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Maersk injects additional vessels into Asia – Europe services

Maersk has announced changes to its Asia – Europe network aiming to improve the reliability of its services and enhance their fuel efficiency.

As of week 23, Maersk has decided to inject one vessel into each of the AE5, AE10, AE7, AE55, AE11, AE12, AE15 services and two vessels into the AE6 service.

“The added vessels will allow us to reduce speeds providing needed buffer to absorb schedule challenges, improving reliability, and decreasing the risk of void sailings,” said Maersk in a statement. The speed reductions are also expected to reduce emissions significantly, according to the ocean carrier.

The aforementioned changes announced by the Danish shipping company are anticipated to have an impact on average transit times. Maersk noted that the average transit time from Asia to North Europe will be increased by three days, from Asia to the Mediterranean by two days, from North Europe to Asia by three days and from the Mediterranean to Asia by three days.

Source: Container News


Maersk adds new weekly rail service in India

A.P. Moller – Maersk has announced another weekly, dedicated rail service, the ‘Pratigya Express’, from Sonipat Inland Container Depot (ICD) in National Capital Region (NCR) to APM Terminals Pipavav Port on the western coast of India in Gujarat.

Maersk’s new ‘Pratigya Express’ service on the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor (DFC) will move 90 TEUs every week.

“The NCR is abundant with retail and rice exporters who need a regular connection from their manufacturing facilities to the consumers in the western market,” commented major Jyoti Joshi Mitter, head of rail at Maersk India.

He added, “Through our dialogues with our customers, we realised that they faced two challenges – either they don’t have a fixed schedule for departure from Sonipat ICD, and once they get it, they do not necessarily make it to the right vessel connection at the port.”

According to Maersk, the ‘Pratigya Express’ will move cargo from Sonipat ICD to APM Terminals Pipavav Port with a transit time of two and half days.

Also, from there, the cargo will have the option to connect on services such as the Shaheen Express, which will be launched in the coming days, or the MECL. Both of these services will then be able to take the cargo to the Middle Eastern or European markets.

Source: Container News


Maersk announces new service to connect India–UAE–Saudi Arabia corridor

A.P. Moller – Maersk has announced the launch of a new ocean shipping service, ‘Shaheen Express’, which started the previous week.

The new service will rotate between Mundra, Pipavav, Jebel Ali, Dammam, and Jebel Ali and back to Mundra, connecting India, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia.

With the new service, Maersk aims to address the rising demand in the trade between the Indian and the Gulf markets. The ‘Shaheen Express’ will include two vessels with a nominal capacity of 1,700 TEUs per week.

India-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) entered into force in May 2022, which is steadily boosting the volumes of trade between the two countries.

The main commodities moving between these two countries that will benefit from the increased capacity include FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) such as electronics, perishables such as foodstuff, retail goods including textile and apparel, and chemicals.

“The markets have started stabilising, and the ocean networks are normalising after over two years of disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. During this time, not only did we strive hard to ensure we addressed all our customers’ challenges, but we also got a chance to look ahead and understand what their requirements would be in the future,” commented Bhavan Vempati, head of regional ocean management, Maersk West & Central Asia.

Source: Container News


Maersk opens specialised warehouse for electric car batteries in Europe

A.P. Moller – Maersk has established a new warehouse specialised in handling batteries for electric cars in the northern part of the Czech Republic.

The Danish company aims to expand its logistics network in the automotive industry and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) across Central Europe.

Located in Teplice, the new 14,000m² facility is within a short distance of a range of car makers and suppliers in the Czech Republic as well as Eastern and Southern Germany.

Maersk said the batteries can be efficiently delivered by train from the major European ports in Hamburg (Germany), Bremerhaven (Germany), Rotterdam (the Netherlands), Koper (Slovenia), or Rijeka (Croatia). Additionally, thanks to the warehouse’s good connection to the Czech and German motorway networks, the batteries can be distributed from Teplice to the surrounding car production sites within a few hours, according to Maersk.

“We are an experienced and trusted partner in transportation and logistics for automotive customers. Our processes are widely audited and approved by car makers and OEMs. We are thrilled that we are taking the next step now with this special warehouse, offering dedicated services for electric car batteries right in the heart of the Czech and German car maker clusters,” comented Leah Offutt, Maersk Central South Europe managing director.

The warehouse is equipped with thermal monitoring cameras and in-rack sprinklers, while the space will be divided into four independent, fire-resistant compartments.

