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Record pace continues in container ship orders


Despite current declines in global cargo demand, the container ship orderbook from liner operators keeps heading for new summits, according to Alphaliner’s latest report. A significant number of orders are for vessels powered by alternative fuels.

Alphaliner commented: “There are two obvious reasons why ordering continues at such as massive scale: Firstly, most carriers are still sitting on large amounts of cash after having made record profits in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Secondly, and more importantly, it is the desire to decarbonise liner shipping that drives the ordering frenzy.”

In the first nine months of 2023, 187 container vessels were commissioned, mainly by liner operators. This adds 1.75 million TEUs of capacity and brought the orderbook for new ships to an all-time summit of 7.88 million TEUs – representing nearly 30% of the existing fleet.

Methanol-powered ships account for 52% of all new capacity ordered this year, while LNG-powered vessels represent 31% of the orders, bringing the total share of ‘green’ ships to 83%.

(MSC photo)