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The global bulk carrier fleet will slow down

The global fleet of bulk carriers, ships that are dedicated to the transport of dry bulk cargo, will slow down in 2022, according to projections from the Golden Ocean company.

Golden Ocean is the largest listed Capesize ship owner in the world.

The global fleet of dry bulk carriers amounted to 879.0 million deadweight tonnage (dwt) at the end of 2020 compared to 845.4 million dwt at the end of 2019.

At the same time, total deliveries of new construction amounted to 48.8 million dwt in 2020, which is equivalent to 5.8% growth of the fleet at the beginning of the year.

At the end of 2020, the total order book was approximately 5.9% of capacity on the water.

According to Golden Ocean, ships scheduled for delivery in 2021 are estimated to represent 4.2% of the shipping fleet.

A portion of these vessels were also expected to be delivered in 2020, but their deliveries were delayed as shipyards and related supply chains suffered disruptions to normal operations due to travel restrictions and other factors triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Through March 2021, fleet growth was expected to decline significantly to 2.0% in 2022.

World fleet

According to industry sources, a total of 15.4 million dwt were scrapped during 2020, representing 1.8% of the world fleet at the beginning of the year and almost double the scrapping level of 2019.

Scrapping activity rose throughout the year, despite job disruptions at junkyards caused by the pandemic that reduced activity in the second quarter of 2020 and despite the rapid increase in freight rates that occurred around end of the same quarter.

But the emergence of the pandemic was not the only cause of the scrapping of elevated vessels, as it coincided with the implementation of low-sulfur fuel regulations that reduce the economic viability of older, less fuel-efficient vessels.

Also these new regulations contributed to an increase in scrapping in the fourth quarter of 2019 and will likely affect the willingness of owners of older and inefficient vessels to continue operating their vessels should rates drop to unprofitable levels.

 

Redacción Opportimes

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