Danish carriers have billions at stake in Russia

Carriers such as Maersk Line, Unifeeder, and DFDS are at particular risk of being hit by Russian sanctions, says the Danish Shipowners' Association, whose members have an estimated combined revenue in Russia of USD 1.11 billion to USD 1.86 billion.

This week the United States and EU introduced sanctions against Russia, and researchers are now talking about the rise of a new Cold War.

But even though Russia has yet to react to the western sanctions, many observers fear that the superpower will act on its threats to freeze western assets and seize the property and real estate of western companies.

Such a scenario, if realized, would have serious impact on Danish carriers.

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According to Jan Fritz Hansen, vice president of the Danish Shipowners' Association, the shipping companies get three percent of their revenue from Russia and much as five percent from the region as a whole.

From a total revenue of USD 37.30 billion, 3-5 percent corresponds to USD 1.11 to USD 1.86 billion.

"When I say that this corresponds to 3-5 percent of their revenue, I'm not trying to downplay the matter. After all, USD 1.11 to USD 1.86 billion is not peanuts," says Jan Fritz Hansen.

According Jan Fritz Hansen, the shipowners' association is speaking to its members about the Russian conflict.

"Right now we're fortunately quite far away from the point where carriers are seriously hit, but there is a lot of focus on this and we're in close talks with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs," he says.

Danish companies fear for assets in Russia

Jan Fritz Hansen says that carriers such as A.P. Moeller, Unifeeder, and DFDS are the ones likely to be impacted by a Russian sanction response because they operate frequently in the region.

Furthermore, the container carriers have invested a lot of money in ports and terminals, explains Jan Fritz Hansen.

Most observers and experts agree that the current sanctions against Russia are somewhat mild. And the sanctions do not have a significant impact on the carriers, he says.

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But the shipowners' association is paying a lot of attention to possible ways in which new sanctions against Russia will impact Danish businesses.

"We keep a close eye on developments to ensure that the sanctions don't have an unnecessary impact on western companies. They have to adapt the sanctions so that the established activity in the country is not caught in the crossfire. We have remind them of that from time to time," says Jan Fritz Hansen.

ShippingWatch has learned that the Danish embassy in Moscow is currently being flooded with calls from Danish companies with assets in Russia.

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