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Asia ocean freight - increasing pressure

The last backlog of vessels from the Suez Canal incident was cleared last week with the longer term impact of the incident now starting to take effect.

As expected, carriers across all alliances are cancelling schedules from China to Europe (including UK & Ireland), seriously impacting capacity and hampering the amount of containers being able to move, particularly in April and early May. Please see below an updated listing of carrier blank sailings. This is without the impact of container equipment issues being known, which we are also likely to face in the coming weeks. 

We expect difficulties for this trade lane regarding space and equipment to continue until the end of May/early June. The Suez Canal incident is having an impact globally. In addition to the issues we are already experiencing from Northern and Southern China as a result, SE Asia never really recovered from the impact caused by COVID 19, struggling with container equipment shortages and port congestion at Singapore as a result. Our Asia team is also reporting challenges with equipment in a number of China out ports.

In the coming days, we are going to see disruption of services to all major ports in Europe. Some ports, including some in the UK, may be omitted with containers destined for the omitted ports being off-loaded at other ports and then being transhipped to the original destination. This will ultimately cause delays in vessel arrivals and port congestion.

In addition to the disruption in services, increases in rates on the Asia – Europe routes from mid-April are to be expected, either by way of a General Rate Increase (GRI) or surcharges such as Peak Season Surcharges (PSS) which are being reinstated by carriers who had previously withdrawn it.

Woodland, in association with our partners in Asia, will do all we can to minimise the impact surrounding the Suez Canal blockage by the Ever Given. 

Please be aware of the very limited amount of schedules currently being offered by carriers due to the severe lack of space and equipment. Please be reminded to consider any options offered even if they differ to your original scheduling requirements.

We will continue to monitor the situation and offer further updates in due course. In the meantime, should you require any further information, please contact your local Woodland representative or reach out to us here.


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