April 27 - The ending of trade sanctions on Myanmar is allowing Rickmers-Linie to once again offer calls at the country.
Initially, the country's main port, Yangon, will be served on inducement as part of the company's Indian service and will cater for heavy lift cargo up to 800 tonnes in weight.
The Indian service fleet consists of Linde, Martin and Baltic Winter (pictured below), as well as Rickmers Yokohama and Rickmers Tianjin. While the 2011-built Baltic Winter has a deadweight of 19,800 tonnes and is capable of lifting individual items of cargo up to 800 tonnes in weight, Linde and Martin, both built in 2005, are 12,800 dwt ships each equipped with two 120 tonne capacity cranes that can be twinned to lift 240 tonnes. The 17,000 dwt sister vessels Rickmers Yokohama and Rickmers Tianjin each have a maximum lifting capacity of 300 tonnes.
Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, has a population of over four million and continues to be the country's largest city and the most important commercial centre.
Gerhard Janssen, Rickmers-Linie's director, sales and marketing, notes that Myanmar's infrastructure, including that of Yangon itself, will require significant improvements to match other major cities in Southeast Asia.
He says: "We anticipate longer term that this issue will be addressed. Free of sanctions, Myanmar's economy should develop quickly and an increase in construction activity is inevitable. That will drive demand for breakbulk and project cargo."