State aid and cheap public financing for ailing shipping companies damage natural market forces, say both shipping organizations and carriers in critical statements after Taiwan announced a large subsidy scheme for the country's shipping sector.
Consolidation of the container market could be delayed by governments providing aid to their struggling carriers. Most recently, Taiwan came forward with a large loan package, while South Korea is also working on a fund to finance vessels.
Wan Hai – the world's 17th largest container carrier – has been brought to its knees by the dire market for container shipping, according to Lloyd's List, as profits shrunk significantly in the third quarter this year. The carrier has rejected a merger proposal.