Deep sea shipping: definition and peculiarities

Published on: 15 July 2021
Category: About shipping

For those unfamiliar with the term, deep sea shipping is the maritime transport of goods on intercontinental routes. Its counterpart is short sea shipping, which involves moving cargo over shorter distances.

The differences between the two, however, are not limited to distance: transporting cargo across the oceans comes with unique challenges.

For this reason it is preferable to have an experienced partner to help you navigate the peculiarities of this form of transport, and we at Global Shipping are here to provide that.

The main characteristics of deep sea shipping

The good news is that it is easier to enter deep sea shipping than it is to begin a career in short sea shipping, as the latter is dependent on pre-established relationships between the parties, while the former poses fewer entry barriers to new players. Once you have taken the first step, however, you will find that there are many other factors to consider.

Short sea shipping employs smaller vessels which are designed to move along the coast and are more flexible in terms of cargo intake; deep sea shipping, on the other hand, involves larger vessels intended to cross the oceans and is extremely sensitive to the fluctuations in world supply and demand.

In the case of deep sea shipping, the market is less subject to geographical segmentation (though there are differences between shipping on the Atlantic and the Pacific Ocean) and seasonality, but larger forces at play, such as the growth of economic superpowers of the caliber of the USA, India and China, will undoubtedly affect freight rates. A period of low demand, and therefore low commodity prices, will have a greater negative effect on deep sea shipping than on its counterpart: in fact, buyers are more likely to go and look for the goods they need a little closer to home at such a time, thereby increasing short sea shipping activity to the detriment of deep sea shipping.

Both kinds of maritime transport are affected by the economic uncertainty that concerns many countries of the world, but deep sea shipping, in particular, is facing an oversupply problem that leads to a generally depressed market, and is not an easy field to work in.

That is why you need an expert to keep an eye on the changes in the market and provide useful insights, and we hope you will consider choosing Global Shipping as your experienced advisor.

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