Emergency Update - Serious Space Shortages on Far East Westbound Cargo
Equipment Challenges and Severe Congestion at Felixstowe / Southampton Ports
Please find below the latest update on the Asia/Europe (UK) trade.
Far East Westbound Ocean Freight Rate Update/Space & Equipment Update.
Following the insolvency of Hanjin Shipping and the further consolidation of ocean carriers, the very tight space and equipment situation that we saw through the summer is now getting considerably worse. Blank sailings after the Chinese Golden Week holiday and increasing demand in the lead up to the early Chinese New Year on 28th January 2017, have led to much higher rate levels and longer notice periods being required for bookings.
We encourage all our clients to increase their lead times and also make sure their suppliers make early bookings with accurate forecasts of how many containers that will be needed and exactly when they will be ready for shipment. We recommend bookings at least 3 weeks in advance of vessel closing date.
Rates in general have been increasing in the second half of 2016 and we expect this pattern to continue with further increases expected with effect from the 15th December 2016. We are expecting a likely announcement soon of a Peak Season Surcharge where one is not already in place from the 1st January 2017.
To further complicate matters, poor weather has led to several vessels arriving late and having to leave UK ports without taking back empty containers, which will lead to equipment shortages in Asia especially in the lead up to Chinese New Year. This problem creates congestion at Felixstowe and Southampton ports which leads to delays in getting containers collected, thus late running of deliveries.
We thank you for your continued support, and wish you and your families a Happy Christmas and a Healthy and Successful 2017.