BRi News - Important News Update 10th May 2021


Dear all Valued Customers


Upgraded Import Forecasts Signal Stronger Shipping Pressures


US Importers are upping their forecasts for the coming months, suggesting that shippers who are already struggling to secure vessel capacity in Asia will find it even more difficult, and ports on the US West and East coasts could face increasing congestion leading into the summer-fall peak shipping season.


Global Port Tracker said that due to especially strong retail sales, it is pushing up its forecast for US imports in June through August from the projections it made only one month ago.


Global Port Tracker is reporting that it now expects US imports to rise 6 percent year over year in August compared with a previous estimate of a 1.2 percent decline. (Record jump)


The upward revision to US import projections for peak shipping season sends a message to shippers and ports that tight vessel capacity and marine terminal congestion issues are far from over.


However, forecasts of the ongoing high cargo volumes reflect the recovering US economy. "Gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 6.4 percent in the first quarter, and some economists are predicting 13 percent in the second quarter. Growth that fast is a clear indication that US economic output has almost recovered to its level before the pandemic struck,” said a representative for Global Port Tracker.


Market Update


With the addition of new routings, premium rates, and lengthened vessel wait times, this unprecedented time of demand has urged shippers to re-evaluate their supply chain needs.


As such, BRi USA has compiled market updates on the everchanging global supply chain:




  • On the transpacific, carriers are sold out for the rest of May and into June, with spot rate increases from Asia to the US west and east coasts continuing to rise.
  • FAK space is extremely difficult to secure and subject to rolled bookings. Carrier premiums may guarantee cargo movement, but not in all cases. These are evaluated by the carriers on a case-by-case basis.
  • Booking lead time is currently four weeks.
  • Ports in Los Angeles and Oakland remain strained mainly due to labour constraints. There are on average 20-25 vessels at anchor in Long Beach with an 8-11 day wait time and an average of 15-20 vessels at anchor in Oakland with a 10-15 day wait time at any given point.
  • Guangzhou Port, located in south China’s Guangdong Province, on April 29th launched a combined sea-rail transportation service to Europe. The train will arrive in Poland in 15 days, 20 days quicker than the normal sea-transport route. China-Europe freight-train services have played a significant role in stabilizing international railway logistics amid disrupted sea and air transport services.




  • Based on some market forecasts, the equipment shortage problem is not likely to be resolved soon. Tighter box capacity means higher rates shippers must pay liners to move their cargo. Transit times from Asia will continue to be affected, too, with some doubling.
  • All shipping lines are in tight supply of 40HQ at this moment.




  • Capacity out of Asia and Europe is tight, most freighters are completely booked through May. We are expecting June to soften a little to that of May but again we wont know until end of May.
  • Rates continue to rise due to tight capacity. Some carriers are updating their rates daily and in most cases validating for a handful of days only.
  • Carriers are booking space up to 21 days in advance in some cases for US imports.
  • We are seeing delays at the airports when tendering the cargo for exports, and the airlines will not hold cargo until the flight schedule departure date.
  • Several airlines are moving shipments on more expensive Express Services only.


Domestic Trucking


  • Truck capacity is tight, especially with intermodal moves as many truckers are preferring to carry over-the-road loads currently.
  • Rates are primarily a spot quote market due to fuel being higher and a lack of stability. Adding to the volatility, the volume of freight moving has made the demand even higher.
  • Most domestic loads are booked a week in advance; however, we are specifically seeing a lot of intermodal and dray moves booked 3-4 weeks in advance. 
  • Truck capacity remains very tight at the following inland ramps/terminals: Cleveland, Detroit, Indianapolis, Atlanta and Memphis. Chassis are in short supply at Baltimore, Chicago, Cleveland, and Detroit.
  • In Memphis, exports rail receiving is becoming a challenge. In Nashville, there is minimal import cargo, but export cargo has increased.


The BRi USA team is monitoring the global situation carefully and will provide updates as they are made available. 


Containerships Pushed to Meet Berthing Windows Regardless of Congestion


A new survey has found a “significant increase” in the average speed of containerships, saying that average laden containership speeds had increased by 5.5% since last June to 14.76 knots, and by 8.5% in the larger sectors.


The finding comes as evidence is beginning to emerge that carriers are abolishing some of their slow-steaming instructions, asking ships to ‘speed up’ to meet berthing windows, as well as increasing average speeds on backhaul routes to prioritise deadheading of empty equipment. Read the full report at The Loadstar.


Egypt Offers to Cut Ever Given Compensation Claim to $600 Million


Egypt offered to reduce claims by a third for compensation from owners of the container ship that blocked the Suez Canal in March, Suez Canal Authority Chairman Osama Rabie told MBC Masr channel television channel. The canal authority said it would reduce the claims for compensation to $600 million from $900 million, according to Rabie. The SCA also offered payment terms to owners of the Ever Given container ship but they have yet to respond, he said.


In mid-April, an Egyptian court granted the Suez Canal Authority’s request for the seizure of the vessel as compensation talks dragged on. The blockage roiled shipping markets because hundreds of vessels had to wait for the canal — which can shave two weeks off a journey between Asia and Europe


BRi ERP and Order Management Program – track your product/shipments anytime and anywhere


To ensure you maintain visibility to your shipments as they move through the supply chain, please take advantage of BRi PATHWAY.


The information in PATHWAY is real-time and available 24/7.


To obtain a login for your account, please respond to this email so we can get you started!


As a valued customer, we hope that you will continue to trust us to source the best options for your supply chain needs now and into the future. Please feel free to contact your Customer Solutions Representative, should you have any queries or questions.


Keeping you updated,

BRi Customer Solutions Team

Back to News Page

News Archives