The newly-created shipping major China COSCO Shipping Corporation (COSCOCS), created from a merger between China Ocean Shipping and China Shipping Group, is set to announce members of its new container shipping alliance.
The announcement is expected to be made today by China Shipping Cosco Group in Shanghai, the Wall Street Journal reports citing sources close to the matter.
The driving factor behind the proposed new alliance is to challenge the 2M’s dominance in the East – West trades and to distance the new setup from weaker partners within the current alliances, which could be facing financial distress, Alphaliner believes.
Talks are said to be underway with international regulators in the US, Europe and China, on approval of the new alliance which would control around 26% of the trade between Asia and Europe.
In February reports emerged on a new carrier partnership between COSCOCS and French container shipping major CMA CGM.
According to Alphaliner, the duo was also seeking to rope-in Evergreen and OOCL in a plan that could potentially split up three of today’s four main East-West alliances.
“If successful, the initiative would radically alter the current liner shipping landscape and leave the eight remaining carriers of the Ocean Three, CKYHE and G6 alliances in the lurch,” Alphaliner said.
Separately, CMA CGM submitted a filing to the European Commission that is said to contain concessions expected to ensure the antitrust approval of its USD 2.4 billion takeover of Singaporean counterpart Neptune Orient Lines.
Under the proposal, the French company is expected to withdraw NOL’s APL from competing shipping alliances.
APL is currently a member of the G6 Alliance, but a notice of termination of APL’s participation in the G6 Alliance is to be issued immediately upon closing of the acquisition.
The French company has reportedly told the European Commission it would remove Neptune Orient’s APL container unit from the G6 Alliance “to allay competition concerns over the tie-up” and avoid anti-competitive links to CMA CGM’s new alliance with COSCOCS.
World Maritime News Staff