In the week of 9 March, the outbound container movement from China improved gradually as a result of the reopening of operations at manufacturing factories.
However, some shipping companies lowered freight rates, decreasing the Shanghai Containerized Freight Index (SCFI) for the week under review by 1.5% to 898.05 points, according to the Shanghai Shipping Exchange (SSE).
On the trade route to Europe, freight movement increased mildly owing to growth in the shipment of some daily necessities. Some operators on the route, nevertheless, imposed slightly lower freight rates. As a consequence, the spot rate for exporting containers from Shanghai fell by 3.6% to US$797/TEU. and that for containers destined to the Mediterranean declined by 1.2% to US$892/TEU.
In North America, more factories went back in service in the week of 2 March, recovering transport demand to bring about a notable rise in freight rates. In the following week, however, many lines decreased freight rates mildly. The rates for shipments bound for the east coast fell 4.4% to US$2,785/FEU and to the west coast, 3.8% to US$1,549/FEU.
More containers were moved to the Middle East Gulf, lifting the rates on the trade by 0.6% to US$1,051/TEU. To Australia/New Zealand, freight rates diminished more severely, going down 2.3% to US$753/TEU. On the route to South America, operators accepted shipments at lower prices, leading to a decrease in the freight rate of 7% to US$1,358/TEU.
To Japan, transport demand was stable. The freight rates for containers to Kansai and Kanto both remained unchanged at US$225/TEU and US$240/TEU, respectively.