Wah Kwong Maritime

The New York-listed Diana Shipping, based in Athens, has recently finalized a new time charter agreement with the Hong Kong-based Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited for a kamsarmax bulk carrier. The ship in question, the MV Leonidas P. C., constructed in 2011 with a deadweight of 82K DWT, has been chartered at a daily rate of $17,000. Scheduled to commence on February 21, 2024, this charter will continue until at least August 20, 2025, and no later than October 20, 2025. Led by Semiramis Paliou, Diana Shipping anticipates that this agreement will generate approximately $9.2 million in gross revenue over its minimum duration. The MV Leonidas P. C., also a kamsarmax vessel with an 82K DWT capacity, had been previously chartered to Cargill in March of the last year at the same rate. Following the recent announcement of the sale of the panamax bulk carrier MV Artemis, Diana Shipping’s fleet will comprise 39 dry bulk ships. The fleet will include four newcastlemax bulk carriers, nine capesize bulk carriers, five post-panamax bulk carriers, six kamsarmax bulk carriers, six panamax bulk carriers, and nine ultramax bulk carriers. With the inclusion of the MV Artemis, the total carrying capacity of Diana Shipping’s fleet is about 4.5 million dwt, with an average fleet age of 10.64 years. In addition, Diana Shipping had previously announced a significant agreement with the Japanese shipping company Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) for the charter of the 206K DWT newcastlemax bulk carrier MV Philadelphia, underscoring yet another important transaction for the firm. 11-February-2024


The choice to host the annual meeting of the Global Maritime Forum (GMF), a sustainability-focused organization, in Athens, a historically conservative maritime hub, has garnered a mixed response from local Greek shipowners. While GMF leaders were pleased with the participation of influential local figures in the opening debate, there were discreet murmurs of an informal boycott by some prominent individuals. This event marked the sixth annual GMF meeting, with previous gatherings held in Hong Kong, Singapore, online, London, and New York, evolving from the original Danish Maritime Forum in Copenhagen. GMF, a nonprofit organization committed to sustainable economic development and human well-being, brings together key players in the maritime industry, including shipowners, charterers, energy companies, equipment manufacturers, academics, and other influential figures from across the supply chain to discuss ways to enhance industry standards. Among the Greek shipowner representatives in attendance were Ioanna Procopiou, John Coustas, Semiramis Paliou, Polys Hajioannou, John Platsidakis, Charis Plakantonaki, and Paolo Enoizi, though they represented only a portion of the local maritime community. During the opening plenary session, participants at GMF raised critical issues, with a focus on topics like the supply of low-carbon fuels, funding the transition to sustainability, and the recruitment and retention of skilled personnel. Hing Chao, Chairman of Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited, stressed the urgency of decarbonizing the shipping industry, highlighting the unsustainability of current practices. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited chairman Hing Chao advocated for a fresh perspective on the questions posed, emphasizing the need to reframe them to find effective solutions. 17-October-2023


Three shipowners have acquiesced to embrace the formidable challenge of achieving absolute zero emissions, a challenge set forth by the Zero Emissions Ship Technology Association (ZESTA). This esteemed global consortium represents avant-garde technologies and fuel purveyors steadfastly dedicated to the pinnacle of environmental commitment: absolute zero emissions. The triumvirate of shipowners comprises the Hong Kong-domiciled tanker and bulker conglomerate Wah Kwong, the illustrious containerline Veer Voyage headquartered in the Bahamas, and the offshore support vessel operator, North Star Shipping. While numerous maritime enterprises have articulated robust carbon neutral aspirations – for instance, Berge Bulk’s ambitious plan to achieve carbon neutrality by 2025, and Maersk’s envisioned 2040 net zero target – the proposition of realizing absolute zero by 2043 is a quantum leap in commitment. “We summon those imbued with resolve, dedication, fortitude, and audacity to stand alongside us in this pivotal endeavor,” declared Madadh MacLaine, the distinguished Secretary-General of ZESTA. These three maritime luminaries will elucidate the complexities of their verdant objectives at ShipZERO28, a marquee event amidst the tapestry of happenings during the upcoming London International Shipping Week. “The salient distinction is our unwavering focus on absolute zero,” MacLaine asserted, “The ambiguities in ‘net zero’ are sufficiently vast to navigate the entire global fleet.” The concept of net zero or carbon neutrality, albeit commendable, presupposes the existence of residual carbon/GHG emissions, but compensates with mechanisms like carbon sequestration or other negative emission technologies. The annals of human history reveal a disheartening neglect of our symbiotic relationship with nature, particularly post-industrialization. As we stand at yet another historical juncture, recalibrating global progress is imperative. “Inextricably woven into the global logistical fabric, the maritime sector must spearhead the decarbonisation discourse. In concert with our associates on both ends of the supply spectrum, we must chart the way forward,” opined Hing Chao, the eminent Executive Chairman of Wah Kwong. Gone is the era of interim solutions and carbon offsets. “With the palpable exacerbation of the climate cataclysm – rampant wildfires, widespread flooding, extensive coral decimation, alarming species extinction, and vast glacial erosion, delusion is no longer tenable. The singular path is an unwavering pivot towards absolute zero,” asserted Danielle Southcott, the visionary founder of Veer Voyage. 21-August-2023


