Trendwatch: World Bank forecasts slower trade growth through 2030; Guidelines published for safe transport of lithium-ion batteries in containers; US, Japan strike deal on supply of minerals for EV batteries

World Bank forecasts slower trade growth through 2030

The World Bank projects that trade growth is on track to slow over the decade to come as global economic growth slackens. The lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Russian invasion of Ukraine and rising interest rates have put the brakes on economic activity, and trade growth through 2030 is expected to slow by 0.4 percentage points per year (relative to the previous decade). A long-term trend towards reshoring or nearshoring supply chains will also have a reducing effect on trade, according to the World Bank's researchers.

In a new report released Monday, the agency warned that nearly all the economic forces that propelled global growth since the 1990s are fading, and that global potential GDP growth is on track to drop by a third this decade when compared with 2000-2010. (Growth will still occur, but less rapidly, particularly in developing economies.)

The Maritime Executive


Guidelines published for safe transport of lithium-ion batteries in containers

The Lithium-ion Batteries in Containers Guidelines, published yesterday by several industry bodies, seek to prevent the increasing risks that the transport of lithium-ion batteries by sea creates, providing suggestions for identifying such risks.

Extensive measures to safely transport what is an exponentially increasing volume of lithium-ion batteries, in their various states or charge and when also contained in electronic devices are fully examined including, classification and regulation, container packing, landside storage, stowage onboard ships, incident detection and fire suppression, and loss prevention and risk mitigation.

Splash 24/7


US, Japan strike deal on supply of minerals for EV batteries

The US agreed to boost cooperation with Japan on critical mineral supply chains and to expand access to tax breaks as President Joe Biden aims to counter China’s dominance of the electric vehicle battery sector.

Following the pact, EVs that use materials that have been collected or processed in Japan will be eligible for incentives under the US Inflation Reduction Act, Japanese trade minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said Tuesday in Tokyo.



Biden tees up a supply-chain rethink with challenge to China’s EVs

Seven months after President Joe Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law, the magnitude of the challenge it will be for the US to loosen China’s grip on the electric vehicle supply chain — a key objective of the legislation — is coming into sharper relief.

Ford, the top US car producer, confirmed last month that it will tap technology from China’s battery-making behemoth CATL for a $3.5 billion plant it’s building in Michigan. Tesla is expecting the base version of its cheapest car, the Model 3, to lose the entirety of the $7,500 tax credit it’s been eligible for because its cells come from China. And barring big surprises later this week, many other EVs currently qualifying for credits will be eligible for $3,750 incentives, at most, after the Treasury Department finalizes content requirements that have been the subject of heated debate and frantic lobbying.



Autonomous mobile robots market is expand at a CAGR of 22.1% during forecast period – by Fact.MR

In 2022, the market for autonomous mobile robots is expected to be worth USD 2.85 billion. By 2032, the market is anticipated to reach a value greater than USD 20.99 billion. The forecast period is expected to see this market expand at a CAGR of 22.1%.

The rising demand for automation in manufacturing and logistics industry is expected to drive the growth of the autonomous mobile robots market. The increasing need to reduce operational costs, improve efficiency and accuracy, and enhance productivity is anticipated to boost the growth of the market. The growing trend of automation in warehousing operations is also a major factor driving the growth of the autonomous mobile robots market. The growing demand for these robots in industrial applications is expected to continue to fuel the growth of the market.



World Shipping Council defends vessel-sharing arrangements

The World Shipping Council (WSC) released a statement supporting the use of vessel-sharing arrangements (VSAs), which are being phased out under a new US law.

The new U.S. law H.R. 1696 intends to eliminate these arrangements, thereby undermining competitiveness and option for liner transportation services, according to WSC.

“Nobody has offered a reason why we should throw away such a useful tool as VSAs, and I think some of the rhetoric comes from a misunderstanding about how VSAs help the supply chain work better," stated John Butler, president & CEO of the WSC.

Container News


Heathrow strike forces BA Easter flight cancellations

British Airways (BA) is cancelling around 32 flights a day to and from Heathrow Airport at the start of the Easter holidays. BBC News reports the move is due to a planned 10-day strike by 1,400 Heathrow security workers in the Unite union, who are taking action in a dispute over pay.

BA said it had offered a range of options to affected customers. Heathrow says contingency plans will be put in place to ensure it can "operate as normal".

Supply Chain Brain


FDA expects COVID-related shortages to normalize this year

  • Supplies of laboratory reagents, testing components and transport media are expected to normalize in the first half of 2023, ending shortages that date back to early in the pandemic, according to the Food and Drug Administration.
  • In its latest medical device shortage update, the FDA revised the estimated durations of the supply disruptions for multiple products used in response to COVID-19.
  • The agency expects most pandemic-related shortages to end by the middle of the year. The two exceptions are continuous, home-use ventilators and clinical sample concentrators.

Supply Chain Dive