Clarkson, S
Hot Keywords
2012-03-20 09:20:36

S & P

The main news in the market this week is of course the reports surrounding Sanko Steamship. The Japanese operator is understood to be in discussions with owners in the hope of deferring and/or reducing hire payments in an effort to improve it’s balance sheet. We have seen a very active sales policy being adopted by the company in the past 12 to 24 months with the disposal of 20 or so vessels. There is understandably considerable concern regarding the knock on effect Sanko’s troubles may have on a variety of Japanese and ‘foreign’ owners.

In the Panamax sector, two sales reported this week; the M/V SUMMER FORTUNE (69,034 dwt 1997 blt Imabari) sold to Indonesian buyers for region US$ 11m, while the 8 year older M/V SILVER MEI (68,676 dwt 1989 blt Sasebo) at US$ 6.8m to undisclosed buyers.

The box-hold open type M/V SANKO MINERAL (50,757 dwt 2008 blt Oshima) reported sold to Greek buyers at region US$ 21.5m. The Handymax M/V STAR SEA RAINBOW (42,717 dwt 1998 blt IHI) is sold for US$ 11.8m to Greek buyers while the Woodchip carrier M/V GRANDIOSA (42,596 dwt 1986 blt Oshima) reported sold for US$ 3m at auction in Romania where she has been lying for more than a year.

Other sale in Handysize sector include the M/V CHIOS LIBERTY (38,891 dwt 1984 blt IHI) at US$ 3.25m with special survey due and a sister M/V WARRIOR (38,888 dwt 1984 blt IHI) at US$ 3.2m. M/V EXPLORIUS (26,536 dwt 1985 blt Kanasashi) to Syrian buyers at US$ 4.1m; M/V ARABELLA (25,758 dwt 1986 blt Imabari) to Turkish buyers at US$ 3.8m and M/V ALAM GULA (23,418 dwt 1985 blt Uwajima) at US$ 3.15m “as is” basis. 

Whilst the dearth of attractively priced tankers continues to be the major obstacle to any upturn in activity it has still been refreshing to note a slightly more upbeat mood to Owners as the tonnage lists tighten and rates respond accordingly. To be fair this is more so for the crude than the clean sectors but then the larger tanker segments have suffered more than most over the past twelve months and so to see positivity emanating from them is both refreshing and welcome no matter how long it may last. With a summer period imminent it would be naïve to suggest that we are out of the woods especially in light of announcements made this week which remind us that these are still challenging times ahead.

However the fact that the market is still capable of responding so positively to restricted tonnage supply should be reason for us all to feel just that little bit more positive about things going forward. We can report the sale of the MR tanker M/T EBONY (46,938 Dwt 2004 blt 3Maj) - which has been sold on subjects to South American interests at US$ 21.5m and is a little firmer than some may have expected. 

The epoxy coated M/T TAMBOV (40,727 dwt 1996 blt Brodosplit) has obtained US$ 9.8 m and the Tanker Pacific’s M/T PACIFIC RUBY (46,850 dwt 1994 blt Halla) has obtained US$ 7.5m. 

 

NEWBUILDING 

As we have mentioned in recent weeks, the market has been somewhat subdued this week again and a much lower number of contracts being signed than twelve month ago.

The interesting dynamic we are starting to see this year though is that of the Japanese Yards coming more and more to the fore, not only in terms of design, but also now looking much more competitive commercially. No doubt this week’s news of the Yen dropping to its weakest level against the Dollar in more than 11 months, hitting 84.18 Yen to the Dollar in Asian trade yesterday, will no doubt be of some relief in the short term to the beleaguered Japanese Yards, especially those with berths open in the second half on next year! With the Yen spending most of the second half of last year well below the 80 mark and as such the Yards somewhat holding off their commercial marketing as long as they can, they will no doubt be pleased with the Bank of Japan’s monetary policy to tackle deflation to allow them to take less of a loss when accepting USD denominated contracts today.

The Japanese designs seem to be market leading, especially on the dry bulk side of the business and with Yards becoming more and more willing to open up to foreign owners, rather than the previous insular nature of just dealing with their existing customer or domestic owners. We expect in the coming weeks there will remain more and more discussions taking place and no doubt firm business being concluded, especially as some of these new design concepts offer more than a 30% saving on the current vessels on the water. With fuel consumption one of the biggest concerns of the owners and operators going forward, this massively improved efficiency, if on acceptable commercial terms from the yards will certainly be the good for our market going forward.

In terms of reported business, OSX Acu in Brazil are reported to have taken an order from Clients of Kingfish Do Brasil Navegaco S/A for eleven 45,000 dwt product tankers, backed by Brazilian finance for charter to Petrobras. The Order is reportedly worth some USD 732 Mill, with the Vessels delivering from 2014-2017. Finally the smaller products sector the Turkmenistan Owners “Turkmen Maritime and River Lines” have ordered a singular 7,100 dwt prod/chem tanker with high ice class. Whilst it is understood the Vessel will be delivered in 2015, we are unsure as yet as to the price.

2012-03-13 09:12:27

S & P 

An active week with few sales to be reported in both the Dry and Wet S+P sectors.

Two sale for the Panamaxes; the German-owned M/V PAIUTE (70,293 dwt 1995 blt Sanoyas) has been sold on subjects for US$ 10.5m to undisclosed buyers while the craned Panamax, NYK’s M/V SAGARKIRAN (73,350 dwt 1995 blt Hyundai) reported sold at US$ 9.8m to Indian buyers.

Market rumours suggest that one of the supramax bulkers currently in the market, namely M/V LIBRE (52,510 dwt 2001 blt Kanasashi) has been committed at US$ 14.75m to Bangladeshi buyers.

In the handies, the M/V SANTA PACIFICA (28,520 dwt 2000 blt Imabari) reported sold to Turkish buyers for around US$ 10.75m while the 6 year older sister vessel the M/V OCEAN ID (28,429 dwt 1994 blt Imabari) sold at US$ 7.85m with drydocking freshly passed in February. The older M/V SIAM JADE (27,652 dwt 1986 blt Mitsubishi) is gone to Chinese interests for US$ 3.1m.

Finally, the forest products carrier M/V FOREST CREATOR (49,865 dwt 1996 blt Imabari) has been sold for US$ 7.3m to Chinese interests.

A few sales to report in the Tanker S+P market.

The Suezmax M/T NAVIGA (150,841 dwt 1998 blt NKK) has been committed on subjects to Indonesian buyers at US$ 16m.

