Chellaram Shipping Hong Kong has decided to place its latest purchase, a 73,500 deadweight tonne (dwt) Panamax, on the Hong Kong register. Chellaram, formerly known as Kishinchand Chellaram Maritime Agencies, ordered the vessel from Sumitomo Heavy Industry. The vessel will be delivered in the first quarter of 1999 and will add to the company's fleet of eight. The firm has an option for a second vessel for delivery in the second half of the same year. Chellaram has placed all its new acquisitions since 1995 on the Hong Kong register, demonstrating its continued confidence in the future of the territory, which remains its base of operation. It also has two 1980s-built Handysize bulk-carriers under the Hong Kong flag. A company spokesman said the register was making its requirements less stringent than before, but in line with international standards. In April, the company acquired the 45,000 dwt vessel Stellar Joy, which has been renamed Darya Rani. The Kishinchand Chellaram Group, which has its roots in India, decided about two years ago to make shipping the focus of its diversified business activities. In 1995, Chellaram contracted and took delivery of two 73,500 dwt Panamaxes from Samsung in South Korea, the Darya Geeth and Darya Preeth. Chellaram Shipping director Sham Chellaram said: 'Chellaram Shipping has built its reputation in the market on the foundation of quality, reliability and integrity. 'We wish to build on this further by strengthening our relationships with our charterers and establishing strategic alliances and joint ventures with like-minded partners.'