“Somethin’s gotta give …”
Regarding the “bigger is better” concept, many knowledgeable people disagree. We’ve just mentioned Commander Helmick and Mr. Davidson. Now consider the following..
“Even continuing with just one service … we were able to provide sufficient space to meet demand. There was no point in putting in two loops where each loop is running half full.” — Frankie Lau, OOCL Marketing Director.
“Global supply chains will be forced to find alternative import-export solutions as many hub port locations become land-constrained.” — Anthony A. Chiarello, Senior VP, AMB Property Corp.
“Vessels from the ‘Super-Post-Panamax Class’ … which can’t squeeze through the Panama Canal … take 56 days to complete a single loop … A crane then places the container in its temporary resting place, where it waits until the shipping company requests delivery. That could be in hours – or weeks.” — Alexander Jung, SPIEGELnet GmbH.
Shipping capacity will outstrip demand … “there is a gap, and it is growing”. — Tue Ostergaard, WestLB Bank, Copenhagen.
On our customers’ minds is the “issue of very large ships. If a box isn’t on top of the deck, if it’s bunched up below with thousands of other containers, it can take days to be unloaded.” — Edward Aldridge, President, U.S. Lines.
“Although the U.S. West Coast recently has accommodated trade growth, primarily from China, it is walking on thin ice … West Coast ports are not ready for the next spurt in ocean trade. If Asia trade continues to grow at 10 percent annually, West Coast ports will reach their limits soon … We will see delays and extra demurrage and warehousing costs … Companies won’t get cargo when they want it, factories won’t get parts when they need them. Certain industries and products – such as high-tech – will be significantly affected.” — Richard Bank, Former Director, Office of Maritime Affairs, U.S. Department of State.
“How far can a containership go and still be cost-effective? If you don’t have the service to handle the terminal side, you won’t be able to service the ship, and you won’t save anything … People don’t look at it that often, but there is a tradeoff between the size of a ship and the ability to turn it at the dock. You don’t get the economies of scale if it takes too long to discharge a vessel.” — John Martin, Consultant and Principal, Martin Associates.
“If U.S. ports don’t start improving their game right now, the field might become too busy to play in – and that could cost consumers, shippers, carriers, and others in the industry a very expensive and nasty lesson.” — Tony Seideman, Marine Digest & Cargo Business News
“The sky may not be the limit after all.” — Ottmar Gast, Deputy Chairman, Hamburg Sud.