Author Name: Dion Suen

The global container shipping market is difficult to find a ship, even a container. The mainstream shipping companies have booked space until late December, and it is predicted that high freight rates will continue until around the Spring Festival. High freight rates and high volumes will drive the explosive growth of shipping companies in the fourth quarter.

The price of the container shipping market has continued to run at a high level recently. On November 13, the latest Shanghai Export Containerized Freight Index (SCFI) released by the Shanghai Shipping Exchange was 1857.33 points, an increase of 11.6% over the previous period. The SCFI index has hit a new high since the 2008 financial crisis.

Recently, the epidemic in Europe and the United States has rebounded sharply. Import demand for daily necessities has been strong, market volume has risen, and container supply has been tight. Spot market freight rates have risen sharply, driving the comprehensive freight index to rise.

According to data from the China Ports Association, China’s foreign trade imports and exports have continued to improve recently, especially exports have further accelerated. In early November, the container throughput of the eight major hub ports increased by 13.1% year-on-year, an increase of 6 percentage points from the previous period. The foreign trade container throughput of the eight hub ports increased by 11.5% year-on-year, and the domestic trade increased by 18.3% year-on-year, both significantly faster than the previous period. In terms of subregions, the Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta regions have seen strong growth in foreign trade business, with Shanghai, Ningbo, Guangzhou and Shenzhen growing at over 10%. Among them, the growth rate of Ningbo Zhoushan Port reached 33%.

Regarding the reasons for the recent boom in the shipping market, on the one hand, due to the global epidemic, demand was suppressed in the first half of the year, and many merchants had the need to replenish inventory; on the other hand, a large number of epidemic prevention materials were exported, and the demand for home shopping in overseas markets increased. In addition, the poor turnover of shipping containers further pushed up freight rates.


Jack Wan