Coronavirus to cost container shipping industry US$1.7bn in lost revenue

THE global shipping industry risks losing an estimated US$1

04 March 2020 - 19:00

THE global shipping industry risks losing an estimated US$1.7 billion revenue on account of the coronavirus. The most affected being international shipping lines, as findings show that Maersk Line could face the worst revenue shortfall since China represents 30 per cent of its annual shipping volume.

Sea-Intelligence said the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the shipping industry is continuing to increase in scope, and the ripple effects are continuing to show up, reported Hellenic Shipping News.

Hapag-Lloyd can also face a weak first quarter because China operations account for 25 per cent of the group's total revenue.

Sea-Intelligence, in its weekly report, stated: 'In the 10-week-period, comprising the Chinese New Year and the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, the shipping industry is being faced with a shortfall of some 1.7 million TEU, roughly $1.7 billion in revenues for the carriers.'

This TEU loss represents one per cent of the total global volume in 2019, meaning that the coronavirus is thus far on track to reduce global container growth in 2020 by one percentage point.

'The hope is that the situation will be brought under control in the near future and that we will get a V-shaped recovery,' the report said, noting that it is possible for the shipping companies to catch up on some of the 1.7 million TEU.

But even in this case, because many containers were exported out of China and there were so many blank sailings, it 'will be a challenge for carriers to repatriate them quickly enough to meet a sudden post-virus surge out of China'.


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