HMM seeking to sharply expand fleet to hone competitiveness

South Korea's top container shipper HMM Co. said Monday it will push to expand its fleet sharply over the next seven years in a bid to boost its competitive edge and secure a stable business base. Under the mid- and long-term strategy, HMM will raise its container shipping capacity to 920,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), or 84 vessels, to 1.5 million TEUs (130 ships) by 2030. In the bulk cargo sector, its fleet of 36 ships with 6.3 million dead weight tonnage (DWT) will be expanded to 110 vessels with 12.28 million DWT over the cited period. DWT is a measure of the combined weight of cargo, fuel, fresh water, ballast water, provisions, passengers and crew that a ship can carry. HMM said its new strategy is designed to cope with the reorganization of a global shipping alliance and improve the competitiveness of its core business. On top of increasing its fleet, HMM said it will ramp up efforts to hike the company's global market share by expanding its service network and diversifying shipping rou tes. HMM also said it will consider moving forward the year of achieving carbon neutrality to 2045 from 2050. In 2013, the state-run Korea Development Bank (KDB) injected 6.8 trillion won (US$4.91 billion) in public funds into troubled Hyundai Merchant Marine, HMM's predecessor, which went bankrupt and was placed under KDB control three years later. The KDB and the Korean Ocean Business Corp. hold a controlling 57.9 percent stake in HMM. Source: Yonhap News Agency