ANL Container Line is taking the opportunity of a vessel replacement in its PAX service to enhance its brand recognition in northern Australia trades.

In mid-March the 618 TEU Blue Nine will phase out of the PAX service in Singapore at end-of-charter and be replaced by sistership MCP Linz, which is being renamed ANL Hedland Trader. On 26 March the service’s MCP Salzburg will be renamed ANL Burrup Trader.

All of the above are members of the 45-strong Huanghai-600 type, also known as the MCP type, built in Chinese yards between 2005 and 2011, mostly for German owner Hartmann Reederei and associates’ Mini Container Pool. The class are known for their economy of operation and ANL has had many on charter over the years, as have other regional operators.

Another MCP, Swire Shipping’s Dili Chief, operated that company’s NWD service in competition with PAX until late last year when Swire opted to take slots on PAX instead. Dili Chief was subsequently sold to PNG’s Consort Express Line for coastal service as Papuan Coast.

PAX operates two loops: Singapore, Surabaya, Dili, Darwin, Singapore with the 1,104 TEU Scion Mafalda and the 618 TEU ANL Darwin Trader; and Singapore, Dampier, Port Hedland, Singapore (currently with Blue Nine and MCP Salzburg).