Ship boat

Huanghai selected for order of ten SITC vessels in first deliveries

The Mingcheng SITC recently delivered. Credit SITC Container Lines

SITC Container Lines expands its fleet again, as line operators continue the tonnage race.

A spokesperson confirmed The Loadstar the company had ordered ten 1,800-teu vessels from second-tier Chinese shipbuilder Huanghai Shipbuilding.

Delivery is estimated for 2024, and while pricing for the new build was not disclosed, a sister ship commissioned by Chinese furniture maker Loctek Ergonomic Technology cost $32.6 million.

The SITC spokesperson said: “We are expanding our own fleet to secure a long-term cost advantage. Chartered vessels will be gradually replaced, while we also sell older vessels, if there are buyers.

The line explains that high charter costs make it more economical to own ships.

The intra-Asian carrier has another 36 new buildings under construction, a 2,700 teu ship; four of 2,400 TEUs; ten of 2,600 TEUs; 11 of 1,800 TEUs; and ten of 1,023 TEUs. The first 16 are being built by Yangzijiang Shipbuilding, while South Korean shipyard Dae Sun Shipbuilding & Engineering has the orders for the 1,023-teu vessels.

Second-tier shipyards have taken market share as operators and tonnage providers display a seemingly insatiable appetite for boxships in a frenzy that has seen major shipbuilders fill their berths until 2025.

In March, Shanghai-based intra-Asian carrier Asean Sea Lines booked a pair of 1,800 TEU vessels in Huanghai, guaranteeing a delivery date of August 2023. SITC therefore may have decided that Huanghai would see itself guarantee an earlier delivery date.