AP Moller-Maersk, the world’s second-largest ocean shipping company, has raised its profit forecast for 2022 by 25 percent—from $24 billion to $30 billion—despite foreseeing stagnating container shipping volume this year, or even a 1-percent decline.
Due to an “exceptional market situation,” Maersk saw first-quarter freight rates soar by 71 percent, year over year, while container volume shrank by 7 percent due to global supply-chain bottlenecks.
The new round of lockdowns in China will continue the imbalance, shipping firms have said, as companies continue to bid top dollar for ships and containers not tied up in ports.
TRENDPOST: Maersk is using a portion of its windfall profits to expand its land-based logistics business to offer customers a “one-stop shop” for moving goods around the world, as we reported earlier in “Maersk Building End-to-End Logistics Service” (12 Oct 2021).
On the downside, more than just supply-chain bottlenecks, there is growing statistical data that economies will slow down, and so too will trade.