-0.9 C
Tuesday, January 26, 2021
Home Most Visited Carriers using digitalisation to marginalise forwarders

Carriers using digitalisation to marginalise forwarders

Container shipping lines are using their online platforms to shift shippers away from freight forwarders and move them into a direct relationship with the carrier, according to freight forwarding sources in Europe and India.

The reports from freight forwarders claim that COSCO, CMA CGM, Maersk and Hapag-Lloyd are all looking to gain direct access to shippers either directly through digital platforms or through the issuance of house bills of lading.

One forwarder complained that carriers were “evacuating” empty containers form their country and leaving them with no empty equipment while they were then also looking to make it difficult for freight forwarders to serve their customers.

One European forwarder told Container News, that COSCO Logistics competes directly with her company and that if they were to ship cargo for a client from China to the United Arab Emirates, ordinarily they would issue two bills of lading, one to the line and a “house bill of lading” that does not go to the carrier. The house bill of lading contains the name of both the shipper and consignee.

According to the forwarder COSCO is now issuing its own house bills of lading, “that is limiting our opportunities,” said the forwarder, who added that Maersk was making similar moves, “We are trying to avoid using both Maersk and COSCO,” she added.

Meanwhile, in the Asia Pacific region, logistics resource management company GoComet has said that the carriers are promoting their online digital platforms to bypass freight forwarders, naming both Maersk and Hapag-Lloyd in this instance.

According to Gautam Jain, CEO of GoComet, the carriers have been encouraging shippers to book directly with the lines through online portals for some time and some customers have been lost in this way.

However, Jain also pointed out that, “Many shippers prefer to use freight forwarders because they get a better, more personalised service, so if there are problems they can talk to a person and the credit terms are significantly better with forwarders,” he said.

Major forwarder Keuhne+Nagel saw no difficulties with Maersk’s moves, however, with Otto Schacht, the forwarders’ global head of seafreight, saying that the forwarder had competed with Maersk for 20 to 30 years, “but we love each other”.

According to Schacht Maersk has been making these moves for some time, “I know that other forwarders have had problems,” conceded Schacht, but he said Kuehne+Nagel have such large volumes that they must spread their cargo around a “core of volume carriers,” he said.

No carrier had responded at the time of going to press.

Nick Savvides
Managing Editor

- Advertisment - LR Sustainability Decarbonisation Digital Adverts

Latest Posts

​OOIL to issue new shares on the market

Orient Overseas International Limited (OOIL) has entered into a Placing and Subscription Agreement with Faulkner Global Holdings Limited, its immediate parent company and part...

Updated: IMO Condemns Mozart pirates in escalation of African Piracy

In a significant escalation in West African pirate attacks, one crew member has been killed, while 15 seafarers have been kidnapped, on the container...

CU Lines guarantees equipment for maiden Asia-North Europe service

China United Lines (CULines) is assuring all shippers that it has enough containers to go around as it launches a solo Asia-North Europe service. In...

Port of Rotterdam test smart mooring system

The Port of Rotterdam has installed a smart bollard, developed in collaboration with the mooring and dredging company Straatman BV, along the quay of...

Busan Port Authority to build a new warehouse at the Probolinggo Port

Busan Port Authority (BPA) will establish and operate a bonded warehouse at the Probolinggo Port in East Java in order to expand its logistics...