LATEST figures from London-based Container Trade Statistics reveal a mixed bag for Australasia & Oceania in April 2024, with imports and exports both slipping compared to March but encouragingly up in most trades when compared to April 2023.

Imports fell from 368,188 TEU in March 2024 to 351,446 TEU in April, while exports slipped from 277,052 TEU to 250,836 TEU.

However, export volumes remain solidly ahead of 2023 year-on-year for most trades. Australasia/Oceania to Europe was up 16%, to the ISC/Middle East up 20.6%, intra-Australasia/Oceania down 2.4%, to the Far East up 21.5%, to Central & South America up 29.9% and to North America up 2.2%.

Imports were also rising y-o-y: from Europe, up 7.8%; from Far East up 16.8%, from ISC/ME up 28.7%, from Central & South America up 41.2%.  However, imports from North America fell 18.3% y-o-y.

Turning to freight rates, April 2024 intra-Australasia & Oceania were down 20% y-o-y and 8 points compared to March 2024. Rates to North America were down 8.4% y-o-y but up 4 points on March; to Central and South America down 26.2% y-o-y but up 16 points on March; to Far East down 39% y-o-y but up 10 points on March;

to ISC/ME down 32.1% y-o-y and down 7 points on March; and to Europe down 15.4% y-o-y and down 9 points on March.

In the opposite direction, freight rates from Europe were down 24.7% y-o-y and down 3 points on March; from Far East down 24.5% y-o-y and down 2 points on March; from ISC/ME down 23% y-o-y and down 4 points on March; from North America down 22.9% y-o-y but up 9 points on March; and from Central & South America down 27% y-o-y but up 2 points on March.

April was the month when carriers announced the first of a flood of GRIs, rate restorations and PSSs, which can be expected to begin showing up in May figures.

CTS always advises that statistics are preliminary and may be amended when further information is received.