Weekly update COVID-19 | Week 38 | 2022
N. China: Demand in the market is slowly picking up as we head into September, however rates remain stable. The US government recently announced the suspension of 26 China-bound flights, covering four Chinese carriers, from the US in response to the Chinese government’s decision to suspend several US carrier flights over Covid-19 cases. The Chinese carriers affected are Xiamen, Air China, China Southern Airlines, and China Eastern Airlines. While the ban will apply for flights that were scheduled to depart from 9/5-9/28, the impact is mainly on passenger aircraft and has no large impacts on freight capacity ex-China.
S. China: Market demand remains soft and rate levels similar to last week. The SZX-HKG cross border situation continues to improve, however please expect 1-2 days additional transit time. Taiwan: Due to the month’s end, TPEB capacity is tighter than last week while Far East Westbound (FEWB) capacity is constrained with all direct flights sold out for the week. Overall, rates remain stable.
Korea: The market ex-Korea continues to be slack with no signs of picking up.
SE Asia: Demand ex-Malaysia continues to be soft with rates maintaining at similar levels. TPEB demand ex-Vietnam and ex-Thailand is beginning to pick up due to the month’s end and Vietnam’s public holiday approaching. Vietnam in particular is seeing space tighten quickly and rate increases on palletized cargo. FEWB demand on the other hand, remains stable.
Demand continues to be soft going into September. Capacity levels are expected to continue at the same levels throughout August & September, however, increase in demand will increase lead time. Ground handling disruptions may still affect the main European hubs. Impact of disruption is more evident on the passenger rather than cargo side of the market. Start planning in advance for the peak season in order to secure more favourable rates and uplift possibilities. Americas
A heavy travel season in and out of Canada is putting a strain on the infrastructure of major airports (YYZ and YVR) which is having a trickle-down effect on cargo operations. This is resulting in longer than normal dwell times for both import and export cargo. Air Canada has announced they are gearing up to add additional flights out of all major gateways. These flights are likely to include both passenger and freighter options.
FOR URGENT SHIPMENTS, THINK PRIORITY CARGO!
Priority is given for loading cargo flights are: Medical equipment & supplies, Perishables, Post, Baggage, Priority paid cargo, General paid cargo. To check any airline operational information click here: https://www.tact-online.org/covid-19.
Global Trucking, fuel surcharges are either being implemented or raised, and this will continue based on where fuel costs go.
Europe: ‘Turbulent’ increase in European road transport rates
NEW RECORD HEIGHTS
European road freight rates reached new record highs in the second quarter, according to the Road Freight Rate Benchmark of industry association IRU, research agency Transport Intelligence (TI) and transport platform Upply. The trio speaks of ‘turbulent developments in road freight prices’.
Waiting hours incurred by drivers has increased due to so many restrictions of staff, medical checks, and crew availability. Driver shortages exist in Europe too and in the USA, it is extreme, and reports indicate no improvements for months.
Our ETL Trucks continue to roll each Friday from Oslo (Tuesday also), Gothenburg, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Hamburg (Tuesday also) and London to Super Hub Amsterdam. As you are very aware, the invasion of Ukraine has increased fuel cost dramatically. All truckers have implemented fuel surcharges and at this point we need to as well as the cost of our ETL trucks have risen accordingly. Therefore, please begin to charge the fuel surcharge of 18% from April 04th to clients that we charge for the ETL services.
Asia → North America (TPEB)
Rates, volume, and demand continue their downward trend. The standard cyclical peak season appears to be pushed off, yet Transpacific Eastbound (TPEB) volume is projected to decline through the end of the year due to over-ordering and low demand. Despite more favourable rates, blank sailings, port congestion, and US intermodal delays continue to affect schedule reliability.
Rates: Rates remain soft in many major pockets.
Space: Open, except in a few pockets.
Capacity/Equipment: Open, except in a few pockets.
Recommendation: Book at least 2 weeks prior to cargo ready date (CRD).
Asia → Europe (FEWB)
There is no peak season and demand has been slowing down. Supply is still relatively tight due to the large amount of blank sailings, vessel sliding, and port omissions. The port congestion in Europe, particularly Hamburg and Rotterdam, has reached critical levels causing further delays and late return of vessels to Asia. There are indications of power cuts in Ningbo (Zhejiang province) which would affect production output but there is still no official information available.
Rates: There is continued rate pressure on spot rates due to lower demand.
Capacity/Equipment: Space is available but it is impacted by additional blank sailings and delays due to the port congestion in Europe.
Recommendation: Allow flexibility when planning your shipments due to anticipated congestion and delays.
Europe → North America (TAWB)
In a clear reversal of trends, U.S. East Coast (USEC) ports are now handling more cargo than the U.S. West Coast (USWC) ports. Historically USWC handles 40% more volume than USEC but at the moment we are seeing the demand shifting and this is also the cause for the current congestion in some ports (Savannah, Newark, Houston).
