frank elliott
25th March 2013, 12:31
Have seen an article in a newspaper that Taiwanese shipping Co.
EVERGREEN LINE has ambitions to become 2nd. in the league of
BOX carriers with 36 new box ships being built or on order.
They have also just bought two lots of new 'dry' boxes 49,200 in
total at a cost of £171.7 million. One lot of 34,050 from China
International Marine Containers for£121.3 m and a second lot of
15,150 for £50.4 m from a company CXIC ( no doubt Chinese ).
In total this is 49,200 boxes at an average price of £3,435 / box
or approximately 5,100 USD /box said to be at the bottom of
present market price range.
I often wondered who makes these boxes and where and at what
cost. Now I know ------------- I would never have guessed!

26th March 2013, 00:34
If i were ordering nigh on 50,000 of something, i`d want it substantially below the present bottom price.

26th March 2013, 00:47
good morning frank Elliott.yesterday,21:31re:ships containers.the fact that they are made in china(what isn't?)what is the normal cost of a container,as rocket_ron said,he would want a desent discount.i have never thought of what a container cost,it is an interesting thread,have a good one ben27

26th March 2013, 06:21
Good subject. How are containers traced? Here in Tonga one sees boxes left about the place. They must have owners and these are presumably missing out on rentals or leases or whatever. Could someone in the biz explain how the system works, If I order a container load of goods from NZ and those goods arrive thro' Reef (now Matson) Shipping how is the owner of the container identified and how is he paid and who is responsible for returning the box to a base etc. Who pays whom? What happens if a box "disappears" and is being used as a plantation hut in Tonga? Are there companies specialising in returning "lost" containers?

frank elliott
26th March 2013, 16:44
Interesting one. That should bring U many answers from people in the know. All I know is that a container has a 'chip' tracking device
built in and an identity number,with the owner staff keeping track on
where containers are at any given time. A container carrying goods to a destination is given a certain number of hours to unload that container' otherwise a demurrage charge is imposed. Yes I'm sure
some go missing,useful things for all sorts of purposes,an example I
witnessed a number of years ago when on a Fyffes ship to Suriname
South America was out in the jungle, ships containers used as road bridges across rivers etc., with the ends knocked out and a bad attempt to erase the owner shipping Company logo.

26th March 2013, 17:43
Maersk announced recently that it was opening a new container manufacturing base in Chile.


27th March 2013, 05:09
Cheers Frank. So I pay the freight company here in Tonga and that payment includes an amount for using the container, they pay the shipping company and similar, the shipping company pay ?, perhaps the owner of the box. On the property next to ours sits a 40' container which a Chinese importer brought in several months ago. A large label on it says "FLORENS". Perhaps the owner. So Mr Florens gets up in the morning, looks at his computer and reads the chips, noting his box is still sitting in the village of Mataika in Tonga. Instead of moving around the globe and earning income for the owner it sits here. I wonder who pays and how. I wonder if Florens get a cheque every month. Lots of questions on this thread, Cheers Frank, very interesting.

27th March 2013, 08:44
Great thread! What is the NORMAL operational life of a container? They regularly come up for sale by the container owner and are in great demand here in S.A. and put to a variety of uses. My son in law has two as storage / workshops on the fruit farm at the top of the Piketburg Mountain range way inland! How about some pics of containers being put to different uses. Think the one of them being used as bridges is great!

uisdean mor
30th March 2013, 09:56
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9th May 2013, 16:37
Here in the US, once the container is reached it's life span it is sold, some are used as on site storage containers, in the case i know of they are used to store product for a store remodel.

9th May 2013, 16:54
Right I have been into all ends of this business over the years but would take too long to answer everything......

Florens are Sydney based operators so Tonga isn't too far off piste......
But the job could well, and this is common, carry a daily/monthly rental on the box itself, so so much for shipping and landing and 'x' for rental.......or the box could have been sent on the basis on nil return......i.e. it becomes the property of the receiver.

Alloy containers are no longer being made for general use.....they are too easily melted down and alternative housing being the 70's we were involved in movements to the hectic Shetland oil industry...but we were losing lots of alloy of our managers in our plane flew over some mountains and spotted a small village of 'our' boxes where even a car couldn't reach....chimneys and curtains et al.........

There has been a severe shortage of shipable 20's for a long time and for the last consultancy I did we were importing empties from Palm Beach & New York into UK so we could load them back to China..........the rate to our clients included the cost of the box but a reduced price back to them if delivered to one of 2 ports China for resale or reload.......


Containers are used until no longer suitable for certification.

11th May 2013, 02:47
Thanks Geoff. Are all container movements computerised? I can see the wisdom of the cost of the container being included in the rate. The Florens box mentioned in my 27 March post is still sitting next door and a Chinese trader occasionally comes and removes a few cartons. A very interesting subject and if you have time in the future I'd love to read more on it. Must look online at other sites. Regarding the mountain village in the Shetlands perhaps the firm's helicopter pilots had been doing a few perk jobs, Cheers

11th May 2013, 03:29
To see a novel use of shipping containers Google- to see photos of the containers used to establish a temporary retail centre in the earthquake ravaged city of Christchurch.
I was there last month and it is like a cleverly designed oasis on a bombsite.


