Maersk Line orders 11 container ships from Daewoo shipbuilding with option to buy 6 more

COPENHAGEN – Danish shipping and oil group A.P. Moller-Maersk says it has ordered 11 huge container ships with an option to buy six more in a deal worth 12.3 billion kroner ($1.8 billion)

Soeren Toft, spokesman for the shipping unit Maersk line, says the 400-meter (1,200 feet) ships “will help us stay competitive in the Asia-Europe trade and will be key in our strategy to grow with the market.”

Toft says the vessels, built by South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering, should be delivered in 2017. They will be the largest in the Copenhagen-based group’s fleet.

Tuesday’s deal was part of a $15 billion investment program to meet growing demand for shipping and to replace less efficient vessels. In March, Maersk Line ordered seven ice-class container vessels from China’s COSCO.