The focus is on sustainable sailing, capacity increase and innovative collaboration models
The shipping group is responsible for a container feeder fleet of 15 vessels, varying in capacity from 430 to 1440 TEU. The ships performed well and benefited from a market that is showing a strong upward trend. Charter rates have been on the rise since October 2020. The rates continued to rise in 2021 and ships were moored for increasingly longer periods of time.
Focus on sustainability
In its specialist area – short sea shipping – JR Shipping is placing more and more emphasis on sustainability while paying close attention to cost-effective solutions. This was possible for existing container feeder vessels thanks to the intensive collaboration with Value Maritime. This Rotterdam company has developed an innovative filter system with carbon capture technology.
Two container feeder vessels, the Endeavor and the Energy, were fitted with the system earlier this year. More ships from the JR Shipping fleet are scheduled to follow. The Value Marine Filter System with its carbon capture technology has enormous benefits. It means that charterers can continue to sail on traditional, cheaper fuel while significantly reducing their carbon footprint.
ECO Feeder programme
Existing vessels fitted with innovative filter systems will continue to play an important role in the competitive container feeder market in the coming decade. In addition, the construction of new ships is unavoidable if we are to guarantee the continuity of transport flows. JR Shipping took a major step in this direction in 2021 with the introduction of its ECO Feeder programme, which is explained in more detail in the JR Shipping Report 2022.
The ECO Feeder design concept, developed in collaboration with Technolog GmbH, heralds the next generation of feeder and Baltic Max feeder vessels. The concept will enable the market to gradually switch to sustainable fuels and reduce emissions in the short term. The shipping group is holding talks with multiple parties to work out the concept in detail.
SeaZip Offshore Service
The theme of sustainability is the top priority for sister company SeaZip Offshore Service. With a compact fleet of its own crew transfer vessels and management services for third parties, SeaZip is directly involved in the transition to the energy supply of the future: electricity from offshore wind.
In 2021, SeaZip made preparations for a unique capacity expansion, namely the conversion of existing vessels from 12 PAX (passengers) to 24 PAX. The work was carried out in early 2022 and the upgraded vessels are already in great demand. SeaZip Offshore Service also made preparations for the further expansion of its fleet in the spring of 2022.
After the corona crisis, which tested the limits of seafarers for two years, another crisis arose in early 2022: the war in Ukraine. In the global maritime industry, the maritime professionals with Russian and Ukrainian nationality are vitally important. JR Shipping also sails with seafarers from Russia and Ukraine.
In collaboration with Marlow Navigation Crew & Ship Management, the company is managing to maintain optimal working conditions on board its ships. The shore organisation is in permanent contact with the ships and its crew members and a number of support programmes have been launched. This does not alter the fact that a feeling of powerlessness dominates, as expressed by the Management of JR Shipping in the foreword to the JR Shipping Report 2022.
Excellence in sustainable short sea shipping
After twelve years of crisis management, in the long aftermath of the financial crisis the short sea shipping markets in which shipping group JR Shipping is active have recovered to such an extent that the focus is once again on the future. The cornerstones are controlled fleet growth, improving the sustainability performance of the existing fleet, and, in collaboration with carriers, paving the way for the next generation of container feeder vessels with the ECO Feeder new-build programme. This will transform the shipping company’s market potential in the years to come from Excellence in Short Sea Shipping to Excellence in Sustainable Short Sea Shipping.