Freight & Logistics Update – 20th April 2023

Freight & Logistics Update – 20th April 2023

Good morning, Clients & Partners,

Below please find our latest industry update & news

As always, we will keep you posted on any impacts to your cargo on an individual shipment level.




Wind delays are impacting on terminals operations.

• Pier 1 : 0-1 days

• Pier 2 : 0-1 day

• Durban Point : 3 days


Berthing delays continue but have improved from delays seen in previous weeks. The port has reported strong winds during the week.

• CTCT : 9 days

• MPT : 4 days


The port has reported strong winds during the week.

• PECT – 0-2 days

• NCT – 0-1 day



Congestion in West African ports is high leading to increased delays and affecting overall transit times.


  • Reduced berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Port Louis.


  • Increased berthing delays of 9 days experienced at Luanda port.


  • Reduced berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Tema port.


  • Presently no berthing delays being experienced at Apapa port.


  • Increased berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Dar es Salaam port.


  • Increased berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Mombasa port.


  • Presently no berthing delays experienced at Maputo port.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Walvis Bay port.




  • The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have resumed operations.

Terminals Updates:

  • NY/NJ – Vessel waiting time is 1 day. Import Dwell time at APM terminal is 1 day.
  • Norfolk – Vessel waiting time is up to 2 days. Two cranes down at Norfolk Int’l Terminal, however, no operational impact expected.
  • Savannah – Vessel waiting time is up to 2 days.
  • Charleston – Vessel waiting time is down to 1 day.
  • Miami/Port Everglades – Vessel waiting time is up to 2 days.
  • Houston – Vessel waiting time is 2 days.
  • Los Angeles/ Long Beach – Vessel waiting time is up to 4 days.
  • Seattle – Vessel waiting time 2 days.
  • Oakland – Vessel waiting time 3 days

Rail Updates:

  • BNSF – Rail ramp is currently experiencing congestion in Chicago, Columbus, and Los Angeles.
  • There are delays in picking-up and delivering containers at these locations: UP/LAX/LGB.
  • Rail ramp is currently experiencing congestion in Los Angeles. 

Equipment Availability:

  • Due to persistent congestion nationwide, chassis shortages continue to be observed resulting in potential delays for pick-up and delivery.


  • Montreal: Vessels are arriving on proforma schedule. Once alongside, productivity is high, and vessel changes are not expected. There are no issues with labor availability, and we are seeing good productivity in the yard.
  • Vancouver: No berth congestion and ships are working immediately once alongside. Yard utilization at GCT has decreased and is presently at 85%. It is expected that this will remain steady over the next 7 days. Rail productivity remains below expectations due to reduced car supply by both rail providers. Dwell times have improved to 8.1 days and it is expected that this will remain stable for the coming weeks.




  • Santos port: Berthing delay of up to 1 day.




  • Antwerp port: Berthing delay of up to 1 day.


  • Increased berthing delay of 4 days experienced at Hamburg port and 1 day at Bremerhaven port.


  • Reduced berthing delay of 2 days experienced at London Gateway port.Slight delays over the Easter weekend due to lack of Pilots additionally, strong winds on mid-week led to smaller delays. Terminal is working well through the backlog.


  • Increased berthing delays of 6 days experienced at Barcelona port.


  • Increased berthing delays of 4 days experienced at Genova port, while a berthing delay of 3 days experienced at La Spezia port.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Rotterdam port. This past week had slight delays due to strong winds during Mid-week, but terminal already recovered by Thursday evening.


  • Ongoing strikes continue to have an impact on services.  Berthing delay of 2 days experienced at Le Havre port, whereas a berthing delay of 1 day is experienced at For-sur-Mer port. Productivity has improved compared to previous week due to the reduced hours of strike. Yard stands partially higher due to the extended Easter gate-closure with less pick-ups. Free truck slots remain a concern, but situation is improving. 




  • Berthing delay of 2 days experienced at Nhava Sheva port. Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Chennai and Mundra ports.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Jebel Ali port.