Rates: Stable at high levels. No sign of steep rate decline in the near future. Some drop on FAK levels out of Turkey as some capacity is freeing up.
Space: Still very tight on the USEC with some space open for direct routing to the USWC.
Capacity/Equipment: Equipment availability remains the biggest challenge for all EU origins, particularly in the Mediterranean region. Low empty stacks at inland depots, prioritize pick up from the Port of Loading.
Recommendation: Book 4 or more weeks prior to CRD. Request premium service for higher reliability and no-roll.
Indian Subcontinent → North America
The Indian Subcontinent market remains strong even as rates begin to creep lower—carriers continue to be bullish on this trade lane.
Rates: Rate changes occurring with more velocity across the market. U.S. West Coast (USWC) being the most affected where rates are coming closer to TPEB levels.
Capacity/Space: Space is available across most lanes at standard (non-premium) rates. Decreases in port congestion around the world is effectively increasing capacity as ships are experiencing less delays for shorter periods.
Equipment: Rising equipment deficits are being reported across India, particularly in smaller ports and inland container depots (ICD).
Recommendation: Take advantage of declining rates.
North America → Asia
U.S. East Coast (USEC) ports continue to see challenges with vessel congestion and some vessel strings still omitting Charleston and Savannah entirely. Erratic vessel schedules continue to cause significant challenges with changes in posted earliest return dates and vessel cut-offs at the port. For USWC, arrivals and available capacity for LA is generally open whereas Oakland and Seattle are more fluid.
Rates: No GRI’s announced for September.
Capacity/Equipment: Deficits on containers and chassis continue to plague Inland Port Intermodal (IPI) origins. Chicago has been the most reliable. Availability for standard equipment has not been an issue for most ports. Capacity from the US Southeast to India remains constrained due to continuing port omissions for Charleston and Savannah. Overall capacity for India ports requiring a transhipment service remains very tight from both the USEC and USWC.
Recommendation: Please place bookings 4 weeks prior to vessel Estimated Time of Departure (ETD).
North America → Europe
Congestion issues persist in Europe but are reported to be improving. Hamburg is experiencing the most significant congestion at present. The port of Houston continues to experience significant capacity constraints due to schedule delays and port congestion with one service still reduced running from weekly to biweekly. USWC service to Europe remains extremely tight due to void sailings and skipped ports caused by systematic delays. USWC coverage for Mediterranean ports now has reduced capacity due to one string being phased out. All carriers continue their booking stop for shipments to Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus.
Rates: No further GRI announcements for September or October.
Capacity/Equipment: USEC service to Northern Europe has capacity available however Savannah has irregular challenges due to it being omitted on certain vessel strings. Vessel capacity from the port of Houston has been very tight due to a significant increase in demand and delayed vessels. Deficits are still plaguing many IPI origins. Availability for standard equipment at ports has not been an issue, but special equipment is hard to come by.
Recommendation: Please place bookings 3 to 4 weeks in advance for East Coast/Gulf sailings and 6 weeks for Pacific. Shipping by full container is more reliable than shipping via Loose Container Loads.
On Board Services / Port Information
Our Last mile delivery service remains in tack in most global ports. It may take a bit longer but as in Dubai and Amsterdam congestion is causing delays by handling staff to hand over the cargo. Delays of 1-3 days. Port congestion in China is delaying many vessels for several weeks! We suggest that you use this service for added control especially in these tough times. Please consult this link for port service listings: https://www.nepia.com/industry-news/coronavirus-outbreak-impact-on-shipping/ (Credit to The North Club)
We would like to provide you with a brief update on the latest market conditions out of Amsterdam key destinations. Please note both AMS and RTM offices will be closed on the following dates: 26-12-2022, Monday, Boxing Day.
Amsterdam (AMS): As we are currently in the middle of the summer holidays ground handling agents in Amsterdam are struggling with high demand in the passenger luggage department while same time being short staffed on both cargo and passenger luggage side.
Frankfurt (FRA): As per Lufthansa report on the current situation in Frankfurt: The entire aviation industry, especially in Europe, is currently suffering from bottlenecks and staff shortages. This primarily affects airports, ground handling services, air traffic control and consequently airlines. This is leading to an extraordinary reduction in staffing levels at our handling partners in Frankfurt, which is severely disrupting our operations during this phase. We will actively try to avoid using any routing via Frankfurt until further notice.
Singapore (SIN): The situation to Singapore does not seem to improve at the moment and in the near future. In most cases we do have the possibility to uplift on next day direct flights although often times it will be for express rates. In general, the costs for airfreight to Singapore seems to have increased on all levels.
Shanghai (PVG): Currently the capacity situation to Shanghai seems to be improved. We can often book next day uplift on either CZ/CK direct flight.
Houston (IAH): We are pleased to announce KLM has activated the day 7 allotment into Houston on KL661. We can now offer a steady rate and service since this’ll be booked on the Cohesion product. Same as used for the day 6 Singapore allotment. Please try to get any shipment to MT USA planned on this console.
