Freight & Logistics Update 4th August 2023

Freight & Logistics Update 4th August 2023

Good Afternoon Clients and Partners,

We hope you’ve had a fantastic week so far! Give us a shout if you have any questions about the below updates.




Port berthing delays at the port has increased. The port has reported windy weather during the week. Congestion continues to be experienced resulting in increased delays for vessels berthing.

  • Pier 1 : 7 days
  • Pier 2 : 7 days
  • Durban Point : 5 days



Berthing delays at Cape Town Container Terminal continues because of congestion. The port has reported strong winds at the end of the week.

  • CTCT : 5 days (Maersk Services: SAECS – 5 days; FEW6 – Upto 10 days)
  • MPT : 0 days



Port berthing delays has decreased at both terminals from week 29. The port has reported strong winds during the week.

  • PECT : 0 days
  • NCT : 1 days




  • Reduced berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Port Louis.



  • Berthing delays of 4 days experienced at Luanda port. Congestion is being experienced.



  • Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Tema port.



  • No berthing delays experienced at Apapa port.



  • Berthing delays of 4 days experienced at Dar es Salaam port. Congestion is being experienced.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Mombasa port. A non-operational berth is impacting on operations.



  • Pre-Inspection Certificates are mandatory for specified products being imported into Mozambique. Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Maputo port.



  • Berthing delays of 3 days experienced at Walvis Bay port.



  • Electronic Cargo Tracking Note (ECTN) required for destination Djibouti effective 15th June 2023.




Terminals Updates:

  • NY/NJ – Vessel waiting time is up to 1 day.
  • Norfolk – Vessel waiting time is up to 2 days. All cranes are back up and running.
  • Savannah – Vessel waiting time is up to 4 days. Deep draft vessels continue to experience delays due to negative tides.
  • 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 up to 2 days.
  • Los Angeles/ Long Beach – Vessel waiting time is up to 4 days.
  • Seattle – Vessel waiting time is up to 3 days. T18 and Washington United Terminals will be closed on July 28 however, Husky will be open on July 28, 2023. WUT has received 2 new Post Panamax Cranes and will commence commissioning both at same time in the next 2 weeks, operational by end of August.
  • Oakland – Vessel waiting time is at 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. There are delays in picking-up and delivering containers at this location.


Equipment Availability:

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




  • All marine terminals in Vancouver are operational. Berth congestion continues as the terminals recover from previous strike action.



  • Vessels are arriving on proforma schedule. There are no issues with labour availability, and there is good productivity in the yard.




  • Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Santos port.




  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Antwerp port. Antwerp Gateways Terminal received 3 additional Gantries which will be fully operational in September. Terminal with good productivity.



  • Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Hamburg port and 1 day at Bremerhaven port.
  • Container Terminal Altenwerder (CTA): Terminal with good operations no operational issues. Labour expected to be short over the weekends with the ongoing summer school vacations in Germany, however impact currently limited.
  • Container Terminal Burchardkai (CTB) CTB started extensive berth renovations on berth 1+2. Construction will last for 10 weeks. Berth 1+2 will be closed for operations during the construction but can be utilized as a layby pier.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at London Gateway port. Due to the ongoing expansion construction LGP with 20m less pier length, minimal impact to operations. Terminal running with full equipment resources available and no operational issues to report.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Barcelona port.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Genova port and 6 days at La Spezia port. Our partners SACO Combimar in Italy have advised that they are unable to accept any Veterinary cargo in transshipment or to Italy.



  • Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Rotterdam port. Europe Container Terminals (ECT) has a lack of labour with start of vacation period. ECT will deploy 75 holiday workers over the summer to support labour, first batch started and further training in progress.



  • Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Le Havre port and 4 days at Fos-sur-Mer port. Due to the visit of the French Prime Minister on Tuesday 25/07 to Le Havre, operations on all terminals were stopped from 1100 – 1500. Additionally, strike action by the Port Police saw the gates closed for 24 hours. No further strike actions expected for next week. Ongoing summer vacation period with slight lack of labour expected to last until September. With current lower volumes impact is limited



  • Reduced berthing delays of 4 days experienced at Istanbul port.




