The worst period of global supply chain disruption has passed: Shipping Association

The MSC Regulus container ship operated by Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) (left), the Monte Verde container ship operated by Hamburg Sud (middle), and the OOCL German container ship operated by OOCL Container Lines Ltd. docked in June 2021 On Thursday, 24th, Port of Felixstowe Ltd., a subsidiary of CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd., was in Felixstowe, UK.

Chris Ratcliffe | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The chairman of the Shipping Association said that the worst period of the global supply chain has passed, but not all the problems faced by the shipping industry have disappeared.

“There may still be volatility, but in general, I think the worst is over,” Esben Poulsson, chairman of the International Chamber of Shipping, told CNBC. “Squawk Box Asia” Tuesday.

Poulsson explained that the retailer has already made “a large number” of reservations, which should help alleviate the shortage of goods. In addition, new container ships are being built and the existing capacity will be increased in the next 24 to 36 months, he said.

After a decline in the first few months of the Covid-19 pandemic, global trade rebounded strongly.

As shipping companies, logistics providers, and ports struggle to keep up with the increase in trade, freight rates have soared, and the new crown pneumonia epidemic in parts of Asia made a comeback earlier this year, threatening the supply of goods from electronics and auto parts to coffee and clothing. .

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this World Container Index compiled by DrewryA maritime research and consulting company said that compared with a week ago, global freight rates in the week of November 18 fell slightly by 0.5% to US$9,146 per 40-foot container. But interest rates are still 238% higher than the same period last year.

Difficulty in crew changes

When many countries/regions require travelers to be fully vaccinated, seafarers’ limited access to Covid vaccines makes this situation worse.

Poulsson said that more seafarers have been vaccinated, which provides “some improvement” to the situation. A report from the non-profit organization Global Maritime Forum stated that Proportion of seafarers vaccinated From 31% in October to 41% this month.

But “this problem has not disappeared,” Poulsson said.He explained that his organization has been urging governments Designation of seafarers as “critical workers” So that more vaccinations can be given priority-but many countries have failed to do so.

“Although there have been some changes and some improvements, the problem has not disappeared and will not disappear until the government has properly fulfilled its obligations,” he said.

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