Mon, Nov 13, 2017 - Page 16 News List

Yang Ming approves joint ports project

SOUTHBOUND SHIPPING:The board-approved project with Taiwan International Ports Corp in Indonesia would accelerate development of Surabaya’s shipping and logistics sectors

By Ted Chen  /  Staff reporter

Yang Ming Marine Transport Corp’s (陽明海運) board has given its approval to a joint investment project with Taiwan International Ports Corp (TIPC, 台灣港務) in Indonesia.

The project is in line with the government’s New Southbound Policy and aims to accelerate development of Indonesia’s shipping and logistics sectors, as well as provide better services to Taiwanese companies operating in the country, the company said on Thursday last week.

The project is expected to take place in Surabaya during the first half of next year, Yang Ming said.

The company’s board has also given a green light to a similar project in the Mediterranean, it said, adding that the project is scheduled for next year.

For state-run TIPC, which is headquartered in Kaohsiung and oversees all of the nation’s international seaports, the investment in Indonesia would be the company’s first overseas project since being launched in March 2012.

Through the joint investment with Yang Ming, TIPC hopes to cooperate with more Indonesian enterprises with the aim of seizing more business opportunities there, the Chinese-language Liberty Times (the Taipei Times’ sister newspaper) quoted TIPC manager Lin Yu-hsin (林育信) as saying on Friday.

Separately, driven by a rebound in freight rates and market share gain, along with an improvement in cost efficiency, Yang Ming on Thursday posted its first profitable quarter since the second quarter of 2015, ending a streak of nine consecutive quarterly losses.

Net income in the third quarter came to NT$1.25 billion (US$41.43 million), compared with a net loss of NT$4.56 billion the previous year. Earnings per share were NT$0.7, the company said in a statement.

Accumulated net losses in the first nine months of this year were tallied at NT$82 million, a marked improvement from net losses of NT$13.02 billion during the same period last year.

Loss per share in the first nine months narrowed to NT$0.05, down from NT$3.76 a year ago.

The improvement in Yang Ming’s bottom line also reflected increases in the shipper’s revenue and shipping volume, as the shipper has become more selective in its business and only accepts cargo bookings that have sound profit margins.

From January to September, consolidated revenue gained 18.33 percent annually to NT$3.28 billion, while shipping volume rose 10.5 percent to 3.52 million twenty-foot- equivalent units, data provided by the company showed.

The turnaround was also attributed to the support of the company’s major shareholders in recent capital contributions, as well as its severe measures aimed at cutting costs and streamlining operations, Yang Ming said.

The company expects its financial condition and earnings to continue to improve, it said.

Yang Ming plans to suspend a measure begun in November last year, aimed at weathering a downturn in the global cargo shipping sector, that would have cut the salaries of 50 high-ranking managers and executives by between 30 percent and 50 percent, Yang Ming said, adding that the pay cuts are to be suspended at the end of this month.

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