As the Peak Shipping continues and we prepare for the Holiday Shipping Season to come next, the historic carrier/cargo space availability trends of high demand, low supply, increase prices and shrinking capacity is once again upon us. To weather the storm that the next few months will inevitably bring, I am keeping my eye on a couple of key places:
India – In July 2019, Hapag Lloyd announced it would be launching a new Indian-Europe Express (IEX) Shipping line (see the Hapag Lloyd Press Release here). Providing a direct connection between India, the Middle East (Jeddah and Damietta) and Europe (Piraeus, Le Havre, Antwerp, Rotterdam, Hamburg and London Gateway), the first departures for this new line are planned to depart on 26 October.
Tariffs – The US just announced a series of updates relative to international trade negotiations. First, near term approval of the Canada-Mexico Trade Deal by Congress may be in question for if Congresses legislative calendar is filled up with impeachment inquiries. Second, the US just announced $4B in potential EU tariffs due to EU aircraft subsidies. If enacted, “food items including cheeses, olives, meats, pasta and whiskey, as well as chemicals and metals,” would be on the list. Third, ahead of the 13thround of trade negotiations with China, and the ongoing UN General Assembly this week, it appears that progress on a trade deal with China is still illusive.
If I have learned anything throughout my career, it is that nothing is certain in the shipping industry. Keeping an “ear to the ground” and strong relationships is still the best way to protect against market instability.