BDP Trendwatch: U.S. ports see shipping logjams likely extending far into 2022; Johnson’s Brexit First strategy collides with empty shop shelves; Hurricane Ida’s fallout continues to cripple U.S. oil production

U.S. ports see shipping logjams likely extending far into 2022 

Leaders of some of the busiest U.S. ports expect congestion snarling maritime gateways to continue deep into next year, as the crush of goods from manufacturers and retailers looking to replenish depleted inventories pushes past shipping’s usual seasonal lulls. 

Ports are already swamped by record numbers of containers reaching U.S. shores during this year’s peak shipping season, and the number of vessels waiting for berth space at Southern California’s gateways is growing as logjams stretch into warehouses and distribution networks across the country. 

Port leaders, such as Mario Cordero, executive director at the Port of Long Beach, Calif., who have spoken with shipping lines and their cargo customers say the slowdown in container volumes that usually coincides with the Lunar New Year in February, when factories in China typically shut down, is unlikely to offer much relief. 

Wall Street Journal

Johnson’s Brexit First strategy collides with empty shop shelves 

Boris Johnson’s reluctance to turn to the European Union to ease a supply chain crisis that has seen shelves in supermarkets run empty has highlighted his government’s priority: Brexit first 

For the prime minister, who spearheaded a campaign to leave the EU which vowed to “take back control” of the U.K.’s borders and secure more jobs for British workers, immediately turning to cheap EU labor to fix a national shortage of truck drivers would be politically fraught. 

Doing so would amount to a tacit admission of an advantage of EU membership, said Julian Jessop, an economics fellow at the Institute of Economic Affairs, a free-market think-tank. 

Supply Chain Brain

Vietnam’s supply chain role to grow despite Covid, U.S. Chamber says 

Covid has disrupted but not derailed Vietnam’s expanding role in global supply chains and growth prospects, the head of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hanoi said Tuesday. 

The Southeast Asian nation has struggled to maintain manufacturing and exports in the face of surging COVID-19 cases, one of the key fronts in the battle to keep international trade running for goods including clothes, computer chips and cars. 

“Even with the supply chain and shutdown problems they have because of Covid right now, Vietnam’s still going to do very well economically and it’s becoming, every day, a more important piece of the global supply chain — especially for things that affect American consumers,” Adam Sitkoff, executive director of the chamber told Bloomberg Television’s Haslinda Amin and Rishaad Salamat. 

Supply Chain Brain

Five Evergreen crew hospitalized with Covid and box ship quarantined in Kaohsiung 

Five of the crew of 22 on an Evergreen intra-Asia vessel have been hospitalised following an outbreak of Covid-19 onboard. 

The three Taiwanese and two Filipinos are part of the complement on the 2,800 teu Ever Balmy, which arrived at Wan Hai Lines’ container terminal on Saturday. 

The five were tested after developing fever and flu-like symptoms upon arrival in Kaohsiung. Positive Covid-19 test results were reported yesterday and they were taken to hospital for treatment – the remaining crew members have been quarantined on the ship. 

The 2017-built Ever Balmy serves Evergreen’s north-east Asia-South-east Asia service, calling at Tokyo, Yokohama, Nagoya, Yokkaichi, Taipei, Taichung, Kaohsiung, Singapore, Port Klang, Penang and Tanjung Pelepas 

The Load Star

Hurricane Ida’s fallout continues to cripple U.S. oil production 

Nearly 80% of U.S. oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico remains offline, almost 10 days after Hurricane Ida tore through Louisiana, as companies struggle to restart offshore platforms.  

Ida, which barreled through the heart of the Gulf as a Category 4 hurricane, is turning out to be the most damaging storm for offshore production in more than 15 years. It crippled key onshore infrastructure, which has contributed to keeping about 13% of U.S. oil production idle. Its storm surge and maximum winds of 150 miles an hour also damaged some offshore operations, including underwater pipelines that have leaked oil into the Gulf. 

Wall Street Journal