Challenging times continue for the container shipping industry, seven months after it was rocked by the sudden bankruptcy of South Korean shipping giant Hanjin.
Following Hanjin’s collapse last summer, shippers and forwarders have been increasingly concerned about the reliability of the carriers they use.
The latest carrier facing obvious troubles is Taiwanese container company Yang Ming, the world's ninth largest. The company suspended trading of its shares for two weeks at the end of April. According to the company, “the suspension [was] simply a standard procedure that is routinely carried out in the Taiwan Stock Exchange when a company implements a recapitalization.”
Private investors and the Taiwanese government have bought into the company as part of its recapitalization. However, despite the resumption of share trading, recapitalization and recent company restructuring, the carrier’s debt levels and financial performance have caused many forwarders to look elsewhere for shipping services.
The support of the Taiwanese government may offer enough protection for Yang Ming to avoid the same fate as Hanjin, however, forwarders can’t be blamed for having lingering wariness around the state of the industry.
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Information provided by: Freight Dept. - Cole International