ATA Freight
SUPPLY CHAIN: 10 disruptions that rocked supply chains in 2021
Here's a look back at some of the top disruptions in headlines that hamstrung supply chains in 2021:
  1. FEBRUARY: Winter storm slams Texas food supply chains, logistics networks. The timing of the storm, coming just after the Lunar New Year and Presidents Day weekend, also contributed to capacity challenges. Supply chains in the region prepare months ahead of time for hurricanes by repositioning inventory, and fleets typically ramp up preventive maintenance in the spring. The unprecedented storms of that week left little time for preparation and planning.
  2. JULY: How the Suez Canal blockage unfolded across supply chains- The Ever Given was lodged in the canal for six days, blocking hundreds of ships from traversing the waterway
  3. MAY: Coronavirus surge in India hits raw materials, manufacturing across multiple industries. The situation also impacted pharmaceutical production. About 80% of active pharmaceutical ingredients are produced overseas, mostly in India and China. Some manufacturers of COVID-19 vaccines started looking to China to bolster their supply as the price of ingredients risen significantly in India.
  4. JUNE: 6 charts show the effects of Yantian port congestion. Dwell times increase, containers build up and blank sailings surge — all at a time when shippers were planning and importing for peak season.
  5. JUNE: More frequent, severe wildfires threaten California's growing logistics network. Fires can clog and cut off freight arteries, creating choke points for inventory traveling via truck and rail.
  6. JULY: Union Pacific pauses service from West Coast to Chicago as congestion hits inland terminals. Union Pacific suspended service between the West Coast and its Global IV gateway in Chicago in an effort to improve congestion at the inland intermodal terminal, a spokesperson for the railroad confirmed.
  7. AUGUST: Meishan Terminal in Ningbo resumes operations. In-gate, out-gate and berthing activity all restarted at the gateway after two weeks of lockdown.
  8.  AUGUST: Shanghai airport terminal closure leads logistics firms to expect cargo delays. China implemented strict measures to contain the spread of COVID-19, leading to strains on already-limited air cargo capacity out of the country.
  9. AUGUST: Ida disrupts freight movement after making landfall as Category 4 hurricane. Tropical storm Ida, which made landfall in Louisiana as a Category 4 hurricane Sunday, has shuttered ports, halted rail operations and could have long-term effects on manufacturing and supplies in the region.
  10. OCTOBER: 6 charts show the effects of Vietnam's lockdowns on supply chains. Brands with high exposure to Vietnam are seeing port delays, canceled orders and slow capacity recovery after months of COVID-19 related restrictions.
SHIPPING: 59% of all containers leave US ports empty 
A whopping 59% of containers left the US ports unattended with goods in the first 10 months of the year. Moreover, the compulsive demand for imported goods into the US has pushed up rates for freight being shipped across the Pacific from Asia to the US, making the route much more lucrative as compared to the US-Asia route. The better money-making opportunity pushes the ships and the shipowners to rush back to Asia with empty containers and return with the loaded vessels on the ‘diamond route’ surfing ‘Richie-rich’ waves of the Asia-US route.

Adding to it, export cancellations in the nick of time results in ship skipping ports which ultimately accelerated freight rates. Unmindful of the circumstances, meat export has been a prominent player in US exports but the congestion across the US major ports has drastically impacted it too. The US Meat Export Federation has only been able to find cost-prohibitive alternatives to the problem. A feasible solution to flawless meat export is still awaited.

Owing to these reasons, the US trade deficit saw an ever-high figure in 2021- US$705.2 billion in the first 10 months of the year, rising a 29.7% high as compared to the last year. Exporting hang-ups and business sanctions season the problem and magnify the US import-export margin.

Source: Containers News
MAERSK: Major trade lane market overview
Source: Major Trade Lane
AIR CARGO: No relief from high demand and high air freight rates into 2022, warn forwarders 
“Airlines are reporting rates on a weekly basis, but it is uncertain if rate levels will reduce during the Christmas week as airlines are trying to keep them high,” a forwarder in Singapore said, although he believes the current rates are “unsustainable” and, therefore, likely to fall by CNY.

However, he added: “As airlines and ocean lines are trying their best to keep rate levels high, any reduction will not be too drastic, and definitely not to the rates levels we were familiar with pre-Covid.”
Out of India, Covid restrictions are increasing and passenger numbers falling, reducing belly capacity, while cargo facilities are expected to operate more slowly, owing to a shortage of labour.
The forwarder added: “The market expects peak season and market demand for air freight to continue until March.”

