In this week’s Roar, Brexit’s making headlines again, container lines are bypassing barge operators, China’s trade is doing surprisingly well despite delays forcing smaller manufacturers to cancel orders, and the ICS is proposing a market-based levy on vessels’ carbon emissions. 

According to SupplyChainBrain, “an Office of National Statistics report published on Aug. 26 found 7% of firms were unable to source materials, goods, or services they needed from within the U.K in the previous two weeks.” And many businesses are warning that growing demand will only make these shortages driven by Brexit and COVID-19 even worse with the coming holidays.

Major ocean container lines are also making waves across the Europe-Asia tradelanes as they attempt to improve cargo flow by leasing barges directly themselves. This move resulting from the industry’s ongoing capacity constraints would ultimately give carriers the upper hand because “if the carrier leases the barge directly, the terminal has to service it … it becomes a key customer,” according to The Loadstar.

Over in China, business is booming based on the latest customs data. With a 25.6% spike in exports equating to $294.3B and a 33.1% jump in imports equating to $236B last month compared to last year, the country’s overall trade has managed to navigate through the pandemic and chaotic ocean shipping environment relatively unscathed.

Smaller Chinese manufacturing companies, however, haven’t been so lucky. The port congestion and challenges for ocean shipping have forced a spike in order cancellations as inventory levels remain very high. According to SCMP, “with cash tied up in inventory that cannot be shipped, smaller exporters are rejecting orders to avoid cash flow problems.” 

In other news, The International Chamber of Shipping is “calling for an internationally accepted market-based measure to accelerate the uptake and deployment of zero-carbon fuels,” according to JOC.

To learn more about this week’s top international shipping industry news, check out the following article snapshots: