Samsung Heavy Industries`s LNG carrier.
South Korean shipyards are likely to return to the world’s top rank in terms of 2018 order book after they stayed behind Chinese rivals for the last seven years.
According to British shipbuilding and marine industry tracker Clarkson Research Services on Tuesday, Korean shipbuilders clinched combined orders of 10.26 compensated gross tonnage (CGT) from January to October, accounting for the largest 45 percent of global orders of 23.05 million CGT.
Korean shipyards have kept up sound performance by winning orders exceeding 10 million CGT in September, the fastest pace since 2015. They are likely to take over Chinese competitors who secured 7.1 million CGT orders or 31 percent of global orders during the January-October period after lagging behind them since 2011.
The global shipbuilding industry has been showing signs of recovery. The cumulative order new order volume for January-October period has been on a steady increase for the last three years - 10.99 million CGT in 2016, 20.49 million CGT in 2017 and 23.05 million CGT in 2018.
For October alone, Chinese shipbuilders won the largest orders of 730,000 CGT (44 percent), followed by Korean players with 220,000 CGT (31 percent) and Italy 120,000 CGT (16 percent).
As of the end of October, the global ship order backlog amounted to 77.81 million CGT, down 1.13 million CGT from the previous month. By country, China had the largest backlog of 27.81 million CGT (36 percent), followed by Korea with 20.64 million CGT (27 percent) and Japan with 13.32 million CGT (17 percent), according to Clarkson.
The Clarkson Newbuilding Price Index (NPI) remained unchanged from the previous month at 130 points. The index measures the average price of vessels compared to the reference value of January 1988 as 100. A reading above 100 means the upward movement in ship prices.
By Hwang Soon-min and Choi Mira
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