Yangzijiang Shipbuilding has secured a fresh round of newbuilding orders that will add nearly another $1bn to its orderbook.

The Singapore-listed shipbuilder said the latest contracts comprise 15 vessels with a total contract value of $970m.

The latest orders comprise six 15,000-teu and two 2,400-teu containerships, two 50,000-dwt MR tankers, three kamsarmax bulkers and two 31,800-dwt Great Lakes bulkers.

On Monday, TradeWinds reported that China’s Sinotrans Container Lines (Sinolines) had ordered two 2,400-teu feeder containership newbuildings at Yangzijiang for delivery in 2023.

Seaspan said in late March that it booked ships at Yangzijiang matching the larger containerships in the yard group's latest announcement.

These latest orders extend Yangzijiang’s newbuilding backlog into 2023, the shipbuilder confirmed in a statement.

Yangzijiang said it has now secured newbuilding orders for 75 ships in the year to date worth just over $4bn in total.

In early February, the shipbuilder announced newbuilding contracts for 29 ships valued at $1.3bn. This was followed by confirmation of another 29 ships on order worth $1.3bn in early March.

New record

The shipyard has been a key beneficiary of the containership newbuilding frenzy this year, which continues to set new records each month.

A total of 47 containership newbuilding orders were place in March 2021, the most in a single month since November 2015, according to Affinity (Shipping).

“This comfortably surpassed February’s previous recent high by 14 ships, with the emphasis remaining on the larger ships,” the shipbroker said.

“As berths become more and more scarce, owners have — and will continue to — rush to the yards to place more orders.”

According to Affinity, the containership orderbook as a percentage of the live fleet in teu terms has increased from 9.6% to 15.3% in the space of just six months.

Yangzijiang said in its recent annual report that it plans to resume shipbuilding activity at long-closed Jiangsu Yangzi Changbo Shipyard in China.

One of the four shipyards under the group, the Jiangsu-based facility stopped operations nine years ago due to lacklustre demand for newbuildings at the time.

Changbo will reportedly be assigned to build feeder containerships of 1,800 teu. The yard, which is equipped with three slipways, will be rolling out six vessels each year.

Yangzijiang’s other yards are Jiangsu New Yangzi, Jiangsu Yangzi Xinfu and Jiangsu Yangzi-Mitsui Shipbuilding (Yamic), a tie-up with Japan's Mitsui E&S Shipbuilding.