Global – Shipping rates for the Asia to Northern Europe route have increased by more than 9% following three weeks of decline, with the Shanghai Containerised Freight Index rising to US$ 1360 per TEU from US$ 1240 the previous week. However, rates are still below the 2012 average of US$ 1378, according to brokers.
‘We are hearing reports of a lack of space and vessels utilised to 97%, so at the moment at least it’s looking strong,’ says ICAP Shipping derivatives broker Richard Ward. Freight rates nearly tripled in June from depressed levels but fell back sharply in July, notes Reuters. Sydbank analyst Jacob Pedersen adds: ‘It supports our expectations that Maersk Line will be able to lift profit this year.’
Maersk Line raised rates by US$ 300 per TEU from August 1. Maersk has also taken delivery of the first of 20 new mega ships, with the first 18 000-TEU vessel carrying its first payload to Europe. The company expects another four vessels this year from South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Company.
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