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Asia-Europe box rates soar as increases take hold

The Shanghai-Rotterdam container freight index more than doubled by $1,632 per feu as container lines' 1 July genereal rate increases hold firm, Drewry reports.

The World Container Index's Shanghai-Rotterdam index hit $2,622 per feu on 4 July, a 165% increase. This pushes rates from a position where they struggled to cover basic operating costs to profitability.

"Over three quarters of the planned $1,000 per teu rate increases was implemented, based on our market assessments in China and Europe," said Richard Heath, director of the World Container Index.

Asia-Europe rates have suffered sustained volatility over the past two years, with price wars and overcapacity dropping revenues to unsustainable levels in the first half of this year. The long-term staying power of the latest round of rises remains open to question, but in the past where large increases have been achieved they usually held to a reasonable degree.

Posted 05 July 2013

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