World waits for Ukrainian grain exports to start moving

As the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, observed the loading of Ukrainian grain onto a bulk carrier at the Chornomorsk Sea Trade Port hopes were high that exports could soon start moving.

“The first vessel, the first ship is being loaded since the beginning of the war,” said President Zelensky. “This is a Turkish vessel. This shows that the port has started working.”

According to President Zelensky, the export of grain will begin with the departure of several ships that were loaded but...

Grain export agreement could see 65% of Ukraine’s seaborne capacity reopen

Ukrainian grain exports

There are at least a few hopeful signs that seaborne exports of Ukrainian grain could resume within days. Under a deal brokered by Turkey on July 22, bulkers will be escorted to the ports through a safe corridor. To create a navigable passage, the corridor will have to have sea mines cleared, a process that is expected to take one to two weeks.

The BBC today quoted Ukraine as saying work has started at three ports, aimed at forming “green corridors” to allow grain exports. Presumably that work...

How small, midsize carriers can protect their businesses as market shifts

Rear of trucks on highway

Capacity is loosening and spot rates have dropped steadily over the past few months, shifting the pricing power from carriers to shippers. This shift comes after two years of constricted capacity and soaring volumes that allowed carriers to benefit from sky-high spot rates.

A slight decrease in consumer demand has played a role in this market turn, but last year’s contract rate increases also have fueled it. FreightWaves research analyst Michael Rudolph recently explored how rising contract...

Can U.S. LNG exports meet European demand?

U.S. LNG exports

As the EU seeks to wean itself from dependency on Russian natural gas, U.S. LNG exporters have been major beneficiaries. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) says that United States became the world’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) exporter during the first half of 2022. Most U.S. LNG exports went to the EU and the U.K. during the first five months of this year, accounting for 71%, or 8.2 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d), of the total U.S. LNG exports. The U.S. provided 47%...

CIT provides $80 million to refinance 2 box ships

CIT, a division of First Citizens Bank, today announced that its Maritime Finance business provided $80 million to refinance two Korean-built containerships operated by Seamax Capital. Founded in 2012 to make investments in the transportation sector, Seamax currently operates a fleet of 12 modern, post-Panamax containerships totaling over 100,000 TEU of container capacity. The fleet is deployed in major trade lanes and provides the world’s top shipping lines with over 1.2 million deadweight...

Shorter RFPs gain ground as market softens

A white semi-truck is traveling down a road with a blue sky in the background.

After years of soaring rates and strained capacity, shippers have been buoyed by a softening market over the past few months. As capacity loosens up and spot rates fall, shippers and carriers alike are taking a look at their contracts. While carriers are hoping to lock in new annual rates before they dip even lower, shippers may be interested in evaluating shorter-term options that allow them to take advantage of future market shifts. 

“For the first time in more than 3 years, the market is more...

UNCTAD: Ukraine war raises global shipping costs, stifles trade

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is stifling the trade and logistics of Ukraine and the Black Sea region, increasing global vessel demand and the cost of shipping around the world.

In a report entitled “Maritime trade disrupted: The war in Ukraine and its effects on maritime trade logistics” published June 28, the UN’s trade and development agency, UNCTAD, says that Ukraine’s trading partners now have to turn to other countries for the commodities they import.

It attributes the shipping and...

Carnival quarterly update gives cruise share prices a boost

Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL;NYSE: CUK), the world’s largest cruise company, today released its second quarter business update and though there was plenty of red ink splashing around, investors liked the rest of what Carnival had to say enough to give the company’s stock a boost that saw the company’s share up by over 11% as of 2.30 p.m. today.

Other cruise shares also went up in Carnival’s slipstream, with both Norwegian Cruise Lines Holdings (NYSE: NCLH) and Royal Caribbean...

Maersk reports “best earnings quarter ever”

A.P. Moller – Maersk (Maersk)may no longer be quite the world’s largest operator of containerships, but it continues to be a money machine, reporting record results for first quarter 2022 across all its businesses. Revenue was up 55% to $19.3 billion, EBITDA more than doubled to $9.1 billion and free cash flow increased to $6 billion.

“In Q1 we delivered the best earnings quarter ever in A.P. Moller – Maersk with growth across Ocean, Logistics and Terminals,” said CEO Søren Skou. “The increased...

Descartes Releases April Report on Global Shipping Crisis: Record Import Volumes but Reduced Port Congestion

ATLANTA, Georgia – Descartes Systems Group (Nasdaq: DSGX) (TSX:DSG), the global leader in uniting logistics-intensive businesses in commerce, released its April report on the ongoing global shipping crisis and analysis for logistics and supply chain professionals. The report shows stronger U.S. ocean container import volumes in March, but reduced wait times at top U.S. ports. However, China’s COVID lockdowns combined with recent geopolitical conflict suggest there may be continuing levels of...

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