Oceanworks Logistics Insights: Q1, 2023
IS THERE A BOTTOM?
INCREASED CAPACITY AND SLOWING DEMAND
- The idled containership fleet has breached the 1 million TEU capacity milestone and expected to jump higher as services are being prepared to be shut off.
- U.S. container imports are generally slowing with the port of Long Beach/Los Angeles handling 9% fewer containers in December 2022 than in December 2021 (source: https://www.portoflosangeles.org/business/statistics/container-statistics)
- However, volatility in the market is gone, suggesting a new short term status quo has been reached.
- Concerns about shipping lines drastically cutting capacities have been at least partially alleviated as transit times have even improved slightly over the last couple of months.
- Services to secondary ports will continue to be limited as shipping lines shift more assets to major lanes.
- Sweeper ships and more balanced trade have all but resolved the issue with empty containers piling up at major US ports.
- Port operations in Asia, Europe and N. America seem to be normal, with the negative effects of strikes in the UK and Covid lockdowns in China gradually fading away.