The Chinese shipping group signed the shipbuilding contract for the dry-bulk ships with shipbuilder China State Shipbuilding Corporation on December 30.
The liner operator said it also intends to order five 9,400-TEU box ships as part of a capacity-expansion strategy for its container ship and bulker fleets.
The debt-ridden company, inactive in the newbuilding scene for more than a couple of years, is partaking in a government subsidy program designed to help domestic shipping companies replace old ships with newer models.
Under the new subsidy plan introduced by China last month, local ship owners will receive 50 percent of a cash subsidy of RMB1,500 (US$247) per gross ton to do away with old ships; they will get the rest upon purchase of a new ship.
The four dry-bulk ships are set for delivery from 2015, while details of the container shipbuilding contracts have yet to be completed.