A report published by Fairplay shows new orders for liquid petroleum gas (LPG) fleet tankers currently stand at 191 to the end of 2013, which is 50 percent less than the previous five years or 40 percent if measured in cubic metres (m3)
“The LPG market will by this slower fleet growth be better positioned than most other shipping markets when the GDP growth resumes to previous levels, particularly in Asia,” explained Niklas Bengtsson, senior consultant for Fairplay Market Forecast. “China and South Korean dominate the order book for tankers over the next five years, holding 30 percent of the orders between them. Europe accounts for only 15 percent.”
This is expected as China will continue to increase its share of world exports with the Chinese state buying raw materials for stockpiling. The Chinese State Reserve Bureau, which manages the government stockpile, has bought copper, aluminium, zinc, indium and titanium in recent months.
The monthly Shipbuilding Market Forecast for February 2010 examines the oil, chemical, LPG and LNG tanker markets. It provides a review of the global business environment demand for seagoing transport, market conditions and capacity utilization for these classes of vessels, and gives a detailed five-year shipbuilding forecast, including new orders, deliveries and demolitions.
The report by Fairplay forecasts that the LPG tanker fleet will increase by a meager seven percent over the next four years. In 2008, the fleet reached historic highs, but the Shipping Market Forecast by Fairplay forecasts that deliveries for 2009 through 2013 will stand at 5.2M m3 which is a 16 percent drop from 2008 deliveries.
The forecast for removals from the worldwide tanker fleet in the period 2009 through 2013 is 152 ships, an increase of 70 percent compared to the previous five-year period, but as these are mostly relatively small ships it is only 40 percent of the capacity if measured in m3.
At the beginning of January 2010 the worldwide LPG fleet stood at 340 carriers which is a capacity of 47.7M m3. At this time 52 vessels were on order which is 40 less than the same time last year.