The liner carrier Zim said
earlier this week that it has joined a Mediterranean Shipping Co.-operated service between the east coast of South America and the U.S. East Coast.
The move dovetails with a decision by Zim and MSC to shelve their jointly-operated east coast South America/U.S. Gulf service, which Zim calls SAX.
The service Zim will join is currently jointly operated by MSC and CSAV, an eight-ship loop with a rotation of Norfolk, New York, Baltimore, Savannah, Freeport, Caucedo, Rio De Janeiro, Santos, Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Rio Grande, Navegantes, Santos, Rio De Janeiro, Salvador, Suape, Caucedo, Kingston, Freeport, and Norfolk, according to Zim’s statement. Zim will call the service XNS.
Currently, forward schedules show the service being operated with seven MSC vessels and one CSAV vessel. CMA CGM, Hapag-Lloyd, and Libra-Montemar also take slots on the service. Average vessel size on the service is 6,168 TEUs, according to American Shipper
affiliate ComPair Data.
The SAX loop to be withdrawn has a rotation of Houston, New Orleans, Kingston, Caucedo, Suape, Salvador, Vitoria, Paranagua, Navegantes, Santos, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, Pecem, Cristobal, Kingston, and Houston. The service is operated with seven ships (five from MSC and two from Zim), with an average capacity of around 3,000 TEUs.
To compensate for the withdrawal of the SAX loop, Salvador has been added to the U.S. East Coast service, as has Zim’s hub in Kingston. Zim also said the U.S. Gulf ports called by the SAX, will be served via Kingston and Caucedo.
Zim said it will only take slots at present on the XNS, but has the option to deploy one ship on the service in the future.
MSC had no comment on the service changes. - Eric Johnson