Soaring freight costs and transit delays from China threaten price rises for consumer goods and products

As consumer demand for Asian-made goods rebounded in the second half of 2020, the shipping lines decision to remove capacity by idling vessels and stop replenishing container supplies, had an almost instant impact on freight rates with the unbalanced sea freight supply and demand equation driving rates up. Competition among shippers for empty containers has

Import supply chains; the UK challenge

The equipment shortage in China and Asia and the lack of vessel space on primary trade lanes are continuing to present significant supply chain challenges and while the UK’s port and transport infrastructure continues to struggle, stability is emerging in some areas. The port and terminal disruption that began in Felixstowe and filtered out to

Container crisis continues from Asia to the rest of world

As Metro reported in last week’s supply chain bulletin, the availability of container equipment has become the primary supply chain issue for shippers and importers from China and Asia in general.  The lack of equipment is a key issue impacting both rates and supply chains across Asia, with some areas experiencing the shortages more severely,

2020 supply chain challenges continue into 2021

The COVID pandemic massively impacted freight infrastructure operations, rates, vessel space and equipment availability last year and is showing little sign of ending any time soon. Sea freight rates from Asia are at the highest levels ever seen, equipment shortages continue at virtually every origin and schedule reliability continues to be impacted by continuing port

Regulators circle shipping lines

As container freight rates continue to rise from Asia, regulators in China and the US are raising concerns and the European Commission is being urged to consider whether the carriers’ behaviour is damaging trade growth at a time of economic recession. Chinese regulators are renewing their carrier investigations, driven by concerns over volume controls and

Critical Ningbo issues and Southern China port suspension

The container shortage that is currently impacting Asia supply chains, has led lines to stop accepting shipment bookings from Ningbo, while the suspension of Southern China feeder operations, because of COVID, will impact key ports until after Chinese New Year 2021. Due to the severe lack of container equipment in the Ningbo area, shipping lines

UK port congestion is not easing

Congestion at UK container ports which commenced in the Summer at Felixstowe, before filtering out to Southampton and London Gateway, is continuing despite all efforts, with Japanese carmaker Honda warning that production at its Swindon plant will be disrupted. Problems at the UK’s container ports have been building for several months, with shipping lines altering

Catastrophic loss underlines need for marine insurance

Dramatic images on Twitter captured the 14,000 teu containership, ONE Apus, losing over a quarter of its load, in a catastrophic container stack collapse, that dumped over 1,800 boxes into the Pacific ocean on the 30th November. The Twitter image, shared by Container News, shows that most of the container stacks between the accommodation and

US regulator monitoring Asia shipping alliances

The United States Federal Maritime Commission (FMC), the body responsible for the regulation of ocean carriers and intermediaries, is intensifying its monitoring of shipping alliance activity on the trans-Pacific and trans-Atlantic trades. Citing market fluctuations, the FMC’s regulators are increasing their monitoring of the three major global shipping alliances, requiring them to provide carrier-specific trans-Pacific