Container Lines

Container Lines

At a time when the container shipping landscape is constantly evolving, and market dynamics present increasingly complex challenges for the shipping industry, the JOC provides up-to-the-minute news, analysis and business intelligence about the container lines that transport most of the world's trade including Maersk, COSCO, Hapag-Lloyd, CMA CGM, MOL, Yang Ming, Zim Integrated Shipping Services, and many others.

JOC’s comprehensive coverage ranges from the latest information about new shipping lines to major changes in company leadership, to in-depth analysis of the pricing and volume trends that directly impact shippers' bottom lines and supply chains. The consolidation of the container shipping sector has resulted in increasingly divergent strategies, with some firms focusing solely on ocean transport while others opt for a more "end-to-end" approach. The JOC’s comprehensive, in-depth coverage probes the consequences of these various strategies for shipping lines, shippers, and other stakeholders of container lines.


Maersk Line and CMA CGM have gotten a lot of press for their plans to offer services many see as “new,” while others say this is just the next iteration of something carriers have tried to do for decades.

News & Analysis

CMA CGM unveils networking service for customers
16 Jan 2020
Importers and exporters shipping with CMA CGM are being offered a matchmaking service that will allow them to leverage the carrier’s global network in search of new markets.
13 Jan 2020
Customers and service providers of container shipping companies have again voiced their opposition to the European Commission’s decision to extend the carrier block exemption for another four years.
10 Jan 2020
In an effort to recoup low-sulfur mandate costs, some containers lines pushing higher fuel surcharges while easing base spot cargo rates, while others are posting more moderate increases in fuel surcharges and trying to keep freight rates steady.
09 Jan 2020
A secret shopper study of top forwarders by an equipment marketplace provider finds that most are uninterested in providing shipper-owned container options to small or unknown shipper customers.
Ocean Alliance tweaks network as rivals change members
09 Jan 2020
The first of the global container carrier alliances has announced its 2020 schedule, with the other two groupings due to reveal their networks soon.
THE Alliance to roll out HMM mega-ships in revised Asia-Europe network
08 Jan 2020
Members of THE Alliance are making plans to reshuffle their Asia-North Europe and Asia-Mediterranean networks in preparation for HMM, which will join the vessel grouping in April.
06 Jan 2020
Spot rate hikes in the major container trades in early 2020 are only slightly higher than the historical average for this time of year, and as such, shippers should brace themselves for further increases.
Trans-Pac carriers recouping IMO surcharges, but scale unclear
03 Jan 2020
Recent quotes by carriers on their surcharges for more expensive low-sulfur fuel oil are confusing shippers and causing suspicion carriers are attempting to make unreasonable profits from the global LSFO mandate that took effect Wednesday.
03 Jan 2020
It took decades to break up shipping conferences’ control and fixing of shipping rates, but now freight forwarders face a new threat from the carrier-backed TradeLens, a group that has already taken control of much of the world's container cargo data.
31 Dec 2019
Despite an easing of trade tensions between the United States and China, shippers will continue to diversify their sourcing options to mitigate risk.
27 Dec 2019
Spot container freight pricing between Asia and Europe are on the rise thanks to aggressive capacity management by carriers, but analysts say continued lackluster demand will make rate growth more difficult to sustain.
26 Dec 2019
Shippers and non-vessel-operating carriers are now seeing electronic quotes on par with those offered through long-term contracts, a clear signal that certain container lines see instant quoting as a key part of their future strategies.
26 Dec 2019
The trans-Atlantic has been the most stable of the major east-west container shipping trades since 2016, with strong growth achieved in both headhaul and backhaul volume, but a recent escalation of trade tensions is clouding the 2020 outlook.
24 Dec 2019
The US Federal Maritime Commission has proposed a rule that would see the agency take a more active role in detention and demurrage disputes, but container carriers are laying the groundwork for a potential legal challenge in 2020 should the FMC enact the rule.
