Nearly 400 Container Ships Wait to Berth

Bottlenecks and capacity shortages are creating long lines in key ports, especially on routes from Asia to the U.S. and Europe.

Globally, 376 container ships carrying a total of 2.4 million teu are piled up near ports, according to figures compiled Thursday, Sept. 2, by ship database Vessels Values.

This is primarily due to bottlenecks near Zhoushan and Ningbo in China, where the key container terminal Meishan recently had to close for two weeks as a result of a port worker testing positive for COVID-19. In the U.S., backups at ports in Long Beach, Calif., and Los Angeles are also contributing to the problem.

In Zhoushan, 105 container ships were waiting for room to open up in the port as of Thursday, while 71 container vessels were piled up near Ningbo, according to Vessels Value.

On the U.S. side, 34 container ships were waiting to call in the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. This also includes the ship which has waited the longest on a global scale. MSC Vandaya has been queuing for 15 days off the Port of Long Beach.

The situation has prompted the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission to launch an investigation into eight container lines in the wake of tip-offs suggesting that they are tacking on surcharges in an unlawful manner.

Source: Shipping Watch