Maritime

The Journal of Commerce is the industry’s source for maritime news and analysis about ocean container shipping, logistics, supply chains, global shipping ports, shipping technology solutions and end-to-end connectivity. Coverage tracks the movement of containerized cargo — from origin to destination — handled by marine terminals in the US and abroad, depots, container ports, container lines, drayage, consignees and shippers, forwarders, non-vessel operating common carriers (NVOCCs) and off-dock warehousing providers, as well as pricing, capacity, volume and reliability on the trans-Pacific, Asia-Europe, North America-Caribbean, Central and South American and intra-Asia trades.

The latest Maritime News & Analysis

Zim hires banks for IPO — report

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
Zim Integrated Shipping Services refused to comment on reports it is planning an initial public offering in the U.S. next year.
Container lines

IKEA chooses Incheon port as South Korea gateway

Xiaolin Zeng, Special Correspondent |
Swedish furniture maker IKEA has decided it will make Incheon port its primary South Korean gateway after it began testing out Incheon New Port Phase 1-1 container pier (Terminal B) in July.
International ports

Panamax unemployment set to soar as carriers suspend services

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
The imminent suspension of several liner services between Asia and the U.S. East Coast and South America during the slack shipping season threatens to put as many as 50 Panamax container ships out of work by January, according to Alphaliner.
Container lines

Hutchison’s Aussie chief gives gloomy assessment of union talks

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
Hutchison Ports Australia (HPA) and the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) today agreed to extend conciliation talks until November as both sides try to find a way out of a bitter dispute that exploded after 97 workers were fired in early August.
Marine terminals

Carriers face three more years of excess capacity pain, Drewry warns

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
The container shipping industry is facing three more years of overcapacity and financial pain because of slowing global trade and a bloated order book of large vessels, forcing Drewry to slash its growth forecast for 2015 and revise down estimates for future years.
Maritime

APL to have full control over new North Asia-US West Coast service

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
Container line APL has launched a weekly service connecting North Asia markets with the U.S. West Coast using U.S.-flagged vessels in a speedy transit that will be controlled by the carrier from end-to-end, including the rail link to inland destinations.
Maritime

West Coast port crisis casts a long fall shadow

William B. Cassidy, Senior Editor |
The labor dispute that clogged West Coast ports with containers for months is still shaping freight markets, speakers at the JOC Inland Distribution Conference say, months after a contract was signed and the freight logjam broke.
Supply chainMaritimeTrucking News

FedEx CEO: Some West Coast diversions will stick

JOC Staff |
FedEx founder, CEO and Chairman Fred Smith expects some of the cargo diverted from congested West Coast ports to remain moving through other entry points as shippers diversify their supply chains.
Maritime

Hyundai to spin off bulk, US container terminal units

JOC Staff |
Hyundai Merchant Marine said it will spin off its dry bulk division and its two U.S. West Coast container terminals as the Korean company seeks to bolster liquidity at its core container shipping business.
Container lines

Panama Canal chief says expanded locks will open in April despite leaks

Neil Weise, IHS Fairplay Managing Editor |
Panama Canal Administrator Jorge Quijano has assured shipping leaders that the canal’s new, larger locks should open on schedule by April, despite concerns that the opening would be delayed by leaks in one of the locks’ concrete sills.
Maritime

Coast Guard to call off El Faro survivor search

JOC Staff |
The Coast Guard said its search for the 33 persons aboard the cargo ship El Faro would be halted at 7 p.m. EDT Wednesday, more than six days after the TOTE Maritime cargo ship sank off the Bahamas during Hurricane Joaquin.
Container lines

Trailer Bridge barge parted from tug during hurricane

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
A Trailer Bridge triple-deck barge broke loose from the tug that was towing it from San Juan to Jacksonville, Florida, last weekend during the same hurricane that claimed TOTE Maritime’s El Faro.
Container lines

Three former NYK, 'K' Line execs charged in ro-ro price-fixing case

JOC Staff |
Three former “K” Line and NYK executives have been indicted for alleged participation in a scheme to rig bids and fix prices for international shipments of roll-on, roll-off shipments to and from the United States.
Breakbulk carriers

Piraeus port privatization delayed

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
The privatization of the port of Piraeus has been delayed as Greece’s snap general election Sept. 20 interrupted preparations by government transport and finance officials.
International ports

Trade slump, port congestion slows India container volume growth

JOC Staff |
The volume handled at India’s major public ports grew a meager 2 percent in the first fiscal half amid sluggish global trade demand and growing service bottlenecks at some of the country’s main container gateways, particularly Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust.
International ports

Container lines’ on-time performance best since November 2013, SeaIntel says

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
Four out of five ships operated by the world’s 20 largest container lines arrived in port on time in August, the best performance since November 2013, SeaIntel Maritime Analysis said in its Global Liner Performance report.
Container lines

El Faro search continues as investigation begins

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
Searchers are combing the Atlantic today in the fast-dwindling hope of finding survivors among the 33-member crew of the TOTE Maritime cargo ship El Faro, which sank five days ago during a Category 4 hurricane off the Bahamas.
Container lines

'End of an era' as Rotterdam's oldest container terminal closes

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
The oldest container terminal in Rotterdam, ECT City Terminal, has closed after nearly fifty years, because it can’t handle the ever-larger vessels calling at Europe’s top container port.
International ports

HHLA trims profit forecast on shrinking Hamburg container traffic

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
HHLA, Hamburg’s leading terminal operator, has downgraded its 2015 earnings forecast in response to declining traffic at Germany’s top container port.
Marine terminals

India earmarks $10.7 billion to upgrade port infrastructure

JOC Staff |
Indian Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari said the government plans to spend roughly Rs. 70,000 crore (approximately $10.7 billion) on upgrades for major public ports under the “Sagar Mala” project over the next five years.
International ports

