The month of June 2023 has set an all-time high for container ship newbuilding deliveries in a single month, with 277,873 TEUs hitting the water.
Ships released by the yards include ONE’s 24,136 TEU ONE Innovation, Hapag-Lloyd’s 23,660 TEU Berlin Express, MSC’s 24,346 TEU MSC Mariella and 15,264 TEU MSC Taylor, Seaspan Corporation’s 15,616 TEU Maersk Charleston, Evergreen Marine Corporation’s 15,342 TEU Ever Max and Capital Ship Management’s 13,312 TEU Buenaventura Express.
In the first six months of 2023, 148 ships of 975,344 TEUs entered service, while over 1.2 million TEUs are scheduled to be delivered in the second half of the year. Linerlytica said in its latest report that total deliveries of 2.2 million TEUs in 2023 will be a new annual delivery record.
Just 47 ships amounting to 84,685 TEUs were deleted in the first half as new capacity continues to outdo demolitions.
Linerlytica noted, “The current pace of capacity deletions is well below the record high of 695,850 TEUs that were removed in 2016. Subdued scrapping numbers dent hopes that the unbridled capacity growth can be contained.”
The record deliveries will add more downward pressure to freight rates, even though Transpacific rates rose on 1 July.
Shanghai-US West Coast rates went up by 20% from 24 June, to US$1,408/TEU, while Shanghai-US East Coast rates rose by 15%, to US$2,368/FEU. However, China-Europe rates remained under pressure, with rates slipping 4% to US$763/TEU.
Linerlytica is certain that attempts to raise rates will be futile as the glut of capacity worsens. The consultancy said, “Carriers are continuing to push for twice-monthly rate increases but the retention rate remains dismal. The July general rate increase will stick for
one more week before rate discounts creep back with limited capacity cutbacks and low capacity utilisation keeping a lid on market sentiment.”