Asia – market update

The Asia market in general is deteriorating. 

  • continuing high consumer demand
  • lack of vessel space
  • limited availability of empty containers
  • continuing congestion at both ports and container depots

are all factors contributing to a difficult shipping environment. What we are also experiencing is because of the above the actual number of ship calls in a month are reducing. This has the affect of reducing overall market capacity, causing further frustration and increasing back log volumes. 

Ship Lines are continuing to release empty containers based on revenue. In other words the higher yielding trade lanes (USA / Europe) are commanding the lions share of available empty containers for export.  
Volume demand is exceeding capacity. All main ports have some degree of congestion. Singapore, Port Klang and Tanjung Pelepas are in a back log and roll pool situation with most ship lines having between 600 and 2,000 TEU containers to move to reduce back logs. 

The current environment is not expected to improve 2021. It may become worse. 


Ocean Network Express (ONE Line) has issued notice of a delay for their vessel m/v NYK Furano V.74. A crew member has tested positive for COVID-19. The vessel has been instructed to quarantine in Hong Kong for 14-days. 
This is a concerning development – if ship crews become infected more frequently this will further negatively impact global shipping as potentially ships around the world enter quarantine. 

Another increasing concern is perhaps best described as “vessel slippage” resulting in the reduction of much needed market capacity. Because of port congestion, vessels are arriving “out of window” or off schedule and therefore face delays at berth. These delays are inturn impacting the feeder vessels which is causing gaps on what would normally be weekly NZ arrivals. For example the COSCO JKN service during June will experience 3-weeks in a row NO VESSELS into N.Z. 

This is obviously not welcome news and will only increase congestion and cargo in transit delays

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