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Four Arrested Hanjin Ships Freed After Creditors Paid

Posted on October 11, 2016

By Xiaolin Zeng, IHS

Four Hanjin Shipping-controlled ships have been released from arrest in China and the Panama Canal after the company settled claims from terminal operators and bunker suppliers.

A company spokesman told IHS Fairplay that some of the KRW110 billion (USD98.8 million) injected by parent Hanjin Group, whose major shareholder is Korean Air Lines, was used to settle the claims.

The freed ships, Hanjin Kingston, Hanjin Turkey, Hanjin Rotterdam, and Hanjin Baltimore, which were chartered-in, will be returned to their respective owners.

Two other ships, Hanjin Düsseldorf and Hanjin Sooho, remain under arrest in China; Hanjin Rome is still detained in Singapore; Hanjin California is still detained in Sydney; Hanjin Vienna and Hanjin Scarlet remain detained in Canada, and on 2 October, a bunker supplier arrested Hanjin Bremerhaven in Panama Canal. The Hanjin Shipping spokesman said the company was working to secure the release of these ships as soon as possible.

The arrest of Hanjin Sooho in China is poignant as the ship was named after Hanjin Shipping’s late chairman, Cho Soo-ho, the younger brother of Hanjin Group and Korean Air Lines chairman Cho Yang-ho.

More than 20 ships remain in open seas as Hanjin Shipping works to get these berthed after freezing creditors’ action in jurisdictions such as the United Kingdom, Singapore, Japan, the United States and Germany. More than 30 ships have returned to South Korea and remain berthed as Hanjin Shipping ponders its future.

The company, South Korea’s largest line, went into receivership on 1 September after accumulating over USD5 billion in debt and losing its banks’ support. Hanjin Shipping is expected to submit a rehabilitation plan to the Seoul Central District Court on 23 December, despite media reports that the court is seeking a buyer for the line.

Source: Fairplay

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