Greek buyers have purchased the M/T MILLENNIUM EXPLORER (102,741 dwt 1999 blt Namura) for a low US$ 10.9m (zinc coating, uncoiled and without a centerline bulkhead). On another sale Avin Oil have purchased Tankerska Plovidba’s M/T PETAR ZRINSKI (101,605 dwt 1994 blt Brodosplit) at US$ 8.75m.

In a sale conducted by the builder, MR product carrier M/T TORM ANABEL (52,300 dwt 2011 blt Guangzhou) was sold to a Chinese leasing company for US$ 32m against a 7 year bareboat to Parakou Shipping, Hong Kong at a rate around US$ 9,000 per day. We also understand that the M/T TORM LANA (52,941 dwt 2009 blt Guangzhou) has been sold by Torm to Greek buyers at a price in the region of US$ 27.5m.


NEWBUILDING  

As week ten of 2012 draws to a close, the Newbuilding market remains relatively subdued. Taking a direct comparison and looking at the number of contracts placed in the first 2 months of 2011 against the same period for 2012 ¨C we can note that 2012 has only produced around 36% of volume, so a total of 112 orders against 310 for the same period in 2011.

However it is not necessarily total doom and gloom for shipyards and there is still time for volume to pick up and 2012 to start to show signs of growth. With further reports of new business being concluded again this week, there is a continual level of activity in the market ¨C albeit at lesser volume to 2011 so far.

The challenge for Shipyards will come from the continued tightening of the debt markets and an uncertain macro economic environment making high capital investment decisions increasingly challenging. 2011 had provided for significant volumes of high value LNG and Offshore ordering, which was instrumental in boosting turnover considerably for shipyards. As to whether 2012 will produce the same opportunities remains to be seen and with concerns over the extent to which this demand has now been saturated, coupled with a challenging financial climate, it will certainly be an arduous proposition to replicate.

The Japanese yards also continue to remain under pressure against a weakened demand story for Dry. However with a focus on efficient designs and the Yen depreciating by over 6% against the Dollar over the past month - there is the potential for some relief here and investment from the market against promising design work hold potential - nevertheless the bid offer spread remains wide and there is some way to go before levels are enticing enough to trigger any real spike in interest.

Having said that - with a number of enquiries still under discussion and the market continuing to tick over, 2Q 2012 will be a key moment in defining how the landscape of the remainder of the year will look from a Newbuilding perspective…

In terms of reported business; In Dry, China Navigation are reported to be close to concluding an order at Chengxi Shipyard for 4 firm 39,000dwt Handysize bulk carriers. These are provisionally scheduled to deliver from end 2013 onwards and we understand includes options for up to 6 additional vessels and is at a price of circa USD 23 Mill per vessel.

In Tankers, STX are reported to have won an order from clients of European Navigation for 1 x 155,000dwt Shuttle Tanker, scheduled for delivery in 2015, which we understand is a declared option from their previous order at the yard. Meanwhile we understand that clients of Densa Shipping have placed an order at HHI for a pair of 106K Aframax Tankers with both of these vessels due to deliver in 2H 2013.

In Gas, Solvang are understood to have declared their optional VLGC of 84,000cbm, which will be built at Hyundai Heavy Industries and is a follow on to their initial order placed in June last year. We understand this vessel is provisionally scheduled to deliver at the end of 2013. Pricing has not been disclosed.

Finally, Flensburher are reported to have won an order from Rolldock for a pair of Heavy lift vessels. These are provisionally scheduled to deliver in 1H 2014 and are understood to be multi function LoLo/Ro-Ro/Flo-Flo vessels.

 

2012-03-06 09:12:38

S & P 

Undisclosed buyers are understood to have committed M/V SANKO FRONTIER (74,900 dwt 2011 blt Sasebo) at region excess US$ 29m. We understand that the Vessel had received a number of offers from both European and Far Eastern Buyers.

The Japanese controlled handysize M/V LUPINUS (31,700 dwt 2005 blt Saiki) which has been reported sold for a second time this week at a price region US$ 16.25m to Greek buyers. The vessel was initially committed last week to Turkish interests at xs US$ 17m, but the deal failed when Buyers Board of Directors approval was declined.

After the activity of last week in the Tanker S&P market where we saw a number of sales transacted, it has been a relatively quiet last seven days. The only sale to report is that of the older Aframax M/T FRANKOPAN (101,605 dwt 1995 blt Croatia) which reported sold to Chilean interests at US$ 9.25m.

 

DEMOLITION 

There remains plenty of activity in the market place and price levels have stabilized or in some cases and surprisingly, improved slightly.

India, the bedrock of the industry for many months now, continue to be the major players. Some 52 vessels had arrived to the anchorage for resale into Alang in February, however many we understand, remain unsold to the breakers or are suffering attempted renegotiations. These problems are now rarely highlighted in the market unlike previous years, which really is a credit to the cash intermediaries who really have brought some exemplary work ethics into the business over recent years, particularly when they are placing deposits into Owners accounts and have the added pressure of some unethical efforts imposed on them by the breakers.

Despite a settled local currency and stable domestic steel market in India, no reasonable price increases are evident due to the large supply of tonnage to the area and some are pleasantly surprised that we have not seen any negative correction in rates. However, the next couple of weeks may see inquiry and activity from India wane whilst the date for the budget draws closer (16th March) as buyers may prefer to hold back from risking numbers pre-budget for later deliveries.

Bangladesh still remains cautious as whilst vessels are being beached, it is reported that there remains lengthy delays completing inward custom formalities and breakers continue to face difficulties opening Letters of Credit. It is hoped that in the future, everything could return to how they used to be, free of any delays or financial issues, to ease the pressure on their counterparts in India.

 

NEWBUILDING  

With further Holidays in the Far East this week - the market has been a little more subdued this week - however with continuing reports of new business being concluded there is arguably enough opportunity present to keep things interesting.

The burning issue in the market continues to centre around efficiency - and with shipyards and owners continually placing an increased emphasis on improvements in efficiency of ship design, against the backdrop of a bullish outlook for Bunker pricing, there is no doubt that this will continue to be a key factor taken into consideration for those contemplating newbuilding. With substantial efficiency improvements now being offered across the entire spectrum of asset classes - facilitate by improvements in engine designs, energy saving devices and optimised hull forms, there is certainly an argument for buyers to take advantage of new technology and competitive pricing.

This has arguably triggered some activity for both the Dry and Wet sectors so far this year - however - despite improved designs also being offered in the container sector, we have only seen one newbuilding deal concluded so far this year in this sector! This was for a sole 4,800 TEU container vessel at CSC’s Jinling Shipyard and saw a some ten per cent drop in pricing from when the last vessels were contracted of this size in China in June last year.

