Member lines of the Southern Africa Europe Container Service, including Deutsche Afrika-Linien, Maersk Line, Mitsui O.S.K. Lines and Safmarine, have decided to merge the current service with Med-Shuttle/225 Service.
The Med-Shuttle/225 Service, operated by Maersk and Safmarine between Algeciras, Spain, and South Africa, on which MOL and DAL participate as slot charterers, will be terminated during the fourth quarter. Algeciras calls will be added to the SAECS core service on both southbound and northbound voyages when Med-Shuttle/225 is suspended, in order to continue providing weekly service to and from the Mediterranean. The transit times and port rotations between North Europe and South Africa will be “largely unchanged,” according to the MOL announcement.
The new joint service will operate with larger vessels, although the weekly frequency will continue to be maintained by eight vessels. The replacement of the current SAECS fleet of vessels will begin in January 2014 and is expected to be completed by the end of March 2014.