Maersk Line cuts Asia-Europe trade capacity

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Maersk Line cuts Asia-Europe trade capacity

Shipping company Maersk Line has decided to remove 9% of its shipping capacity operating in Europe-Asia trade following an oversupply of container vessels.

A company release said the reduction will be facilitated by a vessel sharing agreement with the French container shipping line CMA-CGM, which will allow it to keep full and competitive coverage for customers.

"With this adjustment we are able to reduce our Asia – Europe capacity and improve vessel utilisation without giving up any market share we have gained over the past two years," says Maersk Line CEO Søren Skou.

"We will defend our market share position at any cost, while focusing on growing with the market and restoring profitability."

In a January report, shipping analyst Alphaliner predicted Europe-Far East container traffic would slow to 1.5% in 2012 from an estimated 2.8% in 2011, due to a weakening economic outlook in Europe.

However, the industry container vessel fleet is set to grow by 8.3% in 2012.

"The Asia – Europe trade remains the world’s busiest trade lane, however the supply of vessels currently operating on this trade simply outweighs the demand. We are therefore rationalising our service by taking out vessel capacity and thereby reducing costs," adds Maersk Line chief product and yield officer Vincent Clerc.

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