The small to mid container sector of say 2-5,000 TEU enjoys a very sparse orderbook, especially in terms of a percentage against the Vessels already in the fleet and so with the greater efficiencies these various new designs offer, we do not believe it will be long before we start seeing some more contracts being inked. The interesting thing will be seeing if the Operators will be ordering for their own account, or if it will be Beneficial Owners ordering either on speculation or against long term charter contracts. The even more interesting point for consideration in the current challenging debt climate and typically inability today of the KG’s to support is demand for what was once their bread and butter tonnage, is that will we see a greater number of non-German buyers taking advantage and ordering. In the end, it remains to be seen where the pricing will go today for these container designs, with the Yards, especially in China so very keen for orders of this size at the moment and certainly a story to follow over the upcoming months.

In terms of reported business; In Dry, Clients of “Lomar” have placed an order with COSCO Shipyard for 2+2+2 x 64,000dwt Supramax bulk carriers which will be built at their Zhoushan facility. Although specific pricing has not been disclosed, the firm vessels are understood to be scheduled to deliver in 1Q/2Q 2014 respectively. Meanwhile Clients of “Helikon Shipping” are understood to have placed an order for one further 57K bulker at STX Dalian, with this latest unit due for delivery in 2Q 2014. This will take their total orderbook at the Chinese Yard to five units.

In Tankers, KOTC are reported to have signed 4 x 46,500dwt Product/Chemical Tankers at Hyundai Mipo. These are understood to be scheduled for delivery in 4Q 2013 and throughout 2014 and have been reported to have been signed at a price of circa USD 63 Mill per vessel, but it is understood to be of a bespoke design. STX Offshore & Shipbuilding meanwhile, has reportedly booked a 155,000 dwt shuttle tanker with interests of “European Navigation” for delivery in 2014.

In Gas, Golar LNG are reported to have placed yet further orders at Samsung, ordering another two x 160,000 CBM LNG carriers. The vessel pricing is reported to stand at circa USD 200 Mill per unit and the deliveries are scheduled in 2Q 2014 and 2015 respectively.

Finally in other sectors, Meyer Werft have won a new order from Royal Caribbean Cruises for a 4,100 berth Cruiseship. This vessel in understood to be the declared optional unit, following their similar order placed last year and will be delivered to the buyer 2015. Pricing is believed to lie at around Euros 700 Mill.

2012-02-29 09:32:50

S& P 

M/V CLIPPER MERCURY (27,001 dwt 2004 blt New Century) and her 2002blt sister vessel M/V CLIPPER MORNING have been sold for region US$ 23m en bloc to undisclosed buyers.

The semi box type M/V ALADDIN RAINBOW (32,260 dwt 1999 blt Kanda S.B.) reported sold to Greek buyers for a price in the region of US$ 10.5m. Turkish interests are reported to have purchasedM/V DIAMOND GLORY (28,515 dwt 1997 blt Tsuneishi Zosen) for US$ 9.2m, the vessel has her SS/DD due in August 2012 while the logs fitted M/V KEN ANN MARU (32,115 dwt 1997 blt Onomichiwhich has SS/DD due in July 2012 has been sold at around US$ 9.4m.

The Tanker S&P market is quite active this week with a number of sales of modern tonnage to report.

Suezmax M/T MONTE GRANADA (150,581 dwt 2004 blt Universal) has been sold to Tanker Pacific at US$ 33.7 million a level which slightly surpassed market expectations as in an earlier effort to sell the vessel buyers had been unwilling to pay above US$ 30m. In the Handysize sector, the product carrier M/T STI CONQUEROR (40,158 dwt 2005 blt Shina) and her two older sister vessels M/T STI MATADOR and M/T STI GLADIATOR (40,081 dwt, Built 2003) reported sold for US$ 21m, US$ 16.2m and US$ 16.2m respectively to undisclosed buyers. Finally, The fully stainless M/T OAK GALAXY (19,997 dwt 2005 blt Shin Kurushima) has been purchased by Wilmar International, Singapore for US$ 19m.

 

DEMOLITION 

A stable market is the best way to describe the current situation. It is evident that Buyers remain interested to acquire units, however, we have turned the tide and they are no longer willing to accept Owners demands. With the continuing supply still exceeding actual demand, Buyers are now able to ‘pick and choose’ their preferred candidates.

We see evidence of this changed attitude in the reported sales this week. Several units that have been sold this week have been circulating for quite some time. Owners had been pushing to achieve the high numbers seen in previous months, but were forced to come to the realization that the market was not there to support such prices. The market has not bounced back to the previous highs and subsequently Owners have had to sell their units at the new, reduced rates.

Chinese rates have been stuttering along this week as the domestic market saw steel prices falling daily. As a result it has proved difficult to achieve positive offers. This is further affected by local owners’ tonnage being paraded into the local market.

Elsewhere, Indian breakers continue to show their eagerness to acquire new tonnage, although it is worth highlighting that most breakers are not offering at particularly aggressive rates.

 

NEWBUILDING  

The Newbuilding market continues to maintain a relatively healthy level of activity, with further reports of new business being concluded across Dry, Tanker and Gas segments of the market.

In Korea - they Big 3 continue to place an emphasis on Offshore and LNG, veering away from a focus on conventional tonnage and leaving this segment of the market open to the Mid-Sized yards, who are now competing hard for the remaining pockets of enquiry that exist. Such requirements continue to be design led and efficiency remains a critical consideration for buyers in what is remains, in broad terms, a tight trading environment.

In China, appetite for new business from the State and Private sectors shows no sign of relenting ¨C and pressure continues to mount against what is becoming an ever more imminent exposure, in terms of vacant 2H 2013 capacity. There are moves to increase the diversification of existing product mixes and step away from a pure dependence on Dry ¨C however ¨C it remains clear that China remains most competitive on the sector on which it has built its market position ¨C and with time and money invested into the advancement of the full spectrum of Dry designs they remain by far the most compelling commercial avenue in the market.

Japan also continues to warm up and with further reports of business being concluded ¨C we may well see the Japanese push a little harder on Dry as the year evolves.

