A mass of orders for 82000DWT bulk carrier
Recently, shipowners ordered massive 82000DWT bulk carriers.
According to the official news, Qingdao Shipyard Co., Ltd. has signed an order with Seatankers Group of Norway's John Fredricksen recently to build four 82000DWT bulk carriers and still has four options.
The shipyard said the ship is of 229 meters in length, 32.26 meters in width, 20.35 meters in depth, 12.2 meters in design draft, 82,000 DWT and 14.0 knots in design speed, featuring “Green, Environmental-friendly, Efficiency, Safety". Developed and designed by SDARI of Shanghai Shipbuilding Research and Design Institute, it is the mainstream bulk carrier type in the shipping market which is the latest generation that meets the need of EEDI phase 3.
Another example is reported by Xinde Marine on May 11 that the well-known German shipowner company Oldendorff has decided to order a series of kamsarmax dry bulk vessels in NHT (Jiangsu New Hantong Ship Heavy Industry Co., Ltd.).
In particular, Oldendorf has decided to build three fossil-fueled dry bulk vessels of this type at NHT, and the order includes two alternative orders for three vessels, which could reach up to nine vessels then.
Not long ago, Shandong Shipping Co., Ltd. ordered 12 Kamsarmax vessels at NHT as well.
Moreover, on May 12, Hengli Shipbuilding (Dalian) Co., LTD., a subsidiary of Hengli Group, signed a contract to build four 82000DWT bulk carriers with Fortune Ocean. This contract marks Hengli Heavy Industry's formal entry into the mainstream bulk carrier construction market.
According to the latest news, after the contract above, Hengli Heavy Industry has won another order for four 82000DWT bulk carriers from a well-known Greek ship owner.
It is reported that the above ships were all developed and designed by SDARI. The institute has received orders of 300 SDARI DOLPHINE 82 ships and 120 of its fourth generation.
Besides, Xinde Marine News recently reported that Xiamen International Trade Group Corporation recently issued an additional 3.7 billion yuan, among which 1.07 billion yuan was used to purchase bunkering vessels and 2 bulk carriers, which, as far as we know, are also 82,000DWT Kamsarmax.
Obviously, Kamsarmax is very popular now.
What is Kamsarmax?
The 82,000DWT bulk carriers are known as Kamsarmax, which are larger than the Panamax while less than 229 meters in length, and can call at Karsam Port in the Republic of Guinea, where they are mainly used to load and unload bauxite ore.
This type of ship is called Kamsarmax because it is designed to meet the maximum standard that can enter the Guinean port in Kamsar, West Africa, which has the world's largest reserves of bauxite, and is capable of producing 18 million-dwt per year. The new carriers developed by the request of shipowners are very economical on this route.
Although this type of ship is mainly used for loading bauxite, it is favored by many shipowners because of its cargo suitability.
It is worth mentioning that the designed draft of it is only 12.2m, which is even shallower than that of some Ultramax and Supramax carriers, greatly improving its suitability for port.
Zhou Zhiyong, deputy director of Shanghai Shipbuilding Research and Design Institute, introduced to Xinde Marine News that SDARI improved the ship's performance through collaborative optimization based on the previous ship hulls. Through a combination of parametric modeling and numerical sump technology, the new ship model has increased displacement, reduced drag and improved propulsion efficiency. Through the cooperative optimization of general arrangement and line type, the new ship can control the total longitudinal bending and keep parts like cabin capacity advanced. The outfitting is also lighter and more effective. Therefore, the every indicator of the ship is excellent.
"I think the current Kamsarmax can be seen as a modern Panamax (65,000-80,000 dwt)," Ralph Leszczynski, principal analyst at shipping brokerage Banchero Costa, told Xinde Marine News. This is because the trade routes of Kamsarmax are not significantly different from those of conventional panamax.
Urgent need of updating
Mr. Ralph Leszczynski said a large number of Panamax were built between 1994 and 2000 and would soon need to be dismantled.
In fact, Xinde Marine News has observed that Setankers sold three Panamax ships (built in 2013) shortly before the aforementioned eight 82000dwt ships were ordered.
Leszczynski went on, saying currently, an average of 50-60 Panamax will be dismantled per year over the next few years.
From this perspective, even only to replace the dismantled Panamax, an average of about 50 Kamsarmax will need to be ordered each year.
In addition, VesselsValue data show that there are currently 1,040 Panamax can only load less than 80,000 DWT, accounting for 39.2 percent of the total number of vessels in operation. At the same time, the proportion of Panamax over 20 years old is about 14%. Therefore, Vincent Zhang, senior director of VesselsValue China, believes that the loading capacity of these ships is less than that of the current Kamsarmax, and fossil-fueled ships are less economical. So, under the increasingly strict decarbonization rules, their competitiveness is declining year by year.
Zhou Zhiyong told Xinde Marine News that, equipped with energy-saving conduit and boss cap fin, the 82000dwt bulk carrier designed by SDARI has a speed of 14.0 knots under draft, endurance of 25,000 nautical miles, and daily fuel consumption of the main engine is only 24.6 tons per day.
Another source in the industry told Xinde Marine that due to the latest environmental regulations, many shippers are asking for environment-friendly ships that meet the emission regulations to load their cargo. So it may be difficult for some old Panama to compete in the future, as shippers may not accept such ships anymore.
Demands for goods remain stable
Ralph Leszczynski told Xinde Marine that both Panamax and kamsarmax carry coal as their main cargo (about 50 percent), with some soybean, grain and ore cargoes also being carried.
He believes that a few years ago, most people were sceptical about the long-term prospects of the coal trade and assumed that as we would shift to gas and renewables, which means the coal trade would peak in the next few years and then decline steadily.
Over the past few years, however, the turmoil caused by the war in Ukraine, sanctions against Russia and the resulting high energy prices and natural gas shortages, has actually driven a phenomenal increase in demand for coal and, in particular, a huge increase in tons of nautical miles of coal traded.
In addition, Europe especially needs to diversify its energy structure and depends less on Russian pipeline gas, for example, importing coal from South Africa and even Australia is now a solution and the situation will last for years.
Moreover, because of high overall energy costs, countries like India and China will still stick with coal for quite some time, and whether we like it or not, coal remains one of the cheapest sources of energy available.
Leszczynski concluded that Panamax/Kamsarmax vessels should remain popular in the market for longer than we thought.
The opinions expressed herein are the author's and not necessarily those of The Xinde Marine News.