South Korea’s 14 domestic shipping lines launched a shipping alliance as predicted on Tuesday.
The Korean Shipping Partnership (KSP) was announced by the Korea Shipowners’ Association (KSA) with support from South Korea’s Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries.
The KSP alliance includes all 14 shipping container carriers in South Korea, including Hyundai Merchant Marine, the world’s 15th largest container line by capacity, as well as Goryeo Shipping, Male Shipping, Dongyang Shipping, Dongjin Shipping, Doo Shipping, Category Shipping, Janggum Merchant, Cheon Kyung Shipping, Taeyoung Merchant Marine, Pan Ocean and Hansung Line.
The move comes amid continued consolidation in the liner shipping industry and is part of South Korean government’s strategy to revive the nation’s shipping sector less than one year after the collapse of Hanjin Shipping Co., once South Korea’s flagship carrier and the seventh-largest container line in the world.
The scope of the alliance will include increasing shared cargo capacity, adding new shipping routes, and co-managing overseas terminals, with a particular focus on the intra-Asia tradelanes.
The KSP alliance is expected to begin operations beginning next year.
In October, Japan’s three largest container lines – K Line, MOL and NYK – announced a similar alliance, integrating the container shipping businesses of each member, including global terminals, into one single entity. The alliance, known as the Ocean Network Express, or ONE, will have a total capacity of around 2 million TEU, putting it in sixth place in the global rankings. The Ocean Express Network will launch April 1, 2018.
HMM is currently involved in a “strategic cooperation” with the 2M alliance, made up of Maersk and Mediterranean Shipping Company, but is not considered a full-time member.