In terms of reported business; In Tankers, Scorpio Tankers are reported to have ordered a further 1 x 52K MR tanker at Hyundai Mipo, which brings the total number units they have contracted in the past year to 7. This latest unit is expected to deliver in 2Q 2013 and is reported to have been signed at a price of USD 36 Mill. In Dry, Imabari Shipyard are reported to have won an order for a pair of 80,000dwt Kamsarmax newbuildings from one undisclosed owner. Though the price of these units remains unknown, it is understood these vessels will deliver in the second half of 2014. Finally, Dryships have announced that they have ordered a series of 4 x ICE 1A 75.9K Panamax bulkers at an established shipyard in China. . As per their announcement, this contract is understood to have been placed at the yard towards the end of last year and we understand has been placed at Rongsheng H.I. These vessels are provisionally scheduled to deliver from 1H 2014 onwards

2012-02-21 09:27:11

S & P 

A freshly completed mini Cape the M/V INCE ISTANBUL (106,600 dwt 2011 blt STX Dalian) reported sold US$ 32m for prompt delivery from the shipyard to undisclosed buyers.

The modern handy M/V LUPINUS (31,700 dwt 2005 blt Saiki) reported sold to Greek buyers for US$ 16.9m.

The M/V ACE DRAGON (24,280 dwt 1997 blt Hakodate) has been concluded at region US$ 8m with special survey passed 11/2011.

Following the sale of their geared Panamax M/V B INDONESIA (70,424 dwt 1990 blt Hyundai H.I.) at the end of last year for US$ 7.9m to Chinese Buyers, Italian Owners have now disposed the sister vessel M/V B ASIA (70,424 dwt 1990 blt Hyundai H.I. 1990) to Hong Kong based buyers at US$ 6.5m. Singaporean interests are rumoured to have purchased Japanese controlled handy bulker M/V BALTIC FRONTIER (27,293 dwt 1992 blt Minami Nippon) for a softer price in the region of US$ 5.6m; the vessel will be delivered with her SS/DD due promptly.

A quiet week in the Tanker Sale and Purchase market, and aside from the throng of the rumour mill there is very little to report in terms of sales on any of the tanker markets this week.

Indonesian have purchased the vintage Aframax M/T DALMACIJA (96,168 dwt 1996 blt Samsung) for US$ 9.9m.

 

DEMOLITION 

A slight spike in rates in the earlier part of the week from the waterfront in Alang, India failed to ignite any encouragement amongst the cash intermediary buyers as the majority of these still have a vast amount of tonnage in hand that they continue to try to resell to the breakers. With the supply now far outweighing the demand locally, obtaining an offer for new tonnage from a cash buyer is proving rather difficult.

Fortunately, the volume of new market tonnage has slowed somewhat this week, compared to the ‘manic’ weeks recently seen, and thus may assist the cash buyers to dispose of tonnage in hand. However, some are now predicting a fall in rates again in the future weeks which will not help confidence when it comes to the cash buyers offering for any new tonnage.

Buyers remain apprehensive where Bangladesh is concerned. Continuing reports suggest that cash buyers are still experiencing lengthy delays for local custom formalities and financial implications for tonnage arriving for delivery. This uncertainty continues to hamper the market confidence and proves to their counterparts elsewhere in the Sub. Continent that competition is not aggressive despite the Bangladesh’s recent re-opening.

 

NEWBUILDING  

This week has seen somewhat of a resurgence in activity in the Newbuilding market with reports of new business being concluded across a variety of sectors. Whilst new enquiry in the beginning parts of the year was somewhat tentative, these latest orders do help to highlight that interest is beginning to grow again as we proceed further into 2012.

Newbuilding pricing has continued to soften and with the charter market continuing to look like it will remain somewhat challenging in the short term, owners are increasingly looking towards the future. As was witnessed throughout 2011 and in the early stages of 2012, many of the shipyards have focused their efforts in improving the efficiency of their designs and have made significant inroads to improving on their fuel oil consumption figures.

Bunker pricing has historically been closely correlated to that of Crude Oil and with the potential for this to rise further on the back of any further growth in oil demand, or with simple price shocks in the market, the importance of these design improvements and the subsequent savings over current design on the water, cannot be understated. It will be interesting to see which owners over the coming months look to take advantage of the perceived oversupply of capacity in the market, to place orders and therefore take advantage of these potential future savings on fuel.

In terms of reported business; In LNG, it has been reported that Golar have once again made a move in the market and contracted 2 option 2 x 162,000CBM LNG carriers with Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries. These vessels are preliminarily scheduled to deliver from 2Q 2014 onwards and are reported to have been signed at a price of circa USD 200 Mill per vessel. Meanwhile, HHI have also disclosed that they have won a further order for a 2 units of 162,000cbm LNG Carriers from Dynacom Tankers, though deliveries and pricing remains undisclosed.

In Dry meanwhile, U-Ming are reported to have returned to Shanghai Waigaquaio for a series of 4 option 6 x 186,000dwt Capesize Bulkers. This order has been reportedly signed at a level of just under USD 50 Mill per vessel with deliveries due to begin from early 2014 onwards.

Finally, in tankers, Navios have announced that they have signed an order at an undisclosed Korean Shipyard for a series of 3 x MR Product Tankers. A total Price of USD 106.5 Mill has been disclosed for this deal and deliveries are scheduled to begin from 2Q 2014 and in consecutive periods thereafter.

 

2012-02-14 09:12:45

S & P 

It’s been a quiet week in terms of concluded sales, with little to report. Sentiment across the sector remains low with most Buyers who have the necessary funds in place still opting to sit on the side lines in the hope that prices fall further.

The only real activity to report has been in the Handy and Handymax sectors.

Korean shipyard 21st Century have managed to dispose of the last of their cancelled handysize bulkers. Undisclosed buyers have purchased Hull 1004 namely, M/v POSEIDON (34,000 dwt 2012 blt 21C Shipbuilding) for a price rumoured to be US$ 22m. As a comparison, back in September/October last year Clients of Transman, Greece purchased a sister ship at region US$ 25-26m.

Precious Shipping have purchased two sister vessels of M/V GOOD PILGRIMS (29,400 dwt 2009

blt Hindustan) which was reported two weeks ago. No price has been reported for the new acquisitions, M/V GOOD PRINCESS and M/V GOOD PACIFIC (both 2008) but it can¡¯t be far from the US$ 17.7m agreed for the initial acquisition.

Two older units have managed to find further trading buyers this week. M/V AFRICAN ZEBRA (38,623 dwt 1985 blt CSBC) has been sold to undisclosed buyers for US$ 4.15m and M/V MAGIC FORTIS (42,512 dwt 1985 blt Mitsui) is understood to have changed hands for region US$ 4m.

A quiet week in the Tanker Sale and Purchase market, which aside from a few inspections, has seen very little activity in the modern sectors.

Chemical carrier IMO II M/T SELENDANG PERMATA (45,974 dwt 1997 blt Dalian) has been sold for region US$ 8.5m with drydocking due next month while the pressurised LPG carrier “ORIENTAL OKI” (4,919 cbm 2006 blt Shitanoe) has been concluded at US$ 15m.

 

DEMOLITION 

As we anticipated last week, the ‘peak’ has indeed been reached as the sheer volume of tonnage working its way into the market has completely changed breakers sentiment and mood. The market has become saturated with tonnage and with the appetite seemingly complete on the waterfront in Alang, the Indian breakers can now afford to be choosy over which tonnage they bid for, creating a big problem for Owners with new tonnage to sell, and cash intermediaries alike who hold tonnage in hand from previous acquisitions.

Market rates this week from the Indian sub-Continent breakers fell by some USD 15-20 per ldt resulting in many Owners with tonnage under negotiation to chase the market down to a level that cash buyers were comfortable to purchase at. This, as previously experienced, makes the market a precarious one, and the preference of many cash buyers is to temporise until they dispose of the large quantity of units already in hand, unless of course, owners are willing to consider the new revised price levels.

Confidence in the Bangladeshi market remains unsure still and for the time being, we cannot expect any major purchasing activity from these breakers to compete with their counterparts from India. Some units there are now being beached, although local clearances are taking more time than usual, but, not surprisingly, cash buyers appear to refrain from committing new tonnage to the area until they have released their own tonnage that they have had standing at the anchorage for some time. An additional, and major, issue is local financing which is not helping the market to bounce back. It is reported that there are still only a handful of breakers who have the capacity to open up Letters of Credit, and therefore competition locally for available tonnage is limited.

The Pakistan market, we understand, is also filling up. Their interest remains in the larger tanker units however here to, rates have reduced by some USD 10-15 per ldt over the last few days.

Chinese breakers, who have also been flooded with tonnage (particularly domestic controlled units), have subsequently corrected their own rates downwards.

 

NEWBUILDING  

Owners and Yard alike have been keen to see what lies ahead in the post Lunar New year market and for the time being - with large amounts of early capacity still available at various yards it will be interesting to see just how keen some yards will become in order to win some potentially vital new business. With some yards in China now becoming increasingly flexible through payment structures and terms offered, it will likely not be too long before some owners are tempted to order the new generation eco designs at levels close to or below levels we have seen in the past decade.

Having discussed the merger of two Japanese Yards last week, it is sad to see reported this week that two of the Korean Yards have not been as lucky to receive such good news. Samho Shipbuilding in Tongyong, which has historically specialised in building Chemical tankers and Handysize bulkers no longer has the support of the creditor bankers after the demise of their sister shipping company and will now reportedly only complete slowly two handysize hulls before ceasing business. Sekwang Heavy Industries, who again have their main history in the Chemical tanker newbuilding sector along with more recently a diversification into the offshore sector have found no buyers after being put into court protection and again will now reportedly build any further Vessels.

With the yards only recently back from their holidays there is not too much to report in terms of reported business this week. In LPG and after temporizing their discussions back in October last year, Pertamina are understood to have finally signed the ship building contract for a single 82,000 cbm at HHI for delivery end 2013, the price is variously reported between USD 75-78 mill. After many months of discussions, Sovcomflot are understood to have confirmed the order for two 20,600 cbms at Hyundai Mipo. The Vessels are due for delivery end 2013. They are being built to ice class 1B with various modifications for winter trade including an upgraded propeller, additional protection for the bow thruster etc. As a general rule, ice class 1b is estimated to add approx. 8% to the purchase price, which explains the reported price tag of region USD 50 Mill per vessel. The Vessels have been fixed on a 15 year TC to Sibur to cover exports of LPG from the brand new Ust Lunga terminal in the Northern Baltic Sea.

In Containers the German Clients of Dietrich Tamke have placed an order for one option one SDARI 4,800 TEU container Vessels at CSC’s Jinling Yard in China for delivery at the end of 2013. Contract price is understood to be around mid USD 50 Mill’s.

Finally in the Passenger sector, Clients of Aremiti Pacific Cruises have again returned to Austal for a fourth 80-metre ro/pax catamaran at a price reported to be EUR 35 Mill with delivery set for 2015. Nippon Express have gone to MHI’s Shimonoseki Yard for a technologically advanced 170 trailer vehicles and 100 passenger cars ro/ro ferry with delivery slated for the first half of 2013.

2012-02-13 09:25:58

S & P 

This week the market witnessed the Baltic Dry Index fall to a 26-year low at 647 points, under one third of the recent peak and 11-month high of 2,173 points reported by the Baltic Exchange on October 14th 2011. The initial failure of the end of Chinese New Year to generate a lift in the spot market has had a negative impact on those bidding for vessels.

Panamax sector has witnessed a further drop in values; the Japanese controlled sister units M/V WASHINGTON TRADER and M/V GOLDBEAM TRADER (74,228 dwt 2000/2001 blt Sasebo) have been sold to European buyers at US$ 15m and US$ 16m respectively reflecting about 25% further drop since the summer of 2011. The first supramax sale of the year also marked significant downward movement in values. Clients of Sanko S.S. have now committed M/V SANKO GALAXY (52,980 dwt 2005 blt Oshima S.B.) at just under US$ 21m to Greek Buyers. The Oshima built supramax was placed in the market in mid-January basis a very prompt inspection in Japan.

We will have to see if this reduced benchmark price acts as a stimulant for future business in the sector.

The Handymax M/V ARCADIA (41,455dwt 1995 blt Varna) was arrested at Singapore behalf mortgagees in October and has now been sold at auction to Greek buyers for US$11.75m.

In the Tanker S+P market, the MR tanker M/T KING EDWIN (35,775 dwt 2000 blt Daedong) reported sold to Greek buyers at US$ 12.75m. The Greek controlled MR tanker M/T DOUBTLESS (47,076 dwt 1991 blt Halla) reported sold to Indian buyers at US$ 6.3m while the M/T ZYGI’ (44,484 dwt 1992 blt Dalian) which is due for special survey, obtained US$ 4.8m from Nathalin, Thailand.

In the Specialised Chemical Tanker market the M/T CLIPPER MIKI (19,945 dwt 2009 blt Fukuoka)

sold at US$ 23.5m.

 

DEMOLITION 

The market is awash with activity with much buying prowess being displayed by the Buyers and the large volume of sales.

