The World Trade Organization’s trade measures approved this week in a historic agreement could cut the cost of trade by up to 15 percent, boost the global flow of goods, accelerate economic growth and add up to 20 million new jobs, most of them in developing nations.

United Arab Shipping Co. today named the industry’s first-ever LNG-ready ultra-large container vessel at Ulsan in Korea, with Sajir becoming the first of 17 vessels ordered by the carrier.

Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) became the latest carrier to postpone a port congestion surcharge for cargo entering North America via West Coast gateways, reversing a decision to impose the levy announced just days ago.

Multiple container lines have planned general rate increases in numerous trade lanes in November, December and January, although any gains achieved could be temporary as overcapacity and sluggish global demand continue.

The European Union has agreed a regulation compelling all ships sailing in its waters to monitor their carbon emissions, and it immediately drew criticism from ship-owner bodies for complicating, and possibly jeopardizing, ongoing efforts to reach a global accord.

The port of Piraeus has approved a long delayed-agreement with Cosco Pacific under which the Hong Kong-based company will invest a further 230 million euros ($285 million) in container facilities at Greece’s largest port.

There is optimism that the congestion choking the port of Manila since February may finally be addressed after Philippine government officials and the shipping industry came together in the capital to tackle the crippling problems.

Shipping lines on the trans-Pacific saw all gains made by the Nov. 15 general rates increases fall away as the spot rate plunged $253 per 40-foot container in the past week, according to the latest reading of the Shanghai Containerised Freight Index (SCFI) released today.

There will be no speedy solution to the congestion that is creating bottlenecks at ports around the world as terminals battle to cope with growing trade and surges in container volume.

Seven container ships, two more than the previous day but fewer than earlier in the week, were at anchor on Thursday morning awaiting berths at the congested ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, according to the Marine Exchange of Southern California.

The port of Rotterdam will triple the discount on tariffs for deep-sea containers that are transshipped to other ports in Europe over the next three years in a move likely to trigger a response from its main rival Hamburg.

The international air freight demand of Asia-Pacific airlines, measured in freight ton kilometres (FTK), grew by a firm 6.4 percent in October, on the back of buoyant demand for electronic goods from manufacturing hubs in North Asia.

The revenue container shipping lines are achieving per TEU has been falling steadily over the past three years as freight rates continue to weaken under the burden of excess capacity.