A-E loop numbers fall, but capacity holds with mega ship impact: SeaIntel
THE number of Asia-north Europe services has fallen from 26 to 21, while the number of services between Asia and the Mediterranean has been reduced from 17 to 15 with the coming of the mega ship, according to SeaIntel.
There were notable reductions frequencies at Hong Kong, which has seen a decrease of six weekly calls, and in Rotterdam where weekly calls fell from 21 to 19.

But there has been no corresponding reduction in capacity, due to the mega ships deployed as the average size of vessels has risen from 10,000 to 13,200 TEU while Asia-Med units now average 9,000 TEU versus 7,700 TEU three years ago.

Slot average is also increasing with the advent of the ‘new normal" 16,000 TEU-plus ships being phased onto Asia-North Europe, reports London's Loadstar.

According to SeaIntel, despite fewer services, weekly capacity offered from Asia since 2012 has increased 8.4 per cent to north Europe and by 2.7 per cent to the Med.

In terms of Asia-Europe weekly port calls, SeaIntel said there were now 75 against 78 in 2012.

SeaIntel looked at the number of port calls per service of the alliances, and in the case of the Maersk-MSC 2M alliance, comparing the new co-operation against old style standalone rival offerings.

SeaIntel said the rationalisation of Asia-Europe port calls was a "logical consequence of increasingly larger vessels being deployed on fewer services" as carriers increase their use of hub-and-spoke networks.