New Build Vessels By Maersk Won’t Fit New Panama Canal



A week ago Maersk declared the signing of $1.1 billion worth contract for nine vessels with a 14,000 TEU capacity.

This agreement emphasizes that Maersk is going strength to strength in hull designs with its wings spreading in East-West or North-South trades without making an impact on fuel consumption.  As China leads the global manufacturing market followed by Mexico, Turkey, and other countries; Maersk is therefore preparing for a new trade patterns.

Highlights on Maersk new build vessels:

Based on the views of Dirk Visser, Senior Shipping Consultant at consultants Dynamar B.V. of the Netherlands.

  • The design of the vessels focus on flexibility, but they may not be as flexible as some might expect.
  • It was assumed that these nine 14,000 TEU ships would allow them to pass through the new Panama Canal locks.
  • It means that they should have a maximum breadth of 49 meters.
  • In the order, only the length of these nine TEU container ships were stated, i.e. 353 meters.
  • But meanwhile the breadth of the ship was confirmed, i.e. 53.3 meters.
  • It will be too large to sail via Panama and thus less flexible.

Any spectacular upward revisions may not be expected, though the Panama Canal Authority would consider an upward revision of the maximum allowed vessel-breadth (physically, the lock chambers have a width of 54 meters).  This would be a disadvantage for the nine TEU ships as there should be some room for the tugboats to guide the main vessels in and out.                                                          

Source: VesselFinder