BDP Trendwatch: Ships resume docking at Ningbo port after two-week shutdown; Shippers under more stress as German train drivers launch second strike; Covid detected in two vessels in Chittagong in a week – Fears of the virus spread

Ships resume docking at Ningbo port after two-week shutdown 

Ships have resumed berthing operations at a halted container terminal in Ningbo, China, adding to optimism that full activity at one of the world’s busiest ports will be restored shortly after a two-week shutdown to quarantine dockworkers. 

At least five container ships have left the Meishan terminal at Ningbo in the past few days after berthing there, according to shipping data compiled by Bloomberg. While container collection services were still halted on Tuesday, some ships have been allowed to berth at the terminal, an official from the Ningbo-Zhoushan port said. 

The movement of ships is sparking optimism among shippers that operations will resume soon after no new cases of Covid-19 were discovered, according to local media reports. 

AJOT, Bloomberg


Shippers under more stress as German train drivers launch second strike 

A new rail strike in Germany is intensifying European shipper woes amid concerns that supply chain problems will lead to a slowdown of production lines. 

Members of the German Train Drivers’ Union (GDL) began a new four-day strike on Saturday, hitting Deutsche Bahn (DB) cargo and passenger services, the rail operator warning customers to expect just 25% of normal capacity, but assuring them freight would continue moving. 

The Loadstar


Covid detected in two vessels in Chittagong in a week – Fears of the virus spread 

The risk of spread of coronavirus among the crew and staff of Chittagong port is rising as the presence of the deadly virus was detected in the body of crews of two vessels in a span of one week period. 

The unloading of goods from a vessel namely MV Serene Juniper remained suspended at Chittagong port after seven crew members of the vessel found Covid-19 positive out of 21 crews onboard. 

Container News


Mexico seeks US talks over car-rules dispute under trade pact  

Mexico is seeking formal consultations with the U.S. over rules for cars shipped across regional borders under a year-old trade agreement as it seeks de-escalate a conflict that emerged last month. 

The Mexican government wants the talks in order to avoid or settle a potential dispute over the requirements the U.S. is imposing on motor-vehicle producers, according to a letter dated Friday from Economy Ministry Secretary Tatiana Clouthier to U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai seen by Bloomberg News. Mexico says Washington’s interpretation of the rules is inconsistent with the text of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement.  

AJOT, Bloomberg


Shortages, congestion and Covid delays push container prices sky-high 

The Covid lockdown at the southern Chinese hub port of Yantian in June has resulted in a 180% spike in the price of containers, according to online trading platform Container xChange. 

Its Container Availability Index (CAx) component that covers the average price of transactions on its platform, spanning all box sizes sourced from Yantian, surged from $5,515 in June, to $15,336 this month. 

The Loadstar


Pressure grows in UK for driver-shortage visas 

UK freight transport association Logistics UK is increasing the pressure on the UK government to take urgent action to solve the country’s escalating lorry driver crisis, urging it to grant 10,000 temporary work visas to EU drivers.  

Responding to fresh evidence of the UK’s lorry driver crisis, Logistics UK said the UK government “must prioritise the granting of 10,000 temporary work visas to encourage EU drivers to return to support the UK’s supply chain”.   

Lloyd´s Loading List


Ever Given completes southern Suez Canal transit 

In what promised to be one of the most closely watched and followed transits of the Suez Canal, the containership Ever Given today made a successful southern transit on her return trip to Asia. The transit came just over six weeks after the vessel was released by the Egyptian authorities, which detained the boxship for 14 weeks after it grounded in March blocking the canal for six days. 

The Maritime Executive


At Port of Los Angeles, more boxes leave empty than loaded 

Exports from the top ten US container ports slumped by 8.3% in July, compared with the same month of 2020, to 763,619 teu, while imports gained 14.3% to 2,096,076 teu, according to data from Blue Alpha Capital. 

The New York-based consultant said the divergence between import and outbound volumes at US ports had widened last month to a new record ratio of 2.75x, compared with a 2.19x average in 2020 and 1.85x for 2019. 

And with import records on course to be broken again this month, the trade gap is set to widen further. 

gCaptain, The Loadstar


Shipping agents expect planned Panama Canal maintenance to severely impact transit capacity 

According to many shipping sources, scheduled maintenance at the Panama Canal’s Miraflores Locks Aug. 29-Sept. Ten could severely impact canal capacity and extend transit delays for “days, if not weeks after completion.” 

Shipping agents working with tanker owners recommended their customers apply for an early transit booking to avoid delay in a message to its customers Aug. 18. Owners were advised that booking availability would be limited and that applying fewer than 25-30 days in advance could pose “significant risk, as it may already be too late to succeed in securing a booked slot,” according to one owner. 

Maritime Magazine, S&P Global