The recently enacted "American Jobs Creation Act" gives significant tax breaks to a number of U.S. industries--including shipping.
MARINE LOG and BLANK ROME will present a senior level seminar CHANGES IN U.S. TAXATION OF SHIPPING INCOME in Stamford, Conn. on April 5 & 6, 2004
Make sure you know how the new tax rules work!
February 25, 2005
Matson to buy Kvaerner Philly box ships
Matson Navigation Company, Inc. (Matson), the ocean transportation subsidiary of Alexander & Baldwin, Inc. (Nasdaq:ALEX), announced today that it intends to invest $365 million in vessel, container and terminal assets to launch a new Guam and China service beginning in February 2006 when its present ten-year alliance agreement expires with APL.
As a key element of that plan, the company has entered into cash on delivery purchase contracts for two new U.S.-built containerships with Kvaerner Philadelphia Shipyard, Inc. (KPSI).
The vessels to be acquired will be similar in capacity, speed and operating efficiency to Matson's MV Manukai and MV Maunawili, both built by the same yard and placed in service in 2003 and 2004, respectively. The two new ships are expected to be delivered and placed in service by July 2005 and June 2006 at an estimated combined cost of $315 million. Matson has the option to time charter these vessels in lieu of purchasing. It also will have a right-of-first-refusal with KPSI for up to four other containerships of similar design that are deliverable by the Philadelphia yard before June 2010.
By mid-2006, both new ships will be deployed in an integrated weekly West Coast-Hawaii-Guam-China service together with three of Matson's most efficient diesel-powered containerships. The planned routing will include port calls at Long Beach, Honolulu, Guam and two ports in China.
"Matson's highest priority for the past two years has been the development of a viable replacement service for Guam," said James Andrasick, Matson president and CEO. "We also have a continuing interest in expanding our reach into new markets, and at the same time strengthening our service reliability to our home state of Hawaii. This further investment in new U.S.-built containerships satisfies all of those objectives. Matson has been proudly serving the Pacific since 1882, and this new service underscores that commitment, particularly with regard to Hawaii."
Andrasick added: "These new ships, coupled with our other two new KPSI vessels, will ensure that Matson continues to provide Hawaii with efficient, dependable ocean transportation services for decades to come. The investment marks a significant milestone in achieving our fleet replacement objectives. With their more fuel-efficient diesel engines, state-of-the art shipboard technology and a number of 'green' environmentally friendly design elements, these four new ships will provide Hawaii with a strong, modern, reliable lifeline to the U.S. Mainland. As Hawaii's leading ocean carrier, Matson is acutely aware of the vital role ocean transportation has in supporting the Islands' economic activities and recognizes the importance these investments will have in supporting Hawaii's future growth."
Matson has been modernizing its fleet in recent years, retiring older steam-powered ships to improve fuel and operating efficiencies. With the addition of the two newest vessels, the average age of Matson's active containership fleet will be a relatively young 14 years.
"Matson is very satisfied with the performance of the first two KPSI-built vessels that are now part of the company's Hawaii service," added Andrasick. "We are confident that these additional two KPSI ships will further enhance the overall quality and operating efficiencies of the Matson fleet."
Matson provides ocean transportation, intermodal and logistics services in U.S. domestic markets. Matson is a wholly owned subsidiary of Alexander & Baldwin, Inc. of Honolulu.
Kvaerner Philadelphia Shipyard, Inc. issued a statement saying that it has entered into contracts with Matson Navigation Company, Inc. (Matson) for the two container vessels which are currently under construction. The new ships are expected to be delivered and placed into service in July 2005 and June 2006. The total contract value is estimated at approximately $290 million.
"The contract with Matson confirms that Kvaerner Philadelphia has made a successful transition to become a highly efficient Jones Act shipbuilder," says Dave Meehan, President at the yard.
"We started building these ships on speculation and worked for some time with startup company OceanBlue Express," says Meehan. "As it became apparent that OceanBlue Express was experiencing difficulties in removing contingencies relative to our preliminary agreement, we escalated our sales efforts. We are very happy that we have now concluded a contract with our old customer Matson."
The first ship, a CV2600, will be delivered and placed into service in July of this year and the second ship, a CV2500, in June 2006. Beyond these two vessels, KPSI has granted Matson a right of first refusal for up to four additional container vessels for delivery before June 2010.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Meehan says that Kvaerner Philadelphia still plans to follow construction of the two ships now bought by Matson with a series of for 600 ft, 330,000 barrel products tankers.