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Breakbulk April 2017

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Page 10 of 31 THE JOURNAL OF COMMERCE 11 ships equipped with heavy-lift cranes or other features, as owners replace simple MPVs with more-sophisticated ships. More than 90 percent of the multipurpose vessels delivered last year were project and premium project carriers. Simple multipurpose vessels now aver- age 17 years in age, compared with 8 years for project carriers. Drewry forecasts that the project/ premium project carrier fleet will expand at an annual rate of close to 3 percent through 2018, while the simple-MPV fleet shrinks 1.1 percent. Overall growth in the multipurpose fleet is expected to be only about 0.2 percent. Oat way ex pects tota l d r y ca rgo demand to rise about 2 percent annually through 2020. That would be well below the double-digit growth rates that pre- vailed before 2008. Key brea kbu l k m a rket s rem a i n under pressure. Slumping commodity prices have cut into shipments of mining equipment. Cheap natural gas feedstocks have created a regional boom in chemical construction projects along the US Gulf WE ARE EXPERTS IN HEAVY LIFT & BREAKBULK CARGO JAXPORT JAXPORT. It's Just Smart Business. JAXPORT.COM/CARGO Coast, but energy projects generally have been slowed by low oil prices. Market forecasts are complicated by the considerable market overlap between multipurpose and project carriers and dry bulk and container ships. MPVs' market share "is heavily influ- enced by competing sectors," Oatway

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