The world wide economic climate resulting in lacking consumer confidence has meant that orders for consumer goods are falling below expectations, and ships are sailing below capacity. Carriers on the Asia-US container lines usually introduce surcharges around mid-June. But this year, the surcharges have been delayed because the main routes have excess shipping capacity.
The container lines usually agree on the level of surcharges, but this does not mean that the individual carriers will actually impose the charges. Most container shipping lines have seen a reduction in earnings this year, and rates on the Asia to USA routes have fallen by 21%, according to the Shanghai Containerised Freight Index.
The General Manager of Shenzhen Continents International Forwarding Co, said “Containerships to the US west coast are not filling up, which leaves shipping companies with few bargaining chips for imposing surcharges,”