Seoul/Pusan (ICN/PUS): Please note, due to the Ukraine conflict many flights have been cancelled or re-routed to this region of Asia. Most common carriers used have limited capacity available on flights of the upcoming weeks. We do see a slight improvement for smaller volumes on OZ. Most often we can book same week uplifts.
Qingdao/Tianjin (TAO/TSN): OZ has changed their flight schedule from 4 flights a week to 1 flight a week ex-ICN due to low demand. KE and NH still offer same schedules as usual although their rates have increased significantly.
Osaka/Tokyo (KIX/NRT): Same conditions as to Seoul and Pusan. Many cancelled or rerouted flights.
Dubai (DXB): The situation to Dubai seems to be improved. Rates have settled down and capacity looks fine in the upcoming few weeks.
Airfreight Export: We are no longer facing any congestion situation like earlier this year and has been cleared. We are also no longer facing missed cut off for Air Export shipments due to long waiting lines for our drivers.
Air Import: airfreight is going well. No major delays at the ground handlers. Only Y8 (prefix 871) has often 24 to 48 hours delay at the ground handler, suggest not to use that airline from China.
Global Trucking: Fuel surcharges still high and rising again. Shortage of trucks and drivers which results in higher prices and less availability.
‘Turbulent’ increase in European road transport rates – NEW RECORD HEIGHTS
European road freight rates reached new record highs in the second quarter, according to the Road Freight Rate Benchmark of industry association IRU, research agency Transport Intelligence (TI) and transport platform Upply. The trio speaks of ‘turbulent developments in road freight prices’.
Ocean Import ex Netherlands:
At the moment there is still quite a bit of congestion for the import shipments from FE & US, prices are being brought down by price busters who cannot give a space guarantee, so that the situation does not really improve. The backlog pile only gets bigger. Our customers choose to pay a little more, so that the shipments do not have to wait 3 months or have to join the back of the queue, but come to Rotterdam with a reasonable transit time. So far there is no prospect of improvement.
Ocean export ex Netherlands:
• USA remains heavily affected by port and berth congestion, especially the Gulf. In addition, it is difficult to get hauliers for DAP / DDP deliveries
• Canada has to deal with congestion inland on carriage due to various modalities possible from discharge port Montreal and then further via Rail or All Motor
• South America is subject to delays on the origin side due to Vessel Swaps and the ongoing port/berth congestion introduced by various Alliances.
• South Africa (Main Ports) are also subject to the ongoing port/berth congestion on the origin side but less Vessel Swaps
• Asia/Far East is currently recovering from the aftermath COVID-19, which means that the main T/S ports are still struggling with the backlog of containers intra/transit to final destinations including Oceania.
• Middle East (+ North Africa) main ports are currently selectively offered by various shipping companies. There are various reasons for this (e.g.: Intro ACID regulations/Congestion Main ports/Offering different alternative ports of discharge per shipping company)
All in all, turbulent times in ocean export. First COVID-19 then the SUEZ Channel and now the ongoing war RU/UA… One could not predict improvement in the shorter term.
Trucking ex Netherlands: Fuel surcharges still at all-time high. Shortage of trucks and drivers which results in higher prices and less availability.
Allow 4-6 weeks extra as to when the cargo is needed at destination.
The number of newly infected persons in Germany is at its highest level since the outbreak of the pandemic, with more than 37,000 within one day, but so far are no new restrictions and no new lockdown in sight. At this stage, our office is fully operational.
AIRFREIGHT: Shanghai is still very difficult Very expensive, and space is also not available. It will take some time until that has calmed down. In general, available Flight capacities are very limited and partly booked out far in advance.
SEAFREIGHT: There are still significant delays in arrivals and departures. The biggest problems now are the lack of equipment and the restrictions on the delivery of containers (max. 48-72 hours before departure), as all container terminals are still overcrowded due to delayed ships.
TRUCKING: Normal. No problems/delays.
IMPORT: Air cargo import can be handled without any obstacles or delays, but we are facing significant problems with air freight imports via Frankfurt airport.
Due to the high import volume and changes in the IT system, huge backlogs cause delays in transit of import shipments to Hamburg.
For Sea freight there are significant delays in the arrival of containers due to late departures at shipping ports.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Normal. No problems/delays.
All Operations are normal. Logistics, transports and main necessary production and business lines will stay on work as normal in this period.
IMPORT: Normal. No problems/delays.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Normal. No problems/delays.
Greece lockdown lifted. All services and facilities are working. For our branch, we are 100% back in office (government issued statement for unvaccinated employees to provide weekly rapid test results /penalties for noncompliance). Warehouse is on normal staff working.
AIRFREIGHT: We’re still facing serious backlog & congestion for most key destinations globally and rates are increasing day by day (over-peaking especially for the past 2 weeks).
SEAFREIGHT: No major problems on Export / import, But – No stabile rates & congestion issues. Delays on unstuffing LCL shipments.