  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Mundra, Nhava Sheva and Chennai ports.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Jebel Ali port. Dangerous can still be handled but are subject to acceptance.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Colombo port.


ASIA PACIFIC (Including Oceania)    


  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at this port. Low impact from Typhoon Doksuri.



  • Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at Kaohsiung port.



  • Reduced berthing delays of 3 days experienced at this port.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Shanghai and Ningbo ports. Vessel bunching experienced at Ningbo port.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced due to port closure caused by bad weather.



  • No berthing delays experienced at this port. Port was closed on 25th July due to impact of Typhoon Doksuri.



  • Berthing delays of 2 days experienced at these ports due to the impact of Typhoon Doksuri.



  • No berthing delays experienced at this port.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Busan port.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Hai Phong port and no delays at Ho Chi Minh port.Dredging operation taking place until the end of August. One berth is available for cargo operations.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Port Kelang.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day experienced at Bangkok port.



  • Berthing delay of 1 day being experienced.



Peak season surcharge to be implemented on Asia-SA route

Date: 28th July 2023

French shipping giant CMA CGM has announced a new peak season surcharge (PSS) from Asia to South Africa effective from August 21.

The surcharge will be $300 per TEU and will be applied to dry, reefer, out-of-gauge (OOG) and breakbulk cargo, reports Container News.

It will be applied from ports in North East Asia, South East Asia, Mainland China, Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan to South Africa.[1]


South Africa requests Agoa extension

Date: 27th July 2023

Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel has requested the Joe Biden Administration to consider an early extension of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) to help stimulate investment across the continent.

Local officials visited the US earlier this month to discuss the trade pact and finalise preparations for an Agoa forum scheduled to be hosted in South Africa this year. An early renewal of Agoa in its current form would be preferable to a revised agreement that may  take time to conclude, Patel said. “If we extend Agoa largely in its current form, we can incrementally improve the terms over the next few years. Many African countries are keen on an early extension because it gives investors certainty to commit additional investment on the continent.” [2]

UAE emerges as top rival to China for African port concessions

Date: 28th July 2023

China has invested heavily in Africa’s infrastructure development under its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) for the past ten years, but even the world’s second-largest economy has had to cut back funding due to tough economic times.

The economic slump brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic has seen the country restructure the BRI, which led it to cut funding for most of its infrastructure development projects in Africa. However, this gap has been filled rather quickly by investments by the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which has expanded its footprint across the continent in several significant port and other infrastructure projects.

The UAE is the fourth-largest investor in Africa followed by China, Europe and the United States. UAE launched its ‘Principles of the 50’ document in 2021, which highlights its growth path for the next 50 years and focuses on a renewed foreign policy that places its economy first.

Dubai-based DP World and Abu-Dhabi’s AD Ports have extended their influence across African ports over the past ten years. Both port operators are owned by UAE royal families. DP World and AD Ports operate 12 port facilities in Africa, including a logistics platform in Rwanda. DP World’s acquisition of South Africa-based Imperial Logistics, which provides services across 26 African and European countries, has contributed significantly to this growth in revenue and the company’s strength on the continent. Africa comprised 10% of DP World’s revenue in 2021, via its port operations in seven African countries. [3]


Improved data-sharing can avoid container bottlenecks at US ports

Date: 28th July 2023

America’s Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) this week unveiled plans for a major shake-up in the collection and return of containers in a bid to alleviate future bottlenecks.

Following a decade of fact-finding missions, aided by industry groups and the FMC’s supply chain innovations team, commissioner Rebecca Dye published proposals that would affect Los Angeles and New York ports, calling for shipping community feedback by 15 September. “We must prepare now to handle the next surge in cargo demand by eliminating bottlenecks and processes that undermine US international ocean freight efficiency,” she said. “Based on my experience with innovation teams, I’m convinced focused engagement among industry leaders, rather than regulatory solutions, is a better way to develop commercial practices that address critical supply chain bottlenecks and improve performance.”

In essence, the proposals (https://www.fmc.gov/addressing-supply-chain-bottlenecks) aim to generate greater clarity and sharing of information from marine terminal operators (MTOs) and shipping lines with supply chain partners. [4]


Severe Drought Forces Panama Canal to Restrict Number of Daily Vessel Transits

Date: 25th July 2023

The Panama Canal Authority has announced plans to reduce daily vessel transits to help conserve water due to an ongoing drought.

The new restrictions come as the ACP has already implemented a series of draft restrictions for the critical waterway, limiting the amount of cargo ships can carry. The Panama Canal Authority said it was implementing the measures to reduce the possibility of additional draft restrictions due to extended dry conditions in the Panama Canal watershed, despite water saving measures and the arrival of the rainy season.

This year’s El Niño has resulted in drier than normal conditions in Panama, intensifying the drought and leading to lower water levels in Gatun Lake.

Starting from July 30, 2023, the daily transit capacity of the Panama Canal will be adjusted to an average of 32 ocean-foing vessels per day, with 10 vessels in the Neopanamax locks and 22 vessels in the Panamax locks. The ACP warns capacity may be further adjusted based on factors such as Gatun Lake level, weather forecasts, and vessel mix.

The maximum sustainable capacity of the Panama Canal, including both the Panamax and expanded Neopanamax locks, is approximately 38-40 vessels per day, but generally around 34-38 vessels transit each month. However, the two most recent months, May and June, saw an average of only 32.58 and 32.13 transits per day, respectively.[5]


EU initiative will ‘kick-start’ large scale production of sustainable maritime fuels

Date: 26th July 2023

The much-anticipated FuelEU maritime initiative has been adopted by the European Council, heralding a far more conclusive campaign of ship emissions reduction than anything agreed at the IMO this month.

The new measures force passenger ships and container vessels to plug into shore power, running their systems on grid electricity, ensuring they will not emit exhaust gases while alongside.

The initiative is focused on so-called renewable fuels of non-biological origin (RFNBO), which can include green ammonia and green methanol. It also implies a hostility to biofuels, which, although they can be made using pure waste and residue streams, can also be manufactured with specially grown crops.[6]


Mundra Port still struggling to clear cyclone-induced container logjam

Date: 24th July 2023

Mundra Port, India’s top container handler, continues to grapple with cargo backlogs created during cyclone-related supply chain disruption that began last month.

According to industry sources, a major portion of the import containers that arrived at the height of the logjam have not been retrieved for last-mile delivery. The delays inevitably put cargo owners at considerable risk of additional charges of port ground rent. Then there is the carrier levy of demurrage/detention charges on containers that overstay the free time window for storage or return of equipment. Also, long-dwelling import boxes facing hefty penalties often run the risk of being abandoned by cargo interests, mostly in the case of low-value cargo.

Some ad-hoc relief, by way of five days extra free time, was provided by the port authority in the immediate aftermath of Cyclone Biparjoy, which forced all ports along India’s Gujarat coastline to halt operations for almost a week.

Sources said June imports were still languishing in the port, while containers that were stacked later had received clearance priority due to their ease of retrieval.[7]


Trade restrictions begin to ease

Date: 28th July 2023

World Trade Organization (WTO) members have continued to facilitate imports and generally exercise restraint in the use of trade-restrictive measures from mid-October 2022 to mid-May 2023, according to Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala’s mid-year report on trade-related developments.

However, while the number of export restrictions on food, feed and fertilisers has come down substantially, many such measures remain in place, contributing to supply uncertainty and  price volatility.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said the fact that WTO members had been taking more steps to facilitate imports illustrated how trade was a valuable tool for pushing back against inflationary pressures.

Pointing to the introduction of export restrictions on food, feed and fertilisers since the start of the war in Ukraine in February 2022, Okonjo-Iweala noted that several such restrictions had been phased out.

The report indicates that the pace of implementation of new export restrictions by WTO members has increased since 2020, first in the context of the pandemic and subsequently with the war in Ukraine and the food security crisis.

