Final end for Hanjin comes closer

As expected, a South Korean court has officially declared Hanjin Shipping Co bankrupt, bringing closer the final dismantling of a one-time shipping giant. Hanjin Shipping had to seek court protection at the end of August last year – for a while throwing the global shipping sector into a cash-flow, cargo-delivery and legal crisis.

The court decided that the company would be worth more if its remaining assets were sold off than if it were allowed to continue as a going concern.

Claims by creditors are due by May 1st 2017. The first meeting of creditors will be held on June 1st 2017.

North P&I Club informed its Members that, for the majority of creditors who have filed their claims in the rehabilitation proceedings, they will not need to file their claims again in the bankruptcy proceedings. However, if claims have been filed in a foreign currency then a confirmatory action in respect of such claims will have to be filed again in the bankruptcy proceeding.

If claims are not included in the list of claims accepted by the receiver in the rehabilitation proceeding, then they may be denied by the Bankruptcy Trustee and the creditor will need to file a confirmatory action again.

Common benefit claims will be treated as estate claims in the bankruptcy proceedings, which have priority over other general claims. Nort P&I recommended that a demand for payment be made upon the Bankruptcy Trustee “at least to highlight the existence of the claims”.

In addition, secured creditors are not stayed from exercising their security interests in the bankruptcy proceedings. Secured creditors will have priority of repayment, insofar as the repayment is from the proceeds from the sale of their collateral, up to the amount of their security interest.

North recommends that Clkub Members “discuss any claims they may have with their usual FD&D case-handler”.

Meanwhile container ship Hanjin Vienna, anchored off Victoria, British Columbia since last September, had already been put up for sale. Bettina Wiebe, spokeswoman for Reederei NSB, which is managing the Hanjin Vienna, said that negotiations with potential buyers were ongoing. Hanjin Scarlet, anchored off Victoria for a similar period, is now moored off Cherry Point on Vancouver Island. Scarlet’s cargo was taken off in Vancouver and is being operated with a skeleton crew.