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Valencia Containerised Freight Index rises 4.09% in March

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Valencia Containerised Freight Index rises 4.09% in March. Image: Port Authority of Valencia
Valencia Containerised Freight Index rises 4.09% in March. Image: Port Authority of Valencia
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The Valencia Container Freight Index has increased by 4.09% in March compared to the previous month, and returns, after declining in February, to the upward trend that has been the norm over the last 15 months. In this way, the index stands at 4,428.46 points and accumulates a growth of 342.85% since the beginning of the series in 2018. As reflected in the 2021 annual report, during this time the VCFI has been conditioned by the high demand for port traffic, the price of maritime fuel, congestion in some precincts, disruptions in supply chains and the complex international environment. To this must be added the conflict in Europe over the invasion of Ukraine which is reflected, for example, in the 14.71% increase of the Index in the Atlantic Europe area.

In this line, inflationary tensions persist in many territories, driven by the energy component, where European Brent has returned to record highs since the financial crisis, standing at $113.61 with a rise of 20.67% compared to the previous month. Thus, according to the data offered by Ship&Bunker, which takes as a reference the price of bunkering (refuelling of ships at sea) in the 20 main ports of the world, the cost of IFO 380 (Intermediate Fuel Oil) has risen from 591.5$ in February to 716$ in March, which represents an increase of 21.04%. The price of VLSFO (Very Low Sulphur Fuel Oil) reached $915.5 in March compared to $781.5 the previous month, an increase of 17.14%.

In terms of capacity on offer, the consultancy Alphaliner counted 59 idle vessels in mid-March with a total of 204,977 TEU (standard 20-foot container), representing 0.8% of the total active fleet. This represents an increase compared to February, when there were 101,419 TEUs and 48 idle vessels, 0.4% of the total active fleet.

As far as demand is concerned, according to the latest RWI/ISL Container Througput Index published at the end of March and the Container Trade Statistics (CTS), there was a significant drop in the volume of port traffic compared to the previous month. This decline was mainly due to the drop-in activity in China due to the end of the New Year holidays and the closure of Shanghai due to the new outbreak of COVID-19. There was also a decline in traffic in European ports due to the sanctions imposed on Russia for the invasion of Ukraine.

At the same time, and despite some contraction in certain ports, the high levels of congestion continue to act as a limiting factor from an operational point of view to the supply of capacity. In relation to the Spanish ports, the hauliers’ strike has led to a slowdown in commercial activity for several weeks, with cargo accumulating in the ports and showing high levels of congestion.

Regarding the analysis of the different areas that make up the VCFI, it is worth highlighting the increase in Atlantic Europe freight rates (14.71%), reaching record levels because of the war in Ukraine on transport chains. Similarly, a significant increase is observed in the East Coast Africa Index (13.32%), as a direct consequence of congestion problems. As regards the US/Canada area (11.75%), freight rates have increased due to the boost in import demand from Europe.

Valencia Containerised Freight Index Western Mediterranean

The Western Mediterranean sub-index reflects in March an increase of 3.39% over the previous month to 2,195.78 points. Thus, it accumulates a growth of 119.58% since the beginning of the series in 2018. During the year 2021, the index concentrated the highest increases since the beginning of the series, however, at the beginning of 2022, a certain containment was observed, which has been reversed again. This situation occurs in a context in which traffic from Valenciaport to Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria has once again increased.

Valencia Containerised Freight Index Far East

In the Far East area, the Valencia Containerised Freight Index decreased by 3.17%, following the trend of the previous month. In this area, the Index reached 3,641.62 points, which is 264.16% higher than at the beginning of the series in 2018. In this line, it is worth highlighting the decrease in Valenciaport’s export flows with China, its main trading partner, as has historically occurred after the Chinese New Year. However, this is probably a one-off behaviour, so it is expected that, when the Chinese ports resume their operations, the evolution of freight rates will be altered.

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Container Terminal

Konecranes to deliver first hybrid RTGs to Africa

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Konecranes to deliver first hybrid RTGs to Africa. Image: Konecranes
Konecranes to deliver first hybrid RTGs to Africa. Image: Konecranes
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Konecranes has received an order from the Matadi Gateway Terminal in the Democratic Republic of the Congo for four hybrid RTGs. These will be the first hybrid RTGs operated in Africa by the Congo River in the city of Matadi. As a world first in the container handling industry, Konecranes now delivers hybrid and electric RTGs to customers as carbon neutral. Carbon emissions are minimized wherever possible in the manufacture of the cranes and the remaining emissions are compensated with re-forestation, up to the point of hand-over to the customer. This order was booked in the first quarter of 2022 and the hybrid RTGs will be delivered by March 2023.

