Uni-Asia buys

Uni-Asia Finance Corp has purchased a handysize bulker newbuilding resale from China for $30m.

The 29,200-dwt vessel, which is building at China’s Yangzhou Nakanishi Shipyard, is due to be delivered in June 2009.

It will be owned by Glory Bulkship, a company set up in Panama together with Wealth Ocean Services and as Ocean Pool Ltd.

In a statement Singapore-listed Uni-Asia said it will hold an above-50% stake in Glory Bulkship.

Uni-Asia said the contract price will be satisfied through a combination of equity and debt financing.

It said it would act as the loan arranger for Glory Bulkship to seek a non-recourse loan of up to $22m and mezzanine loan financing of up to $3m.

Uni-Asia has previously said that it expects strong replacement demand for handysize tonnage in 2010 or thereafter due to the ageing fleet.

The company also has three 33,400-dwt bulker newbuildings on order at Japan’s Kanasashi Heavy Industries.

Last month Uni-Asia confirmed that it had chartered the first two ships to Singapore's Pacific Carriers for five and three years respectively.

The ships are due for delivery in the first half of 2010 and 2011. No charter rate details were disclosed.