Sea Freight - shipment delays | DB Group

Sea Freight - shipment delays

14 May 2020

We inform you that we are registering some delays linked to both import and export sea-freight operations between the Far East and the Mediterranean. These are due to the actions undertaken by sea-freight companies as a response to the economic slowdown caused by COVID-19.

Further to the economic downturne already recorded at the end of 2019, the decrease in the demand for goods and raw materials and the pandemic outbreak have caused a severe contraction of the volumes. To reduce financial loss, the main shipping companies have set out different cost-saving strategies, such as:

  • blank sailing, consisting in the cancellation of touch at one port, one area or of an entire route;
  • the reduction of available vessels (on a global scale), and the use of smaller ones towards the Mediterranean area;
  • slow steaming, meaning decreasing the cruising speed to lower the cost of fuel;
  • changes in some services which are going to serve the Tyrrhenian ports through weekly feeder via Barcelona.


Consequently, we are facing an increase in the transit times which affect the delivery dates, and difficulty in the procurement of spaces as the strong reduction of cargo supply does not match the demand.

Thus, to book well in advance and to provide volumes forecasts are actions that might help to reduce inconveniences. Furthermore, our teams are at your complete disposal to evaluate with you an alternative with premium services that can ensure higher departure certainty and handling priority and to keep you up to date about the status of your shipments.

We shall keep you informed about further developments.
D.B. Group

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