Archive for December, 2011


Bali shipping line news After the recent news that CMA CGM and MSC will be working more closely together to maximise efficiency of freight services the two giant container shipping lines have confirmed adjustments to their schedules whilst MaerskHamburg SüdCSAV and CSCL have also seen Winter season restructuring.

In an effort to balance supply and demand during the forthcoming traditional period of weaker demand, Hamburg Süd and Maersk Line on the one hand and CMA-CGM, CSAV and CSCL on the other, have reached an agreement to adjust their services between Asia, South Africa and the East Coast of South America as from this month until next May.

Each Group is currently operating two weekly services in the trade. For the period from December 2011 through May 2012, the existing ASAS/NGX Sling 2 service will be merged with the existing ASAX/SEAS Sling 2 service. The current capacity deployed by the carriers in the ASAS/NGX Sling 1 service (Maersk and Hamburg Süd ) and ASAX/SEAS Sling 1 service (CMA CGM, CSAV, CSCL) will remain unchanged and independent. This means the ASAX/SEAS 1 which currently utilises eleven 6,500 TEU vessels will now have the same number of smaller ships each between 4,200 and 4,600 capacity. Starting vessel for this New Joint Service will be MV Cap Jackson – Shanghai – December 16th and the rotation is :

Shanghai – Ningbo – Nansha – Hong Kong – Chiwan – Tanjung Pelepas – Singapore – Durban – Rio de Janeiro – Santos – Paranagua – Itajai – Santos – Port Elizabeth – Durban – Singapore – Hong Kong – Shanghai

Meanwhile the CMA CGM and MSC agreement means that from April 2012 the Asia-North Europe services (French Asia Line or FAL routes) will vary as follows.

FAL 1: operated by CMA CGM with 11 vessels of 13,800 – 14,000 TEU. Port rotation: Ningbo, Shanghai, Nansha, Hong Kong, Chiwan, Yantian, Vung Tau, Southampton, Hamburg, Bremerhaven, Rotterdam, Zeebrugge, Le Havre, Malta, Korfakkan, Port Kelang, Singapore, Yantian, Ningbo.

FAL 2: this service remains unchanged.

FAL 3: operated by CMA CGM with 11 vessels of 11,400 TEU. Port Rotation: Xingang, Pusan, Qingdao, Shanghai, Xiamen, Singapore, Port Kelang, Tangiers, Le Havre, Hamburg, Bremerhaven, Antwerp, Zeebrugge, Beirut, Jeddah, Port Kelang, Singapore, Xingang.

FAL 6: operated by MSC with 11 vessels of 14,000 TEU. Port Rotation: Dalian, Xingang, Kwang Yang, Pusan, Qingdao, Ningbo, Shanghai, Singapore, Port Kelang, Felixstowe, Zeebrugge, Antwerp, Rotterdam, Southampton, Valencia, Jebel Ali, Singapore, Hong Kong, Dalian.

FAL 7: operated by MSC with 11 vessels of 14,000 TEU. Port rotation: Ningbo, Shanghai, Xiamen, Chiwan, Yantian, Sines, Le Havre, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Felixstowe, Gioia Tauro, Singapore, Chiwan, Xiamen, Ningbo.

The existing agreement with Maersk Line on the Asia-Med trade will remain unchanged and final port coverage and transit times will be confirmed at a later stage as will any news regarding further rationalisation to the other FAL services.

Both MSC and CMA CGM have been at pains to stress that there new cooperation should not be viewed as any form of amalgamation with no staff being affected and no sharing of facilities. Such a move would undoubtedly set alarm bells ringing in the offices of anti trust authorities particularly those of the EU’s Competition Commissioner

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Bali Cargo news – Another pair of scalps for the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) yesterday with the news that Ulrich Ogiermann and Robert Van de Weg, two executives from Luxembourg carrier Cargolux Airlines International S.A., have received jail terms of thirteen months each for their parts in the air freight cartel activities which have scandalised the industry, after personal indictments against them to which they entered guilty pleas.

Cargolux, from the Grand Duchy and the largest European all cargo airline, has been quick to accept responsibility for its actions, pleading guilty in May 2009 and agreeing a fine of $119 million for its role in conspiring with others to suppress and eliminate competition by fixing and coordinating surcharges, including security and fuel surcharges, charged to customers located in the United States and elsewhere for air cargo shipments.

