2017 Shipping Predictions & December News You Might Have Missed

Future of Shipping

As we move into 2017, our team has thought a lot about what this year will mean for the shipping industry. We discuss our five predictions in our latest blog. Check it out to find out what we anticipate will happen to terminals, liners, consumers, and more.

Terminal operators face “a perfect storm”, according to World Cargo News, as rising costs and pricing pressure continue into 2017. Furthermore, idle ships have doubled over the last year, indicating overcapacity. Will future demand for chartered tonnage justify parking idle ships or should they be scrapped?

We should prepare for “Shipping 4.0” and the reality of unmanned ships. It’s not a matter of if, but when. Another future shipping prediction according to Lars Jensen, CEO of SeaIntelligence, is a “world where there are no secrets in the supply chain.” Stakeholders demand transparency.

What should terminals do in a market characterized by “weak trade growth, massive levels of overcapacity and rising levels of consolidation?” Mohammed Al Muallem, SVP and managing director of DP World might have the answer: “The only way of sustaining what we have and of being in a good position for when times improve, as they will, is to be proactive.”

One way our team believes the shipping industry can be proactive is by moving operations into the cloud. Read about the many benefits this awards terminal ports in our latest blog.

Mergers & Acquisitions

Maersk is going digital and have been on a hot streak. The line recently launched a mobile app, announced the acquisition of Hamburg Süd, which will give Maersk container capacity of around 3.8 million TEU - 18.6% global capacity share. To the well-capitalized goes the spoils.

There was a lot of news surrounding Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) this month, as first doubts surfaced about any deal. Then HMM agreed to a three-year slot purchase and exchange deal with the 2M alliance but was denied membership of the Vessel Sharing Agreement. This agreement, called the “2M + H Strategic Cooperation” (say that 5x fast), allows Maersk Line and MSC to take over the charter and operation of a number of HMM’s fleets.

The LoadStar conducted an impressive analysis as to whether or not CMA CGM can stay afloat after the Neptune Orient Line (NOL) acquisition. Will it mean an IPO for the company? The publication also discusses Zim’s announcement of a “standalone” restructuring of its transpacific service from April after the recent combined service deal on the North Atlantic with the Alliance.

And finally, the Port of Long Beach’s largest terminal will see new cargo business after the Harbor Commission approved an agreement that sees MSC replacing bankrupt Hanjin. We are big fans of “The Green Port”. Dr. Noel Hacegaba’s, their Chief Commercial Officer, wrote a great article on POLB’s strategic efforts.

Signs of Shipping Growth

Though we’re still well into the shipping crisis, there were signs of growth this month. Megaships helped North Charleston container terminal increase containerized cargo by 6.4% in November.

We also saw Rolls-Royce throw their hat into the shipping ring. Jay McFadyen, Rolls-Royce Senior Vice President for Ship Intelligence, explains what the company is up to and how they plan to expand shipping intelligence.

The Panama Canal saw its largest capacity vessel yet. The Valparaiso Express (10,589 TEU neo-panamax containership) went through the expanded locks mid-December.

The United Nations Conference on Trade And Development’s port data project is gathering steam with 13 new ports signing on in November, bringing the grand total to 42 participating ports from around the world. Port data will continually be aggregated to help port operators assess operations and work better. Collaboration is always a major key.

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Guille Carlos

Guille is the founder of Octopi: a modern, web-based Terminal Operating System (TOS). He is constantly trying to simplify processes and uses data to truly understand customer needs.

Miami, FL