Meanwhile, a sea-air specialist in Dubai said the market was strong, adding: “The peak season is continuing and this is unexpected. We are seeing a lot of sea-air shipments moving to the EU, during and after Christmas and new year. There is no break and we suspect this will continue until June.”

Source: High Air Freight
TURKEY: Turkish cargo transports Ukrainian satellite for US launch
Turkey’s flag carrier Turkish Airlines (THY) subsidiary Turkish Cargo transported a satellite from Ukraine for its launch in the United States, the firm said in a statement Tuesday.

The Sich-2-30 optical observation was flown to Miami, Florida via a connecting flight in Istanbul, according to Turkish Cargo.

Developed under Ukraine's National Targeted Scientific and Technical Space Program, the satellite will be launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida in January.

Source: Turkish Cargo Transports
LA/LB: White House revs up trucker recruitment drive
Administration officials on Thursday said the plan aims to get more drivers on the road in the coming months by making it easier and faster for them to get certified and by jump-starting or expanding apprenticeship programs through carriers and other employers with trucking fleets. Overland Park, Kansas, based trucker Yellow Corp. and grocery chain Albertsons Cos. are among the companies that have committed to such programs.

The plan also aims to improve industry retention and the quality of trucking jobs, senior administration officials said. The Transportation and Labor departments will examine how drivers are paid—a sore spot for truckers who often spend hours waiting to pick up or unload freight—and investigate truck-leasing programs that administration officials said prey on drivers. The agencies will also get feedback from industry groups and labor unions.

The initiative proposes to bolster efforts across government agencies and private-sector employers to expand the recruitment pipeline, officials said. They said it would support workforce-development programs, including some in the roughly $1 trillion infrastructure package signed last month, aimed at attracting more veterans, women and young people to the profession.

Source: White House
LA/LB: Container imports tumble at Los Angeles, Long Beach ports
Gene Seroka, the executive director of the Port of Los Angeles, on Wednesday attributed the decline to an influx of smaller ships that have been dispatched by retailers, manufacturers and logistics companies as they scramble to get around bottlenecks and satisfy consumer demand.

The influx of smaller ships follows a trend this year of ocean carriers pressing smaller vessels into service on lucrative trade lanes from Asia to the U.S. West Coast and of big-box retailers chartering ships, as companies rush to restock inventories in time for the holidays.

The import slowdown has also coincided with a growing backlog of vessels waiting to enter the ports. The backup reached a record 101 container ships on Monday, according to the Marine Exchange of Southern California.

CHINA: China’s Ningbo Zhoushan port complex reaches 30M TEU in 2021
China’s Ningbo Zhoushan port marked a milestone in its development lifting 30 million containers in 2021 ensuring its position as the world’s third busiest container port complex. The achievement is significant as 15 years ago the port ranked fifteenth in the world, and also came in a year when the container operations were interrupted by a COVID-19 outbreak in August.

A ceremonial lift of the 30 millionth container took place on the morning of December 16 in the Meishan Port District with the decorated box hoisted aboard the 20,000 TEU COSCO Shipping Pisces. To emphasize the port’s success at automation, the command for the container lift was given remotely and employed a remote-controlled bridge crane and a smart truck.

China currently has seven of the 10 busiest container ports in the world. The Ningbo Zhoushan port complex experienced just over a four percent growth in volume in 2020 handling 28.7 million TEU. While it is among the fastest-growing ports in China, it, however, is far behind the global leaders which are Shanghai, which handled 43.5 million TEU in 2020, and Singapore, which handled nearly 37 million TEU.

Source: The Maritime Executive
MAERSK: Air freight updates/main disruptions 
Source: Air Freight Updates
 AIR CARGO: Qatar airways cargo’s year in freight
“Qatar Airways Cargo has forged ahead with its strategic focus on growth, sustainability, and digitalisation in the face of uncertainty, and we are thankful to also draw our stability from the support our dedicated customers and employees have shown and continue to show on a daily basis. We know that Qatar Airways Cargo would not be able to navigate the many challenges and changes in our industry so successfully without you. For this, we thank you”, Guillaume Halleux, chief officer cargo of Qatar Airways Cargo, extends his appreciation in a corporate communication.

