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Maersk continues to upgrade with new buildings

Caption: Maersk is having a total of 24 container ships built for the fleet (© Maersk)

Maersk continues to expand its order book, which is rather small by global standards. The Danes have ordered a series of Subpanamax container ships in China.

The units, each with a capacity of 3,500 TEU, are scheduled for delivery in 2026 and 2027. They will be equipped with dual-fuel engines and can reportedly run on both conventional and methanol. [ds_preview]

Brokers put the cost at €68 million per ship. In addition to six firm orders, Maersk is also said to have agreed options for five further newbuildings with the shipyard. Most recently, the No. 2 in international liner shipping in Japan entered into contracts for four freighters, each carrying almost 6,000 TEU.

Maersk is a pioneer in methanol newbuildings

Maersk was the first liner shipping company in the world to opt for methanol as its preferred “green” fuel. The Danes themselves have ordered several series of container ships in addition to the feederLaura Maersk“, which is already in service.

However, the order book of 36 ships (453,000 TEU) is still rather small compared to other competitors. It accounts for 11% of the existing fleet (4.12 million TEU). The industry leader MSC (5.6 million TEU) has launched a newbuilding program of 1.47 million TEU (122 ships, 26%), and around 330 additional ships have been purchased on the second-hand market since summer 2020, including from German shipping companies.

CMA CGM, the No. 3 in global container shipping with just under 3.6 million TEU, still has 110 ships with 1.2 million TEU (33.5%) on order. Fourth-placed Cosco (3 million TEU) has ordered 50 ships with 834,000 TEU (27.4%).

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