South Korean firm Hanjin Shipping has agreed a 20-year consecutive voyage contract with steel maker POSCO to import 50 million tonnes of iron ore from Brazil.

The KRW1.4tn ($800m) contract, scheduled to end in 2031, is estimated to make up 15% of the company’s total business over 20 years, Hanjin said.

Under the deal, the shipping firm will use two ore carriers – due for delivery in 2011 – to annually import 2.4 million tonnes of iron ore into South Korea.

Hanjin has already deployed 17 ships, 16 Capesize vessels and one Handymax for Posco’s cargo needs.