New container services to India, Red Sea

Wan Hai Lines has announced the launch of a new China-India Service, while RCL has entered a slot exchange arrangement with Inter Asia Lines (IAL) on its new China to Chennai service.

Wan Hai said in an announcement that its CI6 service would be launched on January 24, helping to expand its network by providing direct service from East China to West India.

The five-vessel service will be jointly operated with Cosco using 4,250 teu ships. Wan Hai will contribute one vessel and Cosco will make up the rest.

The port rotation will be: Shanghai – Ningbo – Shekou – Nansha – Singapore – Nhava Sheva – Pipavav – Penang – Shanghai

Wan Hai expects the new service to provide better frequency and service coverage between China /Southeast Asia and India.

RCL’s will brand its slot exchange service, which will take up slots on IAL’s new ICI3 China-Chennai service, as RFC (RCL Far East Chennai service).

RFC service rotation includes Shanghai – Ningbo - Hong Kong – Shekou – Singapore - Port Klang (West) – Port Klang (North) – Chennai – Kattupali – Port Klang (North) – Singapore – Shanghai using five vessels.

“The RFC will provide our customers with the convenience of an additional sailing for China to Chennai and vice versa.  It will also provide our customers in Ningbo and Hong Kong direct sailing to Chennai and Kattupali.  In addition, our customers in Chennai, Kattupali  and Port Klang will benefit from a fast transit time up to Shanghai and Ningbo as well,” said evp (Business) Charlie Chu.

Meanwhile in the longer haul market, PIL announced two upgraded weekly services, done in collaboration with Ocean Alliance, on the Far East–Red Sea service route.

The top Singapore-based line joins the bigger players bringing its latest 11,923 teu P Class newbuildings to the table. PIL has 12 of these ships on order from Yangzijiang.

PIL said that the RSS and RES services will commence operations in March, superseding the current three services RSS, RS3 and RS5.

The route will be operated with a series of 17 vessels with capacities ranging from 11,000 teu to 14,000 teu.

The enhanced Red Sea service will extensively cover North Asia and Southeast Asia with direct connections to the main Red Sea markets, and will also feature a new direct call from Korea to the Red Sea.

Details of the new services are as follows:

RSS

Port Rotation: Shanghai - Ningbo - Taipei - Xiamen - Shekou - Singapore - Colombo - Djibouti - Jeddah - Sokhna - Aqaba - Djibouti - Singapore - Shanghai

RES

Port Rotation : Xingang - Qingdao - Busan - Shanghai - Ningbo - Nansha - Shekou – Tanjung Pelepus - Singapore - Jeddah - Sokhna - Aqaba - Jeddah - Port Klang - Singapore - Ningbo - Xingang

“The new RSS and RES will fortify PIL’s footprint in the Red Sea market as an established market leader. With an enhanced network coverage, increased frequency and improved transit time, we will continue to deliver high quality and reliable shipping services to our valued customers,” said ed (Corporate Development) Lisa Teo.

Posted 11 January 2018

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Vincent Wee

Asia Editor, Seatrade Maritime News