MOL joins APL with direct Vietnam service
Two shipping companies announced Thursday plans to offer direct shipping services from Vietnam to North America.
Hours after APL announced plans to start a service in June, MOL said its Pacific Southwest Express (PSX) service would begin calling at the Tan Cang Cai Mep Terminal, located about 50 kilometers southeast of Ho Chi Minh City, in the province of Ba Ria Vung Tau.
The PSX service will provide comprehensive coverage of the Pacific Southwest with calls at the ports of Los Angeles and Oakland. The service will offer 16-day service from Cai Mep to Los Angeles and 11-day service from Yantian to Los Angeles.
MOL said its first ship in the service to call Cai Mep will be the MOL Premium on June 4. Port rotation for the MOL service will be Cai Mep, Hong Kong, Yantian, Los Angeles, Oakland, Tokyo, Xiamen, Dachan Bay, Hong Kong and Cai Mep.
• APL starts direct Vietnam/WCNA
'MOL is very pleased to be able to offer its customers direct service from the emerging Vietnam market. By providing direct line-haul service, customers can be confident that their cargo will be moved quickly and economically, without concern for feeder misconnections,' said Richard Hiller, vice president of transpacific trade, MOL (America).
MOL’s announcement came just hours after APL said the 4,250-TEU APL Denver, one of the ships in its Pacific South 1 (PS1) service, would begin calling at the Saigon Port-PSA facility in the first week of June. SP-PSA is Vietnam's first operational deepwater container terminal serving Ho Chi Minh City.
The new rotation for the APL service is Port Klang, Singapore, Laem Chabang, Ho Chi Minh City, Yantian, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Seattle, Vancouver, Yokohama, Kobe, Kaohsiung, Chiwan, Laem Chabang, Singapore and Port Klang.
Speaking at a forum on shipping in New York last week, William Rooney, managing director, North and South America at Hanjin Shipping Co., said that his company was also planning direct service from Vietnam.
“Customers are clamoring for services out of Vietnam, which they have not had because of water depth and those kinds of things. That will be fixed by the end of this year. We have a new facility that we are building in cooperation with the government and the navy, in Ho Chi Minh City,” he said.
He said that while production in China is 10 times as large as any other Asian country, there was a shift to the south and west in production of some more labor-intensive goods such as shoes and clothing that requires a lot of stitching. That shift is already happening in the movement of production of some goods to countries like Vietnam, Indonesia and India, whose share will grow as infrastructure improves.