With the continued recovery after the outbreak, the container market is likely to continue to rebound in the third and fourth quarters of this year and return to the level of 2019 next year.
The company is currently the world's fifth largest container transportation company. Despite a year-on-year decrease in reported volume, second quarter profit increased significantly due to increased freight volume and lower fuel costs.
International shipping recovered faster than expected
Speaking at a Q & a webinar earlier this week, Mr Haber benassen said operators were benefiting faster from demand recovery than from idle capacity. "It's not as bad as we expected or worried about," he said. "We saw a sharp decline in trading volume, especially in April and may. However, when we look back over the past six to eight weeks, we see a considerable recovery. Volume may be larger than we expected. "
Hapag Lloyd had to quickly raise its forecast of container trade volume in 2020 from the "double-digit percentage" forecast a few months ago. "I won't be surprised if we end up a little bit better than (compared to 2019) 7.2% and end up around - 5% or similar."
He said the current balance of supply and demand is good for airlines, and the ratio of orders to fleet has dropped to 9%, the lowest level in more than a decade. He also said that the number of idle fleets also declined rapidly from the peak in May, when the idle fleet was about 2.7 million TEUs, accounting for 5.1% of the global fleet and 1.2 million TEUs in terms of capacity.
"I think it could actually fall further," Jensen added. "So it means we're going back to a fairly normal level, because there are always some ships idle - either because they're just waiting for the voyage, or because they're small and large in number, or because they're in dry dock or being refitted.
"I think we are entering a fairly normal state, which may be faster than many of us expected." In the past six to eight weeks, we have clearly seen that we have to scale back again quickly in order to cope with an unexpectedly strong demand recovery. "
He said the recovery in demand for trans Pacific routes was particularly strong, with freight rates soaring to record levels, while rates for border routes on Asia Europe routes were also rising, although not very much.
Demand from U.S. retailers is "very" flexible, as reflected in the latest quarterly results of the largest retailers, he said. He added that they are still quite optimistic about the outlook for the third and fourth quarters, which seems to suggest that the possibility of a sharp deterioration in the next few weeks or months may be much lower than many worried about some time ago.
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