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With further attacks taking place in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, Shipping Lines are continuing to follow the alternative route around the Cape of Good Hope. Port congestion and equipment shortages are now starting to bite, impacting both departure and arrival dates on a regular basis.

Shipping costs remain at a significantly increased rate.

Port Congestion:

As previously anticipated, our Agents are now advising of port congestion here in the UK, resulting in delays to planned docking dates.

Congestion is also building in Asia as we approach Chinese New Year holidays. Shortages of empty containers in China is restricting the flow of product, with many bookings rolling from vessel to vessel.

Chinese New Year Holidays:

January is traditionally a busy time with high demand as manufacturers look to release product ahead of the holidays. With stock accumulating at ports awaiting container availability, we now feel that as of today it’s unlikely that new bookings will sail prior to customs closures.

We understand that sailings will resume after the holidays from around 27th February 2024, with congestion likely to continue into March. Taking into consideration the extended sailing time, we estimate that shipments departing China and Hong Kong after the holidays are likely to dock in the UK in May. Shipments departing from the Philippines are expected to dock in the UK from early June.

The situation continues to evolve and we will endeavour to provide regular updates. Please contact our Sales Team on +44 20 8855 0991 if you have any questions or concerns or require updated pricing ahead of releasing new order coverage.