Tuesday, August 18, 2009

NOL shipping container figures carry mixed message

Container volumes down but revenue starting to pick up.
Shipping News Feature

SINGAPORE – Once again the message from a major freight container line carries both good and bad news. Neptune Orient Lines, the world’s fifth largest container shipping group, were able to post figures yesterday showing a rise in traffic levels of nearly 9% against their last reporting period.

Revenue per container transported rose by $29 compared with the previous month (June) reaching an average for each unit of $ 2219.

The trend against the previous year is, as expected, down overall. 187,400 forty foot equivalent units were carried by the company in July, a drop of around 11% against the same period in 2008. This figure, although not good, is nevertheless encouraging when compared to the 29 to 35 % drop in revenue and cargo levels of 2009’s first few months compared with the preceding annual period.

The company issued a statement saying that volume demand was due to a decline in all the major world trade lanes and that falling revenues was because of lower freight rates and bunker recovery.