The WTO Secretariat’s ongoing monitoring shows that as of July 14, out of the 104 export-restrictive measures on food, feed and fertilisers introduced since the start of the war in Ukraine in late February 2022, 59 are still in place, covering roughly $24.5 billion of trade (down from 63 in mid-May 2023).

During the review period, WTO members introduced 182 new trade-facilitating and 110 trade restrictive measures on goods unrelated to the pandemic. Most trade-facilitating measures were import measures and most trade-restrictive measures were export measures. For the third time since the beginning of the Trade Monitoring Exercise in 2009, the number of new export restrictions has outpaced that of import restrictions.[8]


Maersk slashes its fleet the most among global carrier this year

Date: 26th July 2023

“In the year to date Danish giant Maersk has slashed its fleet size more than any other global carrier, according to new data from Alphaliner.

After reducing fleet capacity in 2022 by 1.4%, Maersk continued to sell ships or end charters in the first half of 2023, reducing its capacity again by 2.1%.

Under previous leader Soren Skou, Maersk had stated its aim of retaining a fleet size in the 4m to 4.4m slot range, a policy that his successor Vincent Clerc looks to have continued. In the last couple of weeks, however, there has been a slight change of tack from Maersk, with Alphaliner reporting a “timid” comeback in the charter markets, fixing six ships in quick succession.

Maersk has spent more money pursuing a goal to become an integrated logistics provider rather than on growing its fleet size, a strategy which saw rival Mediterranean Shipping Co (MSC) surpass it at the top of the liner rankings 19 months ago. MSC, for its part, continued to be the fastest growing carrier this year, increasing its nominal fleet capacity by 12.2%, adding another 560,200 teu, according to Alphaliner data. [9]


Box rates on the transpacific soar amid strict capacity discipline

Date: 28th July 2023

Barring the pandemic bonanza years, box rates on the transpacific are soaring to highs not seen since 2012 for this time of year, a testament to carriers’ tight capacity discipline amid what some are labelling as a disappointing peak season.

Drewry’s latest spot rates on the Shanghai – Los Angeles route soared by 6% yesterday to $2,087 per feu, a fourth consecutive week of gains.

Noting the strong figures, Lars Jensen, CEO of consultancy Vespucci Maritime, observed via LinkedIn, the rates to the US west coast are now 42% ahead of the same time in 2019 before the pandemic. “If we disregard the extremes of 2020-2022 then we have to go 11 years back to 2012 to find a rate higher than this in the last week of July,” Jensen noted.

Rates to the US east coast are also on an upward swing, now at $3,049 per feu according to Drewry, which makes them 12% ahead of the same time in 2019.

Logistics giant Kuehne+Nagel, for one, believes that 2023 will not see a typical peak season.

“Unfortunately . . . there is no peak season to be expected in 2023. There are no signals either on air or sea, at least not for the time being, so we have to be very cautious on that,” said CEO Stefan Paul.  “But we do believe that we may be near an inflection point with a potential to return to a positive yearon-year volume growth versus easier comps in the second half,” he added.” [10]





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[2] https://www.freightnews.co.za/article/south-africa-requests-agoa-extension

[3] https://www.freightnews.co.za/article/uae-emerges-top-rival-china-african-port-concessions

[4] https://theloadstar.com/improved-data-sharing-can-avoid-container-bottlenecks-at-us-ports/

[5] https://gcaptain.com/severe-drought-forces-panama-canal-to-restrict-number-of-daily-vessel-transits/

[6] https://theloadstar.com/eu-initiative-will-kick-start-large-scale-production-of-sustainable-maritimefuels/

[7] https://theloadstar.com/mundra-port-still-struggling-to-clear-cyclone-induced-container-logjam/

[8] https://www.freightnews.co.za/article/trade-restrictions-begin-ease

[9] https://splash247.com/maersk-slashes-its-fleet-the-most-among-global-carriers-this-year/

[10] https://splash247.com/box-rates-on-the-transpacific-soar-amid-strict-capacity-discipline/


Best Regards,

JJ & The Inter-Sped team