  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced. Trucking services from China into Kong Kong are fully functional.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Kaohsiung port.


  • Berthing delay of 2 days experienced at Shanghai port and 3 days experienced at Ningbo port.


  • Vessel bunching experienced at the port. Berthing delays of 2 days experienced.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Busan port.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Hai Phong & Ho Chi Minh ports.


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced.



The Road Freight Association (RFA) denounces truck drivers’ latest shutdown notice:

“The Road Freight Association has highlighted the latest threat circulating on social media which calls for another national shutdown and rejects aspects of the sector’s collective agreement between workers and employers. RFA CEO Gavin Kelly, said the notice sent by a group calling itself SA Truck Drivers was “yet another example of how the logistics chain is continuously threatened”. 

“Shutdowns create long-term, negative consequences to the logistics supply chain and the economy. Jobs are lost. Revenue – both to companies and to employees – is lost. Tax revenue is lost. Business confidence is lost. International trade and investment is lost,” Kelly warned. “Inevitably, opportunistic criminality and violence occur.” He said unions and employers use structured processes to negotiate. “We are all losers when shutdowns happen – as in the South African economy and its citizens.

Kelly called on drivers who are fuelling instigating protest activities to raise their concerns with the relevant authorities and help them by reporting non-compliant transport companies, so that action can be taken against them. The RFA trusts that the relevant authorities, including SAPS, will show the same resolve in dealing with any illegal activities creating a shutdown of supply chain routes, as was shown in the previous national shutdown,” Kelly

Said.” [1] 

Port of Durban open new Bayhead pass:

Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) recently opened the newly constructed Bayhead Bypass Road, a critical route that will enable the seamless flow of road traffic to the Port of Durban, helping to alleviate truck congestion to the Durban Container Terminals.

The bypass road emerged as a response to manage the diversion of heavy motor vehicles, following flood damage to Bayhead Road last April. The 1.6-kilometre bypass road, which will significantly reduce traffic on Bayhead Road, stretches from the Shell Service Station on Bayhead Road to the turning circle on the Ambrose Park Access Road.

The construction and use of the bypass road forms an integral part of TNPA’s efforts to decongest the Port of Durban whilst realising a seamless flow of traffic on its associated road networks and maintaining fluidity in the maritime logistics value chain. [2] 

Germany to Review China Stake in Hamburg Port Terminal:

Germany is reviewing its decision to allow China’s Cosco to take a stake in one of logistics company HHLA’s three terminals at Hamburg port, a spokesperson for the German economy ministry said on Wednesday.

The comments came after it emerged that the Tollerort terminal had been classified as critical infrastructure this year, threatening to relaunch a political row over the risks of Chinese investment in the German economy.

The ministry spokesperson said it was now being determined whether and under what conditions Cosco would be allowed to take a stake in the terminal. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz gave the green light in October last year to Cosco taking a 24.9% stake, resisting strong pushback from within the three-way governing coalition. [3] 

China’s container depots fill up as exports feel the pinch:

Container depots in China are full and having to turn away new customers, following a slowdown in exports.

Container xChange’s latest report suggests China’s container depots are working at 90% utilisation, adding: “Oversupply makes it harder for the depots to move boxes. And because depots make money by moving these boxes, as opposed to storing them, the current circumstances are rendering the depots inefficient in both operations as well as revenue generation.” says Container xChange CEO and co-founder Christian Roeloffs.

The increasing number of idle containers at terminals does not only mean ports are getting congested, but repositioning empty containers has become more expensive and inconvenient, making it difficult for the NVOCCs and shipping lines to open new markets globally.

