Hanjin Shipping bankruptcy causes turmoil in global sea freight

Some vessels seized by authorities and creditors, with others refused entry to ports unload after South Korean company loses the support of banks.

The bankruptcy of the Hanjin shipping line has thrown ports and retailers around the world into confusion, with giant container ships marooned and merchants worrying whether hundreds of tonnes of goods being carried by the South Korean company will reach shelves.

The bankruptcy of the Hanjin shipping line has thrown ports and retailers around the world into confusion, with giant container ships marooned and merchants worrying whether hundreds of tonnes of goods being carried by the South Korean company will reach shelves.

The company filed for bankruptcy protection on Wednesday and stopped accepting new cargo. With its assets frozen, ships were refused permission to offload or take aboard containers because there were no guarantees that tugboat pilots or stevedores would be paid.

Hanjin is the world’s seventh-largest container shipper and the news left cargo headed to and from Asia in limbo. There were reports that some Hanjin ships had been seized in China on behalf of creditors.

Seeking to contain the fallout, a South Korean court said it would begin proceedings to rehabilitate the carrier – which would allow Hanjin to take legal action in other countries to keep its ships and other assets from being seized.

But the court action was seen as mainly procedural and an eventual liquidation of assets was likely, analysts and industry officials said.

 

Comments are closed.