Three Ocean Carriers Plan New Alliance

Jason Alden/Bloomberg News

France’s CMA CGM, the world’s third-largest container shipping company, has signed an equipment sharing alliance with China Shipping Container Line and United Arab Shipping as carriers continue to seek new partners.

The agreement known as Ocean Three was announced within days after CMA CGM’s two larger competitors – Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co. announced their own service agreement.

Both steps follow the dissolution of a planned three-way equipment sharing partnership between Maersk, Mediterranean Shipping and CGM. That plan was scuttled when Chinese regulators rejected it.

The Ocean Three service will cover Transpacific and Transatlantic shipments, Asia-Europe and Mediterranean routes, the CMA CGM statement said.

“We are very pleased to have signed these three agreements with such reputable partners, whom we both know and appreciate,” CMA CGM Vice Chairman Rodolphe Saade said in a statement.  “This will allow us to propose to our clients a high quality and reliable alternative to existing services on the market.”

The Ocean Three plan requires approval from the Federal Maritime Commission. So does the Maersk-Mediterranean Shipping plan. Neither plan has been approved yet.