testata inforMARE
04 October 2022 - Year XXVI
Independent journal on economy and transport policy
12:05 GMT+2
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Original news
FEPORT, ports are certainly not the cause of the current inefficiencies of the maritime supply chain
Bonz: no to simplistic generalizations
November 30, 2021
On the occasion of today's general assembly of the association, noting that MEPs are interested in understanding the true causes of inconvenience and congestion in ports by asking accurate information, facts and figures to avoid drawing incorrect conclusions, FEPORT pointed out that, 'in fact, it is regrettable that congestion in ports is superficial having regard to the main cause of the present disturbance and that the prevailing situation in ports outside the EU leads to generalizations on European ports'. It was in fact stressed that this "is unfair to port companies, terminal operators and their workers who have made enormous efforts to maintain the majority part of the European ports open 24 hours a day, seven days a week since the outbreak of Covid-19, thus allowing goods to reach the shelves of supermarkets».

'The 2020 and 2021 - noted the president of FEPORT, Gunther Bonz - have been very difficult years for our activities in the European ports. The impacts of Covid-19, low reliability of the schedules of the ships aggravated by the accident in the channel of Suez, the closure of Chinese terminals and the consequent congestion in some parts of the world they have broken the chains of supply. However, European port terminals are remained operational while struggling with deterioration the reliability of the planning of the airports of the ships'.

FEPORT recalled that at the beginning of 2020 the pandemic has initially caused a decrease in the arrivals of ships, while in the second half of the year there was a recovery together a slight increase in the average time spent by ships in port. The association specified that, as reported in the last UNCTAD Maritime Transport Report, despite Constraints related to Covid-19 on the organization of work, in 2020 time average of ships in port varied by 2.9% compared to 2019 and this results in a change in the operating time of about half an hour, negligible compared to the weeks of navigation of most ships.

The Association of European Terminalists noted that, instead, the data relating to the reliability of the schedules of the ships before and after the outbreak of Covid-19 highlight problems much more serious. For example, according to the new data processed by the consulting company Sea-Intelligence, two out of three ships are late and the number of days of delay is also remained at the highest level. On an annual basis, as of September 2021 schedule reliability decreased by 22 points percentages and Sea-Intelligence has announced that for the whole of 2021 the reliability of arrival and planning ship departures were between 34 and 40%.

'The poor reliability of ship schedules, which was already a very problematic trend before Covid-19, as well as last-minute airport cancellations - Bonz noted - are putting more and more pressure on stakeholders ports since the ports are the place where they all manifest themselves the inefficiencies of the maritime logistics chain. The ports - ha remarked the president of FEPORT - can not be the buffer that absorbs all those inefficiencies and certainly do not deserve simplistic generalizations."
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