Port congestion is an issue that has been plaguing the supply chain industry since middle of 2020 due to the Corona virus outbreak. When ports are congested, freight costs rise due to longer transit times and higher truck rates. These higher freight costs impact customers in ways such as increased prices of raw materials and finished goods. The effects of port congestion on supply chains can also be felt in other industries, such as food production and retail distribution.
The bad news is that port congestion is here to stay for at least till the end of 2022 as the shipping industry deals with backlog. Most of the world’s largest shipping ports are suffering from high levels of congestion as cargo and containers piles up.
It was reported on Monday (Nov 2) that the backlog in Singapore’s port was 22% above normal levels. As many as 53 ships are anchored off the cargo-transit hub waiting to dock and unload containers. As Singapore’s Covid-19 cases surged last week, vessels were forced to anchor around the country’s shipping hub.
Over in other Southeast Asian countries, the situation doesn’t appear to be promising either. In Malaysia’s Port Klang, congestion rates were 14.5% above normal levels and over at the port of Tanjung Pelepas, the congestion is 29.9% higher compared to normal levels.
In Jakarta, the container hub of Tanjung Priok recorded 6.7% congestion as compared to normal levels and in Manila the figure stands at 6.5% higher. The pileup in Southeast Asian shipping hubs is the latest drawback in global supply chains which have been wrecked since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020.
Over in the United States, the main port of Los Angeles and Long Beach recorded as many as 79 vessels carrying essential goods waiting off the coast of Southern California as of Monday. Meanwhile, over in Europe, 18 ships were anchored at the Greek port of Piraeus.
|Port||Waiting Ships||In Port||Congestion Rate|
|Hong Kong / Shenzhen / PRD||82||69||54.3%|
|Shanghai / Ningbo / Zhoushan||73||89||45.1%|
|Los Angeles / Long Beach||33||27||55%|
|Jebel Ali / Dubai / Sharjah||10||31||24.4%|
|Bangkok / Laem Chabang||2||13||13.3%|