Rise in West Coast dockworker hours highlights terminal productivity pressures

Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor |
Container volumes handled by West Coast ports are returning to historical levels, but the weekly manpower requirements for handling the containers is about 15 percent higher than in the past. That suggests terminal operators are struggling to adjust to the complexities caused by mega-ships, vessel-sharing alliances and chassis shortages.
North American ports

Panamanian ports eye more transshipment

Michele Labrut, Special Correspondent |
Container volumes at Panama’s ports totalled just over 4 million 20-foot-equivalent units during the first seven months of this year, up by 4.4 percent from the same period last year.
International ports

China slowdown casts shadow over TPP trade deal

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
China’s slowdown is causing jitters at the highest business levels with excitement over a deal reached on the Trans-Pacific Partnership tempered by the World Bank cutting its growth forecast for Asia-Pacific on concerns over the mainland’s weakening economic performance.
Container lines

Late hours at DCs may be key to resolving NY-NJ port congestion

Peter Tirschwell, Senior Director, Content, IHS Maritime and Trade |
As the Port of New York and New Jersey tries to reduce chronically long lines for the 86 percent of its containers that move by truck, there are growing cries to extend gate hours. But there’s a problem — many distribution centers aren’t open late to receive the cargo.
North American ports

Suit challenges Mississippi River pilots’ pay raises

JOC Staff |
The Louisiana Chemical Association has filed suit to block raises for two groups of Mississippi River ship pilots that would boost their average annual pay more than $50,000 over four years, to $473,692 in 2019, according to a local report.
Maritime

Panama Canal plots logistics expansion

Michele Labrut, Special Correspondent |
The Panama Canal Authority is not only focused on expanding the waterway itself, but also on synergistic ancillary ventures that render the entire system more attractive.
Maritime

Deepening project to allow Tauranga to handle larger ships begins

Tony Slinn, Special Correspondent |
The fast-growing port of Tauranga has begun widening and deepening its shipping channels to handle larger vessels after a more than four-year court battle over the project.
International ports

Volume at major Japan ports shrinks on domestic, global uncertainty

Hisane Masaki, Special Correspondent |
All but one of Japan’s five biggest ports saw their international container traffic shrink in the first half of this year amid growing economic uncertainty both at home and abroad.
International ports

Search for El Faro crew continues after body found

JOC Staff |
A body of one crew member of the TOTE Maritime cargo ship El Faro has been found, the Coast Guard said, and the search continues for the remainder of the 33-member crew of the vessel, which sank during Hurricane Joaquin.
Container lines

Santos Brasil wins extension, $324 million investment to follow

Rob Ward, Special Correspondent |
Santos Brasil by 2047 plans to invest $324.4 million to allow the Tecon Santos terminal to handle larger ships and boost capacity by one-fifth after South America’s biggest container terminal operator received a 25-year concession extension at the busiest container gateway in Latin America.
International ports

Adani Ports signs deal to run Kattupalli Container Terminal

JOC Staff |
Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone, which operates India’s biggest non-government port complex at Mundra, is rapidly expanding its container-handling footprint to create a pan-India terminal network.
Marine terminals

APM Terminals eyes Mexico expansion

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
APM Terminals confirmed its interest in expanding its presence in Mexico as it starts the countdown to the opening of a container terminal at the port of Lazaro Cardenas on the country’s Pacific coast.
Marine terminals

Cargo migration to US East Coast a long-term trend, Drewry says

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
U.S. West Coast ports are expected to claw back market share lost to the East Coast during the congestion earlier this year, but the longer term trend is for cargo to migrate to the east, Drewry says.
Maritime

Canal expansion raises questions about Panamax ships’ future

Peter Tirschwell, Senior Director, Content, IHS Maritime and Trade |
When the Panama Canal’s expansion is completed, likely next year despite the likelihood of fresh delays, it will immediately orphan a class of ships specifically designed to maximize use of the existing canal. This could have a big impact on container ship supply in coming years.
Container lines

Portland, Maine, undergoes resurgence as transportation hub

Peter T. Leach, Editor-at-Large |
A small port in Maine is enjoying a renaissance thanks to lobsters, L.L. Bean and Eimskip, the Icelandic container line that specializes in the refrigerated trade.
North American ports

No Golden Week sparkle for carriers battling low spot rates

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
Factories across China are closed for the Golden Week holidays, but a few days of limited container volumes through mainland ports are little compared to a year of surplus capacity and record low freight rates.
Maritime

Debris from missing El Faro found, but no crew or life rafts

JOC Staff |
A U.S. Coast Guard air crew found a life ring belonging to the missing TOTE Maritime roll-on, roll-off/container ship late Saturday about 75 miles northeast of the ship's last know position near Crooked Island in the Bahamas.
Maritime

Kingston lags in Caribbean transshipment race

Greg Miller, Special Correspondent |
When the expanded Panama Canal debuts, assumedly by mid-2016, not all Caribbean transshipment hubs will be in the same position to accommodate larger vessels, and none may be as disadvantaged as Kingston Container Terminal.
International ports

Smart boxes to be deployed on CMA CGM flagship in industry first

JOC Staff |
France’s CMA CGM has claimed that its new 18,000 TEU vessel, CMA CGM Bougainville, is the first container ship in the world to be equipped with new technology turning its payload of containers into “smart connected objects.”
Maritime

Strike hits Santos port

Rob Ward, Special Correspondent |
Protesting dock workers brought parts of the Brazilian port city of Santos to a standstill yesterday after the Ecoporto Santos container terminal laid off 200 workers and set out plans to sack another 200 as it fights to stay competitive in the oversaturated container terminal sector of South America’s biggest port.
International ports