24 Dec 2019
With growth in trade between Asia and North America projected to continue at a slow, steady pace in 2020, container carriers will be focused on keeping a floor on rates and recouping the added cost of low-sulfur fuels.
23 Dec 2019
Carriers and other stakeholders have seemingly had ample time to prepare for IMO 2020. As the implementation clock ticks down to Jan. 1, takes a look at the state-of-play, including a host of lingering questions, not least of which include the cost and availability of compliant fuels.
20 Dec 2019
The FMC exemption is part of a broader effort to reduce filing requirements related to freight transportation long after trucking companies and railroads were released from the burden of filing tariffs with the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) in 1994.
19 Dec 2019
The survey found that 63 percent of quotes provided by forwarders were not instant, with manually generated quotes taking an average of 122 hours from the time a request was made.
19 Dec 2019
Trans-Pacific carriers are on pace to blank a record number of sailings when factories in Asia close for the Lunar New Year beginning Jan. 25, 2020, as the downward trend in US imports from Asia is expected to continue through the first quarter of next year.
18 Dec 2019
Cargo no-shows are down 75 percent on freight booked via the Maersk Spot guaranteed online booking platform, according to the container carrier.
16 Dec 2019
Despite retailers’ expectations that a front-loading of imports to avoid now-canceled tariffs that would have gone into effect Dec. 15 would drive up volumes last month, US imports from Asia fell for the second straight month.
13 Dec 2019
A number of ocean carriers are adjusting their detention and demurrage fees in the next 30 days, causing shippers to pay more for these penalties being reviewed by the Federal Maritime Commission.
Hapag-Lloyd tabs Blume for digital drayage help
12 Dec 2019
Hapag-Lloyd has turned to Blume Global, which supplies a range of industry brand names, to help digitally manage its North American door moves.
12 Dec 2019
Singapore-based container line ONE is the seventh carrier to provide guaranteed digital contracts through NYSHEX, which seeks to resolve the systemic issue of shippers making multiple bookings and carrier overbooking.
APMT joint venture widens Cosco’s Med footprint
12 Dec 2019
Cosco has added a new container terminal to its expanding European portfolio in a JV with APM Terminals.
11 Dec 2019
Despite attempts to set its own decarbonization agenda, shipping could find itself included — very reluctantly — in Europe’s emissions trading system.
Alphaliner raises alarm over possible overcharging on low-sulfur fees
11 Dec 2019
Carriers have struggled to lift spot rates on the Asia-Europe trade, and the wide variations in low-sulfur surcharge levels have an analyst asking questions.
11 Dec 2019
Chicago-based startup Transship is teaming with TradeLens and other tech companies to create an automated shipping and forwarding platform for containerized perishables shipments.
06 Dec 2019
The world’s largest container line is headlong into a business transformation that’s highly visible, partly of its own doing and partly due to the increased scrutiny such a change by a market leader brings.
05 Dec 2019
Australian shippers are taking a wait-and-see approach to a review by the country’s competition watchdog on whether to continue the class exemption for container shipping companies from competition laws. The head of the government panel says those exemptions are becoming “harder to justify.”
04 Dec 2019
The addition of Feedertech to the DP World portfolio of regional shortsea and feeder carriers enables the port operator to improve its control beyond the terminal.
02 Dec 2019
Much of the attention in the run-up to IMO 2020 has been on the immediate impact of the mandate, but there are some longer-term considerations that warrant examination.
29 Nov 2019
The Indian government is closely scrutinizing terminal handling charges -- perhaps the most controversial of all ancillary charges levied by carriers -- as they typically vary widely from terminal to terminal within a port and from port to port within a region.
27 Nov 2019
The extent to which US retailers rebuild their inventories post-Christmas will provide a hint as to how consumers will respond to mixed economic signals and higher prices on some Chinese goods.
25 Nov 2019
Maersk is dealing with its second high-profile executive departure in just the past two weeks with the news CFO Carolina Dybeck Happe is leaving to take the same position with GE.