Mainland port interests withdraw from Taiwan’s largest facility

China Merchants and China Cosco Shipping, both with listings in Hong Kong, are alleged to be divesting their interests in the Taiwanese port of Kaohsiung.

According to the island’s China Times analysts have cited deteriorating political relations between Mainland China and Taiwan as a possible driver behind the decision to withdraw from Kaohsiung.

In 2012 Cosco Pacific, China Merchant Holdings and China Shipping Terminal jointly paid US$135m for a 30% stake in Kao Ming Container Terminal with each holding 10% of the equity interest.

Yang Ming Marine holds a majority 60% stake in the terminal with the remaining 10% being held by Ports American Group.

Since the deal was signed for the terminal Cosco merged with China Shipping and formed part of the Ocean Alliance as Yang Ming joined THE Alliance.

Just five years earlier, China Cosco summed up the deal thus: “The acquisition of equity interest in Kao Ming Terminal is the first port infrastructure project opening to the enterprises with Chinese funded background.

“The investment in Kao Ming Terminal by COSCO Pacific, China Shipping Terminal and China Merchants International fully demonstrates their confidence in economic and trade cooperation between Hong Kong and Taiwan as well as the Cross-Strait. The cooperation also represented a successful case with far-reaching and important influence for future closer economic and trade cooperation among the enterprises in Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Cross-Strait and to promote friendly development in the region.”

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