HMM (previously known as Hyundai Merchant Marine) is making some big moves this year in regards to the sizes of their vessels. On April 23, 2020 the “HMM Algeciras” set sail on it first voyage.  This vessel is the first vessel to hold up to 24,000 TEU’s.  This vessel is the first of the twelve 24,000 TEU-class vessels to be delivered until September 2020.   This particular vessel was deployed on the far east service. Some of the ports, but not all the ports the vessel will be stopping at, are as follows: Qingdao, Busan, Hamburg, Antwerp, London Gateway, then Singapore via Suez Canal.

The HMM Algeciras just arrived in London, and took about 6 months of planning to get ready for the arrival of the vessel. Just to give some perspective of this monster of a ship, the average container ship holds between ten to fifteen thousand TEU’s per vessel. These new vessels are able to hold just about double the number of containers of what the normal cargo ships handle.

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Photo Credit: HMM

Unfortunately, what the HMM did not plan for was a Pandemic that is affecting the shipping industry. With cancelled and blank sailings, the vessels are not being utilized as the line had hoped. With rates higher now than they were this time last year, the lines are rapidly making changes and adjustments to accommodate both the customer interest and the lines interest. The vessels are going to join the Alliance, which consist of the following lines Hapag-Lloyd, Ocean Network Express, Yang Ming, and HMM. Going forward the plan is to replace 11 vessel string of 15,000 TEU’s.  The lines will share the vessels going forward.

With these mega ships it does not mean that every port will be able to take the vessels due to the size and the depth of the water. Right now, these vessels are just servicing the Asia-North Europe Trade lane. Hopefully going forward the vessel will be available at more ports but only time will tell when and where these vessels will become available. In the meantime, if you have any foreign to foreign shipments, please reach out to cross trade department to see how this new vessel may benefit you and your customer.

Written by: Stephanie Blanche

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