Despite the supposed return to the market from Bangladesh, no major competitive streak is being seen by the local breakers as financing continues to be a major issue for them, however India is really taking the market by storm with firming rates evident.

If January is anything to go by, we are certainly destined for a record breaking year - this year has started with a bang with an enormous volume of tonnage being concluded with the main benefactors being the Indian breakers.

With steel prices in India continuing on a firm stance and the strengthening rupee against the U.S. Dollar benefitting breakers, sentiment from the waterfront in Alang is positive, however levels on the open market have risen quite dramatically this week and a slight feeling of caution is now being seen

by some as those increased levels recently paid are now reportedly not being justified by the breakers. Therefore have we now reached the 'peak' for the time being?

Chinese breakers have returned to the market also in a positive frame of mind and whilst no real price increases are evident, a stable market, as we are seeing, is good for the industry.

Pakistan breakers remain keen to acquire the larger tanker units and with their gas freeing requirements more relaxed than their counterparts from India and Bangladesh and with the currency issues hampering the price levels on offer in Bangladesh, more of the larger units could well find Pakistan as their only destination.

 

NEWBUILDING  

With both Korean and Chinese shipyards returning to work post Lunar New Year ¨C it will be interesting to see how marketing approaches unfold. With reports of new business being negotiated and concluded the newbuilding market continues to maintain a relative level of activity, against what is becoming an increasingly strained macro environment.

With Dry rates now having dropped to some of the lowest levels, post Lehman, as well as an increased strain on the European debt market making financing both existing and new orders increasingly challenging, it is certainly a tough environment for owners and shipyards alike.

Nevertheless, this is not to say that we have reached a stalemate in the market, and it is likely that necessity from the shipyards perspective will drive buying sentiment. With yards in Korea, China and Japan all facing an exposure to 2013 ¨C it is likely that they will be forced to offer competitive pockets of pricing to try and catalyse buying interest. It is also becoming increasingly evident, that those who remain relatively cash rich and there to take a long term view and position in shipping, remain poised to take advantage of these opportunities ¨C the question looms as to how sustainable this will be from both a supply and demand perspective.

The other piece of interesting news this week is the merger announcement between Universal and I.H.I. Shipbuilding. Whilst this has been in discussion for some 4 years now ¨C it is interesting to see this come to fruition in what is becoming an ever more challenging environment for Japanese shipyards ¨C Consolidation in broad terms is certainly a feasible path for the Japanese shipyards to embark on and it remains to be seen if the Universal / IHI merger may an indicator of things to come..

In terms of reported business; In Dry, it has been reported that clients of Pola Shipping have placed an order at CSC Qingshan Shipyard for 2+2 x Seahorse 35K Handysize Bulk carriers. The final contract price remains undisclosed though these vessels are expected to deliver from 2H 2013 onwards. We understand this contract was placed just before the end of 2011.

In Tankers, K.O.T.C have officially signed a contracts this week to build a series of Crude tankers at DSME including 4 x 317,000dwt VLCCs and 1 x 110,000dwt Aframax. Deliveries of the VLCCs are scheduled to begin from 4Q 2013 onwards and the Aframax in 1Q 2014. No individual pricing has been disclosed for these contracts.

Separately it has been reported that clients of Topships have placed an order at STX Dalian for 2 option 2 x 51K Product tankers due to deliver from 4Q 2013. As with Qingshan however we understand this contract was in fact signed towards the end of last year and again only just surfacing now.

2012-01-19 09:26:25

S & P 

Declining freight indexes and the looming spectre of the Chinese New Year have contributed to a sluggish start to 2012 for the S+P market, with some markedly low levels being paid, notably in the larger sizes.

Cape size M/V HANJIN MADRAS (150,977 dwt 1990 blt Hyundai) reported sold to undisclosed buyers at US$ 10m; a touch above scrap levels.

A couple of mid-90s Panamaxes reported sold to Chinese buyers; Korean controlled M/V EASTERN QUEEN (70,196 dwt 1994 blt Daewoo) is sold for US$ 10.9m with due drydocking in July and Japanese controlled M/V FAIR WIND (69,058 dwt 1995 blt Imabari) at US$ 10.5m. A newbuilding handysize from the Indian ABG Shipyard ¨C ABG Hull 333 (32,000 dwt 2011 blt ABG) understand she is committed to Singapore based buyers for US$ 22.8m.

The open hatch M/V ALADDIN RAINBOW (32,260 dwt 1999 blt Kanda) has obtained US$ 14m; transaction includes a charter back however rate/period remains undisclosed. M/V SOUTHERN FIGHTER (29,478 dwt 1998 blt Japan) is reported sold to Greek buyers at US$ 12m with a timecharter back to sellers for two years at an above market $10,500 per day while the M/V DIAMOND GLORY (28,515 dwt 1997 blt Tsuneishi) is sold at US$ 12m on a charter free basis.

On older tonnage segment Greek buyers, on a transaction understand concluded earlier this month, paid region US$ 6.7m for M/V DEVRPAYAG (47,349 dwt 1986 blt Daewoo); M/V SEA WAVE (45,090 dwt 1984 blt Govan) obtained US$ 4.8m while M/V IKAN ALTAMIRA (42,489 dwt 1985 blt Mitsui) to Chinese buyers for US$ 4.2m. Finally, the laker M/V ZUNI PRINCESS (28,166 dwt 1984 blt Hitachi) has been sold to Syrian buyers at US$ 4.2m.

Not much to report in the tanker S+P market, however interest remains alive as offers are being invited over the next weeks on a number of crude tankers and the numbers of inspections taking place highlight the continued interest in purchasing tonnage at the right price.

A controlling interest of 70% in pair of Hartmann-owned product carriers has been sold to U.S.investors. The vessels are M/T MOUNT GREEN and M/T MOUNT ROBSON (40,000 dwt 2007/2004 blt Saiki). The investment reported to be based on a very firm price of US$ 27m and US$ 24m respectively.  This is obviously not a conventional transaction and understand that Sellers retain 30% ownership and they will continue to undertake technical and commercial management.

Following her arrest by creditors the small product M/T VASI (12,923 dwt 2008 blt STX) reported sold to Singapore interests at US$ 8m at auction took place in Cape Town.

The reported sale of the product carrier M/T STENA CALYPSO (9,996 dwt 2002 blt Gdynia) at US$ 18.5m looks on the very high side in present market, however understand that vessel is sold for offshore conversion; together with her unique features (diesel electric propulsion and exceptional manoeuvring capabilities) may justify the investment from the buyers’ perspective.

 

DEMOLITION 

Another week, another obstacle for the market to overcome in relation to Bangladesh!