A recent study conducted by CCS reveals that older bulk carriers owned by Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited can achieve compliance with the Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) until 2030. The study, in collaboration with BV (Bureau Veritas) and Qiyao Environmental Technology, suggests that the implementation of onboard carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology could potentially extend the lifespan of these ships by five years. By employing custom-designed CCS units, developed by Qiyao Environ Tec, a subsidiary of the Shanghai Marine Diesel Engine Research Institute, the two bulk carriers, namely the 2009 built supramax bulk carrier 53K DWT MV MV Tianjin Venture and the 2012 built capesize bulk carrier 176K DWT MV CSSC Wan Mei could enhance their Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) ratings from D to C. This joint feasibility study aimed to explore the extraction of CO2 from exhaust gas. 21-June-2023


Kenneth Lam and Sabrina Chao have established a finance company called SeaKapital, based in Hong Kong. This newly formed company was co-founded by Sabrina Chao, the chairman of Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited, and Kenneth Lam, the former Asia head of lender Credit Agricole. As investors pledge their support, SeaKapital, led by CEO Kenneth Lam, is already in the process of securing deals for their new ship-leasing company. Initially, the focus of the venture will be on eco-friendly secondhand vessels, a vision which Kenneth Lam shared. After investing 18 months into developing this project, CEO Kenneth Lam-led SeaKapital is now poised to authorize ship-leasing deals. Kenneth Lam has had a long-standing collaboration with both Sabrina Chao and Wah Kwong, spanning over two decades. 17-April-2023


Kenneth Lam and Sabrina Chao have established a finance company, SeaKapital, based in Hong Kong. Kenneth Lam, the former Credit Agricole Asia boss, has embarked on a new ship finance venture with his dear friend, Sabrina Chao. SeaKapital, based in Hong Kong, is now under the leadership of Kenneth Lam as the Chief Executive, and Sabrina Chao, a shipowner, as its Chairperson. Describing the new company as an independent ship leasing company, Kenneth Lam, the former banker, takes great pride in having Sabrina Chao as a trusted friend and business partner. Sabrina Chao, the chairperson of Hong Kong shipowner, Wah Kwong, is an experienced shipowner and is currently the President of BIMCO, the world’s largest non-profit international shipping association. SeaKapital aims to provide sustainable and responsible long-term capital to the most crucial and capital-intensive parts of the shipping industry. With approximately $300 billion of new buildings on order, not even accounting for the fleet renewal necessary to meet climate change goals, Kenneth Lam believes finding long-term capital for like-minded shipowners and players is SeaKapital’s objective. To achieve its goal, SeaKapital will source capital internationally from a vast pool of investors, and collaborate with shipping banks and other capital providers to provide comprehensive solutions to the industry. Hong Kong, with its friendly jurisdiction and deep understanding of the international legal, tax, and regulatory environment for shipping and shipowning, was chosen as SeaKapital’s base. Kenneth Lam, who served 33 years at Credit Agricole in Asia, is excited about the potential of SeaKapital and its ability to revolutionize the ship finance industry. 15-April-2023


Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited held a celebratory 70th anniversary in London. Wah Kwong Maritime held a well-attended reception at the Berkeley Hotel. Recently, CEO Hing Chao-led shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime opened a new commercial office in London. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited was founded in Hong Kong in 1952 by T.Y. Chao. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited evolved from tiny beginnings carrying bulk cargoes within Asia to becoming a reputable international shipping company now managed by the third generation of the Chao family. 24-October-2022


CDB Leasing (China Development Bank Financial Leasing), a Hong Kong-listed arm of the state-owned China Development Bank, has recently expanded its maritime portfolio with a significant new order. The company has placed an order for nine ultramax bulker newbuildings from New Dayang Shipbuilding, a notable move in its strategy to increase its presence in the bulk carrier market. The deal for these 60K ultramax bulk carriers amounts to a total cost of $261 million, averaging around $29 million per vessel. This investment is considered favorable as CDB Leasing stated that the current market value of these vessels, as appraised by an independent third party, is approximately $279 million. The company attributes the advantageous deal terms to its “long-term stable cooperation” with the seller, which allowed for early and effective negotiations. CDB Leasing plans to finance this acquisition through a combination of internal funds and commercial bank loans. This proactive approach to fleet expansion is consistent with the company’s recent activities, following closely after its acquisition of seven handysize bulkers from John Fredriksen-backed SFL Corp for $100 million. As of the end of 2020, CDB Leasing reported control over a fleet of 110 ships. This fleet includes 85 ships under operating leases and 25 under finance leases. Bulk carriers make up over 75% of its fleet, supplemented by containerships (14%), as well as three LNG carriers, two dredgers, and a cruise ship. Meanwhile, New Dayang Shipbuilding, the shipyard for CDB Leasing’s latest order, has also secured business from Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings. The Hong Kong-based shipowner is investing around $120 million in a series of four ultramax bulker newbuildings, scheduled for delivery between 2023 and 2024. New Dayang Shipbuilding became a state-owned enterprise in 2018 after being taken over by Sumec Marine, a subsidiary of Beijing’s China National Machinery Industry Corp and a former creditor of Dayang Shipbuilding. This transition has potentially influenced its capacity to secure significant orders like these. 1-October-2021


Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited sold 2008 built panamax bulk carrier 77K DWT MV Priscilla Venture for around $11.5 million. In 2008, MV Priscilla Venture was built at Oshima Shipbuilding and MV Priscilla Venture is due for a special survey (SS) in March 2023. Sabrina Chao-led Wah Kwong Maritime owns a fleet of 20 ships and endeavors to increase its operated fleet to 50 ships by the end of 2020. 14-September-2020


Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited strives to increase to a 50-vessel-managed fleet by end of 2020. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s ship management business is booming, as the company rides on the growth of China’s state-backed lessors. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited sets a target for year-end as 2019 sees third-party ships under management surpass owned fleet. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited was managing 37 ships as of early January, including 18 of the company’s ships and 19 owned by other shipowners. Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited had more third-party ships under management than its ships for the first time in 2019. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited spent many years enhancing the company’s ship management services. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited is adding new shipowners in China for taking care of their tankers and bulkers. Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s clients comprise China Development Bank Financial Leasing, China Merchants Financial Leasing, CSSC (Hong Kong) Shipping, and CSIC Leasing. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited is aiming to establish a ship management subsidiary in Shenzhen. Furthermore, Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited manages European shipowners’ ships such as Exmar. In 2020, Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited is due to take delivery of two scrubber-fitted kamsarmax bulk carriers from Chengxi Shipyard. Furthermore, two VLCCs Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited jointly ordered with CSIC Leasing from Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co are planned for delivery in 2021. Traditionally, Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited embraces a conventional approach and selects to put the company’s ships on time charters to reputable charterers. Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s ship management business is primarily about taking advantage of the company’s in-house expertise. Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s most significant advantage as a ship manager is that the company can take care of the ships with integrated assistance from the new building stage to commercial and technical management. Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s hybrid model is not uncommon elsewhere. Likewise, Chandris (Hellas) and C Transport Maritime are pleased to be shipowners and ship managers at the same time. Nevertheless, ship managers such as Wallem Group and Anglo-Eastern Group tend to set themselves as third-party technical managers. Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s hybrid model has produced more income streams for the company beyond vessel chartering and sales. Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s business model has evolved more diversified as a consequence. 11-February-2020


Hong Kong-based Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited executive chairman Chao Sih Hing made a firm pledge to keep his family company in shipowning. According to Chao Sih Hing, Wah Kwong Maritime Transport is committed to the family tradition of ordering, building, and selling ships. Recently, Chao Sih Hing transitioned into Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited’s chairman role after his sister Sabrina Chao stepped back. In the past few years, Wah Kwong Maritime Transport has been increasingly acted as a service provider in technical, newbuilding management, and commercial services for new Chinese fleets. However, Asset light activities will be only a small portion of Wah Kwong Maritime Transport’s business. In the same event, Orient Overseas Container Line’s (OOCL) Chief Information Officer (CIO) Steve Siu made the case for technology’s transformative powers. Furthermore, Dingheng Shipping’s CEO Li Duozhu explained that in the near future shipping market will see the shipowners of the world shakedown to 10 players and crewless autonomous shipping will be the key to survival for a few players who latch onto the new methods. On the other hand, Sumec Ocean Transportation’s Manager Yang Lei believes that artificial intelligence (AI) depends on volumes of data that are much less relevant to capesize chartering than to the ultra-detailed task of managing global container logistics. According to Yang Lei, we will not have unmanned ships in 20 years, because the cost of a crew is nothing compared to the cost of a ship sinking. 11-September-2019


Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited CEO (Chief Executive Officer) David Palmer retires after serving for 43 years at the company. David Palmer will step down in September 2019. David Palmer plans to be in non-executive positions. David Palmer’s is well timed to coincide with organizational changes at Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited. Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited will be split into two divisions shipowning and ship management. Furthermore, Hing Chao will take over from Sabrina Chao as chairman of Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited. David Palmer’s retirement will allow the organization to tackle the challenges and opportunities. David Palmer stated that human relationships are the aspect of his career that he will cherish most. 14-August-2019


Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited sold 2012 Chinese built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV Bonnie Venture to European ship owners for about $9.5 million in December 2018. Chinese built MV Bonnie Venture was sold at a discount compared to a similar Japan-built handysize dry bulk carrier. Similar 2012 Japanese built handysize bulk carrier 32K DWT MV Coral Ocean was sold about $14 million by First Marine to Turkish shipowner in January 2019. 3-February-2019


Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited chartered out cape size dry bulk carrier 2011 built 176K DWT M/V Cape Asia for one year at $15,900 per day to mining giant Rio Tinto. Capesize dry bulk carriers average $12,000 per day in 2017. 22% of softening Chinese steel prices has a significant effect on the dry bulk market. Hong Kong-based shipowner and operator Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings Limited has 24 dry bulk carriers and tankers in the fleet. 13-April-2017