After a nearly 6-month long truce in the trade war, all the progress made in the past is now at stake, as the US and China impose more sanctions on each other’s goods this early May. While there has been a lot of discussions about the trade war, this article will look more specifically at the relationship between tariff policies and container shipping.
Trump’s government decided not to renew the “significant reduction exemptions” allowing the primary consumers of Iranian crude oil to continue importing it in limited quantities. This six-month waiver, which expired on May 2 2019, was granted last November to eight countries, after the US imposed sanctions on Iran. In this paper, we’ll provide a brief overview of the current situation post waiver expiration, lay out the possible impact on sea freight, and look at the rising geopolitical tensions.
This week, France is presenting a proposal to the International Maritime Organization to regulate the speed of commercial ships, in an effort to lower greenhouse gas emission. This is an interim and immediately applicable measure, which could be replaced by an overall yearly limit applied to each shipping line.
According to a new report published by the International Transport Forum (ITF), the use of “high capacity vehicles”, or HCVs, increases efficiency for road shipping, both in terms of energy efficiency and security. Therefore, the ITF is recommending increased testing of these vehicles, and offers a public policy toolbox to help broaden their use.
During the first quarter of 2019, maritime companies suffered a strong “green scissor effect”. Facing a decrease in freight rates, which is normal post Chinese New Year, they’re also affected by the increase in maritime fuel oil prices, caused by the new “Low Sulfur” regulation from the IMO, which will enter into force on January 1, 2020. Although the freight rate decline should wear off, the fuel oil price surge, on the other hand, is set to continue as the deadline approaches.
China’s grand European plan, along with Italy announcing its formal participation in the Belt and Road Initiative, means that China is on everyone’s lips. Since 2013, China has acquired shares in 14 European ports (not including ones with MoU agreements). While there is on-going debate regarding the strategic aim behind these acquisitions, this article looks one step further and asks whether Chinese trade flows are following China's acquisition pattern.
The role of China as the “factory of the world” for retail products has strongly incentivized the use of 40-foot shipping containers. TEUs – twenty-foot equivalent units –, although they remain the standard in the industry, only make up 20% of the units loaded on the major East-West routes. It therefore seems like it’s time to change this practice.
The IMO’s new regulation on sulfur emission reduction for ships, imposed to maritime shipping companies, will enter into force on January 1, 2020. With just a few months left before the change, we have decided to publish a series of articles looking at the stakes and impacts of this regulation. For a proper start, let’s look at the facts to get a good grasp on the topic.