German shipping major Hapag-Lloyd confirmed to Freight News today that it had put a hold on freight rate increases on certain routes – and would continue to do so “for the time being”.
This follows last week’s announcement by French Line CMA CGM that it would freeze all spot rate increases from September 9 to February 1, 2022.
“We believe that spot rates have peaked and we are not pursuing further increases,” a Hapag-Lloyd spokesman said.
“Our action is focusing on the trades where we have seen extremely high Freight All Kinds (FAK) rate levels, mainly from Asian origins, but also on some other non-Asian routes where FAK market levels have just gone too high. We hope that the market will slowly start to calm down.”
Port congestion, along with severe capacity shortfalls, have put shipping lines in the driver’s seat, which has seen rates skyrocketing. But with lines under increasing pressure from shippers and regulators, perhaps this is the start of a cooling of rate rises.