As we launch into 2018, we look back and review a tumultuous year for Australian shipping.2017 introduced multiple shipping line alliances, acquisitions and mergers with carriers fighting for market shares. Previously 15-20 shipping lines controlled the market, however the current trend shows that 5-6 main carriers sit on 90% of the global market. Over the past three years, there has been a steady increase of container ships docking at Australian ports. Statistics gathered from the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport & Regional Economics (BITRE) indicate positive growth for the foreseeable future.
The FiguresFrom the period of January to June 2015, to the same period of 2016, there was increase 0.3% of container vessels at Australian ports. Looking at the exact same period from 2016 to 2017, we have recorded a rise of 3.96%. This translates to an increase of 77 vessels in just six months.
However, having an increased number of vessels visiting Australian ports does not make the expected impact if it does not result in an increased amount of Import/Export cargo.If we look at the period of 2015-Jan/Jul and compare it to 2017, we see an increase of 252,600 TEU’s in just two years. This equates to a 7.71% spike from 2015 to 2017.
With the recent interest in Australian products, especially in Asia, we predict exports have had a major influence in the rise of the total amount of TEU handled through Australian ports.The peak season also had a huge effect on market. It was unlike anything the industry had seen before. Volume and pricing hit an unprecedented level as space in December was in high demand. This leaves us to believe that the December quarter may hit a record amount of TEU’s handled Australia wide. Our analysis of throughput tonnage demonstrates Sydney handling less tonnage compared to Brisbane, Fremantle and Melbourne.
This is an indicator that Sydney does not handle big volumes of project cargo.In the last two years, total Cargo Weight has remained somewhat consistent in all ports, other than Sydney. In comparison, Sydney has made a substantial leap of almost four million tonnes in this period. We can conclude that Fremantle and Brisbane are still heavily involved in break bulk, resource and project cargo. These areas have shown modest growth in the past two years.
The ImpactIn the past three years, ICE has experienced growth across all departments. We have seen an increase of 34.6% in the number of FCL’s we have handled and 77.73% increase in total LCL CBM.
Our business focus has been on building enduring client relationships. These relationships are underpinned by experienced and knowledgeable staff. Strategic alliances with experienced agents and the implementation of our tracking and data analytics platform, have also attributed to our success.
Everyone at ICE is proud of being a part of the positive development on the Australian market and look forward to playing an even bigger part in 2018.