AES/NEMO partners MSC and CMA CGM have formalised the temporary re-routing of their Europe-Australia service around the Cape of Good Hope to avoid Red Sea risks.

The carriers first announced the diversion in late December 2023, with CMA CGM saying it was taking contingency measures on several services usually crossing Suez Canal in order to ensure the safety of its vessels and their crews following attacks on merchant vessels in the lower Red Sea.

Vessels already in transit to Australia, including Conti Cortesia, MSC Tianping, MSC Lisbon, MSC Joanna and APL Miami called Malta but then sailed via the Cape to Pointe des Galets. Northbound the first vessel diverted was Le Havre which omitted all Mediterranean ports and sailed direct from Colombo via the Cape to London Gateway.

The first complete voyage affected was by C. Hamburg, which departed London Gateway early January.

The lines have now settled on a modified rotation that sees the Malta hub omitted, with Med exports routed via Valencia and imports through Tangiers (depending on berth availability) or Hamburg.

The full rotation thus becomes London Gateway > Rotterdam > Hamburg > Antwerp > Le Havre > Valencia > La Spezia > Fos Sur Mer > Cape of Good Hope > Pointe des Galets > Port Louis > Sydney > Melbourne > Adelaide > Fremantle > Singapore > Ennore > Colombo > Cape of Good Hope > London Gateway.

The partners have added a seventeenth ship, the 9200 TEU MSC Asya, to maintain fixed-day-weekly frequency.