South Korean Shipbuilders Secure Second Place in Global Orders for 2023

SEOUL – South Korean shipbuilders have secured the second position in new global orders for shipbuilding in 2023, marking their third consecutive year in this rank. According to industry data released on Sunday, South Korean shipyards obtained orders totaling 10.01 million compensated gross tons (CGTs), representing 24 percent of the global orders, which amounted to 41.49 million CGTs.

According to Yonhap News Agency, a global market research firm, the volume of orders received by South Korean shipbuilders in 2023 showed a decrease of 37.6 percent compared to the previous year. This decline was part of a larger trend, as the global total of new orders also fell by 18.7 percent from 2022.

Despite the overall drop in orders, South Korean shipbuilders continued to excel in the high-end market segment, particularly in liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers. They secured orders for 4.41 million CGTs of LNG carriers in 2023, which accounted for 80 percent of the global total of 5.54 million CGTs. This marked an increase from their 70 percent share in 2022.

In contrast, Chinese shipyards, which led the global market by securing 24.46 million CGTs in new orders, accounting for 59 percent of the worldwide total, only captured 20 percent of the LNG carrier orders, amounting to 1.13 million CGTs.

This shift in market dynamics indicates a change from previous years. South Korea had maintained the world's leading position in new shipbuilding orders for three consecutive years before ceding the top spot to China in 2021. However, their continued dominance in the LNG carrier segment highlights their specialized capabilities in this area.

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