Shipping and Freight Review 2019 – the year and the decade

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The last year of the decade is fast fading into the horizon.. 2019 is almost done..

2019 and the decade has been one of continued trade wars, maritime disasters, size race, and containers, ships and bills of lading getting smart and many interesting aspects..

Here is my take on how the shipping and freight industry fared in 2019 and the decade..

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Scale-less weighing of containers for SOLAS VGM

scale-less weighing

SOLAS VGM – probably a term which may have slipped many people’s minds as it seems to have successfully integrated itself into the mainstream container shipping process since its mandatory implementation in July 2016.. Now it seems to be back, but in a good way though..

In July 2016, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) issued a mandatory requirement which required all shipping containers to be weighed and the weight information (Verified Gross Mass) be provided to the shipping lines as part of the SOLAS (Safety of Life At Sea convention) Chapter VI Regulation 2..

This requirement came on the back of continued misdeclaration of weights by shippers many of which resulted in incidents at sea causing loss of property and/or lives..

The regulation allowed shippers to provide the VGM to the carriers using two different methods

  1. Weigh the packed container using calibrated and certified weighing equipment like a weighbridge to get the VGM
  2. Weigh the cargo, dunnage, lashing material and add the tare weight of the container to get the VGM

Although there has not been any real comments or incidents relating to the misdeclaration of weights after the implementation of the SOLAS VGM regulation in 2016, it has been reported that shipping industry has been struggling with Method 1, as physically weighing every shipping container requires significant efforts and costly, space-consuming scales..

Well, it seems there is a solution for that..

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Susan Oatway – First female Chairman of Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers

Education is an important requirement in any field in order for anyone to learn about that field and put that learning to work.. Such education and learning may or may not be formal depending on various circumstances..

Education and learning in the Shipping, Freight and Logistics industry is no different to any other industry and in my opinion, there are not many options for formal education in our industry compared to other industries..

There is, however, one professional body that has been working hard not just to fill this gap but also to set the highest standards of professional service to the shipping industry worldwide through education, example and discipline and that body is the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers..

The Institute has now appointed Susan Oatway (FICS) as its first female Chairman.. I caught up with Susan and this is what she had to say..

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So you want to become a Freight Forwarder huh..!!

Opinion Piece

First question you need to ask yourself is WHY..?? 

It is important that you understand the purpose of wanting to become a freight forwarder.. What is the objective..??

  1. Maybe its your intrigue or love of the industry and your ability to connect people and businesses ;
  2. Maybe because you are tired of the current forwarders in terms of their service offering and their attitude towards business and you think you can do it better ;
  3. Maybe you think you have a set of loyal customers who would support you if you ventured out on your own ;
  4. Maybe its the glitz and glamour that you see some of the freight forwarders exhibiting especially the new startups who the venture capitalists are fawning over ; or
  5. Maybe you are truly well versed in the business and you decided it is time for you to strike out on your own..

Whatever the reasons for you wanting to become a freight freight forwarder, here are 6 points you need to consider and a few things you need to get right first..

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World’s largest LNG-Powered containership launched

LNG powered containership

Climate change has been and is at the heart of many initiatives within the shipping and freight industry.. Whether it is IMO’s proposed implementation of IMO 2020 regulations 98 days down the road, or the use of bio fuels to run ships or the use of scrubbers or LNG powered ships, there are several initiatives being followed by the industry..

In line with this, Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the CMA CGM Group announced in 2017 that the group would be ordering a series of 23,000-TEU containerships that would be the world’s first ever to be powered by LNG (liquefied natural gas)..

This decision became a reality when the group announced the launch of the world’s largest LNG powered containership..

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5 Tips to Improve Supply Chain Efficiency

supply chain efficiency

An efficient supply chain is known to provide a great competitive advantage over competition and make the process of supply chain seamless..

But to improve the efficiency of supply chain management and create effectiveness, companies need to create and improve predictability, optimize the supply chain costs, reduce or minimize working capital, do due diligence and risk analysis and have a proper handle on the data..

A resourceful and successful supply chain helps the business to achieve quicker delivery time, shorter processing time, better inventory management, all of which leads to better revenues..

Here are 5 tips to improve supply chain efficiency

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More shipping lines offering logistics services – Hapag Lloyd is now offering cargo insurance

shipping and freight news

Do I need cargo insurance for my shipment..?? Is a question asked by many customers around the world.. Whether they are exporters or importers or traders.. This is question that has been going for long and is expected to go on longer..

As much as we discuss why cargo insurance and insurers matter, in the recent past the question of who is the cargo insurer is coming to the fore as the line between the shipping line(s) and logistics services providers seems to be getting blurred..

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Questions related to shipping and freight you always wanted to ask

shipping and freight questions

If you have any questions you have always wanted to ask or things you always wanted to know about Shipping, Freight, Maritime, Logistics, Supply Chain and Trade but never got a chance or didn’t know where and who to ask, here is your opportunity..

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Empowering Women in the Maritime Community – Tabitha Logan – #IamonBoard

empowering women in the maritime community

Empowering Women in the Maritime Community is the theme for The World Maritime Day 2019 and also associated with #IamonBoard..

The fact that we need to be reminded about Women empowerment says a lot about how little has been done in this regard in the past and how much more remains to be done..!!

This theme provides us with yet another opportunity to raise awareness of the importance of gender equality in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, and to highlight the important, yet under-utilized contribution of women within the maritime sector..

Inspired by this theme, Shipping and Freight Resource will be featuring selected Women in the Maritime Community (whether on board or on shore) making a difference in their own and unique way.. 

I start this series with Tabitha Logan, Senior Manager – Chartering & Projects at Asia Maritime Pacific..

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Cargo theft statistics and trends

shipping and freight news

Cargo theft can occur anywhere along the supply chain affecting local logistics, transporters, storage yards, groupage operators, LCL consolidators, ports, depots, terminals, insurance, carriers and freight forwarders equally..

BSI Supply Chain Services and Solutions assesses that companies lose more than an estimated $76 million in UK alone due to cargo theft highlighting the seriousness of this issue..

TT Club one of the leading providers of insurance and related risk management services to the international transport and logistics industry and BSI have come together yet again to release the second edition of their report on global cargo theft covering the full year of 2018..

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