In South Korea, the crisis in the container sector triggered by the Hanjin Shipping bankruptcy, which took place over two years ago, is still causing detrimental effects, so much so that the Seoul Government has recently decided to merge the fourth and fifth national shipping companies in the container segment, Sinokor Merchant Marine Co. and Heung-A Shipping, into a single company,
The aim is to rationalize costs and restore competitiveness to a sector that is still struggling. For the time being, the two carriers will integrate their activities and offices, leading to the creation of a new entity in October.
The Korea Maritime Promotion Corporation (KMPC), a body set up last July by the government to sustain investments in the sector, will provide support to the two companies.
As a result of the merger, Sinokor and Heung will together handle something like 88,000 TEUs, becoming the third largest carrier nationwide and the nineteenth largest globally.
Translation by Giles Foster