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The Loadstar does not normally cover the dry bulk shipping industry – it is essentially business of basic commodity flows and has little effect on the day-to-day business of our readership. However, occasionally some development takes place that is Big News. In this instance it is a deal between Chinese dry bulk ship operator Shandong Shipping, and Brazilian iron ore mining conglomerate Vale, which has built a series of 400,000dwt mega-sized bulk carriers to make it cheaper to transport its ore to China. However, it made it so cheap to transport that domestic Chinese shipping interests managed to persuade Beijing to ban the vessels from Chinese ports on safety grounds, and creating a two-year impasse that has confounded the shipping world. This article from Tradewinds relates the strange twists and turns.

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