No sooner than the market heard the long awaited news Bangladesh was officially open once again, then further reports followed to say that no buying will take place until a local issue had been resolved.

The Bangladeshi government recently imposed a 5% income tax on ships being imported for scrap, a decision not favourable to the local ship breaking community and therefore all the ship breakers locally decided to boycott purchasing any new tonnage until this new tax was either completely abolished or significantly reduced. It is unknown when any mutual agreement will be decided which only causes further anxiety amongst the recycling market knowing that the return of the Bangladesh market is vital to the industry. In addition, and another major issue at present, is the fact that there is a lack of U.S. Dollars internally that is needed to support the industry, and this will have a major impact of establishment on Letters of Credit opened by the local banks on behalf of the shipbreakers. It is reported that a couple of Chinese owned bulk carriers had been committed for delivery Bangladesh at the beginning of last week, however these sales subsequently failed to materialise.

Indian has again forced itself into the number one position as price levels improved this week. The reason for this week¡¯s increase is down to the Rupee strengthening against the U.S. Dollar (the best rate seen for some time), the domestic steel market having seen positive improvements and to an extent, the expectation that Bangladesh was returning to the fore. However as reported above, should the situation not improve in Bangladesh in the coming weeks, then the sudden increase in rates seen from the Indian market could potentially tail off again to numbers that are more profitable to the local

industry.

Elsewhere, Pakistan remains eager for the larger tanker units, however, surprisingly given the current freight conditions, few units are being circulated in the market. But with the more favoured gas free conditions (men entry only compared to hot works for India and Bangladesh), the general consensus is that such units will currently find Pakistan as their final destination.

China continues to provide a competitive streak for tonnage completing in the Far East area, however the fast approaching New Year festivities may, next week, ensure a quieter period envelopes the local scene. Currently however, prices levels remain anything from region USD 420-450 depending on the vessels specification.

 

NEWBUILDING  

The year has begun with a subdued start and with Lunar New Year holidays on the horizon in the Far East we don¡¯t expect January to be the most active of months in the Newbuilding market.

However that is not to say that the market is devoid of opportunity. The most immediate challenge for both Korean and Chinese shipyards will be one of managing production. The current landscape in terms of production schedules for yards is jagged ¨C with pockets of 2013 capacity still vacant, particularly in China. Even in Korea though, where capacity was reserved for outstanding options, there still remain these awkward pockets of vacant capacity that do need to be committed.

With strategy meetings in Korea to be held over the forthcoming weeks, it is plausible that we may see a push across certain sectors post Lunar New Year, as the shipyards aim to address these outstanding production issues. In China, the approach seems more immediate and with certain yards within the state sector having struggled to secure business in 2011, the pressure is on fill the outstanding 2013 capacity which is growing ever more imminent. With the demand side in no immediate rush to move, coupled with a continued tightening of debt availability, there seems to be no immediate rush to book new business. That being said, with certain sectors poised to present some enticing opportunities, it will be interesting so see how the story develops and whether yards will be competitive enough to entice buyers back into ordering!

In terms of reported business this week it has been relatively quiet; In Dry, it has been reported that Chengxi Shipyard have won an order from domestic owner Ningbo Fonwa Shipping for a pair of 49,000dwt Bulk Carriers with delivery Scheduled within 2013. No other details have been released.

 

2012-01-10 09:32:49

S & P 

Regardless of the traditionally quiet Christmas and New Year period there has still be a number of sales concluded.

TORM have sold two resale Kamsarmaxes (82,000 dwt) TORM KAMMA and TORM KATRINA vessels reportedly to clients of Efnav of Greece. The ships are on order at Tsuneishi Zhoushan and due for delivery late 2012 and early 2013. The price is understood to be in the region of $32-33m on a novated contract basis.

On the Panamaxes, the M/V PEPITO (75,928 dwt 2001 blt Kanasashi) reported sold to the vessel¡¯s current timecharterers COSCO, Dalian to whom the vessel was fixed for 5 years in 2008 at US$ 41,750 per day. We understand that the Charterers have purchased the Vessel in a deal that would no doubt involve some form of compensation to the sellers in lieu of cancelling the well above market timecharter. Price said to be in the region of US$ 20m.

Japanese controlled logs-fitted handysize M/V LAVIEEN ROSE (31,824 dwt 2000 blt Hakodate) is reported to have been sold at US$ 15.8m to European interests.

In the tanker S+P market, most will be welcoming the start of 2012 and will certainly be hoping that this year is not a repeat of the last where a lack of credible financing and dire charter rates across the crude sectors lead to continued downward pressure on values, which accelerated from Q2 onwards.

Relative to the crude sector, the products marked faired a little better and asset values remained more stable. There is further evidence of this relative stability in the first sale of the year (albeit subject to Buyers Board Approval). The IMO II/III, MR Tanker M/T MARE DI NAPOLI (51,371 dwt 2007 blt SLS) has been sold on Buyers' subjects to a US based investment Co at US$ 27.5m.

Monaco based Seaworld Management has agreed to purchase IMO III M/T FABRIZIA D¡¯AMATO (40,081 dwt 2004 blt Shina) for US$ 19.2m.

Sanko has sold two stainless steel chemical tankers, M/T SANKO NEPTUNE and M/T SANKO NOBLE (19,991 dwt 2011 blt Fukuoka) to Zodiac for US$ 27m each.

 

DEMOLITION 

The year has begun very positively with news that Bangladesh is on the verge of re-opening and on the back of a stable currency and improved steel prices domestically, India increasing their price indications and Chinese breakers continuing their aggressive stance from last year.

However, on paper everything looks rosy, but an air of caution is still to be adopted as currently, Bangladesh remains closed until the hearing due next Thursday 12th, and Indian rates are on the rise but only because some cash intermediaries appear to be speculating on the re opening of the© Bangladeshi market and as such, the current improved rates seen for tonnage basis delivery India are not being justified on the waterfront at Alang.

The concern for most is the tremendous amount of tonnage being proposed to the market since the turn of the year and whether the current firm rates can hold. Many parties believe that when Bangladesh officially re-opens the rates will increase substantially in excess of the USD 500/ldt level, however this is again pure speculation and if the amount of new tonnage witnessed in the market over the last few days is anything to go by, then the conveyor belt of tonnage supply may affect the breakers mentality in the near future even if Bangladesh does re-open next week as predicted.

