Container Freight Rates: India Trade Trends


After spiking dramatically amid the Red Sea crisis-linked shipping disruption, container freight rates seen on trades out of India have held firm or even declined in some cases in February, month-on-month, according to the latest market analysis by Container News.

Short term contract rates

On the westbound India-Europe trade, average short-term contract rates for 20-foot container bookings from West India [Jawaharlal Nehru Port (JNPT)/Nhava Sheva or Mundra Port] to Felixstowe/London Gateway (UK) have been steady at US$3,600 per 20-foot container.

For Indian loads to Rotterdam (the Netherlands), February rates have stood at US$3,600 per 20-foot container and US$3,900 per 40-foot container, up from US$3,700 and US$3,750 respectively a month ago.

For West India-Genoa (the West Mediterranean) bookings, contract rates have cooled to US$4,050/TEU, from US$4,200, and US$4,100/FEU, from US$5,000, the CN analysis shows.

Short-term contract prices on the India-US trades have also seen downward corrections from the Red Sea crisis-induced highs. Average rates in February for shipments from West India (Nhava Sheva/Mundra) to the US East Coast (New York) have stood at US$4,000/TEU, down from US$4,500, but FEU rates have increased to US$5,

For the West India-US Gulf Coast (Houston) trades, rates have slid to US$4,500/TEU and US$5,000/FEU, from US$4,750 and US$5,500, respectively, according to the CN analysis.

Carrier contract rates on intra-Asia trades out of India have in some port pairings recovered from the previous lows, the CN analysis found.

For West India-Yantian (South China), the analysis has put average rates at US$125/TEU and US$110/FEU, compared with US$75 and US$150, respectively, while for West India-Tianjin (North China), carriers are now quoting US$100/TEU and US$20/FEU, compared with US$75 and US$150, respectively, last month.

Also, for West India loads to Singapore, carriers continue to accept bookings at as low as US$10/TEU and US$10/FEU. However, carriers have been able to push rates higher on the West India-Jebel Ali (Dubai) trade -– with February averages reported at US$200/TEU and US$350/FEU, up from US$90/TEU and US$225/FEU in January.

Tensions in West Asia

“Recent tensions in West Asia especially the threat to consignments routing through the Red Sea have further added to woes of the exporting community, as the freight rates have gone up unimaginably high, with further burden of various surcharge,” said Israr Ahmed, president of the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO).

According to FIEO, “The need of the hour is to address the Red Sea crisis challenges by ensuring availability of marine insurance, regular supply of containers, and rationale increase in freight charges.”

However, FIEO expressed optimism about the overall export outlook, noting that annual exports would surpass last year’s figures.

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Source : Container news



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