Top 40 Container Carriers

2016 is shaping up to be a difficult year for the JOC's Top 40 Container Carriers. Container lines are struggling against overcapacity and slack demand that they seem unable to shake. While container ship scrapping is set to reach record levels in 2016, the impact on overall global capacity is unlikely to provide ocean carriers any sustained relief.

Acquisitions have also reshaped the industry this year, with CMA CGM completing its takeover of NOL and its APL brand. Cosco Shipping and China Shipping Container Lines in February completed their merging into China Cosco Shipping and Hapag-Lloyd and United Arab Shipping Company have also agreed to a merger.

2016 is also noteworthy because of the redrawing of vessel-sharing agreements that have come to dominate the industry. In 2016 shippers learned that from April 2017 the 2M Alliance will now have three members, Maersk Line, Meditteranean Shipping Co., and Hyundai Merchant Marine. The Ocean Alliance of Evegreen Line, Orient Overseas Container Line, China Cosco Shipping, and CMA CGM, including its recent NOL acquisition, will be the largest on east-west trades. The last major VSA is known as THE Alliance and is made up of Yang Ming Line, Hanjin Shipping, MOL, "K" Line, NYK Line, Hapag-Lloyd, and UASC.


Previous rankings

Top 40 Container Carriers, U.S. Import and Export Trades, January-December 2015

Top 40 Container Carriers in U.S. Export Trade, January-December 2014

Top 40 Container Carriers in U.S. Import Trade, January-December 2014

Top 40 Container Carriers in U.S. Export Trade, January-September 2014

Top 40 Container Carriers in U.S. Import Trade, January-September 2014 

Top 40 Container Carriers in U.S. Export Trade, 2013

Top 40 Container Carriers in U.S. Import Trade, 2013

Top 40 Carriers in U.S. Containerized Trade in the First Half of 2013

Top 40 Carriers in U.S. Containerized Trade in 2012

News & Analysis

Hanjin Shipping has until Sept. 4 to meet the conditions set by its creditors, and the South Korean government has expressed reluctance to bail out the struggling container line.
25 Aug 2016
Hanjin Shipping on Thursday submitted its plan to boost liquidity to the Korea Development Bank.
20 Apr 2016
The Ocean Alliance was born in Shanghai on Wednesday as CMA CGM, China Cosco Shipping, Evergreen Line and OOCL signed a memorandum of understanding to offer more than 40 global services connecting markets in Asia, Europe and the United States.
Hyundai New York container ship
29 Feb 2016
Hyundai Merchant Marine has once again rejected speculation of a merger with fellow South Korean carrier Hanjin Shipping and clarified the role of a financial adviser serving the ailing ocean carrier.
22 Feb 2016
The newly formed China Cosco Shipping Corp. aims to become the third-largest global container line by boosting its fleet by at least 50,000 twenty-foot-equivalent units to more than 2 million TEUs by the end of 2018.
18 Feb 2016
China Cosco Shipping Corporation was officially launched in Shanghai, bringing together the mainland’s two largest carriers and amassing a huge armada of container ships, bulk carriers and tankers that far out strip those of its rivals.
06 Jan 2016
If an uncertain global economy wasn’t enough for shippers and transportation providers, 2016 will be filled with major changes, from the massive container shipping weight mandate to liner consolidation. Other threats and opportunities will likely emerge during the year, but the 10 trends outlined here will definitely be in play and impact global supply chains. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.


How can alliances maintain enduring links with hubs if the alliances themselves are constantly in flux?