MSC to raise Asia/Europe rates in December
Ocean carrier Mediterranean Shipping Co. said Friday it will raise rates by $200 per TEU from the Far East to ports in the Mediterranean and Northern Europe.
The rate hike, part of the line's drive to restore rates on the battered trade, takes effect Dec. 15. It applies to all cargo leaving China, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia and arriving at all European ports, including Scandinavia, the United Kingdom, the Baltic Sea, the Black Sea and North Africa.
Seven other lines have announced rate hikes between Asia and Europe in recent weeks, with most due to take effect in November.
Meanwhile, it was reported Friday that MSC has withdrawn from an agreement to bring container volume to the Greek port of Piraeus, a terminal whose management has recently been taken over by Chinese terminal operator COSCO Pacific.
The terminal was managed by the local port authority, and MSC's contract with the authority allowed it to cancel the deal if management was transferred, Lloyd's List reported.
The line had a deal to bring 500,000 TEUs to the port annually, but had slowed its traffic to the Greek port in the last year due to labor unrest on the docks. COSCO Pacific has dealt with a dockworker strike in the first weeks as operator of the terminal it took over on Oct. 1.
The report said MSC is not expected to abandon Piraeus altogether and could work out a volume deal with COSCO Pacific. According to ComPair Data, MSC has only one service calling at Piraeus — its Asia-Med Tiger service, which it operates with 10 vessels averaging 8,451 TEUs. That service calls at three other Mediterranean ports.