Weekly Market Updates

Zencargo Market Update: 20th June

Jun 20, 2022

In focus: Ocean carriers increase flexibility in their schedules

There are currently not enough containerships to fully staff all regular liner services, with 14 deep liner services missing half of the number of ships required to guarantee a fixed weekly sailing frequency. 

To counter this problem for shippers, carriers are providing alternatives by adding extra ad hoc calls on other loops or deploying ships with flexible routings. Although flexible, this doesn’t mean that ships are regular on certain routes. 

For example, the Ocean Alliance Far -East to Middle East ‘MEA3’ service is the biggest ‘ghost’ service without any ships assigned. The 17,292 TEU RAFFLES completed a last round voyage for this loop in April. 

Businesses should speak with their freight forwarding partners to understand whether their routes will be affected by these flexible schedules. 




  • China’s port congestion is easing as the backlog of vessels accumulated during the lockdown period is under more control
    • Despite another round of mass testing in Shanghai, ports are operating as usual.
    • The majority of cities outside of Shanghai are accepting entry of trucks and drivers provided they produce a negative Covid test.
    • Although volumes of exports are increasing from China, this has not caused a surge of into Western ports as of yet. 


Central China to USA and Europe

  • From SHA to the USA and Europe, many flights have been cancelled this week. 
    • Capacity is therefore a little tight this week.
    • Please book space as early as possible.
    • However, PVG Airport operations are improving. Operations such as customs entry and inland transportation will be back to normal service within the one to two weeks. 
  • This week, rates from NGB Airport to the USA and Europe have increased.
    • Final rates depend on a case-by-case basis. 

North China to USA and Europe

  • From TSN to Europe and the USA, Korean Air or Asiana Airlines are available to provide space for any urgent bookings. 
    • Rates are stable to both the USA and Europe. 
    • Trucking has resumed to its normal services as Covid-19 has eased in the TSN area.
    • Operations at TSN terminals are expected to run more smoothly compared to previous weeks. 
  • Rates remain the same level as last week from PEK to Europe and the USA.
    • COVID restrictions continue to be tight; capacity and airport handling processes have longer operational lead times. 
    • Truckers are limited for cross-city services. 
  • Please work with your freight forwarding partners to reconfirm rates and space 4 to 5 days in advance. 

South China to USA and Europe

  • From CAN to Europe and the USA, the market is calm. 
    • Shipments need to be checked with carriers on a case-by case basis. 
  • From SZX Airport, the rate is stable to the US but has decreased to Europe. 
  • From XMN Airport, rates have decreased this week to Europe but have kept the same for the USA. 
    • All shipments need to be checked on a case-by-case basis. 


  • Despite inflation, US ports still expect a strong peak season. 
    • The Port of Los Angeles Executive Director, Gene Seroka has commented that peak season cargo is on the way with arrivals beginning at the end of this month.
    • Seroka has commented that the ‘imports remain high coming from Asia to Los Angeles’.
  • Southern California’s ship queue is getting shorter. 
    • There were 27 container vessels waiting for berths in the Port of LA and Long Beach last Tuesday. 
    • This is a significant decrease compared to 109 containerships waiting in January. 
  • Rail dwell times have increased in recent weeks. 
    • This has been attributed to insufficient locomotives, rail cars and crews.
    • There is a worsening shortage of chassis and importers are being blamed for holding onto containers on chassis as supplemental storage space while their warehouses are full. 


  • The Port of Antwerp-Bruges is preparing for another strike.
    • This comes as the Belgian port is suffering from high congestion.
    • Trade unions have demanded better pay, better social dialogue and investment in the public sector. 
    • Hapag-Lloyd suspended barge services in the city this month on the back of growing terminal congestion. 
    • Barge operator Contargo, have stated that wait times have increased to 46 hours as of 9th June compared to 33 hours at the end of May. 
United Kingdom


  • Maersk has changed its strategy to ease congestion at North European ports. 
    • The carrier is looking to overland containers from the Far East at less-congested North European ports.
    • Maersk is also evacuating long-stay imports to off-dock storage facilities.
    • The carrier’s Bremerhaven hub has reached ‘critical level’, impacting yard density and waiting times at the port. 
    • At Hamburg, Maersk said that yard density remained ‘challengingly high’ and noted the industrial action at the port about wage negotiations. 


  • Rail strikes in the UK threaten to cause traffic delays as more people switch to road transport.
    • The strike is set to happen on 21st, 23rd and 25th June as thousands of workers are expected to walk out during the week.
    • More than a third of train journeys are taken by commuters so road traffic increase is likely.
  • Protestors plan to block bridges over increasing fuel costs
    • The M4 and M48 bridges over the River Severn are at risk of being blocked on 4th July.
    • The protests campaigns to draw attention to rising fuel prices and the impact the hikes in cost are having on people’s lives. 
  • The UK Government unveiled a multi-million pound new plan to create a more sustainable haulage sector as part of the Future of Freight plan.
    • The £7 million investment will aim to boost innovative technology to help decarbonise and digitalise the haulage sector. 
    • It will support businesses to operate efficiently and get their goods delivered on-time at a reasonable cost. 
  • High speed railway line planned from Istanbul to Bulgaria. 
    • The Halkalı – Kapikule project, which is scheduled to be completed this year, will reduce the journey from Istanbul to the Bulgarian border to 3.5 hours.
    • The project will enable the movement of trains at a speed of 200kmph. The railway lines are there to boost rail freight traffic as much as passenger movement. 

European Bank Holidays

We anticipate a shortage of availability and the occurrence of delays around the bank holiday periods. Plan ahead and allow extra time for your products to be delivered.

June 22nd – HR

June 23rd – EE, LU, LV

June 24th – EE, LT, LV

June 25th – FI, HR, SE, SI

June 28th – UA

June 29th – CH


July 3rd – BY

July 5th – CZ, SK

July 6th – CZ, LT

July 10th – TR

July 11th – TR

July 12th – Northern Ireland, TR

July 13th – ME, TR

July 14th – FR, ME

July 21st – BE

*Not in all regions




The route ahead

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