The expected rebound in China’s exports after the lunar new year holiday in January didn’t materialise, a situation reflected in container freight rates. Drewry’s composite World Container Index decreased 2%, to $1,756.83 for a 40ft container on 23 March. This is 83% below the peak of $10,377 in September 2021 and 35% lower than the 10-year average of $2,690. It indicates a return to more normal prices, although 24% higher than 2019’s pre-pandemic average of $1,420. [4] 

Record high container order book of 7.54 million TEU signals significant change:

“Despite the collapse in freight rates, shipowners still have an appetite for new container ship orders and the order book has continued to grow. The record high order book of 7.54 million TEU will result in significant changes to the container fleet in the coming years,” says Niels Rasmussen, Chief Shipping Analyst at BIMCO.

The order book has now increased for ten straight quarters, reaching a new record high in each of the last four quarters, and at 7.54 million TEU it now equals 28.9% of the existing fleet.

“The large order book will result in significant fleet growth. Scheduled deliveries for 2024 and the remainder of 2023 are currently at 5.03 million TEU. We estimate that recycling will hit nearly 1 million TEU during that period and the fleet could therefore soon exceed 30 million TEU for the first time; up 16% compared to today,” says Rasmussen.

Delivery of the ships will also increase the fuel types used. 57% of TEU capacity in the order book involves ships with some level of alternative fuels preparation compared to only 10% in the current fleet. The first ships using methanol will be delivered and the first ammonia-ready ships will also be launched. Soon, five different fuels could be in use: low- and high-sulphur fuel oil, LNG, methanol, and ammonia. As the use of alternative fuels increases it will become increasingly difficult to establish a single relevant rate benchmark for the time charter and asset markets.

“Most importantly, the new ships will be more fuel efficient than most of the existing ships and the introduction of alternative fuels will help reduce their greenhouse gas emissions,” says Rasmussen.” [5] 

“Subpar” global trade growth projections:

“World trade growth is forecast to slow this year, falling from 2.7% in 2022 to 1.7%, according to the World Trade Organisation, as a smaller-than-expected increase was eroded by a “sharp slump” in the fourth quarter.

In its latest trade projection report, Global Trade Outlook and Statistics, the WTO noted that 2023 global trade growth is expected to be “subpar” despite a marginal upgrade to gross domestic product projections since Q3 2023. Real global GDP growth is pitched at 2.4% for 2023.

WTO director-general Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said: “Trade continues to be a force for resilience in the global economy, but it will remain under pressure from external factors in 2023. This makes it even more important for governments to avoid trade fragmentation and refrain from introducing obstacles to trade. Investing in multilateral cooperation on trade, would bolster economic growth and people’s living standards over the long term.”

The WTO forecasts are weighed down by the effects of the war in Ukraine, high inflation, tighter monetary policy, and financial market uncertainty. Of note, the Q4 2022 slump was further influenced by elevated global commodity prices, monetary policy tightening in response to inflation, and outbreaks of Covid-19 that disrupted production and trade in China.

The report added that the impact of energy prices was strongest during the winter months in Europe, where gas supplies from Russia were cut off, while high prices for wheat and other grains were also keenly felt in Middle Eastern and African countries that relied heavily on imports from Ukraine and Russia before the war.

WTO chief economist Ralph Ossa said: “The lingering effects of Covid-19 and the rising geopolitical tensions were the main factors impacting trade and output in 2022 and this is likely to be the case in 2023 as well. Interest rate hikes in advanced economies have also revealed weaknesses in banking systems that could lead to wider financial instability if left unchecked. [6] 




Hapag Lloyd 




The LoadStar Publications


Shipco Transport


Freightnews by FTW

News articles: 

[1] https://www.freightnews.co.za/article/rfa-denounces-truck-drivers-latest-shutdown-notice

[2] https://www.freightnews.co.za/article/port-durban-opens-new-bayhead-bypass

[3] https://gcaptain.com/germany-to-review-china-stake-in-hamburg-port-terminal/

[4] https://theloadstar.com/chinas-container-depots-fill-up-as-exports-feel-the-pinch/

[5] https://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/record-high-container-order-book-of-7-54-million-teu-signalssignificant-change/

[6] https://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/subpar-global-trade-growth-projections/

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch.