EU Commissioner Highlights 400% Increase On Asia-To-Europe Routes

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  • Houthi rebel attacks in the Red Sea have caused delays of up to 15 days on certain China-to-Europe shipping routes.
  • European Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni reports a staggering 400% increase in transportation costs on affected routes.
  • Commissioner Gentiloni expresses concerns over potential inflation in the EU due to supply chain disruptions.
  • Houthi rebels, active in Yemen, have targeted commercial vessels since the Israel-Hamas conflict in October.
  • EU foreign ministers have tentatively agreed to launch a naval mission in the Red Sea to protect cargo ships.
  • The EU’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, anticipates launching the naval mission on February 19, aiming to safeguard trade routes in the Red Sea.

Red Sea Disruptions

Paolo Gentiloni has stated that disruptions in the Red Sea have extended delivery times on certain routes by as much as 15 days. (Image credit: © Getty Images / John Lamb).

The disruptions to shipping caused by Houthi rebel attacks on vessels in the Red Sea have raised the cost of transporting goods on some China-to-Europe routes by around 400%, according to European Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni, who also mentioned that shipping times on such routes had increased by 10-15 days.

The commissioner expressed hope that the crises on one of the world’s most important trade routes won’t lead to a significant increase in inflation in the EU, but added that “further supply disruptions could lead to higher prices.”

Red Sea Attacks Prompt Shift In Shipping Routes

The Yemen-based Houthi rebels have carried out dozens of drone and missile attacks on commercial vessels moving across the Red Sea since the beginning of the Israel-Hamas war in October. As a result, many major shipping companies have stopped using the Suez Canal and are instead redirecting ships around the Cape of Good Hope in southern Africa.

The attacks have also reportedly caused average container prices to double globally in the past month, while fuel tanker rates for certain destinations have surged to their highest level in years.

Last month, EU foreign ministers reached a tentative agreement to launch a naval mission in the Red Sea to defend cargo ships. Germany, France, and Italy proposed the move in response to requests from the Netherlands, whose merchant shipping industry has been particularly impacted by the attacks.

The bloc’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, has said that the mission is expected to be launched on February 19.

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Source: azerbaycan24