After some five months of talks with South Korea’s shipping firm Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) on the possibility of HMM to join the world’s largest alliance 2M, the parties have now decided “to look at other cooperation possibilities.”
Since July 2016, the alliance, comprising shipping giants Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), has been in discussions with the Korean container carrier on HMM joining the 2M vessel sharing agreement (2M VSA).
The parties “discussed the possibility of HMM joining 2M as an operating partner,” according to a spokesperson from Maersk Line, however, the talks have now shifted to the possibility of HMM partnering with the 2M network through a slot exchange and purchase agreement.
“The partnership discussions are ongoing and include the possibility of Maersk Line taking over charters and operations of vessels currently chartered to HMM with the aim of deploying them in the 2M network,” the spokesperson said, adding that “the discussions include how we can improve our products on the Pacific trade.”
As the discussions are on-going, the parties declined to comment further until there is any substantial development, Mearsk Line noted.
Hyundai Merchant Marine was looking to join the 2M alliance after their membership in the G6 alliance expires in 2017.
The move, which was made amid the current weak demand in the container shipping industry, was part of HMM’s debt restructuring plan.
World Maritime News Staff