HMM is pushing for a big fleet expansion by 2030 after a sale of the company fell flat.

The South Korean liner company disclosed on Monday that under its medium to long-term strategy, it plans to increase its container ship and bulker fleet extensively to strengthen its global competitiveness, national media reported.

HMM unveiled a target to increase its container shipping capacity from the current 84 vessels of 920,000 teu to 130 ships of 1.5m teu.

The growth in the boxship fleet will enable it to expand its global service network and shipping routes.

On its bulk shipping business, which includes dry cargo, tankers, car carriers and heavylift vessels, the company is looking to swell the number of ships from 36 totalling 6.3m dwt to 110 totalling 12.28m dwt.

HMM did not disclose how it is going to increase its fleet in the current high asset value market and amid a global shortage of shipbuilding berths.

Some shipping players think its fleet growth will come via takeovers and newbuilding orders.

Domestic companies such as Polaris Shipping, which has more than 30 large ore carriers, and Hyundai LNG Shipping, which has 14 LNG carriers and four VLGCs, are up for sale.

HMM’s own $5bn sale fell apart earlier this year.

HMM is considered a state-owned company as its major shareholders are Korea Development Bank and Korea Ocean Business Corp.

KDB and KOBC, which control 57.9% of HMM, want to privatise the company.

They were planning to sell their stakes to a consortium of Harim Group — the country’s largest poultry processor — and JKL Partners for $4.8bn in February but the sale failed due to “differences over certain issues”.

HMM is also accelerating its zero-carbon emissions goal. It is bringing forward its carbon neutrality programme by five years to 2045.

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