Tag Archives: service

2021 vessel reliability recorded at its lowest ever

Ocean carriers are running a business in which their reliability of completing voyages planned in advance ranges around 30% to 40%. The highest reported here, by Sea-Intelligence Maritime Analysis, is Maersk at 46%. How can you run a business with these kinds of service levels?

The answer seems to be, VERY profitably. Most ocean carriers reported billions in net income.

I like this graph from the article.

Source: Sea-Intelligence, from article below.

While the trend down coincides with COVID, service levels were not great even before 2019. It’s due to the canceled sailings and skipped stops that are commonplace today. Port congestion has not helped.

But we can see a significant number of firms changing their level of dependency on the scheduled services offered by the major ocean carriers and the alliances,. Large shippers are buying their own ships and containers, usually of smaller size, and choosing when their shipments are scheduled, where they go, and how they get to their warehouses. Even some forwarders and brokers have started doing this. Other firms are looking for brokers who can help them find ways to get their cargo on time.

I think the large carriers have to start looking at how to improve service levels. If it means smaller ships and frequent sailings that don’t get canceled, that’s what it will take.

Perhaps we need feeder ships to allow the ocean carriers to consolidate multiple loads onto their giant ships for long voyages, but offload them near the destination. Years ago Al Baird, an English maritime economist, wrote about offshore container terminals, that could be used with short-range feeders to relieve the wharf pressure on our landside container terminals of today.

New thinking is needed to improve carrier on-time reliability. It won’t come without effort and money. But we can’t keep relying on ‘someone else’ to brainstorm solutions and give them a try. Especially when we’re earning billions.

8 February 2022 Jack Donnelly Ports and Terminals, Shipping Lines

2021 vessel reliability recorded at its lowest ever – Port Technology International

Flexport: ‘… predictability and stability, not just dirt cheap rates’

It’s always interesting to hear what Ryan Petersen of Flexport has to say about trade. In addition to being a top executive in the shipping 3PL arena, he’s often an astute economic observer.

And he’s echoing a refrain lots of ocean shipping customers are singing. Predictability and sticking to schedules is very important. How many times do ocean carriers have to hear the message?

By Alex Lennane 19/10/2020

Flexport: ‘What we want is predictability and stability, not just dirt cheap rates’ – The Loadstar

Truckers counter ocean carrier effort to dismiss chassis complaint

It goes on and on. Truckers at ports are constantly being rattled by individual contract specifications that are probable violations of law. Chassis, as usual, are one of the flash points. There’s always something new to write about when we look at chassis use around ports.

The article has a series of links to past stories in this chain of events, making it quite easy to follow. At play is a $1.8 billion lawsuit against OCEMA, the ocean carriers’ vehicle for providing chassis for their containers.

Because of US liability laws the ocean carriers didn’t want to own chassis in the US. They then found that in the US they could not force truckers to own chassis. there’s a nice game theoretic reason why that won’t work economically. So they (and others) had to create pools. But now they want to control the pool activities. You can’t have it both ways– be out of the business, and running it at the same time!

Chris GillisTuesday, October 6, 2020

Truckers counter ocean carrier effort to dismiss chassis complaint – FreightWaves