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The number of container ships stuck at anchor off Los Angeles and Long Beach is down to around 20 per day, from 30 a few months ago. Does this mean the capacity crunch in the trans-pacific market is finally easing? Absolutely not, warned Nerijus Poskus, Vice President of global ocean at freight forwarder Flexport. “It’s not getting better. It’s getting worse,” he told American Shipper in an interview on Monday.
”What I’m seeing is unprecedented. We are seeing a tsunami of freight,” he reported.
”For the month of May, everything on the trans-pacific is basically sold out. We had one client who needed something loaded in May that was extremely urgent and are ready to pay USD15000 per container. I couldn’t get it loaded - and we are a growing company that ships a lot of TEUs. Price doesn’t always even matter anymore.”
And this is not just a problem for shippers on the Asia-Europe trade. It’s the same on the transpacific, transatlantic and Latin American and African routes, where shippers are seeing rates increase daily. “It is currently near impossible to hold a booking and rate for more than a few minutes,” said UK based Westbound Logistics.
”Even when bookings are accepted, forwarders are frequently running into additional equipment issues that require containers to be sourced and trucked from alternative ports, at additional cost,” said the forwarder. US-based Jon Monroe, founder of Jon Monroe Consulting, said the Asian export market was broken. “Some carriers require you to send them weekly booking proposals, then they will let you know seven to ten days prior to departure of the vessel whether they will accept them or not.”
“It doesn’t matter how far in advance you make bookings; your booking might be cancelled at the last minute and there is nothing you can do about it,” added Mr Monroe.
According to Mr Monroe, most of the space from Asia to USA for May is “already booked”, and he added that “power is definitely in the hands of carriers, which can, and are, effectively charging what they like in terms of FAK rates and premium surcharges”
Updated on 28April2021- 28042021-01. Resources from