Shipping in the time of COVID-19

Some reflections about the impact of Pandemic on the shipping industry
Published on: 26 May 2020
Category: About shipping

Some reflections about the impact of Pandemic on the shipping industry

Up until today, 2020 has been a challenging year. The Pandemic has had a major impact on the global shipping sector and we would like to share with you some reflections on the current scenario.  

A step back 

What initially seemed a problem affecting just China, had spread beyond Asian countries and reached Europe quickly. The fast spread of the virus forced companies to apply markups to face the increased exposure to risks of the employees and to bear the costs of preventive measures. Then lots of Countries – and Italy in particular – adopted sweeping measures, including border shutdowns and travel restrictions, thus forcing a suspension of all related activities.  

Silver linings 

April data seemed more encouraging: although restrictions on transports are still ongoing, companies have started to reopen following all the necessary procedures and especially China’s reopening is giving economy a breath and a recovery also could be in the cards for the container sector, with the weekly number of large container ship journeys originating in China now going back up. Furthermore, during a recent webinar, Peter Sand, Chief Shipping Analyst at BIMCO, talked about the demolition market as a silver lining: “we are continuously operating in a market with too much capacity but as for dry bulk shipping, we have seen five million deadweights being sold for demolition in the first (almost) three months of 2020. (…) One way to limit peak growth is to demolish overaged or at least commercially lesser superior tonnage.” 

Glance at the future 

Anyway, lemons to lemonade, the need to work and to be sure not to fall behind in a rapidly changing world, led many companies, like ours, to invest in innovative solutions to make work methods more flexible and to develop product diversification strategy – which is truly a leap into the future. 

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