Greek shipping companies have spent more than US$5.5 billion in acquiring vessels so far this year, outpacing additions among their Chinese peers, as prices in the dry-bulk market remain high, according to the N. Cotzias Shipping Group. Piraeus-based shipbroker Cotzias said that in the January-June period, Greek interests purchased 166 vessels for transporting dry and wet cargo, versus 135 bought by the Chinese for $2.2 billion. As a result, the Greek fleet’s carrying capacity rose by 11.7 million deadweight tons (dwt) while that of its Chinese counterpart grew by 9.5 million dwt. ‘Ship prices in the dry-bulk market are still very high. Despite a six-week constant fall in the dry-bulk indices and rates, most ships are looking for cargoes that are just not there. We are still seeing very expensive prices compared with a year ago,’ the shipbrokerage said in its June report.