The carrier transported 1,574,705 tonnes between January to November 2021. A significant part of the tonnage continued to be medical equipment, PPE, and critical supplies to combat the pandemic, including free medical aid to India at the height of the crisis there in April and May.

“Digitalisation will continue to be a core focus in 2022, since it is a major enabler in ensuring quality, speed, efficiency, excellent customer service, and flight safety. The latter will be further supported by our Unit Load Device (ULD) fleet rollover to Safran’s new, Fire Resistant Containers. We will continue to invest in the quality of our products, in our unrelenting push for highest quality standards in our industry, and will continue to collaborate with our customers, partners, and staff, to deliver true value to the market. For us at Qatar Airways Cargo, it is not enough to be the largest cargo airline; our mission is to be the world’s best cargo airline,” outlines Guillaume Halleux.
SUPPLY CHAIN: Global supply chain crisis could last another two years, warn experts
In Britain it’s alcohol, in Canada it’s maple syrup, while in Australia it’s a crucial additive for diesel trucks, and in New Zealand it’s brown sugar. These are just some of the many shortages affecting consumers and businesses around the world as industry experts warn that the supply chain crisis prompted by the coronavirus pandemic could last for many more months and even up to two years.

The gravest appears to be an outbreak of Covid this week in the Chinese manufacturing hub of Zhejiang, which is home to the world’s largest cargo port, Ningbo-Zhoushan. Tens of thousands are in quarantine under China’s strict zero-Covid policy and some local authorities have urged workers not to travel home “unnecessarily” for lunar new year festival in February. “Further supply chain disruption is a significant possibility,” economic analysts at Capital Economics said in a note.

“With winter, year-end holidays in North America and Europe, Chinese new year in Asia, the already stretched supply chain will get even further stretched as workers, truckers and terminals are off for holidays,” a Maersk spokesperson said.

Dennis Unkovic, a US corporate lawyer, trade expert and author of Transforming the Global Supply Chain, says the Covid crisis had shown that the system was dependent on a just-in-time model designed to run perfectly, “but that’s not what’s happened”.

For anyone expecting the post-pandemic world to return to ‘normal’, forget it. Whatever was considered normal before the pandemic is not coming back.

“Companies have to make the supply chain a priority,” he says. “If it breaks down we can’t say we didn’t see it coming.”
RUSSIA: Container traffic via Russian ports up 7.7% in November 2021
According to SeaNews PORTSTAT analytic online service, the total container throughput of all the Russian sea ports in November 2021 increased by 7.7% year-on-year

Import grew by 6.7%, cabotage by 11.6%, export was up 13.2%. Transit, on the contrary, declined by 26%.

Laden container throughput via the Russian sea ports was up 7.3%. Reefer containers accounted for 12.5% of the total laden container traffic, and dry containers for 87.5%. Imports made 50% of all the laden containers, exports 32.4%, cabotage 11.9%, and transit 5.7%.
Source: Russian Ports
SHIPPING: Port congestion causes carriers to blank up to quarter of TEU capacity
A new phenomenon is emerging in container shipping as the major carriers struggle to manage their schedules in light of the persistent backlogs to enter major ports around the world. Research and advisory services company Sea-Intelligence is calling it “congestion-induced blank sailings,” where the carriers have been forced to blank sailings from their schedule not because of overcapacity but because the ships are not returning in time due to port congestion.

The current trend in blank sailings began early in 2021. While it has been fluctuating, Sea-Intelligence illustrates the trend has been rising through the entire year. For all of 2020, the data shows blank sailings between Asian and the North American West Coast ports average approximately 12 percent of TEU capacity versus an expected average of nearly 20 percent of capacity for all of 2021. Since week 41, the carriers have consistently been blanking more than 20 percent of TEU capacity on these routes and it is expected to remain constant through the end of the year.

Sea-Intelligence highlights that for the coming 12 weeks, the percentage of capacity blanked is scheduled to decline sharply. This is because blank sailings are not due to capacity management, but rather due to the carriers being forced to blank sailings, as a result of port congestion. Murphy concludes that sailings are mostly not be blanked in advance, but are blanked closer to scheduled departures an operational result of vessel congestion and delays, which cannot be known that well in advance, especially on a trade with a relatively short roundtrip time. 
Source: The Maritine Executive
CMA-CGM: THC update - Vladivostok & Vostochny, Russia import/export
CMA CGM informs its customers of the following THC update for Vladivostok & Vostochny, Russia.

