Seoul Mulls "Team Korea" Carrier Alliance

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Friday October 21, 2016

In the wake of the collapse of Hanjin Shipping Co. Ltd. (Hanjin), the South Korean government is mulling a plan that will bring together small and mid-size shippers into an alliance intended support South Korea's position within the global container shipping market, Pulse reports.

An unnamed senior government official Wednesday said the government is considering launching the alliance under the name "Team Korea."

While Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) is positioned to operate as South Korea's flagship carrier, it is reported that the new national alliance will be an expansion of an existing alliance of local small and mid-size shippers operating on Southeast Asian sea routes.

Industry sources say they expect that, once the alliance is formed, members will work with Hanjin's overseas workforce in order to grow operations on both inshore and offshore routes.

Korea Shipowners' Association (KSA) and Korea Maritime Institute (KMI) are noted to have initiated momentum toward the alliance when they recently proposed a joint operation among local shippers.

Kim Young-moo, KSA Vice Chairman, at an industry seminar Wednesday, suggested local carriers review the joint operation on intra-Asia routes in order to avoid excessive competition among smaller carriers.

Last week, Ship & Bunker reported that a list of Hanjin creditors had been released, which included ten bunker companies, owed a collective $64 million.