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Shipowners Keep Investing in Dry Bulkers Despite Market Demise

Dry bulk owners are still keen on more investments in dry bulk tonnage, both newbuildings and second hand vessels, despite the fact that the dry bulk market is experiencing one of its most severe periods of downwards pressure, now at a 9-month low. In its latest weekly report, shipbroker Allied Shipbroking said that in the newbuilding market, “despite the fact that the current freight market and global trade prospects remain uncertain for the dry bulk market, 13 new units were added recently to the dry bulk orderbook. The majority of new orders were limited to smaller size segments, with buyers showing their preference to segments that provide more flexibility in terms of trading options. In the tankers market, we also noticed an increased interest from buyers, with the market outlook here being healthier due to an anticipated improvement in demand and a supply growth that has still remained at modest levels. Given these figures, appetite amongst potential buyers is anticipated to remain robust with further deals being expected to come through in the following weeks. Finally, renewed interest was also seen in the gas sector during last week with 12 new units ordered. This is a sector that has showed significant rise in terms of orders in the past few years, and one that is expected to retain this trend during the course of this year”.

In a separate note, shipbroker Banchero Costa said that “the gas sector dominated newbuilding activity with 4 LPG orders and 5 LNG units freshly ordered. Mexican Company Nieto Epresas SA de CV ordered to Hyundai Mipo the construction of 2 x 38,000 cbm LPG carriers, with delivery set for June and September 2021. One 90,000 cbm LNG dual-fuel VLGC was ordered to Hyundai by Geogas for a price of $ 80 mln. The South Korean KKS Line commissioned to Hyundai Heavy the construction of a 84,000 cbm scrubber fitted LPG carrier. Delivery will take place in April 2021 and the stipulated price is around $ 74 mln: once delivered the vessel will go under TC for 5 years with option for two further years to BGN International DMCC”.

Meanwhile, in the second hand market, Allied said that “on the dry bulk side, a considerable boost in SnP volume was noted during the past week or so, with the medium size segments leading the way for the time being. This came to confirm once again that buying appetite exists, amidst a bearish freight market. Notwithstanding this, given the overall uncertainty and poor sentiment that is dominating the market at this point, it would take some time before any sort of balance is restored. On the tankers side, a good flow of transactions took place for yet another week. So far, we have witnessed a very active VLCC market, with buying eagerness being on a bullish track. This is mere reflection of the better sentiment shared now in terms of the prospective future earnings. All-in-all, given the overall turmoil nature of this specific market, it would be of little surprise if we witnessed further spikes in SnP activity take shape in the coming months”.

Banchero Costa added that “the “Majestic Sky” Kamsarmax 81,000 dwt built in 2014 at Tsuneishi was sold to $ 21,6 mln within Japan. The “Sudestada” Panamax about 75,000 dwt built in 2010 at Jiangnan was sold for $ 11 mln to Greek buyers, whilst an older 75,000 dwt sistership “Calipso” built in 2005 at Jiangnan achieved $7,3 mln from Chinese buyers. 4 Supramax enbloc “Serene Jessica – Serene Juniper – Serene Susannah – Serene Lydia” about 57,000 dwt built in 2011-2011- 2010-2010 at STX Dalian were sold for $ 40 mln enbloc. The tanker market remained solid: Greece was the largest buyer in the world in 2019 and started on the same note the 2020. Hartree owners VLCCs “Kiwi” and “Lady” scrubber fitted built in 2020 by Daewoo were resold to a J/V Cardiff/Easter Pacific/Spetalen and to a Korean buyer respectively at $ 105 mln each. Suezmax “Narmada Spirit” 159,000 dwt built in 2003 by Hyundai went to New Shipping of Greece for $ 19,4 mln. A ‘rare’ very modern Aframax sale occurred last week, “Aquafreedom” 112,000 dwt with installed scrubbers built in 2019 by Samsung was sold to an undisclosed Greek buyer at a firm $ 55 mln”, the shipbroker concluded.

Nikos Roussanoglou, Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide

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