News and analysis of Asia–Europe, rates, volumes, services, contracting, ports, disruption, end-to-end strategies

The latest Asia-Europe News & Analysis

Maersk, Hapag-Lloyd put shippers on notice ahead of European ETS surcharges

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Sep 22, 2023, 11:13 AM EDT

The phased implementation of Europe’s emissions trading system on the shipping industry beginning next year will generate significant costs for carriers that will be passed on to customers in the form of new charges.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Asia-North Europe blank sailings to soar in October amid capacity overhang

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Sep 20, 2023, 12:56 PM EDT

Ocean carriers on the busy trade lane plan to slash deployed capacity to match falling demand levels that typically follow China’s Golden Week holiday at the start of October.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Zim, MSC ink cooperation deal on services linking Asia, Europe and Med

Michael Angell, Associate Editor | Sep 7, 2023, 2:11 PM EDT

Facing an operating loss of up to $500 million for 2023, Zim hopes the sharing arrangement with its larger competitor will help drive efficiencies “amidst continued near-term headwinds.”
Container linesContainer shippingTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Rate recovery could buoy container shipping in H2: Cosco

Keith Wallis, Special Correspondent | Aug 29, 2023, 2:06 PM EDT

But in its interim earnings announcement, Cosco Shipping Holdings also maintained a cautious outlook due to challenges it cited, including the global economy, inflationary pressures in Europe and America, and the delivery of new vessels.
Container linesContainer shippingTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Hamburg follows North Europe port rivals with H1 volume decline

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Aug 23, 2023, 12:22 PM EDT

Weak European demand for containerized trade through the first half is hurting port throughput at the region’s top three gateways, but signs are emerging of recovering volume on certain routes.
PortsContainer shippingTrans-AtlanticAsia-EuropeInternational ports

Spot rate gains puts pressure on shippers delaying Asia-Europe contracts: Xeneta

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Aug 23, 2023, 10:30 AM EDT

Additional upward pressure might soon be brought to bear on spot rates, with forwarders expecting carriers to ramp up blank sailings through the fourth quarter to mitigate a significant injection of new capacity.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Lack of market clarity undermines positive sentiment: OOCL

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Aug 21, 2023, 9:44 AM EDT

The Cosco Shipping subsidiary noted that significant uncertainties over economic growth prospects and the huge injection of capacity into major trade lanes made forecasting difficult.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Shippers reluctant to shoulder high cost of decarbonization: executives

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Aug 18, 2023, 11:33 AM EDT

Getting shippers to commit to premium-priced, low-emissions shipping services is a hard sell for ocean carriers and forwarders as cargo owners enjoy rates that are now mostly below pre-pandemic levels after two years of record highs.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesForwardingTrans-PacificTrans-AtlanticAsia-Europe

Forwarders warn of substantial Q4 rise in Asia-Europe blank sailings

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Aug 17, 2023, 11:25 AM EDT

Carriers will have to withdraw large amounts of capacity to prevent a freefall in rate levels that are expected to be undermined by rising capacity and subdued demand, according to forwarders.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Hapag-Lloyd, HMM predict H2 demand pickup amid faltering profits

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Aug 10, 2023, 9:38 AM EDT

The first-half results of Hapag-Lloyd and HMM mirror those reported by their peers, with earnings severely challenged by the rapidly normalizing market.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Robust Asia–Med demand continues to outpace North Europe growth

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Aug 8, 2023, 1:32 PM EDT

Despite unfavorable comparisons with last year, volume between Asia and the Mediterranean has surpassed that recorded in pre-pandemic 2019.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

New China–South India string to boost rising intra-Asia capacity

Bency Mathew, Special Correspondent | Aug 7, 2023, 11:27 AM EDT

The latest China–India service follows the announcement of another new string from CULines and capacity increases from other carriers, including Pacific International Lines, Evergreen Marine and Regional Container Lines.
Container shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Ocean market shows signs of life despite forecasts for muted peak season

Peter Tirschwell | Aug 3, 2023, 8:00 AM EDT

While the magnitude of peak season in any given year may have macroeconomic significance in shedding light on the strength of consumer spending and the economy overall, it is only one factor driving the market conditions that affect the physical movement of goods, writes Peter Tirschwell.
Container shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-EuropeNorth American portsInternational ports

