Sun Releases Analysis Of World Tanker Fleet

Amidst record-breaking tanker lay-ups and depressed tanker demand, and despite forecasts of continuing glut of tankers, the world tanker fleet in 1975 increased by 15 percent to a record 5,092 tankers of 347 million deadweight tons, according to the "Analysis of World Tank Ship Fleet," an annual report on tankers published by Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company.

The Liberian-flag tanker fleet continued its world leadership in total deadweight tonnage, followed by Japan, United Kingdom, Norway, Greece and France. The United States-flag registered tankship fleet was eighth among the leading nations.

Despite the depressed tanker market, the Liberian-flag fleet increased by 19 percent and the Swedish fleet by 20 percent in deadweight tonnage. Retirement of older tankers and new shipbuilding decreased the average age of the Swedish tankers to four years three months, and increased the average tanker size to 108,000 dwt. In the total world tankship fleet, the average age declined to six years six months, and the average size increased to 68,200 dwt.

As a result of record high cancellations of shipbuilding contracts, for the first time in the last 10 years the number of tankships under construction or on order declined from the previous year. The total deadweight tonnage of the tankers to be built fell to 133 million in 1975, 45 million dwt lower than the previous year. More than 27 percent of the total world tanker order book were vessels intended for the Liberian-flag fleet. Norway followed with 11 percent and Japan with 8 percent.

The Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company publication shows that the Japanese shipyards continued leading the world, with tankship construction orders accounting for 43 percent of new shipbuilding. The other leading shipbuilding nations were Sweden, United States, Spain and United Kingdom.

Included in this edition is a section discussing the effects of tanker supply and demand on tanker charter rates. The analysis of this relationship concludes with the development of a simple method for estimating charter rate levels from available information on the demand for oil and the size of the tanker fleet. Prepared by Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company, "Analysis of World Tank Ship Fleet, December 31, 1975" is the 34th edition of this annual publication. It is available for $10 per copy from Tanker Fleet Analysis, Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company, P.O. Box 86, Chester, Pa.

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