TRUCKING: No delays for the time being but facing capacity issues for trucking to EU / Turkey. Working on more frequent stabile routings, especially to NL/DE/TK.
IMPORT: Import handling for Air is functioning normally (only DHL handler at airport has restriction on pick up timeframe 11:00-16:00 our LT every working day).
ONBOARD: No restrictions or COVID related delays to go onboard.
Spain / Gibraltar
AIRFREIGHT: Airports are more congested and all of them invoice us a surcharge for COVID when collecting any cargo from their warehouse. Regarding Export, fewer flights are available and air rates have increased for some destinations.
SEAFREIGHT: Normal. No problems/delays.
TRUCKING: Trucking working as usual.
IMPORT: Longer waiting time due to customs working from home and therefore, slowing the process.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: There are some terminals where we can have limited access to vessel, hence in such case POD cannot be obtained
As at today, our Osaka office & Warehouse are fully functioning for 100%.
AIRFREIGHT: We are facing serious backlog & congestion for ALL DESTINATIONS. Most of the Airlines still working from home and only reply by email or Fax for providing schedule and rate, hence it would take very long time. We really appreciate your kind understanding and patience.
Average Transit Time for TC1/2/3
TC1 (North America) : 5-7 days
TC1 (South America) : 5-7 days
TC2 (Middle East) : 4-5 days
TC2 (Europe) : 4-5 days
TC2 (Africa) : 5-7 days
TC3 (Singapore) : 3-4 days
TC3 (Shanghai) : 3-4 days
TC3 (Oceania) : 5-7 days
TC3 (Others) : 3-4 days
SEAFREIGHT: We are facing serious short on space for USA/EU destinations & heavy delay on all destinations on both FCL and LCL. Please ensure to activate your Sea freight shipment as early as possible without enough time frame.
TRUCKING: Trucking is working normal.
IMPORT: Import handling for Airfreight/Sea freight is working normal.
ONBORD DELIVERIES: Onboard delivery in Japan is working normal.
Typhoon HINNAMNOR will give a direct impact on Busan area from this evening in predicate to pass through Busan tomorrow: https://www.donga.com/en/article/all/20220903/3613183/1
For safety reasons as recommended by the government, today’s M/I cut-off has been moved up to 2PM in KR time, and going to close the Busan warehouse tomorrow on 6th Sep. All cargoes that need to be brought to Incheon Airport tomorrow and the day after tomorrow will be transported to Incheon warehouse in advance today. Also, we would like to inform you that the cut-off today cannot be extended as all staffs in Busan are due to leave the site at 3 pm in KR time. Until now, the flight schedule planned at Incheon airport tomorrow is said to be able to depart and arrive as scheduled. We will keep monitoring the situation, if there are any changes, each PIC will share the news with you immediately.
Although the number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 in increasing, the situation is not significantly affecting the business area in Korea. Instead, this week’s issue is likely to be a typhoon HINNAMNOR. Please refer to the latest update this morning from my OPS team in Korea as below.
AIRFREIGHT: For safety reasons as recommended by the government, today’s M/I cut-off has been moved up to 2PM in KR time, and going to close the Busan warehouse tomorrow on 6th Sep.
All cargoes that need to be brought to Incheon Airport tomorrow and the day after tomorrow will be transported to Incheon warehouse in advance today. Also, we would like to inform you that the cut-off today cannot be extended as all staffs in Busan are due to leave the site at 3 pm in KR time. Until now, the flight schedule planned at Incheon airport tomorrow is said to be able to depart and arrive as scheduled. We will keep monitoring the situation, if there are any changes, each PIC will share the news with you immediately.
SEAFREIGHT / TRUCKING / IMPORT / ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Overall, there’s no significant impact of the Covid-19. Instead, now we faced another issue for strong typhoon in Korea this week. A super strong typhoon is expected to come in Korea from this afternoon(05 September) to 06 September. So all the on board delivery and inland trucking are blocked. In addition our warehouse located in Busan area are to be closed during this period. This morning, our operation team do our best to arrange delivery in advance to minimize any further impact from typhoon.
Our warehouse and office are fully functioning for 100%.
National holiday: Oct 1st-7th
Due to typhoon, vessel schedule got delayed and some flights cancelled without notice.
Now the epidemic has broken out in many places in China, which will affect transportation and onboard delivery, there are too many uncertainty. We will keep you informed of any shipment arrangement and do our utmost for any job.
AIRFREIGHT: We can arrange airfreight to most airports. Almost all airlines resumed, air-freight rate and space is stable this stage.
SEAFREIGHT: We can arrange sea freight to most port, sea-freight rate and space is stable this stage. Recently departure delay is around 3 days, pls grant more time for sea-freight exporting.
TRUCKING: Trucking almost resumes to normal, but 48 hours covid testing report is still required for drivers at most places, which takes longer time and extra charges.
IMPORT: We arrange customs clearance and delivery at almost all China ports. Terminal ground handling and release almost resumes to normal.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: On Board deliveries are functioning for most ports. Due to contactless delivery, many times we could not get POD from vessel, need client help to get POD from vessel. Some ports will charge covid prevention fee, we will charge at actual occur.
