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Taiwan Shipping Firms Set to Hand Out Bumper Bonuses Again

(Bloomberg) —

Taiwanese shipping companies are handing out bumper mid-year bonuses despite a slump in global cargo as the industry continues to benefit from earlier pandemic gains.

Yang Ming Marine Transport Corp. is awarding workers up to 30 months salary on their next payday after shareholders approved the NT$2.3 billion (US$75 million) bonus last Friday, according to an Economic Daily News report Thursday. That’s in addition to a year-end bonus worth 12 months of salary paid at the beginning of this year.

Company rules dictate the shipping firm must distribute 1% of its previous year’s profit to employees as compensation, Yang Ming said in an email to Bloomberg, although the amount each member of staff receives is at the company’s discretion. 

Evergreen Marine Corp. will give its 3,100 workers another NT$1.9 billion, equivalent to around 12 months of pay, after shareholders approved the bonus at a meeting on Tuesday, according to the same report. The latest payments come on top of bonuses of around 50 months’ worth of salary in January after the maritime giant reported record profit of NT$334.2 billion ($10.9 billion) last year.

Evergreen didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Shipping firms have enjoyed a windfall over the past two years on an industry-wide surge in demand for consumer goods and freight rates during Covid. But that’s waning, with economic uncertainty driving a slump in global shipping.

Evergreen’s net income is expected to plunge 94% this year to NT$18.6 billion, according to analyst estimates. Yang Ming is forecast to see profit fall 99% to NT$2.2 billion. 

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