China Cosco Holdings uses options for boxships

CHINA Cosco Holdings has shown its faith in the container shipping market after it exercised options at Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding for four 4,250 teu boxships costing about $280m.

The vessels will be delivered in August and September 2012. The ships were brokered through the Jiangsu Tianyuan Marine Import & Export Company.

The latest contract follows a $1.08bn deal signed between China Cosco Holdings and Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding on December 28 for 16 4,250 teu boxships. Seven of the container vessels will be delivered between August and December 2011, while the remaining nine will join the Cosco Container Lines fleet between January and June 2012.

The new deal, signed on Tuesday, came three weeks after China Cosco Holdings splashed out $2.3bn on a massive newbuilding programme for 25 vessels including eight 13,350 teu containerships to be built by Nantong Cosco KHI Ship Engineering (Nacks).

China Cosco Holdings said the remaining 17 newbuildings comprise nine 57,000 dwt bulk carriers to be built by Cosco Shipyard Group and eight 205,000 dwt very large bulk carriers that will be built by Nacks.

The Hong Kong and Shanghai-listed company later said Cosco Bulk Carrier and Cosco Hong Kong Shipping had taken over contracts totalling $348.9m for the nine supramax bulkers, which will be delivered between March and July 2009.