French container shipping line CMA CGM has six 16,000 teu ships on order, in addition to three vessels of that size already in service, plus 10 vessels of 9,200 teu and three 2,100 teu vessels. The company had decided not to publicise this expansion programme until November.
Three of the 16,000 teu ships are scheduled for delivery in the second quarter of 2015 and the other three are due in the final quarter of that year. The newbuildings’ combined capacity comes to 208,300 teu, equivalent to almost 14% of its current fleet of 1.5m teu. Net growth may not reach this figure if any vessels are taken off charter or scrapped.
CMA CGM is part of the proposed P3 alliance with Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co. The two partners also have sizeable order books, although Maersk has not ordered anything since it contracted its first series of Triple-E ships in early 2011 and exercised options for another 10 a few months later. However, its option for a final 10 Triple-E ships was never taken up. MSC now has a large order book including 18,000 teu and 9,000 teu vessels.