South Korea’s Hyundai Merchant Marine has confirmed that it will join the 2M container alliance currently comprising of Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC).
HMM announced on Thursday that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with its partners to enter into the vessel sharing agreement (VSA) for containerships.
The 2M container shipping alliance will commence in April 2017.
“By accessing 2M VSA network, HMM will be able to strengthen its service offering and achieve improved cost competitiveness. The 2M carriers will benefit from a reinforced service competency in Asia and improved network cover in the transpacific area,” HMM said in a statement.
HMM announced back in late-June that it was in talks to join 2M, amid the company’s troubles of implementing debt restructuring and overcoming its financial problems.
The Korean shipowner managed to strike a deal with owners of its chartered ships to cut charter rates by around 20% for the next three-and-a-half years, allowing it to avert a court-led restructuring process. HMM bondholders also agreed to swap around half of their debts for equity interests in the company, with the remaining half of the debts to be paid back after five years.
And earlier in mid-May, HMM had expressed interest to join THE Alliance, where compatriot Hanjin Shipping is one of the six members.
It is yet unclear if the name 2M will be changed to reflect the addition of HMM.
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