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  7th July 2008 - STAR MARITIME

UASC orders nine container ships

UNITED Arab Shipping Company SAG (UASC) has ordered nine 13,100 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) capacity container ships valued at US$1.5bil from Samsung Heavy Industries Co Ltd.

The shipbuilding contract is the biggest container ship new building order ever placed to date, UASC said in a statement.

UASC chairman Sheikh Ali Al Thani said: “We are very happy to have chosen Samsung Heavy Industries to build these large container ships for UASC.

“Samsung Heavy Industries was chosen from a long list of highly reputed and skilled shipbuilders, and the contract signed recently is the fruit of long and hard negotiations between the two companies.”

The first of the nine vessels will be delivered to UASC in October 2010, and the rest will follow accordingly, with the last vessel delivery scheduled in fourth quarter of 2011.

UASC currently operates a fleet of 41 container vessels.

Going forward, UASC expects three vessels to be delivered this year and another 10 in 2009.

By the time the shipping line receives its last vessel ordered from Samsung Heavy Industries in 2010, its fleet will comprise over 60 modern container ships with a total capacity of 270,000 TEUs.

Meanwhile, UASC Malaysia Sdn Bhd country general manager Desmond Yong told StarBiz that Malaysian ports and local authorities should grab the opportunities to attract more UASC ships to call at local our ports.

Generally, UASC runs ten services between Asia and Europe, Asia and the Middle East, Asia and the Mediterranean, and Asia and the US.

“Our ports need to explore the unique marketing propositions to enable UASC ships to make more calls at our ports.

“We have to be extra competitive as other emerging regional ports in Thailand and Vietnam are growing fast and not far behind us,” he said.


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