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Published: 15 July 2014      

Seatrade orders new box ships

Reefer cargo specialist orders two new 2,200 TEU vessels for its “Fast, Direct and Dedicated” reefer service concept.

Antwerp-based Seatrade is the world’s largest operator of specialised reefer ships. CEO Yntze Buitenwerf said the new order for cellular tonnage was “representative of a larger new building programme for the company”.

“These are specialised reefer container vessels and they will be employed in our current and newly developed trades,” stressed Buitenwerf. “They will form an integral part of our fast, direct and dedicated (FDD) service concept.”

The vessels will be built by the Yangfan Group in China and are scheduled for delivery in January 2016. Seatrade said the vessels “are of an eco design and are equipped with a high reefer capacity that equates to approximately 12,000 pallets”. This works out to around 600 standard 40’ reefer containers, or 1,200 TEU per ship, over half of their total capacity.  

The FDD concept is one Seatrade is continuing to refine as it seeks to improve the efficiency and costs of operating its specialised shipping and reefer logistics services.

Buitenwerf explained: "Transit times and associated indirect costs are increasing on services operated by larger container lines and there remains a clear demand for FDD services operated by specialised reefers, specialised reefer container vessels and hybrid vessels.”

The executive also said that expansion was on the cards and that Seatrade was “seeking oportunities to increase its fleet with further acquisitions of newbuildings and/or modern second-hand tonnage, combined with possible strategic alliances with third-party owners in the same segment.”

Currently, containers carry more than 60% of global maritime reefer traffic. Less than 20 years ago and the split was the reverse.


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