Ocean visibility and data solutions can overcome the lack of transparency and increase supply chain insight, says GateHouse Maritime chief executive Martin Dommerby Kristiansen
In recent months, Covid-19 has put incredible pressure on global supply chains.
While we have had to stay at home, online shopping has peaked and an increasing amount of goods have been transported across the globe. However, oceangoing container transport was still outside real-time tracking until now. If the shipping industry embraces real-time tracking technology, the transport ’black box’ may be opened. And demand for this service is already here. Would you like to know exactly when your package will arrive? I thought so.
According to UNCTAD, maritime logistics represents 90% of the world supply chain. Therefore, ports are an integral part of global trade. The global freight market is under extreme pressure at the moment, and port congestion results in container vessel delays which might lead to demurrage charges for cargo owners.
The lack of transparency in supply chains is an increasing problem for the container shipping market. Congestion in large ports such as Long Beach, LA, not to mention the chaos caused by the Ever Given blockage of the Suez Canal in March, are the main reasons why container vessels are delayed.
Additionally, if the port facilities do not match the increasing number of vessels waiting to unload their goods at the scheduled time, it might consequently lead to disruption within the supply chain.
According to maritime research and analysis firm Sea-Intelligence, only 56% of all container ships arrived on time in September 2020. The remaining 44% were delayed by 4.8 days on average.
To create transparency in the ocean freight market, real-time status on containers and true ocean visibility can help cargo owners predict otherwise unforeseeable delays. Advanced technologies such as machine learning fused with online data, historical trends and planned schedules can provide cargo owners and freight forwarders with precise ETA forecasts, which they can use to manage demurrage and detention costs through optimising free time.
Container vessel delays are a huge problem for most container shipments and logistics companies. Lack of visibility in the supply chain leads to detention, demurrage charges and lost orders, but when you can track containers easily and get notifications about delays in time to make adjustments, you will save both time and money otherwise spent on manually checking for container status updates.
All parties in the supply chain would benefit from having access to precise, machine learning-based ETAs for container vessels.
And the future is here already.
Today, more and more customers request precise and reliable information, and data is available. Being able to service customers with the exact time of arrival, information about delays and exception handling is worth a lot and forms the basis for new business models that take advantage of our increasing online shopping.
The question is whether the shipping industry is ready.
Maritime is a major ocean visibility solutions provider. The company helps global service providers, shipping and logistics companies with cargo transport status, location data and predictions, sailing schedules and sales leads.