Alphaliner: HMM’s Vessel Capacity Shrinks by 24 Pct in 2017

South Korea’s Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) has seen its capacity decrease by 23.9 percent amid a rise in total vessel capacity operated by the top 15 carriers in 2017.

The carrier’s vessel capacity fell from 456,000 TEU in 2017 to 347,000 TEU at the beginning of 2018, according to Alphaliner.

The reduction was mainly due to the withdrawal of numerous HMM ships from the Asia – Europe and Asia – East Coast of North America routes. The ships were chartered out to Maersk and MSC under a strategic cooperation agreement, known as 2M+HMM, that took effect on April 1, 2017.

Over the course of 2017, the top 15 carriers’ combined share of the global container ship capacity increased from 78.6 percent to 85.1 percent, as their grip of the global container trades continued to strengthen.

The total vessel capacity operated by the top 15 container carriers grew by 12.6 percent in 2017, rising from 16.27 million TEU to 18.32 million TEU on January 1, 2018, data from Alphaliner shows. This figure includes capacity operated by companies that were acquired during the period.

Over the same period, the global liner capacity increased by 3.9 percent from 20.69 million TEU to 21.51 million TEU. However, not all of the carriers recorded gains, as two carriers posted reductions in their operated capacity.

The main gainer last year was the Maersk Group, whose operated capacity grew by 26.8 percent to reach 1.8 million TEU on January 1, 2018, up from 1.62 million TEU twelve months earlier.

In case of Maersk, the recent takeover of the German carrier Hamburg Süd contributed to the increase, however, even without the purchase Maersk would still have grown by some 10%.

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