China Merchants Energy Shipping stole the show on the newbuilding front this week.

A huge order running to almost $1bn for 12 newcastlemaxs will mark the company’s first play in the large bulker market in a decade.

Shipbuilding players said CMES is finalising the deal with two domestic shipyards — state-owned Qingdao Beihai Shipbuilding Heavy Industry and privately owned New Times Shipbuilding — for the series of 210,000-dwt vessels.