The proposed membership of Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) in the 2M Alliance has been blocked by Maersk, reported The Korea Times.
The alliance, made up of Maersk and MSC, was a key plank in the restructuring plans of HMM, who need to present a credible rescue package to their creditors in order to obtain debt rescheduling.
Speaking to The Korea Times, a Maersk official said: “The discussions are still ongoing, but I understand the two parties are now looking for other kinds of cooperation” with a press release going on to say this could take the form of slot sharing.
The latest blow for HMM follows last week’s failed attempt to acquire the assets of the now-defunt Hanjin Shipping, being outbid by Korea Line.
With the debts piling up for HMM and attempts such as these to restructure and rebound falling at the final hurdle, the carrier will now find it increasingly difficult to obtain help from the state-owned Korea Development Bank.
One creditor, wishing to remain anonymous, said of the latest blow: “It is very disappointing to hear this. We thought HMM's entrance into the alliance was a given,
“However, there is nothing we can do at this point. I hope HMM concludes the deal as it promised.”