Maritime News

The price of low-sulfur fuel per metric ton in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, a global indicator of bunker prices, has dropped $46.21 in six weeks.
Spot prices for low-sulfur bunker fuel sank for the sixth straight week last week, a total drop of just over 7 percent.

China
If the negative portrayal by China’s state broadcaster of the proposed 2M tie-up between Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co. this weekend has official backing, it could be an indication of internal political pressure to shield Cosco and China Shipping Container Lines from a stronger competitor.

A rise in traffic from Asia to Mediterranean ports has led to tight capacity and a substantial rise in spot prices.

The Suez Canal’s major deepening project is just over the horizon as crews will start widening and dredging a 34-kiliometer strip in order to improve wait times for vessels using the canal.

Ometepe Island volcanoes in Lake Nicaragua.
When the Nicaraguan government earlier this month approved plans by a Hong Kong-based company to build a canal linking the Pacific with the Caribbean and thus the Atlantic, observers in the maritime industry were largely left scratching their heads.

Containerized U.S. imports rose 6.9 percent year-over-year in June.
U.S. containerized imports in June showed substantial year-over-year growth, as labor negotiations on the West Coast seem to have induced an early ocean container shipping peak season.

Images for weekly wrap-up
The International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association met for three days this past week without concluding negotiations; at the weekend, the parties announced a week-long recess in the talks. German carrier Hamburg Süd announced plans to acquire the container operations of Chile’s CCNI, in a move resembling the deal between larger competitor Hapag-Lloyd and Chile’s CSAV, and Crowley is reported to be in talks to acquire Horizon Lines’ Puerto Rico assets. Earnings reports by U.S. truckload carriers are pointing to a stronger freight recovery in the United States, though rail service continues to be held back. And on Friday, Anne S. Ferro announced her departure from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration after five years leading the agency.

Hutchison Port Holdings Trust (HPH Trust) reported a 16 percent rise in first-half net profit on the back of improved U.S. and European cargo and greater transshipment volume.

OOCL Qingdao
Evidence of volume growth in east-west container shipping markets was revealed in Orient Overseas Container Line’s most recent results.

The Shanghai-northern Europe spot rate slipped 2.2 percent to $1,203.
Price drops continued to be reflected in the Shanghai Containerized Freight Index this week, as every major lane on the index saw spot rates fall.