“Container Transport, Ports and Demurrage Applications in Pandemic Process”, the second of the Webinar series of UTIKAD, the International Transport and Logistics Service Providers Association, took place on 24 June. In the webinar, where the industry showed great interest, problems and future predictions in international maritime transportation were evaluated before and after COVID-19.
UTIKAD Chairman Emre Eldener moderated question and answer method ilegerçekleş of webinars to, UTIKAD Board Member and Seaway Chairman Working Group Cihan Özkal, TÜRKLİM (Turkey Association of Port Operators) Chairman Hakan Genç, VDAD (Ferry Shipowners and Agents Association) Board Member Murat Denizeri and FIATA Maritime Working Group President Jens Roemer participated as speakers.
Eldener asked Cihan Özkal, UTİKAD Board Member and Chair of the Seaway Working Group, to evaluate the process in maritime transportation during the pandemic period.
Özkal said, “During the months when the COVID-19 epidemic increased rapidly around the world, some countries followed serious quarantine rules and went to practices that would cover the ship's living quarters and even the entire ship. However, with a few exceptions, all the ports of the country were open and cargo evacuations were possible. The personnel working at the ports continued interchangeably and with very strict measures by reducing them to a low level. Global maritime freight transport has also been heavily influenced during the pandemic as it is a sector that has a significant share in world trade. It is necessary to draw attention to the cancellation of approximately 2020 expeditions on the east-west axis and other trade routes, especially in the first 6 months of 675 in sea container transportation. In the March-April period, shipowners' losses were reported to have reached US $ 800 million per week. As of the end of April, normal returns were made as the COVID-19 process began to be taken under control. ”
In terms of our country, Özkal stated that sea transportation is the least affected mode compared to other modes of transportation, but it may be possible that sea transportation will be relatively normal as of May-June, however, the effects of this period will be seen in the third quarter and an increase in freight prices may be possible.
Murat Denizeri, Board Member of VDAD (Ferryboat Shippers and Agents Association), answered the question of what happened in terms of seaway container transportation during the COVID-19 process and how this process affects shipowners and agents.
Türkiye'nincoğraf structure as of the maritime Denizeri Referring to the great significance of the percentage 88 share in transportation, voiced vary according to the process at the port to haunt engaged in number of vessels and the region traded loads amounts of the ports and harbors.
“It is not possible to immediately see the effects of the pandemic process at the ports. For example, the fall, which was not felt much in March, appeared very clearly with April. The number of ships has decreased and, of course, the amount of cargo has decreased in the following period. As in all sectors, maritime transport has been affected both in operational and commercial terms. When we look especially from a commercial point of view, the stopping of production in China, Europe and America first and the production shortage in the world also showed its effect in sea trade. In this process, shipowners had to reduce their ports of call due to lack of load. All of the ships withdrawn from the services were kept empty, which of course was reflected in the ship's cost. When we look at the operational sense, with the decrease in production, a serious container stock has formed and this has caused the containers not to circulate. ”
Speaking after Denizeri, FIATA Maritime Working Group President Jens Roemer also evaluated the COVID-19 process before starting its presentation.
Roemer said, “With the epidemic, the curfew imposed by the government was also affected by the supply chain in the economy, international trade and the maritime sector. Especially in the USA and China, cargo movements stopped with COVID-19. What we should focus on in this process seems to be cramped terminals, temporary storage and abandoned cargoes. Loads are waiting in ports, we pay high demurrage fees. The events have caused a lot of confusion and it seems that it will take time to recover. ”
Referring to the activities of the FIATA Maritime Working Group in his presentation, Roemer shared the “FMC's Interpretative Rule for Demurrage and Detention Fees” with the audience. Roemer assessed that the process for the emergence of the rule in question took a long time, and also the possible effects and consequences for the global logistics world.
With this interpretative rule, FMC (Federal Maritime Commission) aims to guide ship owners and port operators in line with “fair” and “reasonable” practices in determining the demurrage and detention fees applied to buyers and transport business organizers within the framework of the Maritime Law of the USA. The proposed interpretive rule also aims to reduce confusion in the implementation of demurrage and detention concepts and to reduce disagreements between the parties and to increase efficiency in operations.
TÜRKLİM (Port Operators Association of Turkey) Chairman Hakan Genç is that Turkey is as important as what the port for the lackluster economy was underlined once again in this process.
Genç said, “When we look at the ports, we are talking about a system that operates 24 hours a day and it is very difficult to manage this process. We are all forming parts of the logistics network and within this network.
We should act together with all the actors involved. We should highlight the advantages of our country with the ports. When we think about the bottlenecks of the ports in the past, we should continue our efforts to show the importance of the ports even more. ”
Expressing his views on the ceiling-floor price application, which was envisaged to be approved by the public and to be brought to port services with the circular published on May 16, 2020, TÜRKLİM Chairman Hakan Genç stated that this situation caused serious concerns on the part of port operators.
It was inevitable for digitalization to come to the fore during the webinar. Indicating that the importance of contactless transactions once again emerged, especially with the COVID-19, sector representatives expressed that they continue their negotiations with the public to find new and creative solutions for digitalization. In addition to digitalization, different perspectives on ordino, demurrage and detention, which are of great importance for maritime transportation, were shared with the audience.
“UTİKAD International Maritime Transport Webinar” ended with answering the questions of the audience. UTİKAD will continue to inform the logistics sector on July 1, 2020 with its webinar on “Digitalization and Concrete Initiatives in Logistics”.