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Asia to Europe container traffic slumps

Outbound containers from Asia to Europe decreased 3.4% to 1,351,627 TEUs in September, registering the first year-on-year shrinkage in seven months, according to a report unveiled by the Japan Maritime Center (JMC). Inbound containers from Europe to Asia, in contrast, increased 8.8% to 664,437 TEUs, swelling from a year earlier for nine months running.

In the first nine months (January-September), Asia exported a total of 12,622,534 TEUs from Europe, up 3.7%, while imports from Europe to Asia rose 7.5% to 6,051,505 TEUs in total.

Looking at containers moved from Asia to Europe in September by region of origin, the JMC report, compiled with statistics provided by Container Trades Statistics, Ltd. (CTS) of the U.K., indicated that those from Northeast Asia plunged 10% to 153,369 TEUs. Combined exports from China and Hong Kong were also weak, declining 3.1% to 992,311 TEUs in total. On the other hand, those from Southeast Asia were not, growing a minute 0.6% to 205,930 TEUs. By destination, meanwhile, exports to Northern Europe went down 3.8% to 874,327 TEUs; to the western Mediterranean, down 7.5% to 224,889 TEUs and to the eastern Mediterranean, down 1.9% to 252,411 TEUs.

As for containers carried from Europe to Asia, meanwhile, those from Northern Europe surged 10.5% to 464,919 TEUs in September. Those from the western and eastern Mediterranean both increased, going up 1% to 100,447 TEUs and 9.4% to 99,071 TEUs, respectively. By destination, imports to Northeast Asia were sluggish, sinking 3.2% to 127,393 TEUs. In contrast, those to China and Hong Kong enjoyed a double-digit rise of 15.9% to total 367,564 TEUs. Containers to Southeast Asia were also brisk, climbing 4.6% to 169,442 TEUs.

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