China Looks to Amalgamate Shipyards
The Wall Street Journal has reported that China’s two biggest state-owned shipping companies plan to merge their combined shipbuilding yards into a single entity.
Cosco Group owns six yards and China Shipping Group owns five. Cosco also operates two joint-venture yards with Japan’s Kawasaki Heavy Industries.
The amalgamation would create China’s third biggest shipbuilding group, and a formal announcement is expected in the new year.
The Journal says people involved in the process expect the merger to be used as a model for a wider plan to merge the country’s two biggest shipbuilders China Shipbuilding Corp. and China Shipbuilding Industry Co.
China currently builds around half of the world’s ships. At least 20 medium and large private shipyards closed in China last year as a result of a decline in newbuilding orders.
Cosco and China Shipping combined their fleet and port operations last year to create China COSCO Holdings, the world’s fourth biggest container operator in terms of capacity.
Cosco has also indicated that it would consider buying some of Hanjin Shipping’s container-terminal assets and has agreed to spend $738 million on a new port in Abu Dhabi.