Japan-based shipbuilders have received only eight exporting orders during July 2016, representing a significant drop from 25 orders seen in the same month a year earlier, according to data released by Japan Ship Exporters’ Association (JSEA).
The eight orders feature a total of 303,299 gross tons and consist of one tanker and seven bulk carriers, including two Handysize bulkers, three Handymaxes, one Post-panamax and one Capesize bulk carrier.
The situation was much worse in June 2016, as Japanese shipbuilders saw a mere four export orders. With a total of 162,700 gross tons, the four orders included two Handymax and two Panamax bulk carriers.
During the three-month period from April to July 2016, Japan received 26 export orders featuring some 1 million gross tons in total, compared to 162 export orders with a total of 8,95 million gross tons seen in the same period in 2015.
The shipowners are opting to cut newbuilding orders amid a prolonged slowdown in the dry bulk and container shipping markets caused by a sluggish demand and a structural overcapacity, accompanied by low freight rates.
IHS Maritime & Trade earlier said that major shipbuilding nations would be put to the test during 2016, as the shipbuilding industry entered one of the toughest years in recent history.
The dry bulk fleet is expected to have a very low number of orders this year, IHS said, adding that the container fleet could face a very low ordering activity throughout this year as overcapacity threatens the very survival of shipping lines.