Making good on fixed ocean cargo schedules may be easier said than done
September 25, 2011
Analysts with the Paris-based consultancy, Alphaliner, are advising shippers to cast a critical eye on ocean carrier promises for “daily cut-offs.”
In its latest weekly report, Alphaliner asks the question: “Daily Maersk - what does it really mean?”
The deployments from Shanghai, Ningbo, Yantian
and Tanjung Pelepas to three European main ports would be on time or shippers would be compensated for the time lost, carrier spokesmen added. But
However, According to Stephen Fletcher, Alphaliner’s Commercial Director, shippers should “look beyond the hype” to understand what the product offers and the potential implications for the industry.
“Although Maersk currently offers seven sailings a week from the Far East to North Europe, it does not provide daily departures due to vessel bunching at the Far East ports and the need to insert intermediate ports between its four
core Far East origin ports,” he said. “To overcome this, the carrier would offer daily cutoffs at the Far East origins which does not require a departure every day between
Daily Maersk port pairs.”
Furthermore, said Alphaliner analysts, not all of the European ports are called on by all seven of Maersk’s FE-North Europe strings. For example, only four
of the seven strings call at Felixstowe and five call at Rotterdam.
“In addition, with the different sequence of calls at European ports, the transit time varies depending upon the loop into which container is loaded,” said Fletcher.
For example, of the five weekly Maersk strings that serve the key Shanghai-Rotterdam route, the transit time for this port pair varies between 26 and 32 days.
“Maersk’s ‘giant conveyor belt’ moves at different speeds across, and is not a standard product offering effective daily connections in the Maersk network,” Alphaliner concluded.
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