Furthermore, for repacking, the services offered in the special warehouse include in-depth quality controls and charging of the batteries as well as other value-adding services along automotive supply chains, noted Maersk.

Meanwhile, Maersk is also building a new deep-water terminal in Rijeka, which is scheduled to be inaugurated in 2025. It is expected to increase handling capacity in the Eastern Adriatic and significantly reduce the transit times and thus also CO2 emissions of transports from Asia to Europe and especially to Croatia, the Czech Republic and neighbouring countries.

Two further warehouses for dry cargo were recently opened in Kladno, close to Prague, with 10,000 m² space and Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, with 4,100 m² space. A third 11,700 m² warehouse will be inaugurated in spring 2023 in Rijeka.

Source: Container News


MSC and Maersk accused of abusing container dominance in Brazil

The Brazilian Association of Port Terminals (ABTP) has filled a legal request at the Administrative Economic Defense Council (CADE) of Brazil to investigate the impact of the two largest container lines in the world, MSC and Maersk, on the country’s port market.

ABTP accuses the two container shipping giants of abusing their domination in the box shipping sector in Brazil to give advantages to their own terminals, raising costs and reducing options for the flow of cargo in the country.

ABTP has noted that the two members of the 2M Alliance are responsible for 79% of containers (53% directly and another 26% through commercial agreements) transported along the Brazilian coast. According to them, the control of the flow of cargo is done in such a way that the seven port terminals owned by the two companies would be favored to the detriment of others, even in cases in which other ports are closer to the origin/destination of the cargo.

The terminals that are controlled by MSC and Maersk are three in Santa Catarina and one in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Espírito Santo, and Ceará each and are currently handling approximately 50% of the containerised cargo movement in Brazil.

“The situation should still get worse because the two companies must reach the eighth container terminal, at Estaleiro Atlântico Sul (in Pernambuco),” pointed out Jesualdo Conceição Silva, president of ABTP.

There are 19 other terminals in the country which are not owned by MSC and Maersk and there is a risk of a “generalised crash” if no action will be taken, according to ABTP’s president.

Source: Container News


Maersk stretches cargo airline wings with inaugural US-Korea flight

A.P. Moller – Maersk announced the inaugural flight of Maersk Air Cargo´s new air freight service with scheduled flights between Greenville-Spartanburg, South Carolina (GSP) and Incheon, Korea (ICN).

The scheduled transpacific operation will commence on 31 October with two weekly flights introducing the first of three newly built Boeing 767-300 freighters that have recently been purchased by Maersk Air Cargo.

All US-Korea flights will be operated by Miami-headquartered cargo airline Amerijet International.

“Back in April, we announced the launch of Maersk Air Cargo as our integrated in-house air cargo carrier. With the introduction of this new service between the US and Korea, we have taken the next step in securing logistics solutions for our customers with our own aircrafts. Next to the new scheduled transpacific flights, we also operate own controlled capacity from Europe into the US, Mexico, South Africa, and Singapore,” commented Michel Pozas Lucic, global head of Air & LCL in A.P. Moller – Maersk.

The scheduled flight of Maersk Air Cargo also marks the first scheduled air cargo operation between the state of South Carolina and Asia.

Meanwhile, the Danish company recently opened a new Chicago Air Freight Gateway facility aiming to add more supply chain integration opportunities for customers using Chicago O’Hare International and Rockford International.

Source: Container News


Maersk Air Cargo opens US bases with South Korea service set to debut

Maersk Air Cargo, the in-house airline of container shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk, plans to inaugurate scheduled airfreight service in the U.S. market this month from South Korea to Rockford International Airport in Illinois and Greenville-Spartanburg airport in South Carolina, FreightWaves has learned.

Meanwhile, Maersk has opened a freight station near Chicago O’Hare International Airport to support its aggressive growth plans for air cargo business in the United States, part of a broader transformation into a one-source provider of logistics services.

Maersk said Wednesday it established a 61,000-square-foot cargo terminal near O’Hare to facilitate quicker shipment flows for customers at one of the nation’s largest international air cargo crossroads. The warehouse will also serve as a staging point for Maersk’s dedicated freighter hub at Rockford, about an hour’s drive west of O’Hare.

Acting in the capacity of a freight forwarder, Maersk has designed the Chicago airfreight gateway to offer direct recovery of freight at O’Hare as it comes off the aircraft in pallets or containers. Logistics companies usually collect commercial shipments after they have been processed through a transfer facility operated by an airline’s ground-handling agent but often make arrangements for direct truck collection when full charters loaded with their own freight are involved.

