Container shipping to witness rate war in 2023

Jan 10 | 2023

The latest report from Container xChange predicts lower freight prices in 2023. The report says that 2022 was all about tight capacity and exceptionally high container rates.

Container shipping to witness rate war in 2023

Towards the latter half of the year, the prices started to plummet and continue to crash.

There is significant market volatility that continues to disrupt the container shipping industry. With a significant oversupply of containers and a further influx of more TEUs in 2023, shipping lines continue to reduce vessel capacity and suspend services by considerable blank sailings. In a recent advisory, Maersk indicates that it will continue to ‘make capacity adjustments on services from Asia to North America, Europe and the Mediterranean to better align with demand fluctuations’. The report shows a similar trend echoing in the industry.

“In 2023, there is a high possibility of an all-out price war,” said Christian Roeloffs, Co-Founder and CEO, of Container xChange.  “It doesn’t seem that the capacity restrictions that we have seen in the past two years are due to return, so we’ll just have ample capacity both on the vessel as well as on the container side. With the competitive dynamics in the container shipping and liner industry, I don't expect especially the big players to hold back, and we do expect prices to come down to almost variable costs.
We also foresee market consolidation.” ...

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