Maritime Strategies International News

16 Apr 2020

Trends and Projections for Future Fuels and Decarbonization

Photo: ABS

ABS has published the latest trends and projections on carbon-reduction strategies for shipping as the industry looks to meet decarbonization ambitions.Setting the Course to Low Carbon Shipping examines new fuels, technologies and operational measures and matches that with forecasts for the world’s key trade lanes to envision what shipping may look like in 2030 and 2050.The second of two ‘Outlook’ documents – the first was published in June 2019 – it applies what ABS currently…

06 Apr 2020

COVID-19 Cuts a Swath Through Containership Charter Earnings -MSI

© Oliver Hoffmann / Adobe Stock

While the implications of COVID-19 for containership demand and freight rates are directionally clear, the time charter market often marches to its own drum.The latest Container Shipping Forecaster from Maritime Strategies International analyzes the impact of the pandemic on time charter markets in the light of reduced demand and falling fright rates.Containership time charter rates have broadly retreated in recent weeks, and since the start of 2020 the majority of benchmarks have seen earnings retreat by 10-15% - hardly a historic correction.

23 Mar 2020

Could Coronavirus Disruption Offer an Opportunity for China Shipyards?

© Igor Yu. Groshev / Adobe Stock

A decline in the rate of infections in China provides yards with the opportunity to reorganize their delivery schedules to address an approaching output slump, says Maritime Strategies International (MSI)The welcome news of declining rates of coronavirus infections in China, together with steps already in place and still to come in terms of government intervention, provide the barest glimmer of good news in the dry bulk market.But the impact on dry bulk shipping has gone much further than demand…

02 Aug 2019

MSI Unveils Digital Platform

Dr. Adam Kent, Managing Director. Photo: Maritime Strategies International

UK-based shipping consultant Maritime Strategies International (MSI) has unveiled MSI HORIZON, a new digital platform which enables clients to access the consultancy’s proprietary macro and shipping market models and asset valuations data via a single interface.According to a release, the creation of an integrated data platform means MSI clients can quickly and easily run market simulations and see the results across multiple shipping sectors.This includes creating their own forward…

27 Jun 2019

NorShipping 2019: A “Koselig” Event

Dr. Kirsi Tikka, Executive Vice President and Senior Maritime Advisor at ABS (foreground) and Niklas Carlen from MSI and Gurinder Singh from ABS (background) during the announcement of the Setting the Course to Low Carbon Shipping vision document. Photo Credit: Joseph DiRenzo

"Koselig" is a Norwegian adjective used to describe situations that give a feeling of comfort, warmth, and relaxation. The NorShipping exhibition and conference, one of the largest in northern Europe, could definitely be described as koselig. Occurring in Oslo, Norway between June 4-7, 2019, the conference featured close to 1,000 exhibitors from around the world. With the prominently featured Blue Economy Hall, terms such as marine sustainability and environmental ocean awareness held the center stage at a number of the events.

22 Oct 2018

Scrubber-fitted Dry Bulk Vessels to Command Premiums -MSI

© Alexey Lesik / Adobe Stock

A two-tier market will reward early adopters with higher timecharter rates and asset values as cost of low sulphur fuel increases dramatically, says research and consultancy firm Maritime Strategies International (MSI).According to MSI, scrubber-fitted dry bulk vessels could be earning a significant premium over those burning more expensive low sulphur fuel and higher asset values will reward those owners that fitted the technology early.In an article ‘Scrubbing Up: the impact…

19 Jul 2018

EU Must Speed Up Approvals of Asian Shipbeaking Yards

Graph: MSI Foresight

The European Union should step up its assessment of Asian shipbreaking yards to allow the effective implementation of the Hong Kong Convention, said Maritime Strategies International (MSI).In its MSI Foresight, the independent research and consultancy firm noted that by December 31 2018, all vessels flying the flag of an EU member state (around 12% of the current global merchant fleet) will need to comply with the EU Ship Recycling Regulation (SRR); the rule that brought the Hong Kong Convention into EU law.From 2019 onwards…

23 Feb 2018

Dry Bulk Market Looks Up: J. Lauritzen

Lauritzen Bulkers. Photo:  J. Lauritzen

Both the dry bulk market and the market for small gas carriers are anticipated to benefit from the expected rise in economic activity in 2018, more so as supply growth will be rather limited in both segments, says J. Lauritzen, the Danish shipping company with worldwide operations. For dry bulk though, slow steaming and congestion are at levels where capacity releases could dent the rise. After strong rises in dry bulk rates in 2017, the outlook for 2018 is for continuation of this trend, but at a lower rate of change. Tonnage prices are forecast to continue increasing.