11th May 2013, 05:54
I would imagine that most boxes appear on computers somewhere as they are rarely owned by the Lines but by pretty massive Leasing Corporations and rented and re-rented

The Tonga box I suspect has been sold on to the trader


11th May 2013, 13:24
In the late ''80s Australian National Line commissioned a load of University Students to track down all their containers. The study went on for ages and a notable one that turned up had a large family living in it in Peru. The company decided to let them bide. Of course, that was before Max Moore-Wilton came on the scene - no more Mr Nice Guy with Max the Axe.

John T

19th May 2013, 15:16
You can buy 'one trip' containers in the uk for around £2,500.

They are plated and in perfect condition, but it appears to be cheaper for them to sell them than to return them to China/Korea etc empty.

Very popular with people looking for secure storage, self-build houses etc.


10th June 2013, 18:34
Here is a try at a few definitive answers:
Roughly half of all General Purpose (GP) containers, and 90% of all Temperature Controlled containers (Reefers) are owned by the shipping lines themselves and apart from painting their logo on the sides "APL" "EVERGREEN" "MAERSK" you can look at the code number painted on the ends and sides - for example a container with the prefix APLU followed by 6 or 7 digits is an APL owned unit. If you have access to the owners codes you can find out from the digits what type of container it is (40 or 20 foot, reefer or GP) and where and when it was built. MAEU1234567 is a Maersk box. CPSU1234567 is an old CP Ships container now owned by Hapag Lloyd whose own prefix is HLXU.
The other half of all GP containers are owned by lessers like Genco who have a unique prefix number of GCSU1234567. Other lessors are GOLD-GLDU, Amphicon-AMFU, CRONOS-CRLU and so on. Even big multi nationals are in on the lease business i.e. General electric have a leasing division called GESEACO whose containers have a prefix GESU.
These numbers are the method of tracking the containers because these numbers are the ones quoted in bills of lading, contracts, customs documentation and in gate release records.
Only Containers with very high cargo value are fitted with GPS trackers - usually a requirement of the cargo insurers.
So what is the difference? Well if you want to export something from Australia to Tonga that is suitable for carriage inside a container you can go on the web and get a quote from a shipping line two ways,
the first is "Door to Door" That is the line will supply you with their container swept clean and dry at the factory in Oz - where you stuff and secure the contents. The line then delivers it to you on a truck somewhere in Tonga agreed in your carriage of freight contract.
Alternatively if you don't like the quote you can do it yourself at each end - that is called "Pier to pier" shipment whereby you find your own container get it stuffed and hire a haulier to bring it to the container terminal gate in time for shipment, you have to do all the customs etc paperwork and the reverse in Tonga - you arrange to pick up the box from the port and transport it to your place, unstuff it and probably the lease agreement says you should return it to a suitable inland collection point.
Big companies like Ford do this kind of biz all over europe but use their own containers - crossing the QE2 bridge in Dartford you can look down and see roro vessels loading ford containers.
To answer the original question - Evergreen have a long way to go to catch up with the likes of Maersk, CMA/CGM, MSC and COSCO all of which have in excess of 4-500 ships each and millions of containers.
Some earlier answers are correct - most cntrs are built in china these days but countries like Vietnam, Taiwan, Indonesia, Chile and India do manufacture or have large capacities to manufacture containers but sadly since 2008 ordering of new containers virtually stopped overnight and it is only recently ordering has restarted by owners for natural replacement or to feed organic growth of the company which is the case here with Evergreen - roughly if you build an 8,000 teu vessel and do not retire any equivalent amount of your older fleet capacity then you need to build 24,000 containers on the basis that
1 container is always on the vessel whilst two are elsewhere being driven around, stuffed/unstuffed. Hope this helps!(Pint)(Pint)(Night)
E&OE etc J.

14th June 2013, 13:16
Yes a fair assessment I think........Last project I did on a marine front before retiring required some 3400 containers, mainly 20's.lots of 40's and lots and lots of open tops in both sizes. From memory, over 13 months of project, some 2800 approx were supplied by one leasing company, the balance we bought in from a wide market,European & USA and were shipped here as empties........many of these required repairs, new sheeting etc. but were all re-sold back into the market mainly via Hong Kong & Singapore. At no time did we use Lines own boxes even though only one Line was used for entire project.


frank elliott
14th June 2013, 21:44
Pentalver { Maersk road transport Co. ) at Cannock,Staffs depot will sell
older secondhand containers for £1200. + VAT on a 20ft. £1650 + VAT on a 40ft. Delivery charge on mileage. An extra £300 payment will give a full refurb.
job and a new dark blue paint job. An extra £35 buys a high security padlock.
Suitable for a long life secure storage unit or many other uses.