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Potential for Further Supply-Chain Chaos to Bolster Carrier Finances through 2022

7th October 2021
Global supply-chain chaos: Carriers could earn as much as $150bn this year, and the same again for 2022. The container sector has bottleneck at ports worsened by increasing number of smaller 'box-boat' vessels (as above) on the main trade lanes. Global supply-chain chaos: Carriers could earn as much as $150bn this year, and the same again for 2022. The container sector has bottleneck at ports worsened by increasing number of smaller 'box-boat' vessels (as above) on the main trade lanes. Credit: Jehan Ashmore

Disruption of supply chains could last until the end of next year, keeping freight rates at elevated levels for longer than expected and boosting container line profitability.

Analysts at Drewry said the longer-than-anticipated period of disruption had led it to upgrade its outlook for global freight rates.

“Stronger than expected spot rate movement in the third quarter and a longer supply chain recovery timeline are behind our reason to upgrade the outlook for average global freight rates (spot and contract) for 2021 to 126%, which is an upward adjustment from 47% in our June forecast,” it said.

“For 2022, spot rates are expected to decline, but there will be a significant increase in contract pricing, leading to an increase in average global pricing of about 6%.”

Despite the “immense pressure” the container shipping sector was under, volumes were still being shipped and Drewry expects world port handling to increase 8.2% this year, or 7.2% against 2019’s pre-pandemic levels.

This was down, however, from previous estimates of 10% growth just three months ago due to the effects of Chinese terminal closures, and extreme weather events.

More on this LloydsLoadingList reports including coverage on the impact of smaller 'box' boats has led to congested container ports. 

Published in Ports & Shipping
Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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