Ocean Freight for most trade lanes out of China has been very high , especially for the China to Europe/USA/Africa trades, however, according to our agents in China the trade lanes to Australia are not as congested and rates are far more stable. Carriers do expect further equipment shortages by the end of May and with this may come higher Ocean Freight rates. Some carriers have again started to arrange blank sailings with reduced space capacity by using smaller vessels. These ploys are creating an artificial market rather than actual booking growth.
Whilst there has been a steady increase in May bookings, it’s too early to predict that our Peak Season has already started. Some carriers are predicting O/F increases ranging between USD 300/20’ and USD 600/40’. Whilst these early forecasts are normal, it remains to be seen if carriers actually go ahead and implement such increases.
Some shippers have already started shipping their Christmas bookings. Some lines are starting to reject bookings to Sydney favouring destinations ports like Melbourne and Brisbane due to congestion in Sydney.
We are in contact communications with our Chinese partners and will keep you updated as more information comes to hand.