Container line schedule reliability improves for first time in two years

Date Added: 4 April 2022

Container line schedule reliability improves for first time in two years

With a comprehensive portfolio of ocean freight forwarding services around the globe, Davies Turner notes a report in Maritime Executive magazine that states that after a prolonged decline, schedule reliability among container carriers showed the first significant improvement since the onset of the pandemic.

Based on research by Sea-Intelligence, a research, analytics, and advisory firm for the shipping industry, the report adds that while nearly two-thirds of all containerships are still behind schedule, reliability returned to levels not experienced since mid-2021.

However, Sea-Intelligence says that the number of days behind schedule remains high and experts are warning that the improvements could be short-lived as backups are building rapidly at China’s ports.

Sea-Intelligence says this is the first significant month-over-month improvement it has seen in schedule reliability since March 2020.

The results were contained in the company’s monthly Global Liner Performance report which covers schedule reliability across 34 different trade lanes and more than 60 carriers.

Global schedule reliability for container carriers improved by 4.0 percentage points between January and February 2022, reaching 34.4 percent. In February 2022, the schedule reliability score was only marginally lower than in February 2021. It returned to levels seen in the spring and fall of 2021 before a precipitous year-end decline during which schedule reliability hit the lowest global level in the 11 years Sea-Intelligence has been measuring the carriers’ performance.

China, however, where many of the world’s supply chains begin, is recording dramatic increases in its backlog after areas of Shenzhen had new COVID-related restrictions earlier in 2022 and even before districts in Shanghai began mandatory 5-day lockdowns last week. VesselsValue reported a nearly five-fold increase in the number of ships waiting off Shanghai just before the lockdown that further closed warehouses and manufacturing and restricted truck movements this week. Its data shows that the number of ships waiting to load or discharge at Shanghai had risen in the last two and half weeks to over 300 vessels of all types versus a previous high of under 200 vessels.

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