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January 30 & 31, 2002

January 29, 2002

U.K. competion authority to probe cruise merger
Patricia Hewitt, Britain's Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, today referred the proposed merger of P&O Princess Cruises PLC and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. to the Competition Commission. The decision was made in accordance with the advice of the Director General of Fair Trading (DGFT).

Hewitt said:"The DGFT has advised me that there remain sufficient competition concerns surrounding this merger to warrant a reference to the Competition Commission."

The decision to make a reference does not in any way prejudge the question of whether or not the proposed merger would be against the public interest, said a U.K. Government statement. The Competition Commission is to make its report by May 20, 2002. .

China Shipbuilding expects orders for 1.4 million gt of ships this year
China's largest shipbuilding group,China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) expects to win orders for 1.4 million tons of ships this year, and to generate business income of over 16.1 billion yuan (almost $2 billion), 12.6 percent over the year 2001, China’s Xinhua agency reported yesterday. Last year, CSIC has achieved favorable revenues with total ship orders accounting for 4 million tons, worth 30 billion yuan, Xinhua reports CSIC general manager Li Chanying as saying. The total business income of CSIC was 14.3 billion yuan last year.

CSIC's activities include design, constructionand sale of commercial and military ships, offshore structures and marine equipment. .

Despite reservations over decreased world trade and falling ship prices, Li said that by 2005 CSIC shipbuilding capacity will exceed 4 million tons, ship output will reach over 3 million tons and export revenues will top $1 billion. He said CSIC's goal is to become the strongest and largest supplier of the Chinese navy, and the leading shipbuilder in China's shipbuilding area.