CSD, the dry bulk and tanker arm of China Shipping (Group), said net profit for the three months ended March 31 was Yuan317.9m ($46.5m). Revenue fell 53% to Yuan2.13bn, from Yuan4.5bn in the first three months of 2007.
CSD executives said they could see only a slight improvement over the current quarter and expected to post a more than 50% drop in net profit at the interim.
CSD blamed the poor results on over capacity of tonnage worsened by falling demand dragging down freight rates.
Investment income virtually collapsed, falling 92.9% in the first quarter, as profits fell among its local affiliates, which earned less from sharply depressed freight rates on China's coastal routes.
On April 2 the CSD board approved the issue of Yuan5bn in medium-term notes by the company, which will be used to pay for newbuildings, settle loans and supplement cash flow.