Maersk Sealand adds direct Asia/Central America service
Maersk Sealand will start a direct container service March 5 connecting Asian ports with ports of the West coasts of Central America and Mexico, which does not require the use of congested California ports.
The “Cam-Mex” service will make direct calls in Central America at Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala, and Balboa, Panama. Alongside the “Marex” service of NYK, the Maersk Sealand service will be one of only two transpacific services calling direct at the port of Puerto Quetzal, according to ComPair Data, the global liner-shipping database.
Maersk Sealand’s new service will also call direct at Ensenada and Lazaro Cardenas in Mexico, Chiwan and Hong Kong in China, Kwangyang in Korea, and Kaohsiung in Taiwan.
Initially, the service will be fortnightly and will not call at Lazaro Cardenas, and Balboa. At the end of May, its sailings will become weekly and the port rotation will include these two port calls.
The first vessel in this service will be the “Sea-Land Patriot,” a 2,816-TEU containership. The service will ultimately employ seven vessels of 2,800-TEU nominal capacities.
Until now, Maersk Sealand has served the West Coast of Central America from Asia by transshipment over Los Angeles or Balboa. It will continue to operate a West Coast Central America Service connecting Los Angeles, the West Coast of Central America and Peru.
Shippers who exports from Asia to Central and South America benefit from not transshipping cargoes via Los Angeles or not using a ship that calls at a U.S. ports because they do not have to submit additional documentation under U.S. Customs and Border Protection's “24-hour rule,” a Maersk Sealand spokesman said.
In the Asia/Central America/West Coast of South America trade, NYK and Compania Sud Americana de Vapores are also adding capacity, following the ending of their “Andex” vessel-sharing agreement.