Container freight rates fall 31% on Asia-Europe trade route

Shipping freight rates for transporting containers from ports in Asia to Northern Europe fell 31 percent to $313 per 20-foot container (TEU) in the week ended on Friday, one source with access to data from the Shanghai Containerized Freight Index said.

It was the third consecutive week of falling freight rates on the world’s busiest route. Rates are now on lowest level since June 19 and widely seen as a loss-making level.

Container spot freight rates have so far increased in 8 weeks this year but fallen in 29 weeks.

In the week to Friday, container freight rates dropped 30.1 percent from Asia to ports in the Mediterranean, fell 6.4 percent to ports on the U.S. West Coast and were down 4.5 percent to ports on the U.S. East Coast.

Maersk Line, the global market leader with more than 600 container vessels and part of Danish oil and shipping group A.P. Moller-Maersk, is the most profitable of the 10 largest container shipping companies.

The Danish shipping company controls around one fifth of all transported containers from Asia to Europe, and one of its vessels call a port somewhere in the world every twelve minutes year-round. 

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