Container Shipping Forecast

After two years of unprecedented rises container freight rates were seen as having peaked with a downcycle in 2023-2024 driven by overcapacity. However, Parash Jain, Head of Shipping & Ports & Asia Transport Research for HSBC does not believe the sector will return to losses, which have so often characterised it over the last two decades pre-pandemic.

“There are signs that spot rates could fall to pre-pandemic levels swiftly on the widening demand-supply gap (as seen in the BDI), but we maintain that contract rates should settle above their pre-pandemic levels and that capacity discipline will keep spot rates from lingering at trough levels,” Jain said.