Hutchison Buy Follows Maersk Deal

Wednesday, September 27, 2000
Hutchison Port, a unit of conglomerate Hutchison announced earlier on Wednesday a 30 percent investment in Westport Holdings, a multi-purpose terminal in Malaysia's biggest port, Port Klang. Hutchison, controlled by Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing, said in a statement that the deal would allow it to participate in Malaysia's economy. It gave no other details of the deal.

Malaysia has 15 ports including Port Klang, on the west coast of Malaysia, which is the nation's main port.

Port Klang, which is made up of three ports, the north, south and west ports, has been trying to compete with Singapore, the largest and busiest container port in the world.

The Hutchison deal came about a month after Maersk-Sealand, the world's biggest container line, announced it would move its transshipment hub to the Malaysian port Tanjung Pelepas (PTP) from Singapore.

Maersk-Sealand, part of Danish shipping and oil conglomerate A.P. Moeller, bought 30 percent of PTP.

The move of transshipment activities to PTP from Singapore would give Maersk-Sealand more control over operations and entail "considerable" cost savings, Maersk officials said.

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