EU carbon tax’s long reach to affect global rates, vessel deployments: analyst

Lars Jensen, CEO & Partner, Vespucci Maritime, and Journal of Commerce analyst | Aug 2, 2023, 8:00 AM EDT

Inclusion in the European Union’s emissions trading system will affect not only the cost of shipping to and from the EU, but will likely put upward pressure on pricing for cargo that doesn’t touch the EU at all, writes analyst Lars Jensen.
Container shippingContainer linesTrans-AtlanticAsia-EuropePortsTransport, trade and regulation

ONE reports sharp drop in fiscal Q1 profitability as rates, demand fall

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jul 31, 2023, 9:59 AM EDT

The financial results of the Singapore-based carrier reflect a return to a more normal container shipping market, albeit one characterized by weak demand from inflation-hit destination markets.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Asia-Europe ocean carriers look to steady market with August rate hikes

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jul 24, 2023, 2:37 PM EDT

The new price levels signal the intent of carriers to drive up freight-all-kinds rates in a move to capitalize on any increased buying should a peak season emerge.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Clock ticking on Europe’s new multimodal green transport proposals

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jul 21, 2023, 8:58 AM EDT

With European parliamentary elections set for early June 2024, road and rail lobby groups have emphasized the urgency of getting the latest freight transport measures adopted.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Asia-Europe blank sailings hit two-year low despite sluggish market

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jul 19, 2023, 12:04 PM EDT

Ocean carriers are showing a lack of urgency to blank sailings even as China’s exports weaken and new vessels continue to come online.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Antwerp-Bruges H1 volumes slide on weak demand, poor industrial outlook

Keith Wallis, Special Correspondent | Jul 18, 2023, 1:32 PM EDT

The fall hid some upbeat trends, with the number of refrigerated containers rising more than 10% in the first half and the rate of decline in overall volumes easing in the second quarter.
International portsContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-EuropeBreakbulk shippingRo/ro cargo

Strategic investment underpins ONE’s ‘sustainable profitability’ target: Nixon

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jul 7, 2023, 9:50 AM EDT

The Singapore-based carrier’s multi-billion-dollar investment plan into terminals, new ships and decarbonization is meant to secure the right assets in the right areas to keep it in the black.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

First-half revenue, earnings contract sharply at Cosco, OOCL

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jul 5, 2023, 9:31 AM EDT

The extent to which the rapidly cooling container shipping market is hurting China’s main carriers is likely to be repeated across the industry as reporting season approaches.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificTrans-AtlanticAsia-Europe

Maersk warns of hefty Asia-Europe rate hike from July 31

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jul 4, 2023, 8:58 AM EDT

The carrier is attempting to stem the spot rate slide in a weak demand-high-capacity environment that has seen freight prices fall more than 80% from the record highs of early last year.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

No sign yet of recovery as trans-Atlantic, Asia-Europe rate decline continues

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jun 30, 2023, 10:41 AM EDT

Sustained weakness in demand, excess capacity and ongoing economic uncertainty are undermining the container trade in and out of Europe, making a third-quarter rebound increasingly unlikely.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-AtlanticAsia-Europe

New HMM service covers strong Mediterranean, India markets

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jun 27, 2023, 10:32 AM EDT

Solid demand from both regions has encouraged the carrier to deploy its own vessels on the Asia-Med trade lane.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

IMO must set zero-emission target for 2050: Norwegian shipowners

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jun 8, 2023, 9:39 AM EDT

The shift to green fuels needs to be “supercharged” by establishing a clear zero-emissions target at the IMO’s July meeting, according to an Oslo-based shipowner group.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificTrans-AtlanticAsia-Europe

Second month of big Asia-Med volume growth drives market optimism

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jun 8, 2023, 8:55 AM EDT

There are growing expectations in the container shipping market that the Asia-Europe trade will see a peak season this year as European import volume growth continued in April.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Megaship deliveries add to growing capacity on Asia-Europe trade

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jun 6, 2023, 11:09 AM EDT

About 65% of the current carrier orderbook is for ships over 15,000 TEUs in capacity, the majority of which will be deployed on the already oversupplied Asia-Europe trade.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Slow demand, rising capacity drags air cargo rates to three-year low

