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Industry-watchers like to use a number of metrics to gauge the health of shipping. The Baltic Dry Index is one; the world idle fleet another. Here we take a look at another indicator: the orderbook – or, more precisely, shipyards, which are in the frontline of any improvements or declines in industry health. Shipyards are in a precarious position. A strong orderbook should be good for business; more ships mean more work. But too many orders can tip the fleet bal­ance into a glut and, as we have seen for the past seven years at least, that can lead to a prolonged curtailment of orders. It is a vicious cycle that gets repeated again and again.


Europe will suffer if it introduces Brexit trade barriers, warns Fox

UK International Trade Secretary claims Europe could become less competitive in a global context

Europe United Kingdom Brexit

Brexit insignificant compared with China's global ambitions, says Sohmen-Pao

Shipyard overcapacity, the risks around new technology, abundant capital, and digital disruption among BW Group chairman's main concerns

LISW Political and Trade Dry Bulk

FFA players look to China for market growth

To induce more paper trading, Baltic Exchange plans to launch two per-tonne indices for Chinese grain imports 

China Dry Bulk LISW

UKSR steps up expansion efforts with a slew of new initiatives

Digitalisation of the vessel registration process, a Singapore-based surveyor, and greater customer choice all aimed at expanding size of UK-flag fleet

United Kingdom LISW Europe

From the Business Briefing

Mitigating risk in a mixed fuel future

Sponsored by:


Don’t bank on sulphur cap deadline roll back, experts warn

Industry put on watch for huge headaches over availability of right grades in right ports

Environment LISW Regulation

Co-operation needed to make sulphur cap work

ExxonMobil sees supply disruptions no matter what option owners and operators take to cut sulphur emissions

Regulation LISW Europe