Danish merchant fleet has never been bigger

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img_1233_graded_editedThe merchant fleet under the Danish flag and the Danish shipping companies’ foreign exchange earnings have set a record, despite a historically tough market.

Despite the global maritime market having been subject to great pressure in recent years, the Danish shipping companies have nevertheless succeeded in strengthening the merchant fleet under the Danish flag, thus as of April 2015 it is bigger than ever. In January 2014 the gross tonnage was 12.3 million GT, whilst in April 2015 it was 14.6 million tonnes GT – or 16.6 million dead weight tonnes (DWT).

“The gross tonnage is no guarantee of greater earnings and more Danish jobs in the shipping companies, but it is a good basis for influence and development opportunities, and it means Denmark is still one of the world’s biggest flag states. It means something when we want the rest of the world to follow Denmark’s high standards, and it means something in these times of electioneering when we are talking to Danish politicians about the importance of shipping to the Danish economy and growth,” said Anne H Steffensen, Director-General of the Danish Shipowners’ Association.

The total Danish-controlled fleet comprises about 1,800 ships, of which just over a third, 658 ships, are under the Danish flag. In 2014 the Danish shipping companies set a record for the third time, contributing DKK 204.5bn to the balance of payments. Shipping thus constitutes about 20% of total Danish exports. Over a third of exports go to growth markets outside the EU.

“It’s particularly good news considering the difficult market conditions the shipping companies have encountered in recent years,” said Ms Steffensen.

The figures for Danish shipping were published in conjunction with the AGM of the Danish Shipowners’ Association yesterday. The statement ‘Shipping in figures’ also shows that ‘The Blue Denmark’, which comprises the shipping companies and the maritime sector, now provides employment for 107,886 people.