The waiting game: where are the world’s worst port delays?

From Shenzhen to Los Angeles, storms, Covid and labour shortages are causing disruption

The nearly 100 ships waiting on the horizon to berth at the Hong Kong and Shenzhen container ports are just the latest sign of the problems to have snarled global supply chains, pushed up consumer prices in Europe and the US, and led to shortages of goods ranging from Christmas toys to furniture.

The backlog off southern China is currently the world’s worst. A typhoon closed the ports for two days this week — but although weather often disrupts shipping, this just added to the problems from previous jams since the pandemic began. In August, a single Covid case paralysed a terminal for a fortnight in the major Chinese port of Ningbo, outside Shanghai.

Globally, there are now 584 container ships stuck outside ports, nearly double the number at the start of the year, according to real-time data from Kuehne+Nagel, one of the world’s largest freight forwarders.

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Article Reference: Financial Times

About Authors: Gill Plimmer and Harry Dempsey – Financial Times

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