The perfect storm threatening container haulage is continuing

All parts of the UK have been impacted, including ‘essential’ freight, logistics and supply chain sectors, but the container haulage industry has been hit particularly hard, with many challenges still to be overcome. Six weeks ago Metro wrote about container haulage operations and how it had been impacted by massive increases in demand, at a time

Rates – reliability = frustrated shippers

Container shipping rates from Asia to Europe have soared to a five year high, while reliability falls to the lowest ever level recorded. The rapid recovery in post-lockdown demand has driven up volumes on the trans-Pacific and Asia-Europe trades, with global volume rising for the first time this year in August, up 1.5% on 2019.

Vehicle booking improvements at Felixstowe

In light of the recent criticism and industry-wide complaints concerning delays and service levels, the Port of Felixstowe – the UK’s largest and busiest container port – introduced vehicle booking changes on Monday, to improve service and lessen the delays on its terminals. One of these changes is to the ports VBS (Vehicle Bookings System),

Container line alliances stifling innovation

The container shipping alliances help carriers lower operating costs and broaden service coverage through economies of scale. However, do the alliances restrict individual line’s ability to differentiate and innovate as services beyond the sea element is not always under a carrier’s control.  Container-line profits exceeded expectations in Q2 2020, a period when volumes were weak

UK container ports continue to struggle

After weeks of complaints from port users, shipping lines, hauliers and cargo owners, there is some hope that Felixstowe’s service levels may be improving, but similar challenges are now being experienced at other key container ports. After the recent well-documented service issues, delays, and industry frustrations surrounding the performance of the Port of Felixstowe, blamed on

India’s container shortage spreads

The anticipated equipment shortages in Asia are spreading as importers in the United States and Europe struggle to return empty containers to Asian manufacturing hubs, with India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh hit particularly hard. The container imbalance followed the spike in imports to the US and Europe, after the reopening of their economies and now

Biggest importers struggle for space from Asia

Container freight rates are at their highest levels in five years, Westbound Asia to Europe, driven by rocketing demand and the carriers manipulating capacity to create under or balanced supply, which allows the shipping lines to cherry-pick the best paying cargo and maintain rates at the strongest levels. With demand comfortably out-stripping supply, manufacturers, tech brands,

Fears that Felixstowe congestion may spread

High vessel volumes, spikes in container throughput and diminished operational capability due to COVID safe-working is creating high yard density at the port, resulting in terminal-wide congestion which means vessels are unable to complete empty loading or have diverted to other ports, not loading export containers. Import volumes at Felixstowe have been 30% higher than

Sydney strike threat removed

The ongoing congestion and industrial action at Sydney port, which caused schedule disruption to many carriers and prompted Maersk to stop acceptance of all bookings for the port, has been withdrawn. The move to withdraw industrial action at Sydney port, will bring relief to shippers and shipping lines that have suffered an 11-day backlog of

The axing of Safmarine is more significant than losing a brand

Formed in 1946, the African specialist shipping line Safmarine, which is represented in more than 130 countries, was acquired in 1999 by Maersk. Earlier this month Maersk announced that it was closing the Safmarine brand at the end of the year, integrating it into Maersk Line. What are the market implications? Maersk’s decision to drop