Monday, March 1, 2010

Freight Rates Back to 2007 Peak Levels

(Port News/Cargonews Asia)

Freight rates for container shipping trade lanes between Asia and Europe have returned to their peak levels of 2007 as exports gain strength and shipping companies control capacity over the route, reported the South China Morning Post.

Coscon, the largest shipping company on the mainland, said rates had increased to US$1,400 per TEU, plus a $510 bunker adjustment charge. Rates per FEU rose to $2,650, in addition to $1,020 in bunker charges.

"The market leaders such as Maersk and MSC have urged the industry to keep a balance between supply and demand, and most of the players have reacted positively to keep [control of] capacity," said an official from China Cosco, the parent of Coscon.

Coscon has kept 40,000 TEUs of capacity, or about 10 vessels at "hot lay-up", meaning idling the vessels outside the ports.

About 10 per cent of the global fleet is idled across the globe. Read more here.