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Greece remains the world's top ship-owning nation

posted onFebruary 19, 2019

Greece remains a dominant force in the shipping industry despite the economic hardships faced by the Mediterranean country.

Greek-owned vessels reached $105.22 billion (€92 bn) in value in 2018, an increase of $5.64 billion in less than a year, making the fleet the most valuable in the world, according to London-based ratings firm Vessels Value.

The Japanese-controlled fleet ranked second at $94.72 billion — up from $89.12 billion in 2018, while the Chinese-owned fleet was third, at $90.87 billion. The  fourth, fifth and sixth places were taken by Singapore, Norway and the US respectively with the Singaporean fleet worth $49.96 billion, the Norwegian $48.85 billion and the American $44.51 billion. Germany was at No.7 at $31.46 billion, followed by South Korea at $30 billion, the UK at $29 billion and Denmark at $23 billion.

The Greek company-owned fleet’s $5.64-billion value increase from 2018 was the second biggest among the top 10 shipping nations and trailed only China’s $6.3 billion growth, the ratings firm noted. The increased fortune came mainly from Greek shipping companies’ high demand for LNG vessels and a tanker value uptick.

Greece ranked first in terms of  LNG carriers, which are tanker ships designed for transporting liquefied natural gas (LNG). Their value reached $18.4 billion (€16.2 billion) in 2018, grabbing the top position from the Japanese,  whose fleet came in second at $15.2 billion.  

Japan's fleet was the most valuable in bulker ($40.78 billion), reefer ($513 million), small dry ($3.53 billion) and liquefied petroleum gas ($4.07 billion).“It is interesting to note that Japan based companies saw the largest addition of value from liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) carriers, a segment in which many other nations saw an erosion of value” reads the Vessels Value report. 

Greece John Angelikousis shipowner
John Angelicoussis, owner of Angelicoussis Shipping Group Photo: TradeWinds

Lloyd’s List Names 15 Greeks Among World’s Top 100 Influential People in Shipping

Fifteen Greek shipowners and executives were included in the prominent 2018 LLoyds List of the 100 most powerful personalities in global shipping. Greeks were also the biggest group, in terms of ethnicity on the list; next were the Chinese shipowners, with twelve of the most influential individuals.

The number one Greek individual in shipping for yet another year is New York-based John Angelicoussis, owner of Angelicoussis Shipping Group, who is in the 6th place, up two spots from the 2017 rankings.

The second Greek man in terms of influence and presence in the Lloyd’s Top 100 is George J. Prokopiou, of Dynacom Tankers, Sea Traders and Dynagas who is in 12th place, up from 15th last year. Prokopiou is the world's biggest owner of Suezmax vessels. The third Greek, Angeliki Frangou, head of Navios Maritime Holdings is 22nd with a total of 120 vessels.

Other Greeks at the top are Petros Pappas, the CEO of Star Bulk (24th), George Economou of TMS and Dry Ships (25th),  GasLog's Peter Livanos (26th), a major "player" in the LNG sector and Theodore Veniamis, the President of the Greek Shipowners’ Union (43rd).

Further down on the prestigious list are Kostas Konstantakopoulos of Costamare, Nikolas Tsakos, founder, president and CEO of Tsakos Energy Navigation (TEN) Limited, Evangelos Marinakis of Capital Group, Anastasios Papagiannopoulos, president of Bimco, Dimitris Fafalios of Intercargo, George Logothetis of LibraGroup, Panos Laskaridis, chairman of chairman of the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ESCA) and Despina Theodosiou, president of Wista International. 

“Greek shipowners continue to teach the rest of us how to succeed in the counter-cyclical game” Lloyd’s “One Hundred People 2018” list noted.

Kitack Lim, the South Korean Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization held the leading position on the list.