Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) have announced a deal to share vessels to cut costs and CO2 emissions.
The “2M” vessel-sharing agreement (VSA) will last for 10 years on routes between Asia, Europe and the US and it will have an estimated capacity of 2.1 million containers.
VSA operations will begin in January 2015 after the US Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) gave it the green light, the last remaining jurisdiction where approval was necessary.
Maersk said the VSA would “result in cost savings through the deployment of larger and more efficient vessels and improved utilisation”. “In addition, we will be able to lower our CO2 emissions,” said the firm.
Vincent Clerc, chief trade and marketing officer at Maersk, said: “In our view this is a win-win situation. Due to a larger and more cost efficient network we can continue to provide our customers in North America, Europe and Asia with competitive and reliable shipping services.”
Diego Aponte, president and CEO of MSC, said: “We are very excited that our customers will benefit from the outstanding service enhancements that 2M will deliver as early as the beginning of next year.”
A similar deal involving Maersk, MSC and CMA CGM was dropped in June after the Chinese Ministry of Commerce failed to give its approval.