Bloomberg News

Global Shipbuilding Capacity Seen a Third Lower From 2008 Peak

March 04, 2013

Global shipbuilding capacity is about a third lower than it was at the 2008 peak as yards close or reduce employment, RS Platou Economic Research said in a monthly report.

Shipbuilding capacity is estimated at 35 million compensated gross tons, more than needed in the next two years, according to the Oslo-based research unit of Norway’s largest shipbroker. Compensated gross tons is a formula used to measure shipbuilding output.

“Under the prevailing market conditions, where shipbuilders are forced to accept new contracts below cost levels, we have seen a significant share of the building capacity withdrawn or removed,” according to the report e- mailed today.

Chinese yards tracked by the Oslo researcher gained from 22 in 2002 to 127 by 2011, and consolidation is anticipated, Platou said.

The combined capacity of deliveries of new ships needs to be lower than 35 million CGT a year to absorb an oversupply of vessels in the merchant fleet, according to Platou. Deliveries of new ships, each weighing more than 30,000 deadweight tons, surged from 18 million CGT in 2002 to a peak of 44 million CGT in 2011, led by a 13-fold boost in new ships built in China, according to Platou.

To contact the reporter on this story: Michelle Wiese Bockmann in London at mwiesebockma@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alaric Nightingale at anightingal1@bloomberg.net


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