 

NEWBUILDING  

It is well known that the second half of 2011 saw not only a decline in the number of new orders being placed but also in the firm enquiries and discussion being held with the yards. As such, it is perhaps unsurprising that the beginning of 2012 has begun in a relatively similar vein. We have seen some reports of new business being concluded but for the most the market remains relatively quiet, with the yards having little time to gear up their marketing drives between the return of the West from its recently concluded holiday period and the upcoming Lunar New Year holidays in the Far East towards the end of this month.

Much of the news this week has centred about the announcements by the major Korean Yards of their targets for 2012. Most of the yards have set fairly firm yearly targets, with HHI (USD 23.8 Bln up 19% from 2011), Samsung (USD 12.6 Bln up 8.7% on 2011) and STX (USD 15.0 Bln up 17% on 2011) in particular leading the pack. With many of the more conventional sectors continuing to look relatively challenging for owners over the upcoming months, it remains likely, the yards will be looking to target the higher value sectors such as Offshore and the like. This seems to follow a similar pattern to the

strategies of last year and it will be interesting to see given the successful ordering in 2011 in these sectors whether there is a similar level of demand to sustain these latest targets.

Whilst China was successful in winning a certain volume of business last year, due to the sheer size of structural capacity within China today there remain many yards that still have potential early berths within 2013. With demand likely to remain remaining limited in the short term and against this backdrop of excess supply, there may well have to be a continued adjustment in pricing in order for the yards to be able to push on and drive further ordering.

In terms of reported business; In Dry, it has been reported that Universal Shipbuilding have won an order for 1 x 209,000dwt Capesize Bulk Carrier from Mitsui O.S.K.Lines and this vessel is provisionally scheduled to deliver in 2014. No pricing has been disclosed; however we understand the Vessel has been ordered against long term charter business with a domestic steel mill.

In Tankers, it was announced just before the turn of the New Year that Scorpio Tankers have declared and signed one of their optional 52K MR product tankers at a price of USD 36.4 Mill. This was an option they had held since their original order placed in 2011 and this latest vessel is expected to deliver in January 2013. They still hold a further 3 options, with the first of these to be declared within the middle of January 2012.

2012-01-04 09:20:17

Newbuilding ¨C 2011 Summary/Comments

The Yards will no doubt on reflection be quite happy with the Year in terms of dollar contract value, with most of the larger Yards reaching their year©}end targets, although this has been against the backdrop of a far smaller volume of vessels contracted this year. 

This can clearly be seen across the more conventional sectors, where in Tankers of over 10,000 dwt we have seen just under 100 Vessels being penned so far this year against more than 250 in 2010. In Dry bulk, again over 10,000 dwt, we have seen around 330 vessels contracted in 2011, against over 1,150 in 2010 ¨C a drop of some near 70%! 

It has been the high value sectors that have had a much more positive year with over 50 LNG carriers contracted this year, against a mere six in the previous calendar year. 

Likewise, amongst within the Container sector, the Post©}Panamax and Super Post©}Panamax sizes saw a very good first half of the year, although the second half of the Year has been somewhat quieter. All in all though there has been a near 225% increase in the number of containerships ordered in the 8,000 TEU + sector this year against 2010.   Offshore has again been steadily active with the high oil price keeping up the demand from the owners and the charterers for more Vessels. Let us see what the New Year brings and if the more staple fodder of the Yards in terms of the dry and wet contracting sees resurgence in ordering! 

Second hand market ¨C 2011 Summary/Comments

Dry sector

Despite 'a year of two halves', to quote our dry freight analysts, in the chartering market the sale and purchase market showed few signs of resistance over the course of the year on the back of massive newbuilding deliveries and the availability of new buildings off reasonably prompt dates at reduced prices.   Capes and panamaxes were hit particularly hard in the first six months of the year, not surprisingly with capes averaging US$8,546 over this timeframe, but more recently we have seen the smaller supra©}handymax / handysize also register significant falls .Also at the forefront of potential Buyers

minds were a sales candidates speed and consumption figures, and rightly so with bunkers over US$700 / ton. With this in mind, prospective Buyers of modern tonnage are also weighing up the merits of investing in the new 'eco' newbuilding designs from the Chinese shipyards in particular, but also now from Japanese and Korean shipyards, offering significant savings in this area. The first of these designs will be 'on the water' later next year, and how they perform under trading conditions will be watched carefully by both Owners and charterers.  

The availability of finance ©} or lack thereof ©} also remains a major obstacle to Buyers of ships with, in the main, the traditional financing banks being able to be selective with whom they wish to lend to. To

exacerbate the situation, the number of active ship finance lenders has reduced significantly with some banks looking to sell portfolios or exiting the shipping sector completely, leaving buyers with no option but to seek new banking relationships to secure funding. US dollars, in particular, are in short supply in international ship finance and this shortage coupled with the sovereign debt problems of Europe are among the reasons why banks have curtailed lending activities. Global banks have also become increasingly risk averse, tightening credit criteria and lending less thus requiring borrowers to

increase equity contributions to protect against volatility in asset values and ensuring that break©}even levels are set below historic earning levels. Although Asian banks are gradually playing a greater role

in ship finance, it will take some time before they are significant capital providers for the shipping sector as capital is largely reserved for domestic clients. Together with an uncertain outlook for the physical markets, there seems to be a feeling that buyers will be seeking real value on the second hand side before committing to purchases.

Tanker sector

For most Tanker Owners it is likely to be a case of relief 2011 is over. 2011 has been a very different year compared to 2010 in terms of pricing. We saw values rise throughout the middle of 2010 but this year they have seen a dramatic decline since early Summer, culminating in the sale of 1998 built VLCC for demolition earlier this month (It should be remembered that it was only in December of last year when a 1999 built VLCC was sold for usd 55 million!). We look forward to 2012 with baited breath and hope that despite the negativity surrounding the market we may be taken by surprise to the upside... 

Recycling

China has become the major competitor to the Indian breakers with further acquisitions this week at firming rates. Dry cargo vessels can now expect to achieve excess USD 420/ldt for tonnage giving prompt delivery with tankers expected to obtain closer to the USD 440/ldt, thus finally creating some much needed competition in the market.  The Indian market is still literally ¡®all over the place¡¯ with a ¡®lottery¡¯ feel towards available tonnage ¨C there are more units coming to the market giving further caution in some cash buyers eyes, particularly those who still hold previously purchased tonnage at high rates and are yet to be resold. Maybe the constant supply of tonnage that is arriving into the market is testament that many Owners have finally realised that the market will not return to the heady heights seen this year in excess of USD 500/ldt.  Historically though, today¡¯s rates are still a handsome return as a scrap value is concerned. 

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