Safmarine goes with Maersk to India

Jan 9, 2003
Author: P&S

Safmarine withdraws from India Consortium

Safmarine has announced it is to withdraw from the EPIC (Europe-Pakistan-India Consortium) fixed day weekly container service as from the end of June 2003, and will enter into a Joint Vessel Agreement (JVA) with sister company Maersk Sealand as from July.

The announcement follows a report on 2 January that three of the members of the EPIC consortium – CMA CGM, Contship Containerlines and P&O Nedlloyd had given the stipulated six month notice of intention to withdraw and begin a new service comprising the three lines, known as EPIC 3.

EPIC 3 will consist of seven container ships maintaining current service levels ad using five ships provided by CMA CGM and Contship plus two from P&O Nedlloyd.

Safmarine said in a separate statement at the time that it too would withdraw but wasn’t able to announce any details.

Now, according to Safmarine CEO Howard Boyd it will be business as usual until mid year when the JVA between Safmarine and Maersk Sealand gets underway.

“From July this year we will introduce a dedicated product, which we have named PRIME EXPRESS (Pakistan-Red Sea-India-Middle East-Europe) which will be marketed and serviced independently. I am delighted that we have reached agreement with our sister company Maersk Sealand to forge a JVA on this route, which has always been one of Safmarine’s major areas of operation.”

Safmarine will provide two of the six post-panamax ships and Maersk Sealand four of the same type. Scheduling, port coverage and ship names will be announced prior to the official launch date.

The remaining member of EPIC is Ellermans, which was sold recently to Hamburg Süd and has yet to make an announcement.


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