By Don Ehrlich :: February 14, 2020
The mandatory shutdown has ended in China and the impact on cargo has yet to be determined. Airlines are continuing to cancel and reduce service to China as demand has dropped off significantly since the outbreak. Ocean cargo, though slow to return to full capacity after dozens of blanked and voided sailings, looks to have a shortage of equipment in many areas while cargo that has been tendered to port finally gets moving after sitting in containers, especially reefer containers.
While ocean cargo is impacted by a shortage of both equipment and labor, air freight is witnessing a drop in demand for urgent Chinese goods as nations retreat to protect populations from further infection. Airlines are cancelling or reducing flights to China and Hong Kong well into spring. Reuters has provided an excellent resource for which airlines are cancelling routes that can be viewed here. However, if you have specific questions on the cargo impact facing your company, feel free to reach out to your CFI representative for assistance. If you’re interested in the protections that airlines are taking to protect their passengers, employees and partners, Eric Kulisch has the details here at Freightwaves.
Local deliveries and transportation in China is slowly coming back fully online, but there are still delays between inter-province routes as only drivers who have been cleared can pass between. Health checks and quarantines are slowly coming to an end, but there is no consensus between epidemiologists, shippers, or officials as to when the threat will be gone and we can gauge the speedy return to true normal.