Newsletter – October 2, 2023
AIR FREIGHT UPDATES
Maersk open to growing its freighter fleet
Maersk Air Cargo said it will remain open to new opportunities to grow its freighter fleet, despite the current challenging air cargo market conditions.
The company, which launched operations last year, isn’t ready to provide details on any future freighter plans, but explains there may be a mix of newbuilds and conversions that are purchased as well as leased and under ACMI contracts. Read more here
OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES
Pessimistic box lines cancel India-to-US GRIs and peak surcharges
Container lines seem to be giving up hope of raising freight rates for loads from India to the US, as the market is showing no uptick in volume.
Traditionally, carriers wield the most bargaining power during the peak shipping season that gets under way in August. But this year has proved muted for them, after the rate slide began in the middle of last year. Read more here (login required).
Panama Canal reduces daily transits further as drought continues
So far, the impact of the Panama Canal restrictions has been limited to the container shipping sector, but the signs are becoming increasingly ominous. While it continues to prioritise container traffic, overall canal capacity is declining. Reuters reports that over the weekend the Panama Canal Authority revealed that the lack of rain had led it reduce the number of daily transits from 32 to 31, down from the 40 a day it would normally operate. Read more here (login required).
Box volumes are back at Beirut Port – but so is corruption and instability
Three years after the port explosion in Beirut, container shipping has returned to normal – but political and economic instability means the port may lose out to other regional hubs in the future.
According to government officials and analysts, the container port in Beirut, an industrial and logistics hub for the region, is back to its former capacity following the horrific explosion just over three years ago – but is still plagued by significant problems. Read more here
ILWU dockworkers union files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection
The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU), which represents dockworkers at ports along the Pacific coast of the United States and Canada, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection just before midnight on Saturday.
The ILWU “will continue to operate as usual throughout the restructuring process,” the union said in a statement on Sunday morning. It plans to “continue honoring its employee and payroll obligations in the ordinary course of business.” Read more here
CANADA BUSINESS – GOVERNMENT UDPATES
B.C. mayor sounds alarm over ‘rampant’ crime at local port as expansion looms
The federal government’s failure to fund a police force dedicated to Canada’s ports is a threat to national security that needs to be dealt with immediately, says Delta, B.C., Mayor George Harvie.
Delta is home to the Roberts Bank Terminal, and expansion plans over the coming years will see millions more containers move through the Port of Vancouver annually. Read more here