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Maersk cuts service speeds on Asia Europe run

Maersk cuts service speeds on Asia Europe run

Copenhagen: Denmark's Maersk Line is the second leading liner firm to cut service speed on its Asia Europe service. Following a similar move by French carrier CMA CGM, Maersk plans to cut sailing speeds from February and March 2008 at which time it will also add another four vessels to its Asia Europe network. The moves will result in net additional capacity of 12% in 2008, compared with the originally intended 17%. The speed cuts "to more economic levels" are primarily to save fuel, the line explains, but will effectively cut capacity by 5%.

"In the last 12 months, our bunker costs have almost tripled, and the reduction of speed complements our other efforts to mitigate fuel costs," Maersk explains. As a result, "selected corridors will experience a day or two more in transit time." The adjustment to its Asia - Europe service which, the line says, will provide customers with "more cost-effective, robust and reliable services", is building in a little more flexibility to offset port congestion which, it says, "has an escalating impact on our ability to provide reliable services".

The addition of the four vessels will enable Maersk to incorporate additional buffer time in its schedules. "To further support these efforts, we will continue to work with the ports and terminals in addressing the congestion issues," Maersk says.  [03/12/07]