Drewry Says U.S. Ports Will Be Vigilant in Pursuit of Carrier Calls

By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
April 08, 2014 - SCMR Editorial

Even the most dominant U.S. ports can’t afford to become complacent in the face of several competitive factors converging at mid-year, say industry analysts.

According to Neil Davidson, Senior Analyst - Ports & Terminals for Drewry Research, the newly created/expanded alliances will certainly review and revise port calls, so there will be changes.

“However, it is in their interest to serve as many ports directly as possible in order to offer the best service to cargo owners,” he says.

“Furthermore, adds Davidson, carriers will still call at key cargo generating ports.

“So in this sense there may not be much change to the list of ports called. But bigger ships do mean reduced service frequency, or at least less port calls per year, leading to more peaking of port volumes.”

Davidson says a anticipation of a breakdown in dockside labor contracting on the U.S. West Coast should also be considered when talking about ports.

“I imagine that most shippers, through past experience of similar issues, have contingency plans in place for diversions if necessary. They will adopt a wait and see approach though,” he says.

Finally, Davidson says the impact of the expanded Canal still remains to be seen.

“East Coast U.S. ports are hoping to gain share from the West Coast ports but they won’t give it up easily,” he notes. “Plus, it’s not just about port capacity, but also about inland/intermodal capacity.”


In addition there are two key unknowns about the future, says Davidson.

First, the level of the new Canal vessel tolls is yet to be determined, and we have yet to see how the US and Canadian railroads will react to the expanded Canal.

“Both of these will have a big influence on which way cargo is routed,” says Davidson. “Most likely time sensitive cargoes will continue to move via the West Coast, but cost sensitive cargoes will be more tempted to use the Canal.”



About the Author

image
Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Subscribe to Logistics Management magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your
entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

The Port of Oakland said that containerized import volume soared 75.76 percent last month from January 2015 totals.

The U.S. Customs & Border Protection announced earlier this week that it will delay the implementation of some parts of its Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) electronic document single window platform beyond the current February 28th deadline.

In the new white paper "The Race for Supply Chain Management Excellence," Howard W. Coleman of the management consulting firm MCA Associate explores this question with a focus on wholesale distribution.

As the pull of shopping online via mobile devices becomes ever more prevalent, recent research from transportation and logistics bellwether UPS shows that as more consumers shop online, they also bring with them specific preferences and guidelines, too.

In an 8-K filing with the Securities Exchange Commission this week, third-party logistics and freight transportation services provider XPO Logistics said it plans to retain the truckload business it acquired through its $3 billion October 2015 acquisition of freight transportation and logistics services provider Con-way Inc.

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. Patrick covers international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. Contact Patrick Burnson

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.