In an effort to cut costs and improve services, the new OCEAN Alliance and THE Alliance will kick-off their respective networks and the 2M Alliance will launch new services starting on April 1, 2017. Based on preliminary information, most of the top US ports will have fewer visiting vessels for each alliance service. In addition, there will be an increase in the average vessel size, by TEU capacity, for the alliance services at most of the top US ports.
Initial indications are that the net result will be an overall reduced capacity at top US ports as the number of vessels decreases and average vessel capacities increases. We may also see frequent initial updates to carriers' sailing schedules as vessels are deployed on the new services
Individual ports that are expected to have more visiting vessels and with a greater average TEU capacity could experience an initial impact on operations as the ports adjust to the possible new volumes. Additionally, ports that are accommodating larger vessels may need to adjust berth windows for the greater volume of cargo.
Shippers may experience equipment shortages, potential rate fluctuations, and schedule delays as the industry adapts to the significant changes ahead.
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