Hanjin Shipping will take delivery on April 1 of the first of the five huge post-Panamax ships it ordered in June 2011 with capacities of 13,000 20-foot equivalent units.
The 13,092-TEU Hanjin Sooho, built by Hyundai Heavy Industries in South Korea, will be deployed on the NE6 joint Asia-Europe service operated by Green Alliance of Cosco, “K” Line, Hanjin and Yang Ming, according to the Shanghai logistics provider JCtrans.
The delivery of the new ships comes at a time when the Asia-Europe trade is suffering from an overcapacity of vessels that has depressed freight rates over the last year.
The second and third vessels, Hanjin Asia and Hanjin Europe, will be delivered on the April 15 and May 6 respectively. All three vessels will replace vessels averaging 9,000 TEUs on the NE6 loop that will be cascaded onto other trade lanes.
By mid-March, the existing average weekly capacity of the NE6 service will have increased from 9,300 TEUs to 11,050 TEUs, an increase of just over 18 per cent. The port rotation of the NE6 service starting April 1 will be: Tianjin, Kwangyang, Busan, Shanghai, Singapore, Algeciras, Hamburg, Rotterdam, Le Havre, Algeciras, Singapore, Hong Kong and back to Tianjin.