Hapag-Lloyd leaving CSAV Norasia as sole ABS operator
CSAV Norasia said Friday that from late June it would be the sole vessel provider on the joint weekly Asia Black Sea (ABS) loop as Hapap-Lloyd is leaving the service.
Currently, Hong Kong-based CSAV Norasia operates seven of the eight vessels on the ABS while Germany’s Hapag-Lloyd operates one 4,250-TEU ship. Another German carrier, Senator Lines, and Kuwait-based carrier United Arab Shipping Co. (UASC) take slots on the service.
A spokesman for Hapag-Lloyd told American Shipper that the carrier is exploring its options in the trade. The Grand Alliance, of which Hapag-Lloyd is a member along with NYK, OOCL and MISC Berhad (in Asia/Europe trades only), is expected to soon start its own Asia/Black Sea route.
“With the service independently operated CSAV Norasia will have the flexibility to respond to the needs of its customers and react to any changes in the market when necessary,” CSAV Norasia said in a statement. “The move to provide all eight of the vessels on the service will follow on from upcoming changes that will see CSAV Norasia controlling all the space on the ABS service as all previous slot sales will have ended.”
The upcoming change to the ABS follows the recent addition of Xingang and Qingdao in Northern China and eastbound calls in Jeddah and Chiwan to the service. After the June change to the service, CSAV Norasia will deploy all eight vessels on the service, which operates with ships of average capacities of 4,200 TEUs and speeds of 22.5 knots.
The port rotation of the ABS is Xingang, Qingdao, Shanghai, Ningbo, Keelung, Chiwan, Port Kelang, Jeddah, Port Said, Constanza, Odessa, Istanbul, Port Said, Jeddah, Colombo, Port Kelang, Chiwan and back to Xingang.
CSAV Norasia is a subsidiary of Chile’s Compania Sud Americana de Vapores (CSAV).