We are functioning our office with 100 % strength.
AIRFREIGHT: Flights space availability is getting gradually better, and rates are also getting a little cheaper but still higher side than Normal time specially for Europe & US.
SEAFREIGHT: Sea Freight functioning with good success. Inventory of containers are also limited and rates for Europe and Far East sectors has increased.
TRUCKING: Trucking is working normal.
IMPORT: Export/Import is functioning Normal at Airport and Sea ports.
ONBOARD DELIVIRIES: All imports for on board deliveries are functioning as normal and going on with good success with some restrictions/guidelines.
AIRFREIGHT: Airfreight shipments could be cleared and delivered onboard on a timely manner. We need copies of AWB, invoice and Packing list 2 working days before shipment arrival.
SEAFREIGHT: Due to current limitations because of Covid 19, we need minimum 4 working days to clear Sea freight shipments and arrange onboard delivery. Copies of BL, invoice and PL required well in advance (minimum 3-4 working days before shipment arrival).
TRUCKING: No delays observed, trucking functions are normal.
IMPORT: Limited staff at all key points. Hence, send us Shipping documents for well in advance (as mentioned above).
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Onboard delivery in Sri Lanka is functioning normal. However, outsiders are not allowed to board ships. Hence, PODs and other documents will be sent onboard together with shipment boxes to get ships stamp & signature.
UAE - Dubai
AIRFREIGHT: All terminals are working with full capacity, but still DNATA have only 24 hrs free storage.
SEAFREIGHT: Terminals are in function as normal.
TRUCKING: All ports are open as normal, need green pass for access.
IMPORT: Operates as usual.
ONBOARD: Restrictions are lifted.
Further to the announcement by the Government on 24 Aug’22, mask is no longer required except on public transport and in healthcare facilities. However, some vendors and shipyards are still required to wear mask for pick-up or delivery. Our Office & Warehouse are 75% manned.
AIRFREIGHT: Rates are still high and are subject to change according to supply & demand and last min cancellation of flights.
SEAFREIGHT: Most of the outbound shipments are fully booked for major ports. Rates increased and uncertainty of sailing schedules. Penalty might be imposed for any cancellation. Sea Import – Longer Clearance waiting time from current 5 – 7 days to 7 – 10 days and CFS charges increased.
TRUCKING: Situation improved.
Trucking Singapore / Malaysia: PCR and ART test is no longer required. Driver & cargo hands – must be fully vaccinated (2 jabs) and with surgical mask.
Important – Please ENSURE NO AMENDMENT of Cargo Import Permit once approved. Any amendments will definitely result in delay and missed delivery.
IMPORT: Air Import handling is functioning normal. Sea Import handling is taking longer time due to Port Congestion and CFS Charges are increased.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Delivery onboard at Container Port / Jurong Port / Anchorage – Boarding Officer is prohibited to go onboard. MUST conduct CONTACTLESS CARGO OPERATIONS.
Landed Spares – allowed to land.
Delivery to Shipyard – Driver / Cargo Hand must be fully vaccinated (2 jabs). Mandatory to wear surgical face mask instead of N95.
IMPORTANT NOTE: ALL ARRANGEMENTS SUBJECT TO CHANGE / APPROVE BY MPA (MARITIME AND PORT OF AUTHORITY OF SINGAPORE) FROM TIME TO TIME
Currently issues we have experienced lately is:
1.Severe berthing delays at all South African Ports due to inclement weather conditions which is further compounded by ageing equipment.
2.Shortage of air cargo capacity and airlines upselling on rates quoted.
PLZ – back to normal.
CPT / SLD – not affected.
Vessels berthing at Richard’s Bay will likely be delayed.
AIRFREIGHT: Severe delays (4-7 hours) experienced when collecting airfreight imports at JNB due to the high volume of cargo being handled for the entire country.
SEAFREIGHT: All ports operating as normal, but delays can be expected as the backlog is cleared.
TRUCKING: Trucking between JNB>>>DUR now in operation. Expect delays due to backlog.
BORDERS: Land borders are open but severe delays experienced due to insufficient health authorities processing COVID-19 testing.
IMPORT: Long handling times for clearance due to shift working/rotation, corona/diseases/quarantine/limited staff at airlines/airports/ports.
ONBORD DELIVERIES: Slight delays due to corona testing but mostly back to normal. Delivery personnel not allowed on board the vessel.
As at today, our Egypt office & Warehouse are fully functioning for 100%.
AIRFREIGHT: Airfreight is functional normal .no backlogs or delays
SEAFREIGHT: Same, e.g. port congestions, corona diseases/quarantine/limited staff at terminals. Sea freight works normal. quarantine checks happen as precautions measures without any limitations in staffing or terminals
TRUCKING: Trucking is working normal with no delays or limitations
IMPORT: Import handling for Air is functioning normal, no limitations or restrictions in staff or terminals.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Onboard delivery in Egypt is functioning normal. onboard delivery occurs while staff is following daily healthy. Precautionary measures come into effect.
