The Business Times

Shipping firms face tax, accounting challenges

Published Wed, Dec 3, 2014 · 09:50 PM
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THE seas are turning into a high-stakes battle for market share as container ship carriers enter into marriages of convenience to harness economies of scale. Over the past few years, the world's largest container lines have forged shipping alliances, sharing port facilities in key transportation hubs and pooling services in the world's busiest trade routes.

In 2011, six of the world's leading carriers formed the G6 alliance to provide faster transit times and greater port coverage in the Far East-to-Europe and Far East-to-Mediterranean routes. In 2014, the two-carrier 2M alliance was established after clearing regulatory hurdles. This alliance will pool together 185 ships on the European, trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific routes in 2015.

Meanwhile, the Ocean Three pact is pending regulatory approval. Formed by three of the world's largest container shipping lines, the Ocean Three's entry will heat up the battleground for major trade lanes between Asia, Europe and the US.

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