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Jun 2, 2023, 10:18 AM EDT

Air cargo carriers are set for a bleak few months, with high inventory levels and economic issues in destination markets further dampening the traditionally slow summer season.
Air CargoTrans-PacificAsia-EuropeAir cargo forwarding

No clear link between slow-steaming, schedule reliability: analyst

Lars Jensen, CEO & Partner, Vespucci Maritime, and JOC Analyst | May 31, 2023, 12:38 PM EDT

Slow-steaming has come to the fore of late as ocean carriers seek help in absorbing overcapacity, but analyst Lars Jensen says the common refrain that slower speeds also help to improve schedule reliability doesn’t hold water.
Container shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

‘Super’ slow steaming makes a comeback as surplus capacity builds

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | May 26, 2023, 10:01 AM EDT

Ocean carriers are pulling all available capacity management levers to address a supply-demand imbalance that is set to widen significantly through 2024.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Ocean trade emerges from pandemic haze to face new realities

Peter Tirschwell | May 25, 2023, 11:23 AM EDT

Although the container shipping order book is the highest it has been in many years and demand remains subdued, the ground is shifting under the ocean market in new and unfamiliar ways, writes Peter Tirschwell.
Container shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificTrans-AtlanticAsia-EuropeTransport, trade and regulation

Forwarders locked in margin-destroying price war in post-COVID ocean market

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | May 25, 2023, 10:16 AM EDT

Price is once again on the side of shippers, with excess ocean capacity allowing them to extract lower rates from service providers.
MaritimeContainer shippingForwardingTrans-PacificTrans-AtlanticAsia-Europe

Don’t equate ‘normal’ ocean shipping market to stability: analyst

Lars Jensen, CEO & Partner, Vespucci Maritime, and JOC Analyst | May 24, 2023, 1:46 PM EDT

While indicators may point to a “normal” container shipping market in the wake of the pandemic, it is important to remember that disruptions large and small are all part of that normality, writes analyst Lars Jensen.
Container shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificTrans-AtlanticAsia-EuropePorts

PSA inks China-Europe ‘middle corridor’ deal with Kazakhstan Railways

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | May 23, 2023, 11:12 AM EDT

The Singapore-headquartered terminal operator has extended its reach deeper into the landside business, targeting the growing Central Asia rail freight market.
RailAsia-EuropeInternational rail

Hamburg Q1 volume drops as loss of Russia business bites

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | May 17, 2023, 12:26 PM EDT

Challenging economic conditions, compounded by sanctions against one of its largest trading partners, led to a sharp drop in first-quarter volumes at Europe’s third-busiest container port.
PortsContainer shippingAsia-EuropeInternational ports

HMM says will take ‘cost-cutting measures’ after plunge in Q1 financials

Keith Wallis, Special Correspondent | May 15, 2023, 9:37 AM EDT

The South Korea-based liner became the latest carrier to illustrate the post-pandemic crash in container shipping, posting a 91% drop in net profit for the first quarter.
Container linesContainer shippingTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Yang Ming’s Q1 revenue, profit plunge as global container market stalls

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | May 12, 2023, 10:38 AM EDT

The Taiwan-based carrier is the latest container shipping line to have its extreme profitability of recent years slashed by a slowdown in demand and excess capacity.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

Asia-Med container volumes hit four-year high in March: CTS

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | May 12, 2023, 10:04 AM EDT

A surge in volume from Asia to the Mediterranean in March has carriers injecting capacity into the trade to capture growing demand from southern Europe.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesAsia-Europe

Cosco Shipping confirms Q1 plunge in profits amid weakening demand

Keith Wallis, Special Correspondent | Apr 28, 2023, 2:13 PM EDT

Highlighting the fall in demand, total liftings at Cosco Shipping Lines and OOCL fell more than 10 percent in the first quarter, to 5.5 million TEU.
Container linesContainer shippingTrans-PacificAsia-Europe

European green fuel regulations place airlines on notice

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Apr 28, 2023, 11:02 AM EDT

There are concerns that the latest requirement could force the price of sustainable aviation fuel higher, which would be felt in the pockets of airline passengers and cargo shippers.
Air CargoAsia-EuropeAirportsAir cargo carriers