International Container Terminal Services and La Société De Gestion Immobilière Lengo jointly run the Matadi Gateway Terminal in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The new hybrid RTGs will enable MGT to handle increasing container traffic. “This is a breakthrough for both DR of the Congo and Africa as a whole, where container terminals are looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprints. These are their first RTGs and a big step forward in their container handling ability that will help them to reach their growth goals,” said Matti Talala, Sales Manager, Port Solutions, Konecranes. This hybrid choice of MGT is fully in line with MGT’s ongoing environmental policy.

MGT opened for business in 2014 and has since grown to reach 175,000 TEU of capacity. The new hybrid RTGs will handle containers with high eco-efficiency thanks to their hybrid drives. A hybrid Konecranes RTG is operated with electrical power from batteries and a diesel generator. During normal use, power is drawn from the batteries. During peak use, power is drawn from the batteries and diesel generator together. The hybrid RTGs for MGT will have built-in readiness for fully electric operation and they will have the smart features Auto-steering and Stack Profiling with a lifting capacity of 40t. This design and configuration will increase MGT’s capacity to 400,000 TEU by doubling the yard area.

This is part of Ecolifting, Konecranes’ continuous work to decrease the carbon footprints of our customers. From eco-optimizing diesel drives to hybridization and fully electric fleets, we will continue to do more with less.

A strong focus on customers and a commitment to business growth and continuous improvement make Konecranes a lifting industry leader. This is underpinned by investments in digitalization and technology, plus our work to make material flows more efficient with solutions that decarbonize the economy and advance circularity and safety.

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Maritime

Kongsberg Digital to provide vessel insight to Floatel International

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Kongsberg Digital to provide vessel insight to Floatel International. Image: Kongsberg Digital
Kongsberg Digital to provide vessel insight to Floatel International. Image: Kongsberg Digital
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Floatel International provides top-quality offshore Floatels for extreme conditions, and will now become a part of and benefit from Kongsberg Digital’s digital infrastructure Vessel Insight.

Floatel is currently operating in the North Sea region, Australia, Gulf of Mexico and Brazil and have a fleet consisting of five semi-submersible accommodation and construction support vessels. The company is systematically working to reduce its emissions and optimize its operations. As a part of Kongsberg Digital´s infrastructure Vessel Insight, the goal is to gain better control and smarter solutions through digitalization. Vessel Insight will be deployed on all of Floatel International´s operational rigs.

“We are excited to be a part of Floatel International on their digital journey. They are experts in working under extreme conditions, and we are proud they have chosen us to support them in reducing emissions and proving optimal operations through digitalization.” said Andreas Jagtøyen, Executive Vice President of Digital Ocean in Kongsberg Digital.

“One of our main focus areas is data-driven decarbonization. We hope to get the most out of apps such as Maress and will hopefully get better use of our fuel management data. With the Vessel Insight infrastructure and the Kognifai ecosystem, we have all our digital solutions in the same place and greater opportunities for further digitalization.” commented Alexander Östberg, Technical Manager at Floatel International.

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Intermodal Transport

RUSCON implements its multimodal service between Russia and Israel

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RUSCON implements its multimodal service between Russia and Israel. Image: Delo Group
RUSCON implements its multimodal service between Russia and Israel. Image: Delo Group
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In June 2022, a logistics operator RUSCON, successfully implemented the first shipment of 90 40-foot containers, as part of its new multimodal service between Russia and Israel. The shipment was sent by sea from Novorossiysk to the port of Ashdod. The purpose of these shipments is to link the regions of our country with the Israeli ones through the seaports of the two states.

Transportation within Russia is provided by RUSCON regular services. The consolidation points in Novorossiysk are RUSCON ‘s own terminal and the NUTEP Container Terminal. The sea transportation shoulder is fully organized by RUSCON.

Currently the frequency of calls to Novorossiysk for this service is once in two weeks. Last mile service is available to RUSCON customers in Israel.

Commenting on the new service Andrey Chernyshev, the Senior Vice-President of RUSCON, said: “Under the conditions of partial uncertainty of the situation in the world, RUSCON is doing its best not only to maintain the existing logistic chains, but also to create new ones. Undoubtedly, the launch of the new service in Israel is a significant progress in expanding the geography of RUSCON ‘s multimodal services on the Black and Mediterranean seas.”

He continued, “Such development makes it possible to offer our clients secure solutions for transportations in import-export directions. High demand for the service is evidenced by the loading of cargoes of Israeli manufacturers to Russian cargo owners already in the first call. Partaking of several Delo Group’ assets in the Russia-Israel service allows us to achieve a significant synergy effect and minimize the impact of the current negative factors”.

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