Photo: “Copyright © Pacific Basin”

Pacific Basin Shipping dry bulk company has achieved a record-breaking underlying profit, maintained a strong balance sheet with available committed liquidity of US$615 million, and remained committed to its long-term strategy of further growing of its Supramax/Ultramax fleet and renewing of its Handysize fleet, as Pacific Basin says today in its 2022 annual financial report.

The shipowner and operator of Handysize and Supramax dry bulk vessels said it will look to grow the company´s fleet of Supramax ships by acquiring high-quality, modern, second-hand vessels, and will sell its older and less-efficient Handysize ships, and replace them with younger and larger Handysize vessels.

It said that in the year 2022 asset prices approached historical highs, which allowed the company to sell some of its smaller, older Handysize ships, thereby crystallising value and further optimising the company´s fleet to meet tightening environmental regulations.

In the year Pacific Basin Shipping sold and delivered seven Handysize vessels, while also selling one Ultramax vessel. The company acquired one Ultramax vessel, one Supramax vessel which expects to be delivered within February 2023, and one Ultramax vessel expected to be delivered in March 2023.

The top management of the company said “will continue to look for opportunities to divest these smaller older Handysize vessels depending on market conditions.”

Pacific Basin currently owns 115 Handysize and Supramax ships that are “well suited for its customers and trades”, as the company says today, adding that the “company continues to optimise its fleet to more easily meet tightening environmental regulations.”

The company remains confident for the future and optimistic about the prospects in the medium to longer term of the dry bulk market, despite any short-term headwinds. “We expect demand will be supported by significant global infrastructure investment, particularly in emerging markets such as India and countries in the ASEAN region, as well as global food and energy security issues,” the company says.

As Martin Fruergaard, the Chief Executive Officer of Pacific Basin, said: “2022 was an exceptional year in which Pacific Basin again produced record results, allowing us to further improve our balance sheet, optimise our fleet and return capital to our shareholders. We generated an underlying profit of US$715 million, a net profit of US$702 million and EBITDA of US$935 million – exceptional in a historical context.”