Fleet Growth

Dec 23, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Mercantile Shipping Company said it has taken delivery of the second of a pair of new cargo ships it ordered built by a Dutch yard. According to the company’s September quarter results just released to the stock exchange, it made a loss of 18.8 million rupees in the period compared with a profit of 9.5 million rupees the year before.

Mercantile Shipping’s group sales in the quarter rose 62 percent to 118.5 million rupees from a year ago.

The loss per share in the September 2009 quarter was 7.53 rupees compared with earnings of 3.81 rupees in the same month the year before.

Its two new multi-purpose vessels named Mercs Uva and Mercs Uhana are chartered internationally as the firm has ceased operations in Sri Lankan waters.

The vessels were ordered from Bodewes Ship Yard in the Netherlands by Mercantile Emerald Shipping (Pvt) Ltd, a fully owned subsidiary of Mercantile Shipping Co.

Mercantile Shipping Company was for long the island’s biggest ship owner with a fleet of almost a dozen vessels at one time.

It deployed many of its vessels to supply the northern Jaffna peninsula when it was cut off from the