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Shipping expert comments on Red Sea crisis

Lars Jensen, leading expert in the container shipping industry, says the following on LinkedIn:

'Day 34 of the Red Sea crisis. Maersk’s CEO stated yesterday that he expects the disruption to last at least a few months. Whilst this is not a positive outlook, it is an assessment I would tend to agree with in the light of a situation that has worsened in recent days.

Shippers should keep in mind that the disruptions to their supply chain is actually at the maximum presently. The change-over from Suez to round-Africa has caused significantly larger detours for many vessels as well as the need to discharge some cargo in transhipment hubs with no immediate solution of how to move the cargo onwards. As networks settle into regular, and predictable, schedules around Africa these disruptions will lessen – but of course not disappear as the voyage is longer.

Another problem is cargo bound for the Red Sea prior to the crisis. When suddenly the Red Sea access was disrupted a large amount of cargo got stuck in major hubs across Asia, and with insufficient feeder capacity from niche operators to move the cargo onwards into the Red Sea this is causing rates to surge as well as creating congestion issues in the impacted ports.'

Photo © Mr.siwabud Veerapaisarn |

'Another vessel was attacked yesterday. US-owned bulk vessel “Genco Picardy” was attacked by a one-way attack drone. The master of the vessel reported the bomb started a fire on the vessel, but this was extinguished and the crew was safe. The vessel came from Egypt and turned off their AIS transponder 3 days ago before entering the Bab al-Mandeb strait.

It is the third attack in as many days which successfully hits a vessel. This is an increase in both the frequency of the attacks, and also in the rate of success the Houthies have in actually hitting the vessels.

US forces attacked 14 locations in Yemen during the night where they stated that these were locations with missiles ready on launchers.

Throughout the crisis, Global Feeder Shipping, which is owned by Abu Dhabi Ports Group, is one of the largest companies providing feedering services into the Red Sea. Of the 12 container vessels currently within the southern Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden (and with AIS active), GFS operates four of them. GFS is the worlds 24th largest container line as per Alphaliner’s top-100 ranking.'

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