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Market Update

Freight Market Update: June 12, 2019

Ocean and air freight rates and trends; trucking and customs news for the week of June 12, 2019.

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Ocean Freight Market Updates

Hari Raya Holiday Season May Cause June Delays

The Muslim holiday, known as Eid in some countries, will likely cause shipping delays in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and other observing countries as those celebrating take time away from work. Your operations team will keep you informed of any delays to your shipments.

Weight Restrictions on Panama Canal Shipments

The Panama Canal restricts the draft (how deep the hull goes into the water) of vessels based on the amount of water available in Gatun Lake, which varies based on rainfall, amount of vessels and other factors. Ships must be lighter to meet the draft requirement, so they need to carry less cargo/ballast/fuel or offload cargo to the Panama Canal Railway.

The Panama Canal Authority has postponed the further reduction to allowable vessel draft for the Neopanamax locks and Panamax locks from June 12, 2019 to June 19, 2019 due to increased rainfall.

Port of Oakland Sees Improving Turn Times

The port reported that truck turn times were between 62-72 minutes in May, down from 92 minutes in January. The addition of night shifts, appointment requirements, and a TraPac expansion were cited as reasons for the improvement in efficiency.

Port of Halifax to Expand Capacity

The Government of Canada is allocating C$47M ($37.78M) to the expansion of the Port of Halifax to increase the movement of Canadian goods through global markets. The port will add storage capacity, construct railroad tracks, and increase efficiency.

Impact of New IMO ECA Regulations

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has mandated under new Emission Control Area regulations that by 2020, all merchant vessels must reduce their sulfur emissions from 3.5% to 0.5%.

Whether they install scrubbers, build new vessels, or use higher-quality fuel, carriers will need to make significant changes to comply with the new regulations, and those changes will come at a cost to shippers. Freight rates may climb between now and 2020 as a result.

For an in-depth look at the regulation and how to prepare, read our blog post: IMO 2020: What Shippers Need to Know Now

Air Freight Market Updates

Atlanta and Amsterdam Airports Sign Collaborative Agreement

Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport and Amsterdam’s Airport Schipol have signed a collaborative agreement to promote trade and investment between the two cities by “fostering data exchanges to improve end-to-end planning and capacity optimization.” The partnership will help promote Atlanta as a gateway to the U.S. Southeast, and Amsterdam as a gateway to Europe.

Customs and Trade Updates

*New Section 232 Exclusion Portal *

Importers whose goods are subject to Section 232 duties who want to file an objection, rebuttal, or product exclusion request will have to do so through a new portal. The Department of Commerce will roll out a new portal to handle all requests related to Section 232 on June 13th. The DOC has posted a user guide for the new portal.

For a roundup of tariff-related news and the latest on the Mexico tariffs, read our Tariff Insider.

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