Poised by growing imports from Asia, the Transpacific Stabilisation Agreement (TSA) group has called for an increase of Asia-U.S. freight rates by at least $600 per 40-foot container (FEU) with effect from Aug. 1.
Freight rate levels fell substantially in 2013 due to an overall overcapacity in the market.
“It is essential for the trade to have a rate structure that encourages reinvestment, attracts equipment back into the market, covers rising inland transport and cargo handling costs, and enables carriers to broaden their service offerings. Given current rate levels, TSA members believe that $600 per-FEU is the minimum needed to meet those objectives,” said TSA executive administrator Brian Conrad in a statement.
TSA container group is comprised of 15 companies, those being APL, China Shipping Container Lines, CMA-CGM, COSCO Container Lines, Evergreen Line, Hanjin Shipping, Hapag-Lloyd, MSC, K Line, Hyundai Merchant Marine, Maersk, N.Y.K Line, Orient Overseas Container Line, Yangming Marine Transport, and Zim.
The call for boosting rates, comes as US container ports expect to reach a total of 1.5 million containers this month, the highest monthly volume in at least five years.
The hike is an immediate result of the ongoing West Coast longshoremen contract talks that triggered a trend of unusually high import levels that began this spring.
World Maritime News Staff; July 17th, 2014