Copyright World Maritime news
Maersk-Chef Andersen„Wir wollen niemanden plattmachen“
14. Juni 2014
„Wir wollen mit dem Markt wachsen und ihn nicht schlagen“, sagte Andersen im Interview mit der WirtschaftsWoche. „Wir wollen niemanden plattmachen.“ In den kommenden Jahren rechne er „mit einem Wachstum der Containernachfrage von vier bis fünf Prozent“.
Als Grund für die Zurückhaltung nannte Andersen die höheren Renditen in anderen Bereichen, in denen Möller-Maersk tätig ist. „Wir erzielen in der Containerschifffahrt eine Rendite von nur neun Prozent auf das eingesetzte Kapital. In neue Bohrinseln, das Erdölgeschäft oder Häfen zu investieren, ist für uns deutlich lukrativer als in höhere Marktanteile im Reedereigeschäft.“ Deshalb plane Möller-Maersk im Container-Geschäft auch keine Zukäufe. „Nein“, so Andersen, „wir wachsen organisch.“ Bei den Frachtraten äußerte sich Andersen pessimistisch: „Ich glaube, dass in den kommenden Jahren die Preise weiter langsam sinken. Wir haben es weiterhin mit Überkapazitäten zu tun, und das wird noch lange Zeit so bleiben.“
Between the royal palace and the old citadel of Copenhagen nestles the head office of A.P. Møller-Maersk. From the stylish, modern low-rise building, CEO Nils Smedegaard Andersen (1958) has been running the global activities of the Danish conglomerate since 2007. Andersen was appointed after the €2.3 billion takeover of P&O Nedlloyd in 2005 failed to deliver the hoped-for profit. Prior to this, he was CEO at the Danish brewery Carlsberg. His decisions could determine the future of many European ports. ‘I don’t think Rotterdam will lose out’, says Andersen in an exclusive interview with the Dutch financial daily FD. How do you see the future of European container ports? ‘Naturally, the world looks different from before the crisis. Then, lots of companies were still busy moving their production offshore, to China for example. As a result, container transport grew by between 10 and 12%. Those days will never return. Global growth will be slower, but healthier. European manufacturers will relocate partly to Turkey and Eastern Europe, for example, rather than to China, where things are becoming increasingly expensive. Moreover, automated production closer to home will increase. As a result, therefore, growth in production will not automatically mean the need for more shipping too. So ports will have to adapt to an increase in volume of say 4 to 5%.’ Does this mean that many ports have invested too much in expansion? ‘I think that these investments were a good thing because ships are becoming bigger all the time and they need more modern infrastructure on the quayside. Not every existing terminal or crane is able to cope with our new ships. The question is, of course, will some ports be less successful? At the time of the large expansions, a lot of port projects were launched on the assumption that capacity had to be increased no matter what. Ultimately, only a number of ports will win more market share.’ Will Rotterdam continue to be Europe’s largest container port? ‘I don’t think that Rotterdam will lose its position. Even if growth is lower than assumed when planning the Second Maasvlakte, the expansion is still needed. For us, Rotterdam is clearly one of the ports with the most interesting future in Europe. We are creating a large hub there for ourselves. It is very well positioned and it has reasonably good hinterland connections, which doesn’t mean, however, that things can’t be improved.’ What must Rotterdam do to stay ahead? ‘Rotterdam is doing very well. It has invested heavily. But it’s very important that not only the sea side of the port is efficient, but also the land side. We therefore need big motorways, more rail capacity and expansion on the inland waterways to make the port successful. You therefore still have quite a lot of investments to make in transport infrastructure.’ Will everyone in the port of Rotterdam benefit from this? ‘I don’t want to go into the situation in Rotterdam too specifically, but the crisis made it clear that we are facing a period of slow growth. Some terminals will lose out as a result. Naturally, it’s awful if you have made large investments and have enough capacity and then you are overtaken by other terminals. But that’s the reality. We overestimated the future growth in Europe. That’s why some investments were perhaps made too soon.’ What will the P3 alliance between Mærsk Line and the two other large European shipping lines MSC and CMA-CGM mean for Rotterdam? ‘Mærsk Line will become the major user of our new terminal on the Second Maasvlakte. But we will have to see precisely how the volumes are shared and how we organise it. The P3 partners will decide that. We’ll have to look at how we can best allocate the cargo at which hub and which available terminals. Considering the fact that our terminal on the Second Maasvlakte is very big, modern and automated, it will get a large proportion of the cargo. I assume that our P3 partners will also use our terminal, but we will have to discuss that among ourselves. Mærsk Line does not necessarily take the lead in this.’httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QacugkO5nqs&feature=uploademail