Norwegian/Swedish ro-ro shipping company Wallenius Wilhelmsen will reactivate the last three of its vessels that were placed in cold layup in the spring of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, citing rising rates and demand.

“Reactivation will take place in Q3, and the intention is that reactivated vessels will replace capacity sourced through short-term charters,” Wallenius Wilhelmsen said.

Earlier this year Wallenius Wilhelmsen decided to reactivate up to 12 of the 15 vessels placed in layup last spring. 

“Nine of these vessels have already re-entered service, while three are in the process of being reactivated and are due to start sailing again during Q2. Customer demand, scarcity of capacity and rising rates in the time charter market continue to make reactivation of vessels in layup a more cost-competitive option. The vessel that was placed in cold layup before COVID19 will be activated in November 2021,” Wallenius Wilhelmsen said.

“As previously stated, we expect the overall industry supply-demand balance to improve in the mid-term. Given the time required to reactivate vessels, we believe that the time is right to reactivate the remaining vessels that have been laid up due to the pandemic.  Predicting the potential market impact of the ongoing pandemic remains a challenge, however, we have the flexibility in our operations to adjust the fleet for any changing market conditions,” said Torbjørn Wist, acting CEO of Wallenius Wilhelmsen.

Wist was appointed acting CEO after Craig Jasienski stepped down from his CEO role and left the company effective March 8.

The car carrier operator said earlier this month that Wist, who had joined the company as CFO in October 2020, would assume the role of acting CEO while the company works to find a replacement for Jasienski, a 30-year Wallenius Wilhelmsen employee.

This post appeared first on MarineLink News.

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