Ethiopian Shipping Lines (ESL) will buy nine vessels from Chinese companies to enhance its current annual transport capacity from 150,000t to 400,000t.

The shipping line will purchase seven general cargo vessels and two tankers worth over $290m.

The general cargo and the tankers have the capacity to carry 28,000t and 41,500t, respectively.

ESL expects the delivery of the vessels by 2012.

The company secured $8.65m during the first quarter of 2009 from transporting over 730,000t.