Friday, January 29, 2010

China Shipping Container Lines Post Profit Warning

Global Trade Downturn Hits Carrier
Shipping News Feature

CHINA – China Shipping Container Lines, the China Shipping Group subsidiary and the country’s largest native container shippers, today posted a warning that they expect to post a net loss for last year due to the adverse trading conditions which have swept through the world's freight markets.

Although due in April the groups preliminary figures have unsurprisingly revealed that profits have been hit hard by the downturn and 2008’s net profit of around RMB 130 million ($19 million) will not be matched. The company, in tandem with other carriers such as fellow members of the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement, have raised TEU and FEU prices lately in an effort to return to profitability.

The company will not officially produce results until the 22nd April but disclosing preliminary figures now gives credence to their argument that higher rates are essential for the sea freight container carriers to be able to maintain reasonable service levels. In common with others the company raised rates from Asia to both the US and Europe despite howls of protest from freight organisations and exporters representatives such as the Asian Shippers Council.