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Japan, China Lead Slipping Greek Shippers in Total Fleet Value

ATHENS – While Greece’s shipping oligarchs lead the world in the Dead Weight Ton (DWT) carrying capacity, they are now just third – behind Japan, which moved into first past China – for total fleet value.

Rebecca Galanopoulos Jones, Senior Content Analyst at online ship valuation and data provider VesselsValue has analyzed the top 10 global ship owning nations including their companies.

The review showed that Japan’s shipping fleet is worth $196.6 billion, an increase of $9 billion from 2021, largely due to the boom in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector as countries are looking to diversify sources.

This led to an increase of 142 new orders in 2022 and nearly 25 percent were placed by  Japanese companies including MOL, NYK and Meiji Shipping, with Japanese LNG vessels alone valued at $30.3 billion.

China has the most ships – 6,908  – but at $190.1 billion their worth was just behind Japan although China has the largest containership fleet both in terms of vessels and values as well.

The unprecedented increase in rates seen over the last two years has boosted the value of the Chinese box ship fleet from about $28 billion at the start of 2021 to about $56 billion today, the report found.

Greece stayed third both for total number of vessels by fleet and by value but was surpassed in the tanker category by China, although Greek tankers are valued the highest at $56.2 billion.

Greece is also the owner of the second most valuable LNG fleet worth $29.1 billion, increasing by more than 50 percent since the beginning of the year and interest in the gas rising in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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