Chinese yards signed more new orders than their South Korean rivals in July— the first time since the beginning of 2015, as the world’s largest shipbuilding country in terms of orderbook size took the brunt of the global newbuilding contraction.
China’s shipbuilders recorded new orders of 2.5m dwt, against 1.8m dwt fetched by their Korean peers. Japanese yards meanwhile added 1.5m dwt onto their orderbook. Lloyd’s reports that Korean players had led newbuilding orders six months in a row between January and June, mainly with their overpowering strength in building large containerships and gas carriers, as the bulker market dipped in comparison.
However, their new orders in July dropped sharply by 74% year-on-year, or 158% compared to this June. Losses recently revealed in the second quarter results of the South Korea’s Big Three — Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering, Samsung Heavy Industries and Hyundai Heavy Industries — seems to have taken a toll on their capability to bank more contracts. The Chinese yards, by contrast, have shown a sign of recovery, fuelled by Beijing’s decision in June to extend the scrap-and-build subsidy for another two years to 2017.
Nearly half of the new tonnages in China last month were contributed to by eight new 13,500 teu containerships, which China Shipping Container Lines ordered at the subsidiary yards of China State Shipbuilding Co and China Shipbuilding Industry Co — the country’s two largest state-owned shipbuilding conglomerates.