Capacity on the two major global headhaul lanes fell around 3 percent in the first quarter of 2013, according to the latest World Liner Supply Report from the BlueWater Reporting service.
Eastbound transpacific allocated capacity to the west coast of North America declined 4.1 percent in the first quarter, while all-water capacity to the east coast stayed virtually the same. Total eastbound capacity fell just less than 3 percent.
Meanwhile, westbound Asia-Europe capacity fell 2.8 percent in the first quarter, with a 2.3 percent drop in Asia-Northern Europe capacity and a 3.9 percent drop in Asia-Med capacity.
Reduced capacity in the first quarter s consistent with previous years, when carriers typically retrench services or sailings to coincide with the slack container shipping season.
The transatlantic trade, however, saw increased capacity in the first quarter. Eastbound transatlantic capacity rose 3.4 percent in the quarter, while westbound capacity rose 3.6 percent.
In terms of capacity share of trades, the eastbound transpacific changed little over the first quarter, with minor shifts in capacity among an established set of alliances and individual lines. The Grand Alliance saw its share of trade to both coasts increase from 12.1 percent to 13.7 percent, while Zim’s capacity share dropped from 5 percent to 3.8 percent.
The figures do not factor in the impact of the pending G6 Alliance services from Asia to the U.S. East Coast.
The quarterly World Liner Supply Reports are designed to help ocean carriers, non-vessel-operating common carriers, freight forwarders, shippers, ports and analysts monitor competition and capacity trends in liner shipping. The report tracks on a quarterly basis how capacity moves on 30 individual lanes operating between Asia, Europe, North America and South America.
WLS reports are downloadable in Excel spreadsheet form here.
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