Japan shipyard Tsuneishi building mid-size carriers for SE Asia
TOKYO, NNA – Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co. of Japan is shifting its focus from building bulk carriers to making compact “feeder” containerships that meet intermodal transportation needs in Southeast Asia.
Feeder ships gather containers from different ports and carry them to central terminals for longer-haul transportation by bigger ships or for loading onto trucks and rail cars.
Earlier this month, Tsuneishi Heavy Industries (Cebu) Inc. in the Philippines launched a 1,944-TEU feeder container equipped to carry 1,944 twenty-foot boxes.
Tsuneishi said demand for smaller ships will increase because full-size vessels on international routes cannot fit into many ports in Southeast Asia.
Yutaro Shiga, a spokesman at Tsuneishi Holdings Corp., declined to say who would take delivery of the first new vessel and when.
The Japanese firm, based in Fukuyama, Hiroshima Prefecture in western Japan, is enhancing its lineup of mid-sized bulkers, tankers and containerships to meet global demand.
“We are trying to establish a manufacturing structure in the Philippines and China,” Shiga said.
The Philippine unit has built mostly bulkers with freight capacities in a range of 30,000 tons to 180,000 tons.
Tsuneishi has yards in Japan, China, Paraguay and the Philippines. It expects to launch a total of 47 vessels this year, up from 40 last year, with the Philippine dock building 19, up from 18, according to Shiga.