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The shipping industry turns to megamergers to stay afloat

Cosco deal is the latest move spurred by deteriorating business conditions

TOKYO Less than a year after South Korea's Hanjin Shipping went bankrupt, consolidation among Asian marine shippers is gathering pace as business conditions continue to deteriorate.

On July 9, Cosco Shipping Holdings, parent of the world's fourth-largest container line, announced that it will acquire Hong Kong's Orient Overseas International, or OOIL, for 49.2 billion Hong Kong dollars ($6.3 billion). The deal will create the world's third-largest line, overtaking CMA CGM of France.

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