Hyundai Merchant Marine Co., a major South Korean shipper, said Monday it will join a major ocean carrier alliance next April in a bid to boost its competitiveness in the industry.
Hyundai Merchant said it will become an official member of THE Alliance, and will work with Hapag-Lloyd AG of Germany, Ocean Network Express Pte. Ltd. of Japan and Yang Ming Marine Transport Corp. of Taiwan. THE Alliance, formed in 2017, is considered one of the world's top three shipping alliances, along with 2M Alliance and Ocean Alliance.
Hyundai Merchant said it will serve as a member of THE Alliance until 2030 under the agreement signed last month.
The South Korean shipper has been a strategic partner for 2M Alliance, operated by Maersk Line of Denmark and Mediterranean Shipping Co. (MSC) of the Switzerland, since April 2017, but their partnership is set to expire in March 2020.
Hyundai Merchant CEO Bae Jae-hoon said the company has negotiated with all three major alliances for its membership since last year, and THE Alliance made the best offer.
"I can't say it all, but in terms of slot exchanges and service lines planning, THE Alliance offered the best conditions," Bae said.(Yonhap)
Hyundai Merchant is set to receive 12 23,000 twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU)-class containers in the second quarter of 2020 and eight 15,000 TEU container ships in 2021. The company said 23,000 TEU container ships will be used in Asia-North Europe routes to beef up the service network of THE Alliance.