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Cosco takes over China Shipping's box carrier role in mega merger

COSCO Container Lines will take over the container segment of China Shipping Container Lines (CSCL) early next year, said a joint statement from the two companies a party to the merger. "We expect to start the business integration at the beginning of next year and complete the transition within one year. Our top priority is to ensure business continuity." said the joint statement from China Cosco, Cosco Pacific, China Shipping Container Lines (CSCL) and China Shipping Development (CSD).

"Coscon and CSCL will restructure and integrate in order to become one of the top four container shipping giants in the world. We will combine our quality resources to achieve synergies and provide better service," the statement said. The companies said the consolidation would create the world's fourth biggest container shipping enterprise with 288 containerships - of which 84 are larger than 8,000 TEU - and total shipping capacity of 1.6 million TEU. "This restructuring helps us combine quality resources, thus laying a solid foundation for us to enhance the core competitiveness," the statement said. Under the deal, Cosco will rent CSCL's assets, including ships and container boxes, with China Cosco selling its loss-making bulker unit Cosco Bulk to its parent group for CNY6.77 billion. 

At the same time, Cosco Pacific will buy the port assets of China Shipping and CSCL in order for Cosco to consolidate the container shipping and port businesses. "CSCL will achieve business transformation by leasing ships and containers, acquiring the leasing business held by Cosco and China Shipping and injecting other ship financing business and assets," the statement said. "As the leading companies in China's shipping industry, Coscon and CSCL have cooperated with each other for years. By the restructuring and consolidation, we will greatly improve the new company's core competitiveness.

"For our customers, expanded shipping capacity and widened scope of the business will optimise the route network, and improve the fleet structure, thus enhace our ability to deliver higher-quality services," the statement said.

The joint statement also said restructuring and consolidation would also offer employees more diversified career development opportunities.

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