“We want to expand our air freight presence and logistics services in key locations, and [Wednesday’s] Chicago inauguration is an important step in our integrated offering to customers,” said Mike Meierkort, regional head of Maersk North America Logistics and Services, in a news release. “We want to create more routing options and flexibility for customers looking to improve their air cargo supply chains. Our new Chicago Air Freight Gateway offers an integrated supply chain solution to time critical shipments and order fulfillment deadlines.”

The Chicago gateway is a logical step for Maersk as it makes a big push in air cargo and into the U.S. market.

Last summer it took ownership of Senator International, a German forwarder that specializes in managing air shipments, for $644 million. Senator enhanced Maersk’s existing, but limited, air logistics capabilities.

The shipping giant also is expanding its existing cargo airline, called Star Air, to support internal customers rather than only operate as a contract carrier for express delivery companies. Star Air changed its legal name to Maersk Air Cargo and now the airline and airfreight management team function collectively under the Maersk Air Cargo umbrella.

The U.S. Department of Transportation in September issued an amended foreign carrier permit to Maersk’s private airline, allowing it to provide scheduled and charter service between the U.S. and international destinations under its new name.

Maersk Air Cargo operates 15 Boeing 767 freighters, most of them converted passenger aircraft, from hubs in Germany and England. It has an agreement to begin leasing three 767-300 freighters from Ohio-based Air Transport Services Group (ATSG) in the second half of the year. It also has two 777 freighters on order from Boeing.

FreightWaves was first to report that Maersk, without notice, this year bought three production 767 freighters from Boeing when the original customers canceled the deals and is outsourcing their operation to Miami-based Amerijet, which will soon fly them on trans-Pacific routes.

Rockford-Chicago symbiosis

Chicago is strategically important for serving customers because of its central U.S. location and connection point between Asia and Europe.

O’Hare ranks as the second-busiest air cargo gateway in the U.S. — excluding the FedEx and UPS hubs in Tennessee and Kentucky. It benefits from proximity to the manufacturing belt, massive distribution infrastructure and the fact that more than two-thirds of the American population can be reached from Chicago within an overnight truck drive.

A Maersk spokesperson said demand for airfreight service in the Chicago region is high among industrial, chemical, automotive and technology customers.

Senator International last year leased a section of the new cargo terminal at Rockford International Airport (RFD) to handle more dedicated freighters rented from all-cargo operators to avoid congestion at O’Hare. Maersk now controls the facility, which is set up for direct transfer of freight from all-cargo aircraft.

The spokesperson said Maersk Air Cargo planes will arrive and depart at Rockford, which also handles charters provided by third-party carriers. The new gateway in Chicago can feed the freighter operations in Rockford or receive inbound shipments.

The Maersk representative said Maersk Air Cargo will commence U.S. service sometime this month with regular flights between Incheon airport in Korea and Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport (GSP), where Maersk, thanks to the Senator deal, also operates a terminal to support the forwarding business’ charter activity. As previously reported, the airline ran trial flights in August between South Korea and GSP.

On Oct. 31, Maersk will begin flights between Korea and RFD.

The spokesperson said Maersk is exploring the possibility of increasing freighter operations at Rockford airport. At O’Hare airport, Maersk will rely on airline ground handlers to perform plane-to-truck transfers.

No information is available yet on where the aircraft leased from ATSG will operate.

Leveraging air-to-truck transfers
Maersk’s ability to pick up shipments inside O’Hare’s fence will enable more expedited delivery to customers.

Arrangements must be made for roller-bed trucks with special clearances and coordinating with ground handlers.

Maersk’s deconsolidation/consolidation facility has authority to receive imports and exports under a customs bond for deferred clearance away from the port of entry. Import cargo can be ready for delivery within 24 hours of arrival, the company said.

It also is certified by the Transportation Security Administration to screen outbound cargo before being transferred to airlines, which saves time and money compared to airport security.

Source: Freight Waves


Maersk enhances Samba service

Danish box carrier Maersk will add a ninth vessel to the fleet of its weekly North Europe – East Coast of South America “Samba” service in November, while it will also add Tanger Med southbound call to the service’s port rotation.

