USE of the Suez Canal fell three per cent in tonnage in November, with 35 fewer vessels transiting the waterway compared with the same month the previous year, reports London's Fairplay.
The decline is blamed on increasing use of the Cape of Good Hope route on the backhaul from the US east coast to Asia to avoid canal tolls and to take advantage of low oil prices.
Ships are charged an average of US$285,000 each in November. Tankers and containerships led the drop to 1,366 vessels from 1,401 in November 2015.
With freight rates at low ebb, liners have tried to find savings wherever possible to stem the inevitable losses in a market defined by a supply and demand imbalance.
As a result, November is the ninth month in a row that the number of ships using the canal fell on a year-on-year basis.
IHS Markit data shows that from April through November, 707 fewer ships used the Suez compared with the same period last year, representing an average drop of 88 ships per month over the past nine months.
Source: SchednetPrevious Next
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