02 Nov 2017

Are South Korean Shipbuilders Back from the Abyss?

(Photo: Samsung Heavy Industries)

Sparks light up the night-shift at giant shipyards on Korea’s southeast coast, as welders and fitters at some of the world’s biggest marine engineers forge next-generation container ships, oil rigs and even ice-breaking tankers in a bid to clamber out of a global industry abyss. Sunk by drastic cuts in orders from customers hit by the 2008 financial crisis, South Korea’s shipping landscape has been littered with bankruptcies and billion-dollar losses. But some, like Busan’s DSME, are adding innovation to craftsmanship to tap new demand for nimbler ships and offshore energy platforms.

16 Aug 2017

Shifting Oil Market Dynamics Key to Tanker Trade Prospects -MSI

© Kovalenko I/ Adobe Stock

The Q3 2017 tanker market is proving vexatious for owners still struggling with the effects of fleet oversupply. But in its latest monthly forecast, Maritime Strategies International (MSI) observes that changing trade patterns could help stabilize the market toward year-end and into 2018. With all-OPEC crude exports setting record highs in July, the cartel’s attempts at lowering production are clearly open to question. There was a reduction in flows from OPEC’s Gulf producers while China’s imports tumbled to seven-month lows in July.

12 Apr 2017

MPC Rolls Out New Box Ship Investment Firm

Photo: MPC Capital AG

MPC Capital AG, an international asset and investment manager, has initiated an investment company with a focus on small-size container ships between 1,000 and 3,000 TEU. The newly formed 'MPC Container Ships AS' raised USD 100 million in equity in a private placement towards international institutional investors and family offices in the Norwegian capital market. Following its corporate investment strategy, MPC Capital is a co-investor. Based on the current pipeline exceeding 100 vessels, capital proceeds are expected to be fully deployed within 2017.

21 Feb 2017

MSI: OPEC’s cut is deepest for VLCC, Suezmax markets

Maritime Strategies International (MSI), a leading independent research and consultancy has forecast a testing time for the crude tanker market over the next six months – and perhaps longer if OPEC is successful in extending production cuts beyond the first half of 2017. In its latest Tanker Freight Forecaster* MSI notes that the VLCC and Suezmax markets moved unequivocally downwards in January, with spot rates sliding rapidly from a seasonally strong December. Pressure has persisted in these sectors in February leaving the crude tanker spot market under increasing strain. More mixed dynamics and volatile conditions characterised the Aframax and product tanker sectors in January…

16 Jan 2017

Dry Bulk: Less Pain, Not Much Gain

© Volodymyr Kyrylyuk/ Adobe Stock

The dry bulk market’s strong end to 2016 is unlikely to last long into 2017, according to the latest research from Maritime Strategies International. In its latest quarterly dry bulk market report*, MSI predicts a depressed year for rates in 2017, a year marked by multiple risks to recovery. Stronger freight markets in Q4 2016 had been broadly expected by MSI, albeit for slightly different reasons. While iron ore trade undershot its expectations, coal trade overshot them with geographical imbalances playing a key role.

21 Nov 2016

‘Frothy’ Capesize Sector Threatens New Year Hangover for Dry Bulk

Photo: BSM

Maritime Strategies International (MSI) is forecasting a firm festive season for the dry bulk market, swiftly followed by a New Year comedown. In its latest Dry Bulk Freight Forecaster* MSI notes that after a steady fall in average daily TCE spot earnings in October, November saw an inflection point for Capesizes, with rates soaring to over $16,000/day, the highest since mid-2015. Some of this strength has translated to the Panamax market, although Supramax and Handysize earnings have been broadly unaffected.

10 Nov 2016

Shipping Recovery Faces Supply/Demand Challenges

Photo: Maersk Line

The shipping industry faces a stormy road to recovery, with uneven supply/demand trends set to test the nerve of investors and operators, according to independent research and consultancy firm Maritime Strategies International (MSI). Addressing the Hansa Forum in Hamburg, Germany this week, MSI Senior Analyst James Frew warned that the industry will continue to face multiple challenges to a sustained recovery despite positive demand fundamentals. “The commodity shipping sectors…

07 Nov 2016

Charter Owners, Operators Confront Container Market’s ‘Great Divergence’

Photo: Hapag-Lloyd

The latest Container Shipping Forecaster from Maritime Strategies International highlights the contrasting fortunes of liner operators and tonnage providers. The entire container shipping industry remains under significant pressure. Whilst freight rates have improved marginally from the extreme lows seen over the middle of the year, most liner companies are now at best breaking even, with weaker lines still probably in a loss-making position. The situation is even worse for charter owners, with vessel earnings marooned below operating costs for most mid-sized vessel classes.

