The Shipping Corporation of India plans to buy up to five used ships later this year as part of a joint venture with India’s Steel Authority.

The ships will be mainly used to import coking coal, the company said.

Last month, Shipping Corporation chairman and managing director S Hajara said the two companies would each own 25% in the joint venture, which is expected to be formed in March 2010.

The company is also considering buying bulk carriers such as Supramaxes or Panamaxes, according to the Dow Jones.