COVID-19 Crisis: Shipping & Trade Recovery will be Uneven

first_imgSea News File Photo Sharing his views with Sea News on the impact of COVID-19 on shipping sector, Dr Braun said that the carriers are doing a noble job trying to adjust to a quickly-changing situation. But will still face losses into the billions in 2020, he cautioned. “We notice that authorities have a focus on the importance of the globalsupply chains and remain committed to our role in ensuring stable deliveries ofgoods for our customers and assisting them in managing their supply chains. Wecontinue to monitor the situation in order to quickly adapt our network to newdevelopment,” Maersk added. The recovery will be uneven, with essential sectors such as food and pharmaceuticals faring better than discretionary goods Sea News Feature, April 14 “But because container availability and shipping schedules are outof sync, clients can’t expect huge cost breaks or easy-to-schedule capacity,leaving air and even overland transportation as options in some cases, whichcould further threaten the weakened maritime shipping industry,” he added. Speaking about the near future, Braun said that recovery will be unevenand dependent on industry sector. Items such as foodstuffs and householdessentials will not see the steep disruption that is happening in discretionarygoods like apparel or automotive. “We can expect that consumer spending will be muted for some timeand will only come back as jobs return and uncertainty fades. Companies engagedin exports of both goods and services should expect strong competition and evenprotectionist measures as governments do whatever they can to shore up domesticeconomies,” he said. Meanwhile global carriers have shown strong resolve in facing theCOVID-19 pandemic. Maersk stated thatits terminals and vessels are fully functional. “We continue tomaintain our customers’ global supply chains,” the company said.center_img The UK’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) released a report lastweek revealing the impact of COVID-19 on global trade. The ONS figures showedthat the total trade balance (goods and services),  excluding non-monetary gold and otherprecious metals, increased by £6.6 billion to a surplus of £1.4 billion in thethree months to February 2020, the first underlying three-month total tradesurplus since comparable records began. “Carrier actions to offer storage options through suspension oftransit or slowed transit times will certainly help their clients through thedemand crisis, which is expected to continue into the peak summer season. Commenting on the ONS report, Dr Kerstin Braun, President of Stenn Group said, the game has completely changed with the COVID-19 pandemic, rendering these results largely insignificant. “With reports that the UK economy shrinking at record pace, the immediate focus going into summer will be on business recovery and survival, supported by government measures to soften the impact of the shutdown.” It also stated that the trade in goods deficit narrowed by £6.4 billionto £23.2 billion in the three months to February 2020, caused by fallingimports of machinery and transport equipment, chemicals, and miscellaneousmanufactures. Braun added, the recovery will be uneven, with essential sectors such asfood and pharmaceuticals faring better than discretionary goods. “A first schedule shock came during the COVID-19 surge in China inFebruary. Then, as Chinese exports were picking up pace in early March, importdemand fell off a cliff causing the current round of blanked sailings andstorage issues.” Author: Baibhav Mishralast_img

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