We are now struggling to find containers to ship goods from China, with some tins set to miss shipment before Chinese New Year.
This all occurred when the world became gripped with the pandemic, demand for goods from China dropped (with the exception of PPE) as shops closed and lock downs were imposed.
The shipping lines placed smaller vessels at anchor and started to run large vessels with over 19,000 TEU (20ft Equivalent unit), these vessels are more economical to run but take longer to load and off load, this has resulted in mass port congestion as these large vessels need bigger berths, larger cranes (taller boats) and more infrastructure to efficiently off load and reload.
The larger ships were arriving on schedule only to find that the UK ports had no room usually still in the process of off loading and reloading earlier vessels, so many of the shipping lines decided to skip the UK and off load the UK bound cargo in Europe, this has left empty containers in the UK that should have been reloaded back to China.
Around the ports we are seeing a familiar picture of containers stored waiting for a trip back to China.