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S. Korea's top 3 shipyards fare relatively well despite pandemic

This file photo shows a liquefied natural gas (LNG) ship made by Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering Co. (Yonhap)
This file photo shows a liquefied natural gas (LNG) ship made by Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering Co. (Yonhap)
Despite the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, South Korea's big three shipbuilders have fared relatively well this year as they clinch a majority of global orders for liquefied natural gas (LNG) ships and very large crude carriers (VLCCs), industry sources said Thursday

The trio -- Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering Co., Samsung Heavy Industries Co. and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. -- have achieved 91 percent, 65 percent and 75 percent of their order targets, respectively, so far this year.

Comparable figures for last year were 82 percent, 91 percent and 82 percent.

Industry watchers said their performances are relatively good in light of the fallout from the COVID-19 outbreak, though Korea Shipbuilding downgraded its order target to $11 billion from $15.7 billion in October.

Korea Shipbuilding is the world's leading shipbuilding group and holding company of three shipbuilders -- Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co. and Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries Co.

The solid performance of the top three shipyards come as they have almost monopolized global orders for LNG ships, VLCCs and other high value-added vessels.

The three shipyards have bagged orders for 46 LNG carriers this year, or 73 percent of the 63 orders placed across the world.

In addition, they have won orders for 34 VLCCs, or 81 percent of the 42 global orders.

Industry sources forecast the trio's orders to rise about 10 percent in 2021 from this year as global orders for LNG carriers and very large container ships are expected to increase due to tougher environmental regulations and pent-up demand from the pandemic. (Yonhap)
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