China Shipping plans to buy dry-bulk ships for ore cargoes.
China Shipping Group Co., the nation"s second-largest sea-freight company, plans to buy ?quite a few? dry-bulk ships this year on rising demand in Asia for shipments of iron ore and coal. ?The shipping market has bottomed out from its worst period,? Li Shaode, the group"s president, said Wednesday in Beijing, where he was attending a meeting of policy-makers.
He declined to elaborate on how many vessels the company may buy. The group has also agreed to haul coal with China Datang Corp. for at least 10 years, Li said, as China Shipping seeks long-term contracts and ventures with customers to guard against fluctuations in rates. The Baltic Dry Index, a measure of commodity-shipping rates, tripled in 2009 after plunging 92 percent a year earlier.
?We will sign more strategic deals with power companies and coal producers,? Li said. The contracts will cover both domestic and overseas shipments, he said.
Pacific Basin Shipping Ltd., Hong Kong"s largest operator of dry-bulk vessels, also said Tuesday that it planned to expand its fleet ?significantly.?
Li said he expected a rebound in dry-bulk, container and tanker shipping this year after the global recession sapped demand in 2009. There may be ?fluctuations? in the second half, he said.
In the container-shipping sector, the group has raised rates on routes from China to Europe and the Mediterranean, Li said.
?The demand on the China-Europe route was hot in the past two months,? he said. ?I"m very satisfied with the rates on China-Europe and China-Mediterranean routes.