China Shipping Update
May / June 2022
Please see below updates received from our partners in China regarding the forecast of shipping following the opening up of provinces that have experienced lockdowns.
Officially, the Shanghai government has announced that starting from 01st June 2022, the cities will slowly get back to normal and by the end of June we should see all the restrictions from covid lockdowns removed. As of Monday 23rd, Shanghai had only reported 50 active covid cases and 550 asymptomatic cases, these figures are supportive of the government policies that were put in place.
Based on the news that has been received last and this week, Shanghai port is now seeing approximately 90% of their volume coming back to the terminal for handling as well as two thirds of the trucking services coming from cities and towns around Shanghai which has the largest seaport of the world and carriers 25% of China’s imports & exports.
It is now forecasted by those in the industry that the freight industry in the China to Australia trade lane is going to experience a boom without any doubt in June. After speaking with all the major players like COSCO EMC HMM ZIM TSL, all vessels are already fully packed starting from sailings that left China around 15th May onwards, the forecast for all vessels that are planning to leave China in June are extremely strong.
With all the space from the other ports around China that have now been given back to Shanghai during the past 8 weeks whilst it was in lockdown, some of the carriers have started to bump some containers in Shanghai for the last week of May, this has come at a surprise for all of us because we thought the wave wouldn’t arrive this fast.
These factors are pushing the rates in first half of June to increase by about USD200.00-USD300.00 per TEU.
2, QINGDAO - The carriers that operate the CAE service, EMC HMM ONE have now decided to call Qingdao every fortnightly instead of weekly to try and restore the sailing schedules, this will cause some delays whilst the backlog is cleared.
3, SHANGHAI is starting to get as busy as NINGBO port, we foresee that Shanghai will be getting busier in 10 days time when more and more factories are back to normal manufacturing levels with less disturbance. As per above we are seeing 90% of the volume coming out of Shanghai as per previously before the Covid pandemic lockdown started 2 months ago.
4, NINGBO is still as busy as it was 6-7 weeks ago while a big portion of SHANGHAI shipments have been moved out of Ningbo as an alternative, all CFS and warehouses are still fully packed with cargo and are over capacity. We are sure that NINGBO will start to see peak season straight away without any rest this year until the next slow season comes after Chinese New Year 2023.
5, XIAMEN is the definitely only major port that has not experienced much increase from 2nd half of May because the major hubs of manufacturing centre in Quanzhou, Zhangzhou and Fuzhou cities and the surrounding towns have also had their own short lockdown periods due to the Covid pandemic as well, these lockdowns were not as strict and lengthy as Shanghai however caused a lot of disruption to the market in these regions. So, XIAMEN has been the only port that is running a bit of slower than other ports, however as we have heard from our team there, we are also getting busier starting this week.
6, SHENZHEN and PRD. These ports are experiencing most of the rolling from carriers now due to being the last port of call. As well as Qingdao, Shanghai and Ningbo being overloaded with containers, once the vessels start to arrive in Shenzhen and PRD, they have to bump containers due to being overloaded. The carriers have been letting us know that this is due to the misjudgement and miscalculation from their offices of the north and east China ports because they never thought that China would be experiencing such a busy market after losing lot of volume of Shanghai.
A lot of us never thought the slow season of this year will be ending in May however it seems that it has come around quicker than we anticipated. We are heading back to the same scenario where we must be in search constantly for empty containers and space again.
This is only the first wave of the rush, the back log from the 8 weeks of the lock down hasn’t hit the market yet because it normally take 2-3 weeks to manufacture new orders and have shipments ready, the 2nd wave of the big rush will start to come to the market around of 15th -20th June and that is also when carriers have told us that there will be further GRI of approx. USD200.00-USD300.00 PER TEU again in the second half of June.
Even in these tense times, KTL Australia is ready to work hard to get all the extra space allocations for our clients and thank to you for the support that you have provided to us because those bookings and trust you have given to us are the reason we are able to bring on and keep the allocations in peak season which will be starting from June this year.