P3 Network

Maersk Line, Mediterranean Shipping Co. and CMA CGM have announced plans to form a long-term alliance on the major east-west trades.


The P3 Network alliance will operate a fleet of 255 ships with a total capacity of 2.6 million 20-foot-equivalent units on 28 service loops on Asia-Europe, trans-Pacific and trans-Atlantic routes.


The world’s three largest ocean carriers plan to launch the network in July 2014, subject to regulatory approval. The lines in October 2013 released initial plans for service loops and port rotations.

JOC Executive Vice President and Chief Content Officer Peter Tirschwell earlier this year offered an analysis of what the announcement of the P3 Network tells us about the state of the global container shipping industry.

Container ship in Hamburg, Germany.
08 Apr 2014
The 2013 financial reporting season for container lines ended for many carriers in a sea of red ink as high bunker prices and weak freight rates combined to drag down profits.
08 Apr 2014
European ports will struggle to handle the revamped services due to be launched by the P3 and G6 carrier alliances due to their weak intermodal transport links, according to Drewry Maritime Research.
03 Apr 2014
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission yesterday unanimously voted to allow the G6 Alliance to expand into the Asia-U.S. West Coat and trans-Atlantic routes.
24 Mar 2014
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Federal Maritime Commissioner who cast the lone vote against the P3 network last week called it an “alliance in name only” in which the controlling carrier, Maersk Line, can virtually “paint the other parties’ ships light blue.”
21 Mar 2014
Ocean container lines and the shipowners that lease ships to them are suspending new ship orders for fuel-efficient mega-
20 Mar 2014
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission today voted 4-to-1 to allow the P3 Network to set sail in the second quarter and vowed to create new reporting requirements to monitor the vessel-sharing agreement involving the three largest global container lines.
Containers on dock
18 Mar 2014
A coalition of global shipper groups today urged the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission and European Commission to investigate the impact the P3 Network would have on price and service.
10 Mar 2014
Many U.S. East Coast and Gulf ports will struggle to handle the larger container ships the P3 and G6 carrier alliances likely will deploy on trans-Atlantic routes, according to Drewry Maritime Research.
The JOC’s Peter Tirschwell (left) talks with maritime industry leader Ron Widdows onstage at TPM.
05 Mar 2014
LONG BEACH, Calif. — No, container lines won’t be able to get freight rates to sustainable levels for some years to come.
From left: Adam D. Hall, Dollar General; Klaus Schnede, Eastman Chemical.
04 Mar 2014
It is possible to think up all kinds of scary scenarios that could play out as container lines form new vessel-sharing alliances or expand existing alliances, but the primary goal of carriers is to deploy the largest ships at their disposal in order to reduce their per-unit costs.
Antwerp’s Duerganck dock.
12 Feb 2014
The Port of Antwerp said it will proceed with plans to expand container handling facilities for Mediterranean Shipping Co., its biggest customer, as it has not received alternative proposals.
10 Feb 2014
WASHINGTON — The P3 Network could be sailing past any U.S. regulatory hurdles by late March...

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