Japanese export ship orders grew for the first time in six months in October on a year-on-year basis, rising a strong 26.5 percent to 854,570 gross tons, according to the Japan Ship Exporters’ Association.
The October gross tonnage represents a 3.5-fold increase from September. It is unclear whether the October growth is a sign of the beginning of a long-awaited recovery in Japanese export ship orders or just a temporary blip.
Japanese shipbuilders received orders for 21 export ships — 20 bulk carriers and one general cargo vessel — in October. The 21 ships total 398,120 compensated gross tons.
In the first seven months of fiscal 2011, which started in April, Japanese export ship orders totaled 3,937,972 gross tons, down 48.2 percent from the same period last year.
Japanese shipbuilders received orders for 107 export ships — 100 bulk carriers, five general cargo vessels and two marine resource research vessels — in the April-October period. The 107 ships total 1,925,868 compensated gross tons.
Kazuaki Kama, the Shipbuilders’ Association of Japan’s chairman, said at a press conference last week that the current situation surrounding the Japanese shipbuilding industry remains difficult, largely because the yen is value at record high levels.
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