Global Freight Updates Delivered to You!

Global Freight Updates Delivered to You!

November 23rd, 2020

In this week’s international freight updates, we’re covering everything from the shortage of shipping containers, to the transition from ocean to air and rail, to research on supply chain risk management, to El Paso’s new role in trade, to the concerns surrounding COVID vaccine distribution, to efforts to limit detention and demurrage at key U.S. ports. Well, that was a mouthful. There’s clearly a lot going on, so let’s get to it.

Here’s our timely take on the most important issues that are currently affecting the day-to-day lives of logistics professionals everywhere around the globe:

We’re sure you’re already aware of the major container capacity crunch that’s going on in the ocean freight marketplace. While demand remains strong and volumes soar, shippers are pleading with authorities to help them as carriers focus on backhaul empties and rates on less popular lanes climb. Thanks to Chinese regulators discouraging any further rate increases, however, prices on China-U.S. lanes have continued to stay relatively untouched for over two months.

These equipment shortages are even impacting China-Europe rail capacity due to those who are jumping ship as a result of canceled sailings and rising air freight rates. According to JOC, “Rail demand is being driven by shippers balking at the sky-high air freight rates on Asia-Europe with most of the long-haul passenger fleet — source of half the available capacity on the route — still grounded. And unexpectedly high and ongoing peak season demand on the ocean trades is limiting Asia-Europe container shipping space.” Let’s also not forget about the significant disruptions many, especially those managing pharmaceuticals, will face once companies start distributing COVID-19 vaccines.

With their complex cold chain storage and transportation requirements, industry leaders are striving to proactively improve shipping visibility and efficiency by developing strategies that will address critical logistics gaps and stressors. Even if you aren’t directly dealing with these pharma problems, it’s probably a good idea to start reevaluating your shipping reliability and risk management based on the findings of a recent report on manufacturing costs in a post-pandemic world.

A topic every shipper hates is detention and demurrage and it turns out some shippers have finally decided enough is enough. A coalition has gotten the attention of the FMC and the situation at several U.S. ports is being investigated.

Last, but certainly not least, El Paso well-positioned as a key trade portal between the U.S. and Mexico. With a focus on improving logistics infrastructure, many large industry players are making big investments in the area. There is a lot going on at the border.

Want to go straight to the source? We understand. Check out the article highlights below:

'Abusive' ocean carriers driving forwarders to air freight, and rates are rising

“Hell on the high seas” has triggered a new rise in air freight rates after a period of relative stability, according to forwarders.

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Container Shortage Begins to Impact Shipping

The peak volumes of Chinese goods headed to the U.S. has led to overwhelmed U.S. ports, delays in returning empty containers to Asia, and more scrutiny from regulators on multiple fronts.

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Rethinking the Supply Chain During COVID-19

As the world struggles to contain the coronavirus and understand its long-term implications, Duff & Phelps has created a new analysis of several key factors affecting post-COVID manufacturing.

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As supply chains cut costs, El Paso, Texas, takes on a new role

There is a long list of companies that have made the city a magnet for logistics investments over the past six years.

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Pharma supply chain faces challenges, even before COVID vaccine distribution

Based on a new survey, concerns about the state of the supply chain go beyond the expected issues with the temperature-controlled nature of the vaccine.

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Coalition on demurrage/detention charges seeks intervention from Federal Maritime Commission

The coalition led by the Harbor Trucking Association is looking at two routes to get relief from growing demurrage and detention charges on the key East and West Coast ports.

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Box shortages challenge fast-growing China–Europe rail (sub req'd)

Severe space constraints in both air and ocean on the booming Asia-Europe trades and rocketing spot rates across both modes have forced shippers onto the rails in growing numbers.

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