January 28 - Breakbulk and heavy lift shipping line, Austral Asia Line (AAL), has established a new division in Tokyo, Japan.

AAL Japan will focus on providing quality services to key Japanese industries, paying particular focus to the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) sector. AAL Japan will provide a wide range of transportation and logistics services including sea, land and air transportation, related agency services, financing, temporary staffing and logistics consultancy.

The AAL Japan division will be headed by Wolfgang Harms as managing director, in conjunction with his current roles as chief representative for greater China and deputy managing director of Austral Asia Line.  

 "Japan saw a steady resurgence in its export market towards the end of 2014 - supported by demand from the US and China - an encouraging sign, considering the volatile global market," said Harms. "To maintain their competitive edge, our local shipping customers aim to maximise their operational efficiencies, as well as health and safety and sustainability standards.  At AAL, we have built a trusted reputation for providing flexible transportation solutions that meet these demands."

Kyriacos Panayides, managing director of Austral Asia Line, added: "We will continue to invest in the expansion of our operations and the development of our fleet and trading routes to all continents, to create a truly global reach for our customers.  Launching AAL Japan is a good example of this."

Wolfgang Harms (right), managing director, AAL Japan.