Freight News, Sea

Global shipping lines shun Russia

[ March 22, 2022   //   ]

Most global shipping companies apart from China’s COSCO have suspended cargo bookings to and from Russia, says analytics company GlobalData.

Business Fundamentals Analyst, Sathiya Jalapathy said the decision could put the country in a difficult position as it will struggle to import goods such as motor vehicles and spare parts, industrial machinery and equipment, apparel and electrical machinery.

Essential goods such as medical equipment, food, and humanitarian aid continue to be transported, however.

MSC Mediterranean Shipping: has stopped accepting cargo bookings to and from Russia, covering the Baltic Sea, the Black Sea, and Far East Russian regions. The company operates in Russia through its subsidiary MSC Rus, LLC.

CMA CGM’s Russian subsidiary, which has nine offices including Saint Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg, and Moscow serving seven Russian ports, has suspended its operations in the country.

Danish shipping company Maersk has halted its container shipping operations temporarily to and from Russia. It operated through three shipping routes connecting Saint Petersburg and Kaliningrad in the Baltic Sea; Novorossiysk in the Black Sea; and Vladivostok and Vostochny on the Russian east coast. The company has also announced that it will suspend its ocean and inland cargo bookings temporarily to and from Russia. Maersk intends to sell its 30.75% stake in Russian port operator, Global Ports Investments.

Korean line HMM halted cargo bookings on two of its shipping routes to and from Russia, citing low demand but said that it will fulfil previous bookings. The company operates container ships with a capacity of 1,700 TEUs each on the Busan to Vostochny and Busan to Vladivostok routes.

Singapore-based Ocean Network Express (jointly owned by K Line, MOL, and NYK) has suspended cargo bookings to and from Odessa in Ukraine, and Novorossiysk and Saint Petersburg in Russia.

Germany’s Hapag-Lloyd has also suspended bookings to and from Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine. The company operates in Russia through offices in Kaliningrad, Moscow, Novorossysk and Saint Petersburg.

COSCO Shipping’s tanker fleet however continues to transport crude oil, which is Russia’s major export commodity, to China. Jalapathy adds: “COSCO is offering economic succour for Russia as it faces a barrage of economic sanctions from various governments.”