Ocean and Key Ports Update
While all primary Gateway and Hub Port operations across Europe have normalised, our teams continue to work on additional measures to improve delivery to customers. As weather is expected to deteriorate across the region and potentially cause delays, our teams have factored those delays into forward plans. See how our teams prepare for and evaluate the impact of weather on operations.
In Rotterdam, Collective Labour Agreement (CLA) negotiations are taking place at APMT Maasvlakte II and Star Depot terminals. At APMT Maasvlakte II, negotiations remain ongoing, with the next round scheduled for 26 January. Our teams continue to monitor the situation and remain in contact with parties involved. For latest developments, please visit our advisory page. Likewise, CLA negotiations remain ongoing at Star Depot and to ensure continuity for reefer customers, our teams have put contingency plans in place, including diversions to Rotterdam Delta II terminal.
Due to the easing Covid-19 restrictions in China, terminals are facing congestions, which is causing delays for vessels coming into Europe. At the moment, we are expecting delays of around 2-4 days for vessels travelling from Asia to North Europe and 3-5 days for those travelling from Asia to the Mediterranean. We will keep our customers informed of any delays through advisories on vessel level.
In line with standard seasonal practices, Maersk has adjusted its network and schedules to complement stabilising demand for ocean services. This will limit weekly ad-hoc adjustments and provide customers with more supply chain predictability in the coming weeks. Please click here to check the latest schedules.
For cargo travelling out of Europe, we are seeing delays and possible gaps in export coverage to Cape Town, due to congestion and strong winds at destination. In our efforts to keep customer impact to a minimum, replacement coverage plans are under construction.
Our teams continue to monitor the situation across the terminals in Europe and making the necessary adjustments in the interest of keeping our customers’ supply chains moving. To help maintain terminal operations at a feasible level, we kindly request customers to please continue picking up full import containers or requesting dispatch as swiftly as possible after discharge. For latest updates on your cargo, sign up for ETA notifications here.
Air Freight Update
High inflation rates across Europe are continuing to impact the air freight market, both in terms of consumer spending and jet fuel prices. The Chinese New Year slowdown traditionally slows air freight demand, too, however with Covid restrictions lifting in China and the national holidays potentially causing delays to the ocean network, air freight can once again be called upon as alternative transport.
Jet fuel prices continued to stabilise in December 2022, however oil inventories are forecasted to increase once again in the second half of 2023. We will keep customers informed of any developments within the market as soon as possible.
Maersk Air Freight will continue use its own controlled network to keep supply chains moving fast and effectively when needed.
For more information on our air network and expansion, click here.
Inland services across Europe are operating stably in the early part of 2023. Inventory levels across European warehouses remain at high levels, however, and the need for temporary storage is increasing the inland flow of goods.
We encourage all customers to continue planning ahead and booking services in good time to keep their supply chain moving efficiently.
Elsewhere, the wave of rail strikes across the United Kingdom came to an end in early January, but negotiations are yet to be concluded and could make for further strike action at short notice.
Stay up to date with our advisory page for the latest information as it happens across the network.
Our teams will keep analysing the market situation and make necessary changes in order to minimise any impact on customers.
For more information on inland services, click here.
For ecommerce businesses across Europe, there remains concern surrounding inflationary pressure in the last-mile market.
By using multiple last mile carriers per destination, and having the flexibility to switch carriers swiftly, both technologically and physically, brands can reduce inflationary cost pressure on their last-mile strategy.
On the consumer side, in part due to delays, there is now a stronger preference for alternative delivery options, such as PUDOs, click and collect and parcel lockers. Ensuring they have the right last-mile carrier and option setup will allow brands to drive up their Net Promoter Score (NPS), which directly impacts conversion and retention in online sales.
The same is true for brands delivering to multiple destinations, where using local last-mile carriers can not only help increase their NPS, but also drive down costs as local last-mile rates are generally lower than rates of pan-European integrators.
With sales going down or stabilising across the region, brands are looking for growth beyond their home markets. Having access to the right local last-mile carrier setup is key for success. To support our customers in this process, Maersk E-Delivery now provides customs clearance directly to Ireland and a competitive transit time from UK and other non-EU countries to the Irish market.
To learn more, head to the E-Delivery portal here.
In 2023, we expect to see an increased focus on digitalisation, climate action such as the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM), green customs and collaborations between the likes of the EU and USA to facilitate trade and develop global standards on technology and security.
From 1st January 2023, the latest version of the EU’s Combined Nomenclature (CN) came into force. In 2022, the World Customs Organisation made extensive changes to the Harmonised System. Updates require attention and diligence – and you can save time and cost by staying updated using the correct commodity codes. Complementary amendments to the HS Nomenclature 2022 edition have also come into force from 1st January. Click here to learn more.
From 11th January 2023, the EU control list of dual-use items was updated, including new entries in the electronics, semiconductors, and computers field. In the chemical and biological sector, the updated list includes software specially designed for nucleic acid assemblers and synthesisers.
Under the category of aerospace and propulsion, the addition of sub-orbital crafts and specific technology for the manufacturing of gas turbines (pressure gain combustion) stands out. Learn more about the changes here.
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