UK scrap exporters hit hard by eastbound shipping suspensions

Apr 12, 2012 | 07:48 AM |

The lack of container space on eastbound vessels from northern Europe has hit the UK scrap market particularly hard, with reports of shipping lines reneging on bookings made by UK scrap exporters to Asia. “We had confirmed bookings and reservations that were just ripped up,” one scrap dealer said. “It has become difficult to export to some places due to the lack of containers.” There has been a shortage of eastbound containers since international shipping company Maersk, which accounts for 15-20% of export capacity on these routes, said in late March that it would no longer be taking bookings for shipments out of northern Europe to Asia on a shortage of available containers in the aftermath of the Chinese New Year. “Very low westbound demand from Asia after the Chinese New Year prompted several carriers to cancel multiple westbound sailings and, in turn, eastbound sailings,” Maersk said in March. “We have heard from customers that other lines have also stopped bookings until May,” the company....

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