From transatlantic to transpacific?
Transpacific is one thing, transatlantic another. Sea Intelligence, the maritime intelligence provider from Copenhagen, recently analysed the volume of blank sailings on the transatlantic trades.
CEO Alan Murphy: "In 2020 there was only a single 2020-1H spike in blank sailings, as the coronavirus impact was only seen from the spread of the pandemic to Europe and North America. ...(Yet) there was a significant spike in blank sailings towards the end of 2020 – very much in contrast to the transpacific routes and Asia-Europe."
While the level of announced blank sailings for March and April 2021 is also consistently high compared to the same period last year, transatlantic spot rates have remained remarkably stable throughout the pandemic period.
Sea-Intelligence reasons that, with a large number of vessels being held up in congestion outside ports on the US West Coast, vessel redeployment from less-profitable trades could well be argued as a measure of “first aid” to bolster transpacific trade. The drive to shift capacity to more profitable trades may also help raise transatlantic rate levels. (cd)