Posted on May 6, 2024
Global shipping news

Weekly Shipping & Logistics News Wrap, Week 19 

Top Highlights 

  • Shipper frustration mounts as spot rates climb 
  • CMA CGM starts new service route 
  • UPS and FedEx announce fuel surcharge increases 
  • MSC plans for fleet expansion 
  • Enhanced safety in Asian maritime regions 

Shipper Frustration Grows as Spot Rates Soar with Demand 

A surging demand across Asia-European trades has caught carriers and forwarders off-guard, leading to tightened space and an increased likelihood of shipment delays. The shifting preference of carriers towards higher-paying spot rates over contractual rates during peak periods has escalated shipper frustrations. This trend is particularly puzzling as the origin of these disruptions remains unclear. The recent spike in spot rates, observed on key shipping routes, signifies a potentially volatile quarter ahead, with rates expected to remain elevated until new vessel deliveries in Q3. 

CMA CGM Launches New Asia-Mexico Service 

CMA CGM is set to enhance its service offerings with a new shipping route connecting Asia with Mexico, starting with the inaugural voyage of the ANL Wangaratta on 11 May from Busan, South Korea. The Mexico Express (M2X) service will feature a rotation that includes stops at major ports such as Ensenada, Manzanillo, and Lazaro Cardenas, focusing on connectivity for reefer containers between the west coast of Mexico and key Asian markets. 

UPS and FedEx Implement Major Fuel Surcharge Increases 

In a move set to impact delivery costs significantly, UPS and FedEx have announced hikes in their fuel surcharges. UPS has already adjusted its surcharge tables across various service types, and FedEx is scheduled to follow suit shortly. These adjustments reflect a strategy to manage rising operational costs while maintaining service efficacy, likely prompting shippers to reconsider their logistical strategies as delivery costs climb. 

shipping logistics news

Maersk Falls to Third as MSC Poised to Extend Fleet Leadership 

Maersk is slipping in the global shipping rankings, now trailing behind MSC, which is set to expand its fleet size further. This shift comes as MSC benefits from a strategic mix of acquiring new vessels and managing its charter arrangements more effectively than its rivals. Maersk’s recent dip in ranking highlights the competitive nature of the shipping industry, where strategic fleet management and service innovation are critical for maintaining a leading position. 

Enhanced Information Sharing Boosts Maritime Safety in Asia 

The recent decline in piracy and armed robbery incidents in Asian waters is attributed to better coordination and information sharing among maritime nations. This collaborative effort has led to a more secure environment for shipping operations in regions traditionally plagued by maritime threats. The proactive measures taken by the ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre and the support from the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) have been instrumental in this improvement, ensuring safer passage for ships through critical Asian maritime corridors. 

House of Shipping Insight 

This week’s developments in the shipping and logistics industry underscore a period of significant adjustment and strategic realignment. From the sharp rise in spot rates causing shippers considerable distress to strategic expansions by major carriers like CMA CGM and MSC, the industry is witnessing a dynamic shift in operational and competitive landscapes. Furthermore, the proactive measures in Asian maritime security highlight the importance of cooperation and advanced planning in mitigating risks associated with international shipping. 

Weekly Shipping & Logistics News Wrap, Week 19 

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