COVID-19 Latest Updates

Port of New Orleans Reopens, U.S. Ports Expect Logjams to Extend Into 2022, & Shanghai Airport Still Sees Delays

By September 9, 2021 No Comments

Ocean  

Mediterranean Shipping Co. (MSC) expands connections on India-US network. The carrier had said that its Indus 2, an eight vessel premium string, will now include a direct call at the Port of Halifax, Canada. This expansion will further propel the carrier’s ability to tap growing demand and will add competitive transit times, serving customers who wish to ship cargo to Toronto and midwestern U.S. cities. 

Carriers increase capacity on the Asia-US trade routes. By deploying more extra loaders and several new weekly services, carriers are increasing capacity on Asia-US trade routes. It’s expected that there will be approximately 22% more capacity to the U.S. West Coast through December, with 14.4% more to the U.S. East Coast. However, this capacity is strained by the current level of congestion at Asian hubs and U.S. gateways, and due to ongoing demand, U.S. marine terminals may not be able to handle continued growth and future surges. 

Ports 

Port of New Orleans reopens. After Hurricane Ida shut down the port and left it without power, the port has now resumed vessel operations, with power restored to the terminal. Stay tuned for additional updates regarding the hurricane’s impacts.   

The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are preparing for 20 million TEU this year. As peak season cargo arrives to the port’s complex, it is likely that the complex will hit a record-breaking 20 million TEU. Terminal operators will still handle this load despite vessel bunching, excessive container dwell times, and increasing truck turn times. The ports are also counting on the expansion of the Long Beach Container Terminal (LBCT), which will add 1 million TEU of annual capacity and more space for container storage.  

U.S. ports expect shipping logjams to extend into 2022. With record imports arriving to U.S. ports, port executives across the U.S. are expecting a crush of container imports beyond the holidays. The number of vessels waiting at Southern California’s ports is increasing, with more logjams stretching into warehouses and other distribution networks. It’s also expected that the slowdown in container volumes that usually coincides with the Lunar New Year is not expected to offer much relief. 

The Port of Philadelphia’s marine terminal suspends vessel service to clear container backlog. At the Port of Philadelphia, the main container terminal will not service ships through the rest of this week. The facility is striving to clear a backlog of containers that has caused high trucking turn times. There is also a limited number of chassis and railcars, which is stalling the ability to clear the backlog.

Air

Shanghai Pudong International Airport is still seeing delays due to COVID-19. After more than two weeks of breakout COVID cases closing one of the airport’s two terminals, disruptions at China’s largest airport are still prevalent. The Pudong Air Cargo Terminal isn’t fully operational with strict quaratine rules imposed on ground staff. Some airlines still have flights coming in, but cargo is still sitting at the port. 

Amazon will invest $125 million in air cargo facility at Newark Airport. Retailer Amazon recently announced an agreement with the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey to revitalize two existing industrial structures along Newark Liberty International Airport. While no renderings have been not been released yet, the air cargo facility is expected to generate more than 1,000 jobs and has the potential to grow the airport’s workforce by 5%. 

Trucking 

Hurricane Ida disrupted trucking capacity on a much larger scale than predicted, raising spot rates. Beyond the Gulf Coast and the Louisiana area, the storm affected unstable market conditions as holiday imports to the U.S. are on the way. This instability will likely continue and not diminish, with shippers likely to see truckload spot rates rise higher than expected as new lanes will be sought out to move goods. 

Rail

Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) gives Kansas City Southern (KCS) an ultimatum. The CEO of CP has said that the company will walk away from the merger unless a deal is reached with KCS by September 13.