As a result, nine vessels of 10,500 TEU capacity will be deployed on the Samba service, which will have the following rotation: London-Gateway, Rotterdam, Hamburg, Antwerp, Tanger Med, Santos, Paranagua, Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Paranagua, Santos, Tanger Med, London-Gateway.

The first ship following the extended rotation will be the 10,589 TEU Cap San Antonio, scheduled to sail ex Antwerp on 15 November, while the extra boxship for the “Samba” fleet will be the 10,500 TEU Cap San Tainaro.

The extension of the round trip time will not lead to the reinstatement of calls at Itapoa or Le Havre, according to a statement.

It is important to note that french ocean carrier CMA CGM and Chinese box line COSCO Shipping Lines are co-loading on the “Samba” service using “Safran” and “ESE” brand names, respectively.

“The changes are intended to restore the reliability in East Coast South America & North Europe and deliver higher level of predictability of your cargo delivery, while providing improved product offerings from Mediterranean & Middle East to East Coast South America,” said Maersk in a customer advisory.


Traffic restrictions cause congestion concerns for carriers at Nhava Sheva

Maersk Line has reported a slowdown in truck flows in/out of India’s Nhava Sheva Port/JNPT as a result of new traffic restrictions imposed by local authorities.

“Traffic Police have issued a notice on movements of heavy vehicles from Nhava Sheva CFS [container freight station]/yard,” the carrier said in a customer advisory. “Heavy vehicle movement from JNPT area is, therefore, leading to traffic congestion. All these restrictions are beyond our control and this may lead to delays.”

The carrier has called on cargo interests to plan their shipments in advance to avert cargo gate-in delays/roll-overs.

Historically, the bulk of containerised freight passing through terminals in Nhava Sheva is handled by road.

The port saw its highest monthly volume in the current fiscal year last month, handling some 503,500 TEU, up 16% year over year, according to the latest data.

As volumes expand, terminal stakeholders are showing greater interest in opening new rail connections. PSA Mumbai, also known as Bharat Mumbai Container Terminals (BMCT), recently secured two dedicated freight trains from a private rail operator for round-trip operations between Nhava Sheva and ICD Faridabad [inland container depot], targeting newsprint cargo that had traditionally moved via Mundra Port.

PSA has also added final-mile delivery service to the designated warehouse under this arrangement, contracted on a merchant haulage basis, versus liner haulage at Mundra.

According to port sources, average transit times from Nhava Sheva to North India are pegged at two days, versus four days from Mundra.

With a round-trip solution, sources noted that importers have an opportunity to reposition empty boxes back to storage yards in Nhava Sheva. This type of cargo is generally handled through direct port delivery (DPD) bookings, a fast-track clearance mode meant to improve dwell time levels.

“It’s a long-term business and a sustainable solution for the major newsprint importer,” an official told Container News. “We are also in discussions with other newsprint customers.”

Stakeholders are also hoping to see greater truck-to-train freight conversions with the soon-to-be completed dedicated freight corridor (DFC) connectivity.  The Western DFC is a 1,504-kilometer broad-gauge freight only network between Dadri ICD, a busy inland location in Uttar Pradesh, and Nhava Sheva.

The port has also begun operating freight trains loaded with “dwarf containers,” albeit on a limited schedule, to expand the intermodal leg in the supply chain. Dwarf containers are relatively shorter than conventional standard equipment, thereby helping attain higher payloads and consequent inland cost advantages for cargo owners.

Source: Container News


Maersk upgrades full-year profit outlook

A.P. Møller – Mærsk has announced that its financial results for the second quarter of 2022 are ahead of its previous expectations.

The Danish container line reported a revenue of US$21.7 billion, an underlying EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation) of US$10.3 billion and an underlying EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) of US$8.9 billion.

“The strong result is driven by the continuation of the exceptional market situation within Ocean,” said Maersk, which pointed out that high freight rates have remained longer than expected due to port congestion issues in key markets worldwide.

Consequently, the company’s full-year guidance for 2022 has been revised upwards with underlying EBITDA now expected to be around US$37 billion and underlying EBIT expected around US$31 billion, both increased by US$7 billion compared with the previous expectations.

The free cash flow (FCF) for the full-year 2022 is now expected to be above US$24 billion, while the cumulative CAPEX (capital expenditure) guidance for 2022-23 is unchanged at US$9-10 billion.

Maersk, which will publish its second-quarter results tomorrow (3 August), noted that 2022 guidance is currently based on an expected gradual normalisation in its ocean sector in the fourth quarter of the year.

Source: Container News