Back on time
Good news for shippers. In 2015 maritime shipping’s punctuality returned to the high last seen in 2012. The market analysts SeaIntel and Drewry have ascertained significant improvements both from lines as well as in individual trades.
The punctuality of shipping lines rose steadily over the course of 2015. The experts who study these fluctuations for the Copenhagen-based company SeaIntel Maritime Analysis recently presented their overall assessment of last year’s performance. Even though December saw a slight decline of 0.6% vis-à-vis the previous month in the index measuring lines’ timeliness, the figure for the month nevertheless stood a substantial 13.3% higher than for the year 2014. The overall analysis is based on 12,413 vessels’ adherence to their schedules.
A tightly-bunched field
SeaIntel CEO Alan Murphy told the ITJ that this was «one of the most punctual years ever,» adding that it represents «a return to the figures last seen in 2012 / 2013.» The lines remained tightly bunched together in the final table.
An examination of the global rankings shows that the top 20 is led by Wan Hai, which registered a punctuality rating of 91%. MOL, Maersk Line and Hamburg Süd were all hot on its heels, scoring 90.1%, 89% and 87.7% respectively. 15th-placed MSC and Maersk Line improved most (by 3.7% and 1.8% respectively to 85.6% and 89% in December 2015). The last three in the top 20 – NYK (85.2%), Zim (84.2%) and CMA CGM (84.1%) – also did well. The difference between first and twentieth place grew no larger than 10% in five months over the second half of the year – a close race.
A uniform pattern in the trades
Drewry compared the shipping industry’s key routes and also found a very compact field. In six out of ten trade routes analysed the curve in the second half of 2015 showed an upward trend every month. The Asia–Mediterranean trade in particular put in a good performance – which just kept getting better. Three east–west routes and the Asia–South America route proved outliers – the only one of the global north–south connections.
The average deviation from the schedule for all of the routes came to 0.8 days, a figure that was unattainable in 2013 and 2014. The decisive question that Drewry posed at the end of January was: Will the shipping lines be able to maintain their good record from 2015 this year? A major improvement hardly seems on the cards.