China Shipping Container Lines said weak rates and high fuel costs contributed to a net loss of 2.74 billion yuan ($428 million) last year, compared with a $667 million profit in 2010.
The company warned the next year or two are expected to be “characterized by uncertainty and volatility.” China Shipping said it would continue to cut costs through measures such as slow-steaming and joining shipping alliances.
China Shipping’s revenue last year tumbled 18.9 percent to $4.48 billion despite a 3.2 percent increase in volume to 7,438,002 20-foot equivalent units.
Average rates for China Shipping’s domestic services rose 4.9 percent to $262 per TEU, but average international rates declined 24.7 percent to $850 per TEU.
China Shipping said international demand slowed while container ship capacity rose. The company said slowing world economic growth was aggravated by Europe’s sovereign debt crisis and a tepid U.S. economic recovery.