face ‘Hobson’s choice’ on the containership charter market: agreeing to owners’
hugely inflated daily hire rates or risking losing the vessel to a competitor.
just agreed a three-month charter commencing in January of the 4,253 teu
Synergy Oakland for an eye-watering $130,000 a day from Greek non-operating
The carrier’s in-house
charter desk will no doubt have baulked at a charter rate some $50,000 a day
above the current bull market, but was clearly unable to fix an alternative to
cover a vital commitment. It will now pay the owner some $11.5m for the
duration of the time charter.
Hapag-Lloyd fixture into context of today’s market, Euroseas paid just $10m for
the Synergy Oakland in November 2019, as part of an en-bloc purchase and, four
years ago, owners of similar panamax ships would have been happy to achieve $8,000
a day for a three-month charter.
The Israeli carrier snapping-up the in-demand vessel for a daily hire
of $42,000 on a four-year time charter
expiry of the Hapag-Lloyd fixture, the 2009-built ship will be handed over to
Zim, the Israeli carrier snapping-up the in-demand vessel for a daily hire of
$42,000 on a four-year time charter.
and CEO Aristides Pittas said the fixtures were “indicative of the strength and
recovery of the market”.
He added: “We
expect to be able to continue benefiting from the present market, as there are
another four of our vessels which open for re-chartering within the next four
months and another two later in 2022.”
It is an ominous
sign from Euroseas for current charterers, and is being echoed by NOO peers,
and carriers face losing some of their fleet to the highest bidders, obliging
them to discontinue services and postpone their growth aspirations.
Carriers have to buy vessels to cover their requirements Alphaliner
Faced with the
threat of conceding market share, Alphaliner said, carriers may have “no other
choice but to buy, rather than charter, vessels to cover their requirements”.
This is a strategy
led by MSC which, since August last year, has purchased a phenomenal 124
second-hand containerships – an unprecedented buying spree.
Of note, the
carrier recently acquired two post-panamax wide-beamed vessels from feeder
specialist X-Press, paying $105m for the 4,896 teu X-Press Jersey (now renamed
MSC Jersey and which the X-Press group acquired in June 2019 for just $27m) and
$105m for the 5,001 teu X-Press Guernsey (for which X-Press paid $47m in July
And, as well as
its seemingly insatiable raids on the
S&P market, MSC has by far the largest orderbook of its peers, with around
60 ships for some 1m teu of capacity.
Alphaliner said, there had been reports of the Geneva-based carrier signing a
letter of intent with South Korean yard HHI for construction of a further six
15,000 teu LNG-powered vessels.