October 1 - Rickmers-Linie and Eastern Car Liner will expand their cooperation in the Trans Pacific trade.

Since 2006 Rickmers-Linie has deployed ECL's vessels from the US to Asia. The newly concluded agreement will allow Rickmers-Linie also to utilise the ECL vessels eastbound from Asia to the US Gulf and East Coast. This new expanded cooperation will be effective with the sailing of Fortune Epoch sailing Japan in early October. 

The four 11,000 dwt vessels that are involved in this cooperation come with heavy lift gear capable of lifting loads of up to 120 tons. These vessels were built between 1995 and 1998 and are equipped with ro-ro ramps. Regular loadings ports within Rickmers-Linie's eastbound service will include Moji, Kure, Nagoya, Hitachi and other ports not presently served by Rickmers' Round-the-World vessels. 

The four vessels involved are Fortune Epoch, Reina Rosa, Del Sol and Millennium Falcon (seen below, and, disappointingly, not the fictional spacecraft in the Star Wars universe commanded by smuggler Han Solo and his Wookiee first mate, Chewbacca which shares the same name - ed!) 

Through this agreement, the two lines say that they will be optimising their operations within the US Gulf and East Coast services and cooperating on the monthly service from Asia to the US Gulf and East Coast. For Rickmers-Linie, this expanded cooperation will enhance both its westbound and eastbound services.