We would like to share the following market information received from our Chinese partners as sailing schedules threaten to be impacted across the coming months for a variety of reasons. They are outlined below:
1. The scheduled sailings have been delayed during August. These delays will flow over into the September sailing schedules. Due to several typhoons during the month of August, various vessels have been delayed creating port congestion in Ningbo and Shanghai, with vessels unable to berth as scheduled.
To compound this COVID-19 procedures require crew to be tested (NAT) prior to vessel berthing only after reporting is clear.
For example, EVER UTILE 158S — this vessel was scheduled to depart Yantian port on 20th Aug, but due to the port congestion, the vessel is still berthed in Ningbo and has only departed on 26th Aug. This has resulted in a 10 day delay.
2. Since the outbreak of the COVID-19, the demand for global transportation has sharply declined due to the border controls put into place by various countries. As a result shipping companies have reduced shipping lanes to balance profitability and reduced the voyages available to ensure sailings are at full capacity. We have received advice that major supermarkets chains have negotiated block bookings of container space, at reportedly inflated rates, with the shipping companies to ensure their export space to Australia. As a result, the shipping lines will only have fewer general booking slots due to the reduced available capacity on vessels for freight of all kinds and ad-hoc bookings. This will no doubt lead to offloaded containers on a larger scale and increase in the freight rates with shipping lines now having full capacity.
3. Just to make things a little more difficult there is an equipment shortage in China, due to the lack of export containers within the Chinese ports. This is expected to become an issue during September and is the result of more containers being exported from China than those being imported. The lines are trying to relocate empty containers from the destination ports like Australia however with reduced capacity and voyages it is slow.
We will keep you informed as we continue to receive information from shipping lines across the globe.
Please contact our office if you require any further information.