Global Container Trade Grew 3.2% in H1

Damas Jati - Jakarta, 23/08/2018, 11:12


Global container trade in first half of this year (2018) grew up 3.2% on last year, climbing from 79.8m teu to 82.3m teu. However, there was a slowed trend growth in second quarter, according to Container Trades Statistics (CTS).

CTS reported that growth in container volumes slowed in the second quarter of 2018, as a strong showing from the transpacific and transatlantic trades was unable to offset weak performances elsewhere, including most notably Asia-Europe.

CTS revealed that global box numbers were up 2.3% to 42m teu in the second quarter of the year. This compared with growth of 4.2% in the first quarter, when carriers shifted 40.3m teu.

However, growth was largely fragmented and, in some cases, lacking altogether.

Having achieved a relatively sprightly 3.7% growth in the first three months of the year, Asia-Europe traffic fell 0.9% to 4.1m teu in the second quarter, highlighting the reason why carriers struggled to raise freight rates during the period. 

The weak second quarter performance for Asia-Europe resulted in only moderate half-year growth of 1.2%, a trend that analysts Drewry put down to softening demand from the trade’s two largest inbound markets, the UK and Germany, which account for approximately two-fifths of westbound cargo.

“Retail sales in Germany remain sluggish despite more optimistic consumer confidence surveys, while in the UK despite an improved outlook for wage growth and employment, consumer confidence appears to be stuck in the doldrums,” the analysts said in a recent trade report.

“A lack of clarity as to what Brexit will really mean for the nation’s economic health, coupled with a rise in petrol prices, has prompted British households to take a more cautious approach to borrowing and spending,” added Drewry. 

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