The traditional pre-Chinese New Year sea freight demand spike, failed to materialise this year, with high inflation and the threat of recession suppressing consumer demand, with the container shipping lines blanking close to 30% of planned sailings and cargo being rolled at Asia origins.
As part of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, which came into effect on the 21st June 2022, importers must submit China postal codes from the 18th March 2023, to prove that goods have not come from the Uyghur region.
The main change for the supply chain industry in the two weeks since our last update has been the continued downgrading of COVID-19 handling, with major China cities now lifting controls, which will further simplify logistics, transport and shipping operations.
It has almost become traditional for shipping lines to blank sailings in the demand lull after China’s Golden Week holidays, but the carriers blanked sailings have been mitigated by easing European port congestion.
Last week The Loadstar shared a prominent story – ‘Another blow for Hong Kong, as cross-border trucking comes under pressure again’ – which is likely to have raised the concerns of more than a few shippers, trading in the region. Unnecessarily, we think.
Our June freight market report provides a multi-modal situation review and Asia round-up, together with international freight updates and supply chain insights, to aid your decision making in the weeks ahead.
The severe lockdown, which has been in place for more than two months may finally be coming to a gradual end, with some public transport and other services already resuming and the 1st June the target date for lifting lockdown.
All China ports are operating, while facing a variety of local COVID control measures and the prospect of lockdown with short notice. Some critical road infrastructure is not available and strict rules for the testing of drivers is limiting transport capacity in many areas, impacting operations and adding to costs in many regions.
We are working closely with our local offices to help shippers avoid weeks of disruption after Shanghai entered nine days of COVID lockdown yesterday.
As China’s latest COVID peak continues to impact supply chains and transportation infrastructure, Hong Kong will lift flight suspensions on nine countries from the 1st April and Shenzen has ended its seven day lockdown, but a nine-day lockdown has been imposed in Shanghai and people told to work from home, because of a massive surge in new infections.