Shipping prices are unsustainable, says Maersk


A worldwide glut of containers and a fall in demand for shipped goods during the global financial crisis have pushed shipping prices to unsustainable levels, the director of sales at Maersk Line Gerard Morrison said, reported Dow Jones Newswires.

Morrison told a conference that Maersk is now making a loss of US$217 on every 40 foot container that runs between Melbourne and the Chinese port of Qingdao.

"Current rates are not able to cover our costs and we cannot sustain continual losses,"Morrison said.

The global shipping industry averaged a rate of return of two percent last year, a fifth of its target level of 10 percent, he said.

Volumes from Australia and New Zealand and Asia halved last year from their peaks in 2010.

Cargonews Asia