Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Global Shipping Will Have Returned to Normal When Punta Colonet Mega-Port Opens for Business

The New York Times on Jan 16 published a lengthy article on the state of global container shipping. The analysis was generally gloomy for the companies that own container ships, due to over-capacity: "Although world trade, which collapsed last year, is beginning to recover, driven by demand from developing countries, the recovery is being offset by added capacity in the large number of new container ships coming out of shipyards."

Clear signs of trade resurgence are apparent: China, the world’s largest exporter, "announced last Sunday that exports had risen 17.7% in December from a year earlier, the first increase in 14 months; imports rose 55.9%."

The Times' survey of trade analysts indicates that container traffic will likely recover to pre-recession levels in 2012 or soon thereafter. Drewry Shipping expects a 2.4% increase in global trade volume this year, after an estimated 10.3% decline last year.

Given that it will take several years of construction before the Punta Colonet mega-port will be able to begin operations, it is not surprising that the Calderon government is so determined to get the project started this year.

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