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

Update: Coast Guard search continues for missing TOTE ship

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
The U.S. Coast Guard has resumed its search for a missing TOTE Maritime roll-on, roll-off/container ship with 33 crew members that was caught in Hurricane Joaquin, near Crooked Island, Bahamas.
Container lines

Oakland wins EPA grant to reduce emissions

JOC Staff |
The Port of Oakland has won a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to help it reduce carbon emissions from some of its dockside equipment.
North American ports

Free trade agreement puts pressure on Vietnam port expenses

Jem Newton, Special Correspondent |
Vietnam reached a framework deal with the European Union on a free trade agreement in August, increasing pressure on Hanoi to streamline the country’s logistics costs.
International ports

Container lines study Honduras rail bridge as canal alternative

JOC Staff |
Some ocean carriers are exploring a rail route through Honduras to move containers from Asia to the North American East Coast, a Federal Maritime Commissioner said at a Port of New York-New Jersey Port Industry Day forum.
Container linesRail NewsInternational rail

Container ship charter market squeezed

Michael Hollmann, Special Correspondent |
Expectations of a rebound in daily rates for charter container ships following the end of the summer holidays are being quashed as container lines reduce their active route capacity.
Container lines

Maersk launches direct Thailand-Aussie service

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
Maersk Line will this month start a direct service between Thailand and Australia, eliminating the need to make transshipment calls at other Southeast Asian hubs and cutting down both transit time and costs for shippers.
Container lines

NLRB deals another blow to the ILWU in Portland

Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor |
The National Labor Relations Board determined that International Longshore and Warehouse Union Locals 8 and 40 in Portland violated federal laws prohibiting secondary boycotts by engaging in work stoppages and slowdowns, and on Wednesday ordered the ILWU to cease and desist from those activities.
North American portsTransport, Trade, and Regulation News

Canadian trucker union files suit against Vancouver's clean-truck requirements

Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor |
Unifor, the union representing owner-operator truck drivers at Port Metro Vancouver, has filed suit in federal court charging that Canada’s largest port is enforcing a clean-truck requirement that will cost each of its members thousands of dollars, while at the same time allowing terminal operators to use cargo-handling equipment that emits harmful pollutants.
International ports

Extended free time contributes to chassis shortages in LA-Long Beach

Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor |
Spot shortages of chassis continue to plague terminal operators in Los Angeles-Long Beach, seven months after the portwide “pool of pools” was rolled out by chassis-leasing companies with the intention of eliminating that very problem.
North American ports

Truck appointments to be tested in NY-NJ port

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
Tests of truck appointments at the Port of New York and New Jersey will begin late this year or in early 2016, said Rich Ceci, vice president, information technology, at GCT USA.
North American ports

Higher clearance for Bayonne Bridge delayed to late 2017

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
Targeted completion of a $1.3 billion project to raise the clearance for ships passing under the Port of New York and New Jersey’s Bayonne Bridge has been pushed back more than a year, until late 2017.
North American ports

Repairs to leaky locks could further delay Panama Canal opening

Greg Miller, Special Correspondent |
Repairs to the Panama Canal's new locks will be more extensive than previously indicated, and the date for their completion is uncertain.
Container lines

Container ship operators told cost cutting is the ‘new normal’

Kari Reinikainen, Special Correspondent |
Container ship operators are being told that finding new ways to cut costs to stay profitable is the "new normal" in container shipping. The discipline is being imposed on them, in part, by orders for large newbuildings, which will postpone cyclical recovery.
Container lines

Peel off method gaining momentum as port congestion fighter

Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor |
A process known as free flow, or peel off, is attracting favorable reviews from terminal operators as well as truckers in Los Angeles-Long Beach. Though still considered to be in its infancy since it was launched in early 2014, the ports are confident enough about the potential of peel off that they are identifying parcels of land in the harbor area that can be used to expand the program.
North American ports

Zim upgrades Asia-Mediterranean loops

JOC Staff |
Zim Integrated Shipping Services announced it is upgrading its Asia-Mediterranean service network, comprising the East Med-Black Sea Express, or EMX, and the Asia-India Subcontinent East Med, or AME, by adding new port calls and upsizing tonnage deployment.
Container lines

NY-NJ import growth slows as cargo returns to West Coast

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
The Port of New York and New Jersey’s import container volume rose 6 percent year-over-year in August as growth moderated after months of double-digit increases aided by West Coast cargo diversions.
North American ports

Major carriers, feeder operators cut capacity to ailing Venezuela

Greg Miller, Special Correspondent |
Plummeting cargo flows to Venezuela are forcing major carriers and feeder operators to reduce services as they grapple with poor port productivity and hinterland connections.
Container lines

Surge in US transport, warehousing job openings recedes

William B. Cassidy, Senior Editor |
The great swell in U.S. transportation, warehousing and utility jobs receded in July after hitting historic heights in April and May, but demand for workers remains strong in a complex employment market. Hiring numbers, and separations, continue to rise.
Transport, Trade, and Regulation NewsTrucking laborLongshore labor

SeaLand CEO reports progress after initial bumps

Greg Miller, Special Correspondent |
Maersk relaunched SeaLand in January to provide more specialized service in the Americas’ north-south trade. After some early hiccups, it is now reporting solid progress.
Container lines

