2010.

Published : March 30, 2012

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