China's troubled shipbuilding sector has reported more positive figures in 2013, perhaps an indication of a brighter outlook following the recent restructuring, reduction of excess capacity and infrastructure upgrades, a report from the government showed.
Last year, the shipbuilding industry received new orders with tonnage amounting to 70m dwt, a jump of 242% year-on-year, according to figures from China's ministry of information and technology.
The top 20 Chinese yards won 80% of these new orders, up 5.5% over the previous year, the ministry revealed. It added that the shipbuilding industry has managed to attract orders for more sophisticated ships, including six LNG carriers and four VLGCs.
Shipowners have been returning to the newbuilding market, especially at Chinese yards, as they believed that new vessel prices have touched bottom, despite the lingering overcapacity that still exists in the shipping market.
Zhang Guangqin, president of China Association of National Shipbuilding Industry (Cansi), said earlier that China's surplus yard capacity is likely to last for another five years.
Zhang also urged Chinese shipbuilders to stop dangling low newbuilding prices and compromise on quality in order to win shipbuilding contracts.