Sinking container demand creates stacks of excess boxes around Europe

Sinking container demand creates stacks of extra packing containers round Europe

As container delivery demand continues to sink from its pandemic highs, that change is creating stacks of extra containers stranded throughout Europe, triggering congestion bottlenecks and house shortages at ports, warehouses, and storage yards, in line with Container xChange.

These circumstances have been additional strained on Wednesday by a labor strike over wage complaints on the Hamburg Port Authority, which is at the moment closed to giant ships. That strike has already result in a 27% lower in TEU capability in early March, a 31% lower in vessels in port, and import/export dwell spikes as excessive as 7 days, in line with knowledge from provide chain visibility provider project44.

General container overcapacity at the moment quantities to between three and 5 million twenty-foot equal items (TEUs), sufficient to trigger space for storing shortages and put “substantial downward stress” on field costs and leasing charges throughout the continent, Hamburg, Germany-based on-line logistics firm Container xChange mentioned within the March version of its “Europe Container Market Forecaster” report.

“The vital Asia-Europe container delivery lane has seen demand tail off quickly for the reason that summer time of 2022, which has been mirrored in sharp falls in container delivery spot freight charges. That is prompting carriers to chop providers or cascade capability on to regional trades. The issue is that that is leaving empties stranded throughout Europe as an alternative of being despatched again to Asia and different origin markets to be loaded with extra exports,” Christian Roeloffs, Container xChange’s CEO & co-founder, mentioned in a launch.

“When export demand picks up as soon as extra, this large pile-up of packing containers will step by step be whittled down with most returning to Asia. However strike motion throughout March on the port of Hamburg in Germany and at varied container terminals in France will gradual that course of,” Roeloffs mentioned.

These lingering labor troubles might gradual the business’s restoration from these congested flows, whilst negotiations on the U.S. West Coast run far overdue to discover a answer for a renewed labor contract settlement between the Worldwide Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and the Pacific Maritime Affiliation (PMA), in line with the ITS Logistics U.S. Port/Rail Ramp Freight Index.

In a parallel to the European markets, slower container flows within the U.S. are altering the dynamics of these protracted debates over working circumstances, Reno, Nevada-based third get together logistics supplier (3PL) ITS mentioned.

“The ILWU has misplaced leverage due to the low volumes on the West Coast, which additional solidifies the stance that PMA is taking in negotiations within the close to time period,” Paul Brashier, vp of drayage and intermodal for ITS Logistics, mentioned in a launch. “With volumes the place they’re now on the West Coast and the diversions to the East, the ILWU just isn’t in a powerful negotiation place. I additionally don’t consider the Biden Administration will tolerate greater than work slowdowns with inflation at the moment being of serious significance.”


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