Please contact us for any specific arrangement and we will look for the best solution. We will continue to advise you as we see critical events. Thank you for your business and your trust.
APAC: AUSTRALIA (AU)
AU offices remain open and operational 100% with limited Covid restrictions currently in place.
AIRFREIGHT: Import airfreight remains restricted due to flight limitations and airline backlogs coming into AU.
SEAFREIGHT: Delays are being experienced due to congestion through transhipment hubs to AU, plus local AU ports becoming congested with further unpack/handling delays.
TRUCKING: AU internal transfer delays are further being experienced due to cross border checks plus increased volumes causing added handling delays.
IMPORT: Customs clearances going through with minimal delays currently. Some handling delays at terminals due to congestion.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Deliveries to vessels still operating normally, but subject to port/berthing changes and added time is recommended for import handling to vessels.
USA - Houston
Covid is basically a non-issue anymore. There are no more restrictions for the most part. There are still some in some parts of the country, but local municipalities decide their recommendations on this. Most of the issues we are facing now are economic related. Unstable fuel and trucking prices, inflation, supply chain backlogs etc. A lot of it due to the effects of Covid over the last two years, plus conflicts overseas, etc.
AIRFREIGHT: High demand on Airfreight causing all airlines filling up the space quickly. Can go less than an hour and we confirm a shipment and the booking we wanted the space is already gone. Air freight lift is showing some back logs to selected destination such as South America. Asia and Europe
COURIER SHIPMENTS: Be aware that DHL/UPS/TNT/FEDEX has had HUGE trouble lately with HIGH DEMAND and they have not had enough employees and trucks to keep up with their volume on the domestic movements. SO HUGE DELAYS ON SOME SHIPMENTS.
SEAFREIGHT: To keep you better informed of the current operational situation occurring in the U.S., we would like to provide you with the following updates.
Vessels continue to be pushed further off the proforma schedule causing blank sailings, and the continuous increase of import volume within the past two years has affected operations in almost all areas of the country, creating delays. Outlook for this year shows the increase of import volumes through the summer, caused by the increasing demand of products driven by expected rising prices, these situations may worsen congestion and storage capacity. Even with lockdowns ending in Shanghai, the international supply chain will be impacted until summer, affecting the service, especially for the US West Coast. Limited trucking capacity and vessel delays are still impacting the service in Shanghai.
The current events in Ukraine is impacting vessel routing, schedules, ports, and rails, especially in Eastern Europe, aggravating delays and congestion. The situation of severely congested ports in New Zealand and Australia is affecting vessel routings and schedules from US West Coast. With all of the recently mentioned events, there is a high number of container vessels currently congested at different ports around the world, affecting logistics services overall. Container availability in the USA is tight in the areas of the South Atlantic Coast and Gulf Coast.
Terminals Updates: Due to increased volume and labour shortage, most terminals are experiencing congestion issues, including Los Angeles/Long Beach, Savannah, Charleston, Miami, Houston, and Seattle. Each month, high cargo volumes continue to enter the U.S., with most North American ports facing berthing congestion. Some carriers are omitting ports and altering schedules for services into US East Coast due to high congestion and delays.
U.S. East Coast
New York/New Jersey: Vessel wait time up to 3 days due to high import volume and severe port congestion, with an average of 14 vessels a day, the highest number since the COVID-19 pandemic started, delaying the overall service. Congestion is mainly due to almost 12% of increase in import volume during the first quarter of the year compared to the same period of 2021. Also, the rising movement of empty containers has contributed to slow down operations; about 120 thousand empty boxes are clogging the yard, a figure that is double the usual number.
Norfolk: Vessel waiting time is up to 2 days due to high import volume, berth congestion, annual terminal inspection, and construction.
Savannah: Vessel wait time is up to 8 days due to high import volume and port congestion.
Miami: Vessel wait time is up to 4 days due to high import volume and bad weather.
U.S. West Coast
Long Beach: Vessel waiting time is up to 17 days due to high import dwell and labour shortages.
Los Angeles: Vessel waiting time is up to 15 days due to yard congestion, high import dwell, and labour shortages.
Seattle: 2-day vessel wait time due to high import volume and labour shortages. Containers can sit for up to 2 weeks in a closed area at the terminal, depending on the congestion at each terminal, until truckers can pick them up.
Oakland: up to 7 days of waiting time for containers from Asia and 10 days from Germany due to high import volume, labour shortages, and one berth down. 90% of yard capacity is being used. Ships looking to berth in Oakland will now wait offshore, which will delay operations. The backlog is caused mainly due to a massive number of empty containers in terminals waiting to be returned to Asia.
U.S. Gulf Coast
Houston: Waiting time is up to 10 days due to high import volume, labour shortage, and port congestion.
