New fleet launch imminent

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 01 July, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 01 July, 1998, 12:00am

A venture between Capital Steel Group of the mainland and Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation of Britain that will have the world's biggest capesize dry bulk carrier fleet will start operating in Hong Kong on July 7.

The companies each will have a 50 per cent share of the venture, which will have assets of US$633 million in 26 bulk carriers, Beijing Youth Daily said yesterday.

Each ship will have capacity of between 110,000 and 210,000 tonnes, and the fleet's total tonnage will amount to 4.2 million tonnes.

The fleet will be used to ship iron ore from Peru as well as other raw materials from South Africa and Australia and to compete for business in the international market.

Capital set up a fleet in 1993 with nine ships to bring to the mainland raw materials from abroad.

The venture represents one step in Capital's diversification out of steel into real estate, high-technology products, foreign trade and services.

Capital is one of the mainland's biggest steel producers with an average annual output of eight million tonnes.