Mega-Ships to Cause Mega-Problems for Asia-Europe?


New mega-ship orders are likely to drastically affect the Asia-Europe tradelane by piling further pressure on ports that are already struggling with large capacities, according to gCaptain.

Kim Fejfer CEO of APM Terminals, said: “Changes in shipping require not only investment and increased efficiency at the individual port level, but the configuration of port complexes needs to adapt to cope with current trade flows, increased ship sizes and demands for lowest possible costs. There will be clear winners and losers in the coming years.”

Mr Fejfer previously said that ports need to be prepared to handle the big ships of up to 20,000 TEU otherwise the business will go to other locations.

Dr Jean-Paul Rodrigue of Hofstra University in New York in the US recently found that out of a sample of more than 500 container terminals, only 38% have a draft of more than 14 metres.

Technical Paper: Maritime Shipping: Disadvantages of Scale

This may prove to be burdensome for container ports aiming to optimise operations to better handle multiple ship calls.

Despite the pressure being placed on ports to boost operations, it was recently argued that mega-ships are not delivering cost-savings container lines.

This has arguably been caused by the drop in oil prices, which is having a knock on effect on shipping lines, which are not seeing economies of scale.

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