Ocean carriers are suddenly waking up to the fact that supply chain disruptions for their customers are bad for relations. Now they’ve decided that they blanked too many voyages. And thehoarding of containers by customers who usethem to store goods they’ve already taken possession of has disrupted things further. There just aren’t enough containers and chassis to get cargo from China and to move it about.
They should have thought about the repercussions in the supply chains when they started out reducing service.
The main advantage of ocean shipping is the cost and large quantity; if the service becomes marginally reliable in terms of time of delivery, naturally people are going to look for alternatives like buying larger quantities, beyond storage space, and using the containers to help out.
Supply chain performance is about matching supply to demand, and ocean carriers should continue to remember that it’s not about them, but about their customers’ needs.
By Gavin van Marle 21/09/2020