Release Date:
Release ID: 948

NOL To Establish Wholly-Owned Operations In Vietnam. Vietnam Government grants shipping-logistics licence to Singapore-owned group

Global cargo transportation and logistics group Neptune Orient Lines (NOL) has received approval from Vietnam’s Ministry of Planning and Investment to establish a wholly-owned company to provide container transportation and logistics services in Vietnam, marking a first for a Singapore-based company.

The new company will be known as APL-NOL (Vietnam) Limited, and will replace the existing joint venture on 1 January 2007.

NOL's subsidiaries APL and APL Logistics have been providing container transportation and supply chain management services in Vietnam in association with a leading local shipping and logistics company, Vietfracht, since 1991.

Today, APL offers five weekly sailings from Vietnam to global destinations and APL Logistics operates more than 30,000sqm of warehouse space to customers in the country. NOL was also an early investor in Vietnam’s first privately-owned, purpose-built container port – Vietnam International Container Terminal ­– which will handle around 440,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) this year.

NOL Group President and Chief Executive Officer, Dr Thomas Held, said: “We thank Vietfracht for the great support they have given us since we began our partnership in 1991. Moving forward, the establishment of a wholly-owned subsidiary is consistent with NOL’s global strategy of taking first-mover advantage in key emerging markets such as Vietnam.

“Over the coming years, we will further enhance our liner and container terminal capabilities as well as improving the logistics services we offer. This will enable NOL to keep pace with the fast-changing global business environment and provide our customers with the best-possible services as they place an increasing amount of their sourcing and manufacturing in Vietnam.”

The approval of the licence was based on the provisions of the Singapore-Vietnam Connectivity Agreement, signed in December 2005, which aims to strengthen the economic relationship between the two South East Asian countries.

Vietnam’s GDP growth averaged 7.4% between 2000 and 2005 with 8.2% expected in 2006. Over the same period, Vietnam’s container throughput grew by 19% per year. The country’s growth is expected to continue with GDP expansion of 8-8.5% forecast for 2007, and container traffic is likely to rise by around 20%.

“Vietnam is already among the world’s fastest-growing sourcing locations and its economic reforms and accession to the World Trade Organisation have greatly increased its importance to the global economy,” said NOL Asia-Middle East President, Jim McAdam. “Over the next five years, we aim to add capacity in key trade lanes, further develop our container terminal interests and expand our logistics capabilities.”

The new company will have more than 140 staff across the country, with offices in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Haiphong and Danang.

“As one of the first companies to obtain a wholly-owned license to operate shipping and logistics services in Vietnam, APL and APL Logistics are well placed to serve our customers’ needs in this fast-growing market. We are actively pursuing opportunities to establish new container shipping services and operate new logistics facilities across the country,” concluded APL-NOL Vietnam Managing Director, Tan Hua Joo.


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