Sydney Port Congestion – Update 2
Unfortunately the situation in Sydney is getting worse with many vessels bypassing the port and instead going to Melbourne or Brisbane and discharging Sydney cargo in these ports. Click here to see a notice just received from ANL advising of their amended schedule details for their vessels to Sydney, with most now not calling into this port at all and this is just one example of the type of information that we’re now receiving daily. Therefore, containers for Sydney are being discharged in these other ports and moved on a coastal service back to Sydney at a later date, which will further delay the arrival of these goods. At present, there are long delays for vessels to get a berth in Sydney and this is why many lines have imposed a Congestion Surcharge of USD 300 per 20’ container to Sydney. Also, some lines are now not even taking bookings for cargo to Sydney, Click here to see a notice received from Maersk, which is the biggest shipping line operating around the world and they’ve advised that they’re no longer accepting any bookings to Sydney for the time being.
At present many of the shipping lines here are still unsure of when their vessel will arrive until just a few days out, as they’re being rerouted and changed by their principals at the last minute, depending on what the current situation is here in Australia. Therefore, it’s very hard for them and for us to be able to give out accurate information on vessel arrivals, as differing dates are being received from several sources at the same time, but we’ll continue to work through these issues and try and provide you with the updated details as early as we can.
These delays are also continuing to impact the return of empty containers, as all empty parks in Sydney are 100% full, as no empty containers are being shipped back out from Sydney. The reason for this is that the vessels are not waiting in port to load empty containers, as they’ve already been delayed too long, so they’re departing as soon as they can without waiting for empty containers to be loaded. This has meant that all Sydney empty depots are full and not receiving any more containers, so empty containers now have to be held and stored by transport operators in their depots, which incurs additional costs.
We are hoping that pressure from Industry Groups and the Government will help get this dispute resolved as soon as possible, as there are several reports stating that the productivity levels in the port are currently down around 40% due to this ongoing Industrial Action by the MUA. Unfortunately this course of action has totally crippled the port now and it’s severely affecting everyone that has cargo moving through Sydney with long delays being incurred and huge additional costs being applied.