Effective January 1st, 2022 (date of loading in the origin ports) until further notice (January 15th, 2022 for US trades):
Import Amounts:
Export Amounts:

Source: THC Update
The Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach announced that consideration of the “Container Dwell Fee” will be postponed until Dec. 27.

Since the fee was announced on Oct. 25, the twin ports have seen a combined decline of 47% in aging cargo on the docks. The executive directors of both ports will reassess fee implementation after another week of monitoring data.

Under the temporary policy approved Oct. 29 by the Harbor Commissions of both ports, ocean carriers can be charged for each import container that falls into one of two categories: In the case of containers scheduled to move by truck, ocean carriers could be charged for every container dwelling nine days or more. For containers moving by rail, ocean carriers could be charged if a container has dwelled for six days or more. Currently, no date has been set to start the count with respect to container dwell time. 
Maersk to manage Unilever's ocean and air transport via control tower. The agreement includes developing and managing Unilever's control tower, which centralizes its ocean shipping and air transport. Maersk will manage the transport with the aid of its digital supply chain platform, NeoNav.

Cathay Pacific’s cargo plane stranded on airport runway due to malfunction causing 6 planes to be diverted. It was reported today that one of Cathay Pacific’s cargo planes that was originally scheduled to fly to Delhi, India, was required to return to HK airport today (16th) due to a malfunction of the landing gear. During the period, the plane was unable to leave the runway and was stranded for nearly two hours. As a result, six planes originally scheduled to land in Hong Kong had to be diverted to Shenzhen, Macao and Taipei  

Source: Air Cargo News
Tough contract talks loom for shippers 'gobsmacked' by rate increases. With capacity remaining extremely tight ahead of Chinese New Year, shippers are bracing for a further wave of rate increases on container trades out of Asia. The spot rate indices this week were virtually unchanged – the Freightos Baltic Index (FBX) Asia-North Europe component stable at $14,496 per 40ft, and its US west coast and east coast readings at $14,924 and $16,865 per 40ft, respectively
Source: The Loadstar
APM Terminals Pipavav, PRCL begin double-stack rail service to Jodhpur on hub-and-spoke model. The service is managed by PRCL, the joint venture between Gujarat Pipavav Port Ltd and Indian Railways. Jakob Friis Sorenson, managing director of APM Terminals Pipavav, said, "The rail connection to Jodhpur via Sanand on the hub-and-spoke model will give an edge to our customers in connecting to their markets/ICDs (inland container depots) quickly. We extend all our support to the PRCL to make this connection big success." 

Source: The Economic Times
Singapore Airlines buys Airbus A350F freighters. Singapore Airlines (SIA) has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with Airbus to purchase seven of the recently launched A350F freighter aircraft, with options to order another five aircraft. Deliveries are scheduled to begin in the fourth quarter of 2025. SIA said it will become the first airline to operate this new generation circa 100-tonne widebody freighter aircraft 

Source: Air cargo News
'Turkey-Ukraine trade volume jumped 50% to $5B'. In the first nine months of 2021, Turkey ranked fifth in the list of Ukraine’s largest trade partners, behind China, Poland, Germany and Russia, Yulia Svyrydenko told Anadolu Agency in an interview. Kyiv wants a free trade agreement (FTA) with Ankara that takes into account the interests of all sectors of Ukraine’s economy, Svyrydenko said, adding that the two countries have held 11 rounds of formal talks on the matter since 2011. Pointing out that Ukrainian businesses have well-founded fears about opening a market with Turkey, she added: “But there are more requests for access to the Turkish market than for protection from Turkish goods coming into Ukraine.” 

Source: Turkey News
IATA: Airline shares fall amidst concerns about the Omicron variant

Airline share prices have fallen in response to Omicron news. As of December, the global airline share price index is 37% below pre-crisis levels while wider equity markets have risen by 30% since the start of the pandemic.
MAERSK: Vessel arrival waiting time indicator

April 05 2022. Nordic Air Cargo/Symposium 2022. Copenhagen 
27-29 Sept 2022. World Cargo Symposium Hong Kong/ AsiaWorld-Expo 
Source: IATA

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