A liquefied natural gas tanker, built by a subsidiary of China State Shipbuilding Corp, docks at a terminal in Qingdao Port, Shandong province. (HAN JIAJUN / CHINA NEWS SERVICE)

BEIJING – China's shipbuilding sector continued to take the lead globally last year, as busy maritime transport across the world pushed up ship demand.

The country's shipbuilding output, an indicator reflecting the vitality of the sector, amounted to 39.7 million deadweight tons in 2021, rising 3 percent year-on-year, data from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology showed.

China's 2021 shipbuilding output accounted for 47.2% of the world's total, up 4.1 percentage points from that in 2020

The 2021 output accounted for 47.2 percent of the world's total, up 4.1 percentage points from that in 2020, the ministry said.

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New shipbuilding orders, another major indicator of the shipbuilding industry, surged 131.8 percent year on year to 67.07 million dwt in 2021, accounting for 53.8 percent of the global market share.

Holding order volumes came in at 95.84 million dwt by the end of last December, rising 34.8 percent from the end of 2020 and taking up 47.6 percent of market share globally.

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The ministry also said the international competitiveness of Chinese shipbuilding companies further enhanced in 2021, with six companies ranking among the world's top 10 shipbuilders in terms of output, new orders and holding orders, respectively.