Maersk has announced the removal of Brisbane call in its Southern Star service due to the "continued schedule disruption and terminal congestion across Oceania".
"As a result of significant delays and suspension of our proforma windows, we need to make additional changes to our network in an effort to reduce delays, avoid vessel bunching and lost market capacity due to vessel sliding," said the Danish carrier in its announcement.
Earlier this year, Maersk phased in a seventh vessel to increase the schedule buffer to the Southern Sar service, which will continue the schedule with seven ships with an adjustment to rotation.
Starting from the Singaporean-flagged Rio Negro voyage 133S (departing Tanjung Pelapas on 17 August), the Southern Star schedule will stop calling at the Port of Brisbane and follow the below proforma rotation.
The only Australian port left on the rotation is Sydney, which is called eastbound on the way to New Zealand. The revised rotation is Tanjung Pelepas, Singapore, Sydney, Tauranga, Napier, Lyttelton, Port Chalmers and back to Tanjung Pelepas.
"Given the ongoing New Zealand port congestion and delays, the actual arrival and departure times along New Zealand coast might vary due to the suspension of berthing windows," noted Maersk.
However, the company believes that this schedule adjustment will add important buffer to the schedule to enable the service to arrive on-time at the hubs in Tanjung Pelepas and Singapore.
Maersk added that it will offer alternative products on its network for importing and exporting cargo to and from Brisbane with the Komodo and J-Star continuing to connect Asia with Brisbane on a weekly basis.