Spot freight rates on the key Asia-north Europe trade are reported to have slumped to just $750 per 20-foot container, down more than $1,000 since the beginning of the year.

China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection is considering new regulations that would put provincial authorities in charge of approving wastepaper imports that the ministry now regulates.

LA stacktrain
The percent of import containers arriving at the Los Angeles-Long Beach gateway that were transloaded into domestic containers for onward rail transport into the interior U.S. continued to increase last year and is forecast to continue rising in 2014.

India plans nearly a 50 percent increase in port fees including stevedoring and pilotage at Chennai to improve the port's financial performance

The cost of shipping a 40-foot container from Hong Kong to Los Angeles declined this week, with rates losing all gains brought on by a Sept. 1 general rate increase.

soybean fields
Low prices invariably generate increased demand, so exports of corn, soybeans and energy products derived from those commodities will do quite well in the coming year and beyond, said David Hightower, principal at Hightower Associates in Chicago and publisher of the Hightower Report on commodities.

The northern Chile port of Iquique plans an $80 million expansion.

Maersk Group said it has raised $1.25 billion from the successful issue of two maiden U.S. dollar bonds.

Air freight is suffering from the same issues that afflict container shipping, with growing volumes not enough to lift profitability in the face of high fuel prices, weak yields and growing capacity, the International Air Transport Association said in an industry report.

China-Europe rail services continue to grow in popularity with DHL the latest forwarder to offer a new weekly scheduled block train from Suzhou to Poland.

The Port of Virginia made strides toward financial stability in August, on the back of volume growth that topped 8 percent.

MSC container ship
Executives from Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co., in an attempt to expedite the U.S. approval process, met with a U.S. Federal Maritime Commissioner last week to address questions regarding their proposed “2M” vessel-sharing agreement.

Singapore
Container handling rose nearly 2 percent in August at the world’s largest transshipment hub, the Port of Singapore.