China Ocean Shipping Co (Cosco) has awarded Japanese yard Imabari a US$200m contract to build three 5.500 ten container ships. Shipyards in China and South Korea were said to be unable to meet Cosco 5 requirement of delivering the ships by 2005. While the company has bought container ships from Japan before. it has recently turned to Chinese yards for much of its new medium-sized tonnage.
The line has also ordered two bulk carriers in China for around US$21 m each. They will be constricted by Hudong Zhongzhu shipyard in Shanghai. The 73,000-dwt bulkcarriers, which are not so time sensitive on delivery dates, will be delivered in December 2005 and June 2006.
Cosco has increased its bulk carrier fleet profile in recent months, having earlier confirmed that Jiangnan Shipyard would build two ships of around 70,000 tonnes. These vessels will be delivered during the second half of next year.
Meanwhile, Cosco also plans to increase its tanker fleet with orders for three 74.000-dwt panamax crude-oil tankers at Dalian New Shipbuilding for delivery in 2005.