Container volumes at Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) grew by 3.6% to 6.3m teu in 2017, while the carrier’s parent company returned to profit.
Volumes on OOCL’s Trans-Pacific and Asia-Europe routes performed considerably well, growing by 16.3% and 19.7% respectively.
Orient Overseas (International) Limited (OOIL), which counts OOCL as a subsidiary, recorded a net profit of US$138m in 2017 after posting a loss of US$219m the previous year.
OOIL’s revenue increased by 15.1% to US$6.1bn, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) jumped by almost 140% to US$691.1m.
OOIL chairman, Mr C C Tung, attributed the positive year to the Ocean Alliance network and healthier-than-expected world economy: “One of the cornerstone strategies for many years of the OOIL group has been to work in alliance.
“Alliance membership continues to deliver meaningful benefits in terms of network and scale, and very much remains part of delivering our growth strategy.
“Following a decade of low growth, we saw healthier performance in both GDP and trade volumes across most of the world’s major economies.
“This synchronicity of growth, a rare phenomenon in recent memory, may bode well for the sustainability of the recovery.”
The company received five of six 21,413 teu vessels in 2017, receiving the last in January 2018, and Tung said upsizing vessels on certain routes was key.
He said: “These titans of the sea provide us not only with additional capacity, but also with a more efficient cost base.”
Another milestone for OOIL was the completion of Phase II at the company’s Long Beach Container Terminal, US, which went into operation in October, 2017.
OOIL is currently preparing for its proposed US$6.3bn acquisition by COSCO Shipping Holdings and Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG).