Korean Register fleet hits record high
THE Korean Register of Shipping has seen its classed fleet hit an all-time high of 30m gt, a figure it predicts will hit 40m gt by 2010 when it celebrates the 50th anniversary of its foundation. Much of the growth - which represents a 4m gt surge on last year’s tally - has been driven largely by the current buoyancy of the newbuilding market, with a wide range of vessel types being built to the International Association of Classification Society member’s rules. Korean Register Chief Executive Oh Kong-gyun said: “We’ve been focusing on international growth and the Chinese market has been a particular target. We’ve expanded our resources in China to provide a wide range of technical support to the local shipyards and opened two additional Chinese branch offices in Nanjing and Ningbo. As a result, of the 143 new KR-classed vessels being built outside Korea, 69 are to be built in China.” Recent clients include Greek owner Danaos Shipping, which is classing three 10,000 teu containerships with KR, and Sinochem Shipping, which will class four chemtanker newbuildings with the society. Mr Oh added that an increasing number of Norwegian, Japanese and Turkish owners are also requesting newbuilding classification surveys from the Korean Register. KR continues to develop its range of services, technical expertise and global reach into 2008. Plans are in place to extend its international network in Mumbai, Durban, New Orleans, Taipei and Tianjin, bringing its total number of branch offices to over 50. It also has plans to establish regional head offices in China and Europe later this year.
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