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Company worries mount as Hanjin Shipping files for bankruptcy

Finance minister vows all efforts to solve Hanjin crisis Company worries mount as Hanjin Shipping files for bankruptcy
Rufina Vignone | 15 Settembre, 2016, 07:41

Hanjin Group has pledged to raise a total of 100 billion won ($90 million) in funds to help rescue cargo that is stranded at sea following the failure of Hanjin Shipping, the world's seventh-largest container carrier.

But last week, Fairview's operator, DP World, and CN Rail said they had made arrangements to handle the cargo - though the terminal operator "requires pre-payment for handling of Hanjin containers".

On the surface, the bankruptcy fate of a South Korean shipping company doesn't look like it would be more than a minor blip on the radar of the overall US economy.

At the moment, United States dockers and transporters are refusing to unload and move cargoes from Hanjin Shipping vessels for the fear of not getting paid for their services.

For example, it would have to charter at least 16 planes at a cost of about $8.8 million to move 1,469 tons of goods, it said.

One of Hanjin's captains on board a vessel in global waters close to Japan has said that his vessel was allowed to enter the Japanese port on Wednesday in order to unload cargo.

Ports have refused to accept Hanjin cargoes without guarantees that port fees will be paid.

The court did not say how much it had requested from lead creditor Korea Development Bank and government ministries.

Dock workers at the Port of Prince Rupert's Fairview container terminal started loading cargo off the Hanjin Scarlet on Wednesday, a week after the vessel was stranded there when its parent company filed for bankruptcy protection.

Shippers with cargo on Hanjin ships right now are in a tough spot.

"If these vessels can not dock, companies like Samsung, U.S. retailers and U.S. customers will be injured by orders of magnitude greater than the harm Samsung suffers from the delay and increased costs of these two vessels inability to dock at Long Beach", Samsung executive Jung Tae Ahn argued in a statement to the court.

Many ships carry only a limited supply of low-sulfur fuel.

Attorneys for the South Korea based- Hanjin Shipping said the company got approval from the bankruptcy court in its home country to spend roughly $10 million to unload cargo from four ships that were headed to ports in the US, according to an investors update from Teresa Lii, a legal analyst at Reorg Research.

The South Korean government earlier announced a plan to direct such vessels to selected offshore ports, including Singapore and Hamburg, where safe freight unloading can be guaranteed, in order to help Hanjin ships have their cargo safely offloaded at the port. Hanjin owns the company that operates that terminal, which is still up and running.

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