Rail Terminal Updates: Increased terminal dwell and labour shortage are the main challenges affecting rail services.
USA: Rail Strike Update: Unfortunately, as class 1 Railroads in the United States have not yet reached an agreement with all remaining unions, there is the potential for a strike or lockout as early as 12:01 am on September 16, when the final scheduled cooling-off period expires. Vanguard anticipates this will be restricting movement of cargo in general, and most specifically, hazardous shipments will be impacted. Please refer to the following updates and commodity list of rail security-sensitive material as we have received them. We will keep updating any further details in a timely manner.
On Monday, September 12, Union Pacific will begin to secure hazardous and other security-sensitive materials on our property for the safety of our customers, employees, and communities we serve. In addition, we will embargo new shipments of hazardous commodities until those shipments can safely arrive at their destination. This is a proactive measure we are taking ahead of any potential work stoppages due to an impasse in labour negotiations.
NS must take steps to ensure we can shut down operations safely if a strike occurs and be positioned to restart quickly when operations resume. Most importantly, we must ensure that no hazardous material or freight that requires special security is left on an unattended train out on the network in the event of a sudden strike. To prevent this, we must begin issuing embargoes for certain types of shipments beginning today, which includes rail security-sensitive material (RSSM) and certain time-sensitive shipments outlined in the embargo.
Due to the possibility of an interruption of service when the cooling-off period expires on September 16, we will begin to take steps to manage and secure the shipments of hazardous and security-sensitive materials as early as Monday, September 12.
CN rail has placed an embargo on all hazardous and over-dimensional loads. CN is shutting down the movement of this specialized cargo in anticipation of the strike.
BNSF & UP/LAX/LGB: There is severe congestion. Limited gate capacity, restrictions, rail car shortages, and limited reservations continue, causing increased delays on import rail units. There is limited allocation currently. In Los Angeles, containers wait an average of almost 16 days before being picked up.
Chicago Rail Ramp: The rail facilities in Chicago are experiencing severe congestion due to dwelling containers and chassis shortages. There are gate restrictions and lane suspensions, causing extended delays in pick-ups and deliveries. The rails continue to monitor in-gates with allocation or reservations.
CSX Bedford Park: Limiting reservations for in gate to rail.
NY/NJ: Chassis shortage includes rail ramps due to the high increase in import volume.
Philadelphia: Severe chassis shortages in the Philadelphia area. Extended delays in pick-ups, deliveries, and drayage.
Charleston: Lack of chassis causing extended delays in pick-ups, deliveries, and drayage over to rail facilities.
Savannah: Continued congestion and delays at the local ramps. Shortage of chassis and equipment continues to affect operations.
Jacksonville and Miami: The shortage of equipment in Florida has carriers struggling to keep the service due to a slower turnover of import containers coming into the area. Most loads have been delayed an average of one to two weeks. Equipment shortages are resulting in pick-up delays.
Seattle: Congestion due to increased dwell for Import rail cargo. Up to 10 days delay for cargo going to Chicago. Most truckers are booked 2 weeks or more in advance with limited trucker capacity. Local terminals are extremely congested, all import containers are moved to a closed area for about 6 weeks. Transit time from Japan which is the closest port to the Pacific Northwest, is around 62 days.
Houston/Dallas: There is a severe chassis shortage and ongoing congestion in the area. Finding truckers has become a challenge as they are booked for 2-3 weeks in advance. Chassis issues are challenging in all regions in the U.S. This is due to the division of the intermodal system, the severity of the Covid 19 pandemic, and the lack of additional capacity at different levels of the supply chain.
Equipment Availability: Shortage of container equipment for Hazardous cargo in Houston is an additional issue that affects operations in the Gulf Coast, especially for freight moving to Los Angeles. There are continuous chassis shortages in Los Angeles/Long Beach, New York, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Columbus, Cleveland, Chicago, Memphis, Atlanta, Nashville, and Louisville. Equipment availability remains an issue at Atlanta, Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Detroit, Kansas City, Minneapolis, Memphis, Nashville, Omaha, St. Louis, South Florida, and Seattle.
TRUCKING: HUGE delays with LTL and same with Courier shipments, once they have processed customs they now go a lot on their domestic trucks and causes huge delays. Hazmat Trucking fee went up by 37 %,Fuel Surcharge for Onboard and trucking rates increased as much as 37% throughout USA. Lastly, price of lumber is also going up like crazy, so cost for pallets will also for the time be increased to about 10-25 USD pr reg pallets. All due to supply chain issues. Hot shot trucking has been running pretty normal until lately, also here now due to extreme high demand all over. Seeing difficulties getting 18 wheelers and also Hazmat drivers and trucks and availability and rates are going up like crazy on certain trucks and lanes these days, especially out of town and interstate runs
US Import/Export Trucking: Market Trends
Congestion continues at the Montreal and Toronto terminals and inland ramps. The volume coming into Toronto continues to surge, while the number of drivers continues to decrease, which translates into less drivers handling more volume and creating the previously mentioned congestion. On a YTD basis, the total truck visits to the rails has declined by almost 20% percent. Chassis shortages continue to persist, notably now in Memphis (95% utilization, 10+ day street dwell time) and in LA (9.5 day street dwell for 40’). East coast and gulf congestion will continue through July, with vessels at anchor in New York, Norfolk, and Savannah with 36 ships at the end of June awaiting berths with wait times in the 7-10 day range. Los Angeles/Long Beach (LA/LB) conditions have improved with only 3 ships at anchor at the end of June, and port dwells down to less than 5 days. Rail dwells continue to be elevated. Highway Diesel fuel prices remain at record highs.
