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Maersk unveils low-sulphur surcharge, but customers of other carriers must wait
However, with less than six months until the deadline, most other major ocean carriers trading within ECA zones seem unprepared for a big hike in their fuel bills.
It appears that only Maersk and Germany’s Hapag-Lloyd have announced an intention to recover the extra cost of the low-sulphur fuel – currently at $900 per tonne it is around 50% more expensive than heavy fuel oil.
Maersk Line estimates that it will purchase 650,000 tonnes of low-sulphur marine gas oil (LSMGO) a year for its fleet, equal to 7% of its annual bunker fuel requirement, at an additional cost of around $250m. Hapag-Lloyd says it faces a similar bill.
However, unlike Maersk, Hapag-Lloyd has not indicated the level of its ECA surcharge, telling its customers they will be informed in a “timely manner”.
Carriers do not have a good track record of explaining surcharges to customers, and the timing of announcement and implementation can also cause confusion and irritation. In fact, in regard to general rate increases, several thousand dollars of GRIs announced this year have been eroded within weeks of their implementation dates, thereby denting carriers’ credibility.
And there is another problem for the embattled carriers hoping to recover the extra cost of the low-sulphur fuel – shippers will point to the already considerable fuel savings that container lines have achieved as a result of slow- and super-slow-steaming.
The major argument from shippers on slow-steaming is that it is done without any form of consultation with the customer, leaving shippers to build expensive bigger inventories to compensate for much longer transit times.
Interestingly, feeder ships transhipping export and import cargo at hub ports in the Channel, North Sea and Baltic Sea must burn the 0.1% sulphur content fuel from next year, while feeders operating in the Irish Sea and serving ports on the UK’s west coast and won’t be subject to the tougher regulations.
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Other news in this sector:
- 2014-07-31 Extend shipping distances for perishables
- 2014-07-30 Philippine Ports Authority plans to privatize 3 ports in Mindanao
- 2014-07-30 Maersk unveils low-sulphur surcharge, but customers of other carriers must wait
- 2014-07-30 Port of Antwerp handled up to 98,229,046 tonnes in H1 2014
- 2014-07-29 Qatar Air aims to be among top five cargo operators
- 2014-07-29 "Limited availability of reefers will lead to greater shortage of equipment"
- 2014-07-28 Chile's CCNI and Hamburg Sud ink preliminary merger deal
- 2014-07-28 New route for South American citrus, grapes and blueberries to the U.S.
- 2014-07-28 Israel: “Beauty of vegetables” opens new logistics centre
- 2014-07-25 CEO at Easyfresh and expert in global reefer logistics
- 2014-07-24 Ability to scan cargo on moving trains with no loss of security
- 2014-07-23 Peru: Ecuador's restrictions affect exporters
- 2014-07-22 Tilbury wins CMA CGM North Europe-Med service to meet demand
- 2014-07-22 New freight train from China through 5 countries in Central Asia
- 2014-07-21 Triple-E ships boost Maersk’s Asia–North Europe capacity by 15%
- 2014-07-21 Oman International Container Terminal enhances capabilities at Sohar Port
- 2014-07-21 Affordable cold chain solutions to protect valuable assets
- 2014-07-18 Maersk Line: Additional ECA surcharge will be $50 to $150 per FEU
- 2014-07-17 Building a fresh-produce gateway through South Florida ports
- 2014-07-16 New CHEP pallet hits Germany