$2B Israel ports expansion aimed at averting capacity crunch

Stephen Cousins, Special Correspondent |
Israel is hoping that a $2 billion port expansion drive, involving construction of two major container terminals at the ports of Haifa and Ashdod, will help it stave off a trade capacity crunch.
International ports

Turkey’s Yilport acquires Portuguese port operator

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
Yilport Holding, the leading Turkish port operator, has reached agreement to take over Tertir, a Portuguese port and logistics company, with terminals in Europe and Latin America.
Marine terminals

JNPT deploys more container trains to deal with months-long backlog

JOC Staff |
Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, India’s biggest container handler, is increasing intermodal train deployments and rolling out more proactive measures in an effort to alleviate the backlog of containerized freight built up during the past few weeks.
International ports

Idle box ship fleet surges to 18-month high

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
The fleet of idle container ships over 500 twenty foot equivalent units surged by 90,000 TEUs in the past two weeks to reach 673,000 TEUs, or 3.4 percent of global capacity, the highest rate since March 2014, according to Alphaliner.
Container lines

Lines in G6 Alliance cut Asia-US sailings

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
Carriers in the G6 Alliance have announced new sailing cuts in services from Asia, this time to both the U.S. East and West coasts from late October as the container shipping heads into the slow season.
Container lines

Ningbo-Zhoushan officially merged into one port

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
Port News

Dar es Salaam works to double capacity, cut dwell times

Shem Oirere, Special Correspondent |
The fast-growing port of Dar es Salaam is working to double its annual capacity to 30 million metric tons per year and reduce dwell times from nine days to five by 2020, in an effort to become the top gateway to landlocked East African countries.
International ports

Outlook for fresh food cargo brightening

Michael Hollmann, Special Correspondent |
Refrigerated ocean cargo volumes are bound to grow at an accelerated pace in the coming years despite economic difficulties in key emerging markets, experts say.
Container lines

JOC forecast: US imports to hit record high this year

Joseph Bonney, Senior Editor |
U.S. containerized imports this year will surpass 20 million 20-foot-equivalent units for the first time, driven by continued strength in housing, automobiles and consumer spending, predicts JOC Senior Economist Mario O. Moreno.
Container lines

Technology idea aims to double hourly port container throughput

Joe Charlaff, Special Correspondent |
Container ports fighting bottlenecks that drive up costs for shippers may soon have a new weapon: an automated container management system that promises to double throughput hourly.
Marine terminals

Port labor actions hurting Brazil poultry exporters

Rob Ward, Special Correspondent |
Strikes and slowdowns by Brazil’s customs officers are creating serious delays for chicken exporters in Brazil, according to the Brazilian Association for Animal Protein (ABPA).
International ports

Novorossiysk to deepen to lure larger ships from Ukraine

Eugene Gerden, Special Correspondent |
The Russian government plans to spend between 20 and 25 billion rubles ($400 to $500 million) to expand and deepen the harbor of the Novorossiysk seaport to handle larger vessels, in order to make it more competitive with Ukrainian ports also on the Black Sea.
International ports

Cosco, China Shipping talks to drag on for another month

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
China’s two largest shipping lines and their subsidiaries have extended the trading suspension of their shares for another month as the carriers continue to discuss “asset reorganisation” in what is strongly believed to be part of a merger.
Maritime

Maersk transfer 12 box ships to German ship-managers

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
In a break with tradition, Maersk Line is transferring the operation of a dozen container vessels to two German ship-management companies.
Container lines

Europe-east coast S. America container outlook bleak, Drewry says

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
The Europe-East Coast South America trade is facing a bleak future with freight rates set to remain under constant pressure from shrinking container volumes, according to Drewry Maritime Research.
Container lines

Scrapping has little impact on oversupplied trade routes, Drewry finds

Greg Knowler, Senior Europe Editor |
If all the ships over 20 years old were demolished tomorrow, the global fleet would shrink by around 750,000 TEUs, or 4 percent of the total, yet ship utilisation on the embattled Asia-Europe services would not budge one percentage point.
Maritime

Dominican Republic transshipment hub expands

Greg Miller, Special Correspondent |
The DP World Caucedo transshipment hub in the Dominican Republic is moving forward with upgrades to accommodate the larger vessels that will be able to traverse the expanded Panama Canal next year and provide shippers with more warehouse capacity.
International ports

EBRD buys minority stake in Turkish port operator

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development announced the acquisition of a minority stake in Turkish port operator, Global Ports Holding, just weeks after a near $1 billion Chinese investment in the country’s waterfront.
Marine terminals

Hapag-Lloyd unveils plan for $5.6 billion IPO this year

Bruce Barnard, Special Correspondent |
Hapag-Lloyd, the world's fifth-largest ocear carrier by capacity, today unveiled plans for an initial public offering before the end of the year that is set to raise around $500 million to help fund the acquisition of mega-ships and value the company at around 5 billion euros ($5.6 billion).
Container lines

Indian government caves to labor pressure, backs off port reform

JOC Staff |
The Indian federal government is retreating from a controversial “corporatization” plan to transform ‘major’, or public, port trusts into independent companies following stiff opposition from labor unions and some political groups, dealing a big blow to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s reform efforts to stimulate trade and economic growth.
International portsTransport, Trade, and Regulation News

Japan's aggressive approach on trade could open new markets

Alan M. Field, Contributing Editor |
In a historic policy shift, Japan’s Abe government hopes to leverage the potential of free trade agreements to revitalize its medium- and long-term economic productivity and global competitiveness.
Container lines