US Domestic Trucking: Market Trends
The domestic FTL market has been suffering from the inventory glut with the highest inventory/sales ratios in history, current global inflation, record high diesel fuel prices, and most recently the sharp drop in container imports. Diesel prices remain at record highs, most recently. Fuel continues to be a much more taxing operating expense for fleets both on loaded and empty miles—It also increases contract rates which are primarily on FSC schedules.
IMPORT: Airfreight: Airlines have longer than normal waiting times for collection due to short staff and reduced opening hours. Some airlines (AA, ANA, BA, JL) are no longer open on the weekend so not possible to pick up cargo until Monday with weekend arrivals if needed. KLM is closed on Sunday’s and close earlier on Saturday (1600) so difficult to get anything from KLM on weekend if Sat arrival. Customs: Longer processing times for CASR due to short staff / staff rotation – currently working every other day. Several airlines and handling partners have again increased their rates.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Everything is still pretty much going as normal with those. Only can note that New Orleans is slowly getting going again. Still some congestions and delays with the vessels getting in, but we can operate deliveries there. Our agent is operating and doing deliveries and the airport warehouse are now opening back up again to pick up cargo.
** National Holiday Notice – November 15th (Monday) “Proclamation of the Republic” **
** Local Holiday Notice (Santos, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro) – November 20th (Saturday) “Consciousness Day” **
Airfreights: can be cleared and delivered and depending of the region, spare parts can be forward directly to destination, without pass to GRU, however, the best option nowadays is being attended via GRU in São Paulo and from there continue by truck to the delivery Ports.
SEAFREIGHT: So far, no restrictions.
TRUCKING: TRUCK DRIVERS STRIKE – At the moment the main highways in Brazil are not blocked, also considering that Government increased the security to avoid it.
At Santos port, the transportation of empty containers between Santos x Guarujá (internal Haulage) are being totally affected due to lack of trucks. The empty return to the marine terminals and depots is reduced considerably.
Regarding laden containers, the delivery of export units is being performed under Military Police escort via convoy operation, to avoid blockage and not put in risk the safety of others truck drivers. The import units are being kept at marine terminals and there are plans to have it collected with escort too, once marine terminals might face issues with yard occupation soon.
Operations of Solid Bulk and other cargoes are also being direct affected due to lack of trucks. The Agencies Union as well as Marine Port Operators Syndicate are working to push authorities to provide security for the drivers to enter the port area, since the manifestants are based on the port entrance area to intimidate the ones who are still working. The main reason for the strike is the increases of diesel/fuel, which had already 8 adjustments along the current year. Also, some past demands as freight levels plan, tolls costs reductions among others are part of the requirements.
The Government offered an assistance value of BRL 400,00 per month, which as per Truck Driver’s Union are not enough. There are some rumors that strike movements will be reduced gradually as from now considering that, not working, the independent drivers can’t guarantee their revenues. Security level (ISPS Code) of BRSSZ/Santos port is being elevated from level I to level II as from Nov 01st 00h01 /2021.
It means that marine terminals and others port facilities must to apply additional security measures. On the notice, the Authorities determined that monitoring via camera must be increased, and also give authorization for Military Police of State to have free access at port. Important to inform that vessels at port also need to take necessary measures on board looking to comply with that.
IMPORT: No impact on clearance activities. Airfreight we require 3 working days (depend of location) and sea freight about 5 days.
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: No restrictions.
All ok so far. No strikes, no curfew, airlines, ports and transport companies are working as usual. We are releasing during weekends, but we can experience some delays in availability of cargo, as all in subject to WH airline personnel. (on weekends the workforce its always reduced)
Just to keep in mind:
AIRFREIGHT IMPORTS: Kindly note that we will not be able of releasing cargos during weekends (only until Saturdays 0800hrs to 1200hrs). So, we kindly request to book your cargoes with arrival weekdays. Otherwise we will not be able to release and deliver.
Below Airlines warehouse working schedule for releases:
Monday to Friday: 0800hrs to 1600hrs
Saturday: 0800hrs – 1200hrs
Monday to Friday: 2130hrs to 2300hrs
Saturday: 1930hrs – 2130hrs
Sunday: 1930hrs – 2130hrs
ONBOARD DELIVERIES: Clearance/on board delivery running at 1-3 working days (weekdays) Please send pre-alerts arriving weekdays.