Yantian International Container Terminal, which manages southern China’s largest port, in Shenzhen, has announced that operations have been fully restored, as of midnight last night:
- All berths (including the Xigang operation area) have basically resumed normal operations;
- Reservations for entering the gates has been increased to 9,000 vehicles per day, while withdrawal of empty containers is operating as usual;
- Receipt of export heavy containers will return to normal ETA-7 days (that is, seven days before the expected arrival date of the ship).
However, it is not yet disclosed how many containers are awaiting offloading or onloading at the port, which handles a quarter of all goods shipped between the US and China. A report by Week in China quoted business executives as saying the recent lockdown has had a much bigger effect on global trade than the closure of the Suez Canal.
Although Shenzhen officials say Yantian Port should be back to normal operation by the end of this month (June), it would appear that the recent lockdown of the area due to a small Covid-19 outbreak has had a major disruptive effect on global trade. Some sources in the shipping industry are saying the disruption is far worse than the recent jam of the Suez Canal in Egypt, affecting twice as many containers of goods.
According to a report in Week in China, at least 50 ships are waiting at anchor outside Yantian, while cargoes have not been collected for more than 16 days, with more than 600,000 TEU of containers impacted.
Week in China quotes sources as saying the strain is being felt in supply chains. “The longer operations in Yantian are restricted, the worse the delays will become and the more the need to find alternative routes, particularly with the peak pre-Christmas season coming and supply chains already stretched to breaking point,” says Tim Huxley, chairman of Hong Kong’s Mandarin Shipping. “Coming after the crisis in Suez, this is just the latest blow to a stretched industry and it might be the end of ‘just in time’ inventories and a return to warehousing being a good investment. One thing is for sure, costs will rise and this will have to get passed down the supply chain along with these delays”.
Read more on Week in China
Shenzhen’s Yantian Port, which was heavily disrupted by the recent Covid-19 outbreak, should be back to normal by the end of the month, officials say. At present, daily throughput is nearly 24,000 TEUs, around 70% of the level prior to the outbreak, which resulted in the lockdown of the area, home to one of the world’s biggest container ports.
“The operation of the port terminal is steadily improving, the reservation system is operating effectively, traffic in the port area and its surroundings is smooth, and all sectors of society have responded well,” Chen Biao, secretary of the board of Yantian Port Group, told reporters. Lin Lixin, deputy general manager of South China COSCO Shipping Container Lines Co., Ltd., told reporters that the company is confident that Yantian will resume work and production steadily. “The company has already made plans to re-berth in Yantian Port Area, and I believe that the liner routes in Yantian Port Area will soon return to normal conditions.,” Lin said.
More on SZNews
Shenzhen’s eastern port of Yantian is undergoing a
major upgrade in the coming few years that will see a new industrial district
spring up around it. It will include logistics and industrial parks showcasing
innovative ideas, with some combining trade and tourism.
Much like the old shipping neighborhoods in western
cities that turned themselves into food and tourism attractions, such as
Chelsea Market in New York, the new development plan for Yantian envisages
building facilities that can be both practical for industrial use and attract
visitors who will splash out for an authentic experience.
Continue reading Yantian Port plans ‘Ice and Snow’ project