According to the indictment, Ogiermann, a ‘special advisor’ to the Company and a former president and CEO, participated in the conspiracy from at least as early as October 2001 until at least February 2006, and Van de Weg, the senior vice president of sales and marketing for Cargolux, participated in the conspiracy from at least as early December 2003 until at least February 2006. Under their plea agreements, Ogiermann and Van de Weg have also each agreed to pay a $20,000 criminal fine and to cooperate with the department’s ongoing investigation.

Including Ogiermann and Van de Weg, a total of 22 airlines and 21 executives have been charged in the Justice Department’s continuing enquiries into price fixing in the air transportation industry. To date, more than $1.8 billion in criminal fines have been imposed and four executives have been sentenced to serve prison time. The two men were charged with price fixing in violation of the Sherman Act, which carries a maximum fine of $1 million and up to 10 years in prison. The maximum fine may be increased to twice the gain derived from the crime or twice the loss suffered by the victims of the crime, if either of those amounts is greater than the statutory maximum fine.

Unlike many of those found guilty of the charges against them Cargolux has been open about the actions it took at the time. The company has stressed that neither man was accused of making any personal gains from their actions and, while expressing its regret for the executives personally, the company views their decision to plead guilty as a way to finally bring this matter to a controlled close both for them and the company. A search of our archives (type key words like cartel or anti trust in the News Search Box) will reveal the extent to which the freight and logistics sector walks a fine line between cooperation and collusion and this situation extends throughout the entire industry from freight forwarders to ocean container fleets.

This week saw two of the most substantial players in their own fields underline similar tactics for dealing with a turbulent freight market. Clarksons the London based shipping services group announced it had acquired EnShip Ltd the Aberdeen based shipping agency and marine industry logistics specialist via its Clarksons Port Services Group. Meanwhile French giant Norbert Dentressangle completed its acquisition of APC Beijing International, a China-based freight forwarding company.

Enship, formed in 2004, has built a reputation as a vessel agency within the UK, as well as being a provider of related support services to both its UK customers and worldwide client base. EnShip also encompasses Opex Industrial Supplies, a procurement house supplying the marine, oil and gas industries. It will retain brand identity and Clarksons says it complements its port sector strategy to expand its geographical reach and broaden its services to existing and new customers in bulk shipping and the offshore and renewable industries. Gross assets acquired amounted to £3 million.

Dentressangle has followed up the Memorandum of Understanding signed in July to take over, APC Beijing International which last year generated revenue of €50 million. APC employs a staff of 270 spread throughout 16 offices strategically located in China’s key costal and inland regions. Known best for its European road haulage operations the acquisition strengthens Dentressangle’s foothold in Asia and says it will enhance the company’s service offering in airfreight forwarding

WORLDWIDE – Lots going on at Emirates SkyCargo with several developments this month, including a pair of heavy lift records and the announcement of a couple of new routes. Not satisfied with setting a new record for the heaviest recorded single item ever carried by a Boeing 777F the airline has now broken its own record for a freight forwarding project by shipping an even larger piece via a Boeing 747.

Firstly the cargo carrier shipped a blowout preventer, a specialised valve used to seal, control and monitor oil and gas wells weighing 21,157kgs, from Iraq to Dubai. The piece cubed out at over 8m3 and bordered the limit of the 777’s capacity by less than 500kgs. Nihal Wickrema, Emirates’ Manager Freighter Operations & Charters commented that the preparations by the ground handling staff, dnata in Erbil and SkyCargo personnel in Dubai, had been impeccable.

Now the cargo airline has transported its heaviest ever single piece, a 36 tonne rudder section for an urgent delivery from the shipyard in Korea to Dubai using a Boeing 747. The move entailed two 50 tonne cranes and two high loaders to stow and offload the massive piece via the aircraft’s hinged nose section.

A Boeing 747-400F will also feature in the newly announced service which SkyCargo will in future be offering between Dubai and Ghana every Friday. Parent airline Emirates has been operating a passenger service to Accra, with a weekly cargo capacity of 120 tonnes each way in the bellyhold of an Airbus A330-200, since 2004. The new service, to Kotoka International Airport, will operate via Lome, Togo, on the outbound journey and return to Dubai through Frankfurt, Germany. Emirates has also started a regular service to Buenos Aires due to commence on the 3rd January 2012.

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