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Canal Competitiveness in Question

(The Bulletin Panama)

Container ships with dimensions exceeding the capacity of the expanded Panama Canal put into question the country’s readiness to receive them.

Although the increasing size of container ships on the pretext of economies of scale has its limits, the main shipowners are engaged in a race to build ships of 18,000 TEU and more. Earlier this year, Evergreen Line announced it had ordered 11 mega container ships of 20,000 containers, and on February 4 the Danish owner Maersk Line ordered 10 mega ships with similar capacity, to be delivered this year.

The fever for huge container ships with dimensions exceeding the capacity of the expanded Panama Canal, began in 2006 when Maersk announced the construction of the huge ship Emma Maersk, capable of carrying up to 15,000 TEUs. Then, in February 2011, the same shipping company ordered the first 10 Triple E vessels with capacity for 18,000 TEUs, and in June of that year ordered 10 more. Click here to read more.