Global Shipping has the Flu. Click to keep reading…

Global Shipping has the Flu. Click to keep reading…

The spread of the coronavirus in China is impacting global shipping, as shipping companies that carry goods from China are reducing the number of seaborne vessels. China is home to seven of the world’s ten busiest container ports, according to the United Nations. “A closure of the world’s manufacturing hub impacts container shipping at large, as it is a vital facilitator of the intra-Asian and global supply chains,” remarked Peter Sand, chief shipping analyst at BIMCO. “This will affect many industries and limit demand for containerized goods transport.”

The Chinese government is struggling to keep the virus contained by keeping workers at home and closing factories. Close to 60 million people live in Chinese cities that have been locked down. As the outbreak spreads, it will become more and more difficult to move goods around the world.

Some ships cannot get into Chinese ports, as the loading and discharging of goods has slowed dramatically. Others are stuck in dock waiting for workers to return to ports. Additional ships are floating in “quarantine zones,” as countries deny entry to ships that have called at Chinese ports until the crew has been officially declared healthy. Logistics companies are warning clients that delivery of Chinese goods may be delayed.

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