GENEVA's Mediterranean Shipping Co (MSC) has chartered slots with immediate effect from the ASAX Loop 1/SEAS Asia-ECSA loop jointly operated by CSAV, CMA CGM and China Shipping Container Line (CSCL).
This further strengthens the tie-up between MSC and CMA CGM, the world's second and third largest carriers, which recently announced an alliance on Asia-Europe, Asia-Southern Africa and the South American routes.
The new Asia-ECSA joint service, called Ipanema by MSC, will first deploy CSCL's vessel, the Xin Tianjin, from Busan. The joint loop deploys 11 ships with an average capacity of 6,227 TEU, with six from CSAV, three from CSCL and two from CMA CGM.
The port rotation for ASAX Loop 1/SEAS includes Busan, Shanghai, Ningbo, Shenzhen-Chiwan, Hong Kong, Port Kelang, Santos, Montevideo, Buenos Aires, Rio Grande, Paranagua, Durban, Port Kelang and back to Hong Kong.
MSC and CMA CGM have made separate co-operative arrangements with Chile's CSAV on the South American trades, reported American Shipper, adding that CSAV subsidiary Libra also takes this Asia-ECSA loop slots.
The partnership enables MSC to offer first direct Asia-ECSA service. MSC currently runs two standalone loops connecting ECSA to ECNA/US Gulf, and four strings from ECSA to North Europe and the Mediterranean/Africa.
MSC and CMA/CSAV have also engaged in slot swap in the Asia-Southern Africa and Asia-WCSA trades.