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BYD’s First Vehicle Charter Sets Sail Loaded With 5,000 EVs

China’s automakers have been placing orders for their own transport vessels in a bid to counter rising shipping costs

The logo of BYD is pictured at the 2022 Paris Auto Show in Paris, France
The logo of BYD is pictured at the 2022 Paris Auto Show in Paris, France. Photo: Reuters


Chinese EV-maker BYD’s first chartered vehicle vessel has set sail from the southern city of Shenzhen carrying more than 5,000 electric vehicles to Europe.

Automakers including BYD, Chery Automobile and SAIC Motor have been placing orders for vessels to counter rising shipping costs as they boost exports.

The sailing also comes amid escalating attacks on shipping in the Red Sea by Iran-backed Houthi rebels retaliating over Israel’s Gaza campaign.


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The new roll-on/roll-off vehicle carrier named ‘BYD Explorer No1’ departed on Monday for Flushing Port in the Netherlands and the German port of Bremerhaven, state media Xinhua reported on Tuesday.

The vessel was built by Yantai CIMC Raffles Shipyard for Israeli shipping company Zodiac Maritime, Xinhua added.

China exported 5.2 million vehicles in 2023, estimated to have overtaken Japan as the world’s largest auto exporter.

BYD exported about 243,000 cars out of its total sales of 3 million units in 2023, with Australia, Brazil and Israel among its biggest overseas markets, data from the China Passenger Car Association showed.


  • Reuters with additional editing by Sean O’Meara


Read more:

Red Sea Attacks Pose Billions Worth of Risks for China, India

Chinese Car Exports to EU Seen Hit by Red Sea Ship Attacks

EU Investigators in China to Probe EV-Makers BYD, Geely, SAIC

Smaller Profit Margins Help China’s BYD Steal Tesla’s EV Crown




Sean O'Meara

Sean O'Meara is an Editor at Asia Financial. He has been a newspaper man for more than 30 years, working at local, regional and national titles in the UK as a writer, sub-editor, page designer and print editor. A football, cricket and rugby fan, he has a particular interest in sports finance.


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