Idle box fleet at pre-recession levels

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The number of idle container ships is at a 30-month low, with 71 ships recorded as unemployed, according to a survey of the container fleet by Alphaliner last week.

The survey said the current unemployed capacity is 134,000 TEUs, or 0.9 per cent of the overall cellular fleet.  This represents the lowest idle capacity level recorded since the start of the financial crisis in September 2008.

The report also forecasts that apart from a few mothballed ships and some damaged units, essentially the entire usable cellular fleet under carriers’ control will be employed by the end of May.

At the peak of the recession late in the year 2009, close to 400 ships controlled by non-operating owners and an additional 200 carrier-controlled ships were unemployed.


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