Spring is in the air – can you feel it too? But I’m not only talking about the mild weather spreading across our Central European climes, bringing the first colourful blossoms of the year into bloom. I’m rather addressing a flowering that not many of us had expected. The strong last quarter of 2016 was succeeded by a surprising scarcity of capacities for the export of goods from Europe by maritime vessel. After many years of excess market supply a sudden rise in demand has led to a degree of disarray in the smooth functioning of the markets. Shippers’ and freight forwarders’ associations have already complained, however, that shipping lines are continuing to levy freight surcharges in existing agreements too. It’s going to be rather interesting to see how this scenario develops.
We have a whole bouquet of special foci to enchant you with this week. There are our traditional Breakbulk / Heavylift and Iberia / Latin America supplements – the latter in Spanish and Portuguese too – and we take a closer look at the situation in the logistics markets in the UK and Ireland.