Shipping companies operating in the container business are desperately seeking new economies of scale. Unlike previous years, there was no rush to buy Chinese goods this year in the period immediately preceding the Chinese New Year holiday (which began on January 21st).
Moreover, the market sentiment for the weeks immediately following the holidays continues to remain negative. This is also why the three major alliances (2M, The Alliance and Ocean Alliance) have announced new blank sailings for the first seven weeks of the year. Overall, an average of 27% of the total capacity used on the Asia-Europe trade routes will be removed. In other words, 53 out of a total of 196 scheduled sailings.
These latest figures were provided by Alphaliner in a recently published report. According to experts at the French consultancy firm, sailings have been canceled due to lack of demand. They forecast that for the foreseeable future, we are likely to see further blanking.
Translation by Giles Foster