Newsletter – April 16, 2021
AIR FREIGHT UPDATES
Drones back on the agenda for air cargo
Before the pandemic hit the world of air cargo, there were five or six industry developments that were constantly hitting the headlines; digitalisation, drones, e-commerce, sustainability and Brexit were key amongst them.
And as an early sign that we are perhaps heading back to some form of relative normality (touch wood), or at least a ‘new normal’, the industry does seem to be turning its attention back to some of these more long-term developments. Read more here.
OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES
USA Carrier’s Haulage Demurrage and Storage Update
As a follow up to our letter sent 27 October 2020, we would like to provide you with an update on our policy regarding import storage / demurrage in the U.S.
Hapag-Lloyd announced in this letter that if our customers were able to satisfy the below requirements five calendar days before the expiration of free time, they would not be responsible for import storage and demurrage related to truck power delays as this would allow us to secure timely trucking appointments and keep cargo flowing. Read more here.
Import gains at top US container gateways go ballistic
The import stats at U.S. ports just went ballistic. Year-on-year (y/y) gains skyrocketed for two reasons. First, March volumes were unusually strong — as high as the peak in October. Second, import volumes in March 2020 were unusually weak, suppressed by the initial COVID lockdowns. Read more here.
Spectre of a new Montreal port labour clash sees shippers eye alternatives
The port of Montreal appears to be on course for another flare-up in the confrontation between management and labour.
The past few days have seen an escalation in the conflict, increasing shipper fears of another crippling slowdown in operations. Read more here.
Zim puts the geared-up port of Oakland in the fast transpacific lane
Zim is extending its footprint in the fast shipping lane between Asia and North America.
By the end of the month, the carrier intends to start an expedited transpacific service from Taiwan and China to California. Read more here (login required).
GROUND AND RAIL FREIGHT UPDATES
CP and KCS begin fight for merger with regulator
Canadian Pacific Railway Limited and Kansas City Southern made a filing this week with the U.S. Surface Transportation Board (STB) asserting their right to have the STB review their combination under a waiver the STB granted to KCS in 2001.
The filing was made in response to objections to the application of the KCS waiver that were filed with the STB by competitors and others. Read more here.
IKEA to electrify last-mile delivery in Canada with Lion Electric
IKEA and its last-mile delivery partner in Canada, Second Closet, will deploy 15 all-electric Lion Electric trucks this fall in Canada.
The vehicles making deliveries for IKEA Canada will operate in Bocherville, Quebec; Etobicoke, Ontario; and Richmond, British Columbia. They are Lion6 heavy-duty zero-emission vehicles and will play a significant role in IKEA’s broader sustainability effort, the company said. Read more here.
INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS – GOVERNMENT UPDATES
Retail sales pop in March along with freight demand
Retail sales, including food services, increased 9.8% sequentially in March, according to Thursday Census Bureau data. The pop in sales highlights the impacts of widespread vaccinations and federal stimulus payments to consumers.
On a year-over-year comparison, sales were up 27.7% for the month and 14.3% for the first quarter. The comparison to 2020 is clouded by a sharp rise in pantry stocking in the first few weeks of the pandemic’s onset, followed by a sharp falloff as shutdowns spread. Read more here.
Shippers warned against ‘worse-than-average’ US hurricane season
It never rains, but it pours … Shippers are being warned of more supply chain disruption when the hurricane season hits the US in June.
Colorado State University said the “2021 Atlantic basin hurricane season will have above-normal activity”.
“We anticipate an above-average probability for major hurricanes making landfall along the continental United States coastline and in the Caribbean.” Read more here (login required)