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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

MOL ‘has no plans to quit the container business’

Tokyo: Japanese container giant Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) has issued a statement to the press in which it clarifies its position on the current rumours of a possible ‘container division spin-off’.
The statement reads:  
There have been some reports in the   press recently that MOL is considering “spinning off” its container division. This was a resultof a misinterpretation of remarks made by MOL Financial Director Mr Yonetani in an interview with Reuters.  
MOL is not considering spinning off its liner division and it has no plans to quit the container business. Mr Yonetani did say that the container business had been hardest hit “due to unprofitable rates and sagging volumes”. He also admitted that he   expects overcapacity in the container market to continue for several years.    
But he explained that "only diversified shipping lines which provide a wide range of   services including bulkers and containers will be able to survive” and that although MOL’s spinning off its container shipping division was one option, the benefit of doing so at this time would be small due to the industry's huge overcapacity. 
Obviously, with the current downturn in the global economy and over supply of capacity in the shipping market, being a responsible company, MOL continues to review every alternative to improve its profitability.
However, as MOL’s CFO actually said, it considers that the option of a “spin off” is not a choice under the current circumstances.  [09/06/09]