The huge increase in blank sailings means there will be a significant impact on ports
The amount of blank sailings on the main east-west trades are now 250-350% higher than what is normally seen during Chinese New Year, says the latest edition of Sea-Intelligence Sunday Spotlight – and so there will be a significant impact on ports as well.
Sea-Intelligence chief executive Alan Murphy said “The Asia-Europe trade lane is also where the world’s more than 100 ultra-large container vessels operate. As such, the calls to individual ports from these behemoths is an important part of both their operations and finances.”
These vessels regularly call at 41 different ports in Europe, and using Sea-Intelligence’s Blank Sailing Tracker, it has been possible to measure how severely each individual port will be impacted in terms of blank sailings directly from Asia.
Looking at Q2 2020, the hardest-hit ports in the Mediterranean are La Spezia, Tangiers and Damietta which see more than 40% of their direct calls removed due to blank sailings from Asia. In north Europe, the hardest hit ports are Felixstowe, Zeebrugge and Antwerp with roughly a 30% drop in vessel calls from Asia. There are only seven ports not scheduled to experience blank sailings.
Mr Murphy said “This clearly shows that the capacity reductions performed by the carriers will not have an even impact across different cargo gateways, and as a consequence this might serve to strengthen the longer-term competitive positioning of some ports over others in Europe.”
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