22 Aug 2016

Tanker Market: ‘New Normal’ Drives Downbeat Summer Sentiment

Antigone (Photo: Euronav)

The tanker market is forecast to see challenging conditions with technical and structural factors impacting earnings, according to independent research and consultancy firm Maritime Strategies International (MSI). In its latest Tanker Freight Forecaster, MSI dismisses claims that current conditions in the bellwether VLCC freight market are entirely due to seasonality. Instead, MSI says dynamics reflect lower rates of crude import growth across the year combined with reduced waiting times and, in particular, much higher deliveries.

18 Aug 2016

Q4 Bounce Forecast for Dry Bulk Market

File photo: Eagle Bulk Shipping

The Q4 bounce – a seasonal staple of the dry bulk markets – looks likely for Capesize and Panamax segments, but the effects may be limited. Independent research and consultancy firm Maritime Strategies International (MSI) is forecasting a fourth quarter bounce in dry bulk market earnings, driven by improving iron ore, coal and grain trades. In its latest Dry Bulk Freight Forecaster, MSI sees positive signs beyond the traditional summer lull in chartering activity for both the Capesize and Panamax sectors.

11 Aug 2016

Newbuild Volatility to Alter Future Shipping Cycles -MSI

Photo: Robert Kunkel

Independent research and consultancy firm Maritime Strategies International (MSI) has forecast a structural change to future shipping cycles, driven by increased volatility in newbuilding activity. In an article by Dr. Adam Kent, MSI notes that as a consequence of the current glut of excess shipyard capacity, many yards will be well-positioned to take orders and deliver within two years, should freight markets show improvement. “This may mean that we are set to see a something of a structural change in the shipping cycles going forward…

11 Jul 2016

Brexit to Hinder Container Shipping Recovery -MSI

File photo: CMA CGM

The U.K. Brexit vote will have far-reaching effects on the container shipping market, despite the country’s relatively minor role in global trades, according to industry research and consultancy firm Maritime Strategies International (MSI). MSI’s analysis of the impact of the U.K. Brexit vote on the container shipping sector finds that amid the short term political and economic uncertainty, the downside risks for container shipping have been extended beyond 2016 and into 2017 as the risk of recession grows. In and of itself, the impact of reduced U.K.

19 Apr 2016

Capesize ‘Uptick’ Not Strong Enough for an Upsurge

April 19, 2016. The latest Dry Bulk Freight Forecaster from Maritime Strategies International* analyses the recent uptick in the Capesize market and considers the positive trends and mitigating factors. MSI finds the indicators are relatively positive in the short-term for iron ore trade. On the supply-side, iron ore prices of $50-60/tonne are in profitable territory for the big iron ore miners and will no doubt support the ramp up of new export capacity in Australia and Brazil. On the demand side, an uptick in steel prices and steel production in China in March underpins more positive sentiment. In addition, concerns of high iron ore stockpiles in China are overplayed…

11 Apr 2016

Mixed Prospects for Container Shipping

Photo: Cosco

The latest Container Shipping Forecaster from Maritime Strategies International (MSI) makes a more optimistic forecast on the demand side. Though its supply-side predictions are broadly aligned with those of Drewry and Alphaliner, MSI's  trade growth estimates for 2016 are more than double those of the others. Much of this positivity rests on an interpretation of the dynamics of trade volumes on the Asia-Europe route, with MSI ascribing much of the weakness in 2015 to short-term currency and inventory effects and 2016 seeing a reversion to fundamentals-driven growth.

04 Apr 2016

Dry Bulk Market in Historically Bad State -MSI

Figure 1 (Image: MSI)

Dry bulk sector revisits 1980s lows and faces uncertain longer term outlook; with the market near bottom, attention is turning toward the length of the downturn, the effect on asset values and the impact of broader demand side changes. In terms of annual average fleet employment rates, the dry bulk market has now dropped to levels last seen over 20 years ago in 1992, according to the latest quarterly dry bulk market forecast from Maritime Strategies International (MSI). However, current time charter rates of $5,700/day for Panamax vessels are much worse now than the $9,500/day rates seen then.

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