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OOIL posts positive results but warns of COVID-19 instability

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Overseas Orient International Line (OOIL), the parent company of Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) and a subsidiary of COSCO, saw increases in revenue and profit in 2019 but warned of the effects COVID-19 will have on the market this year.

In its annual financial results, the Hong Kong-based company said its revenue jumped from $650 million in 2018 to $680 million. Its profit grew from $263 million to $361 million.

The growth came amid low economic growth – the globally economy grew by 2.9% in 2019, its worst performance since the 2008-2009 financial crisis.

It put the success down to “significant synergy benefits” and its integration into the wider COSCO Shipping Group; COSCO bought OOIL in 2018.

Higher freight rates, a result of a better supply and demand balance in the container shipping line market, also helped its financial performance.

In March 2020, OOIL placed an order for a new fleet of mega-ships

In its 2020 outlook OOIL said it believes the market will become “increasingly complex” due to COVID-19, or coronavirus, pandemic.

This is because the pandemic’s spread around the world has caused great uncertainty in global supply chains, even if China is able to control it.

“In general, the impact of the epidemic in 2020 may be longer, and market uncertainty is further increasing,” it said in a statement. 

“We expect the governments of many countries and regions may launch further stimulus packages to alleviate the downward pressure on the global economy. 

“We firmly believe that China’s economy will continue to maintain stable growth in the medium and long term, and will continue to be an important stabilizer for global economic growth, thereby supporting global trade demand and the development of the shipping industry.”

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