Red Sea crisis sparks surge in Asia-Mediterranean transit times

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Red Sea crisis sparks surge in Asia-Mediterranean transit times

Transit times between Asia and the Mediterranean surged by 39 per cent from January to March 2024, compared to the preceding six months.

A recent study by Sea-Intelligence has shed light on the profound repercussions of the Red Sea crisis on global shipping pathways, which compelled shipping lines to circumnavigate the Cape of Good Hope, resulting in increasing sailing distances and prolonged transit times.

In contrast, the increase was less pronounced at 15 per cent for vessels travelling from Asia to North Europe.

The study scrutinised the effects on transit times, underscoring the necessity of considering the actual shortest transit times for specific port pairs, rather than relying solely on overarching figures that may not accurately depict the most competitive routes.

© Sea-Intelligence

READ: Blank sailings surge amid widespread port congestion

The analysis from Sea-Intelligence concerning sub-region combinations revealed varying impacts (figure above).

Routes to the East and Central Mediterranean experienced the greatest impact, with transit times skyrocketing by 61-63 per cent and 39-40 per cent respectively.

Conversely, connections to North Europe, particularly those leading to the Baltics, saw a more moderate increase of 7-11 per cent in transit times.

A different analysis from Sea-Intelligence found that global schedule reliability is improving, with the March 2024 statistic up 1.6 percentage points Month-over-Month (MoM) to 54.6 per cent.

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