SILA Global – Coronavirus Weekly Update 08/05/2020


Dear Reader,

Please find below weekly update of major international hubs experiencing COVID-19 restrictions:

Canada: Working as normal – limited air space

China: Working as normal – limited space & higher air rates and congestion starting to clear. Permits needed between Hong Kong & Shenzhen & strict policies on export of medical supplies.

France: partial lockdown extended to May 11 – air freight very difficult with all contract rates cancelled and cancellation fees to apply. Sea freight mostly OK with reduced working hours. Essential production OK, non-essential is decreased or short term shut down.

India: Complete lockdown extended until 17 May– essential cargo but permits required. Air space drastically affected, sea freight affected by less capacity, some port closure, quarantine requirements and port congestion. Domestic transport for essential services only. Some agriculture, manufacturing & construction allowed to resume work.

Indonesia: Partial lockdown extended until end of May – working with decreased hours/less capacity. Air rates are high with some services suspended. Domestic transport operating as normal.

Italy: Limited air space, Sea freight stable. From 27/04 companies with >50% export business can reopen and from 04/05 all companies can reopen with social distancing and hygiene requirements.

Germany: Partial lockdown – air space is extremely limited and sea freight is mostly OK. Most factories are shut except essential services. Biggest concern is driver shortage and storage shortage.

Korea: Social distancing in place – unstable schedule & limited space however domestic transport not affected.

Malaysia: Partial shutdown in place extended to 12/05 – essential services are OK however non-essential requires exemption. Less air/sea capacity & transport requires permits. Face masks controlled item – restricted for export.

New Zealand: Some lifting of restrictions moving to Level 3 – to be reviewed in 2 weeks.  Essential services OK, some businesses now allowed to open and will allow for cargo deliveries to take place.

Peru: Partial lockdown in effect. Air & sea freight OK however with delays.

Philippines: Partial shutdown extended to 15/05. There is less space, unstable schedules and transport requires permits. Port congestion in Manila.

South Africa: Government lockdown extended until 30/04. Supply chain for essential services is OK

Taiwan: Working as normal, with some restrictions still in place until mid May – limited space & higher air rates

USA: Working as normal – some partial shutdown in some areas. Air freight is tight, sea freight is operating as normal. Factories mostly working but with limited hours.

UK: Lockdown extended to May 7 – air space heavily reduced – no contract rates. Sea freight working as normal. Essential services working ok, non essential working limited hours/staff.

Vietnam: Some lifting of restrictions in South Vietnam. Medical supplies allowed to be exported in limited volumes. Less capacity, subject to blank sailings as a result of diminishing export volume and limited flights. Transport subject to health check points.

Please also find below latest update from the FTA:

China – Update

Our sources from China have provided us with the following updates

  • As at May 5 there are 634 confirmed cases and 947 cases with no symptoms in China. Only 15 cities have cases which were confirmed cases. Nanshan Zhong, a member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, described that the Basic reproduction number(R0) of Coronavirus is around 3, which is higher than SARS and MERS.
  • According to Sea Intelligence, due to COVID19 combined with Labor day holiday in China, last week the vessel cancellation had increased dramatically (from 45 to 212), and expecting 3,000,000 TEU capacity will be cancelled in coming couple of weeks
  • Name List of Non-Medical Use Face Masks Companies with Certification/Authorization from other Countries
  • Name List of Medical Devices and Supplies Companies with Certification/Authorization from other CountriesGeneral  Updates
  • Europe – Ports operational in most countries but processing is slow. Italy & Spain, restrictions starting to ease but caution still to be undertaken with social distancing and hygiene procedures to be followed. France, some restrictions expected to be eased on May 11 however the health emergency has been extended till late July.
  • United Kingdom – Lockdown restrictions are expected to be reviewed later this week by British PM, Boris Johnson, at which time he is expected to provide a “road map” for the road to recovery.
  • India
    Private office work and industrial and construction activity are allowed in limited capacity, even in “red zones” or infection hot spots – where restrictions were the strictest – like Delhi. – Lockdown restrictions extended till May 17.
  • The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) have extended the facility given to businesses to import and export goods without furnishing bonds to the Customs authorities till May 15.
  • South East Asian Ports – please refer the chart HERE for an update on a number of other South East Asian countries

European Union
Responses to the Covid Crisis have been implemented at a national level rather than EU level which has seen different strategies followed across the EU. Even national borders between countries party to the Schengen Agreement on passport-free travel were closed to movement of people and have resulted in some delays to road freight movements as credentials are checked. The GSF Secretariat has found a website monitoring the length of borders delays in real time across the EU, including the UK to be useful. To facilitate trade flows and continuity of logistics operations, the European Commission published Guidelines on the operation of ‘Green Lanes’ at border crossing intended to fast-track essential goods through Customs and other formalities. It has also produced a searchable database of the support measures being adopted by each member state during the Crisis, as well as an exit strategy for managing a return to work and the reopening of public institutions and facilities, once the pandemic has eased

Seafreight commentary – is there a reduction in volumes coming our way?
In recent updates we have reported feedback from shipping lines that inbound volumes to Australia were predicted to ease off in early / mid May and continue low through to end of June in some cases. However in a ring around of lines earlier this week the figures for vessel capacity particularly from China  is running, in most cases, above 90%. Most lines said they were managing capacity, sailings and rotations, to meet demand. The feeling was that businesses were pre-empting an opening back up of the economy and that there may be an end of financial year (EOFY) surge for people  / companies to make purchases in a “sales” market. At this stage trade from China was expected to be strong through to end of May / early June.

Other South East Asian ports were softening for exports to Australia but not significantly.

European trade was steady but expected to taper off 10-15% late May / early June. Whilst USA trade expected to be down 10% – 20% late May depending on which coast cargo was coming out of.

Export market from Australia was still strong across most commodities.