Shipyards faced with vexing capacity issues

Shipbuilding executives have difficult decisions to make about business expansion this decade despite widespread belief that the global merchant fleet will be in urgent need of a major renewal in the coming years.

The number of shipyards has contracted massively from the boom years of the first decade of the 21st century with the sector now far more risk-averse following many years of losses. Nevertheless, many yards are sitting on longer orderbooks than they have enjoyed for many years, with experts predicting an imminent wave of orders for alternative-fuelled ships to replace an aging, polluting global merchant fleet.

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