Read all the latest news about Covid-19. ShippingWatch gives you independent, credible, critical and fair news.

Port congestion and sky-rocketing freight rates hit Barbie

The explosion in freight rates and historic shortage of capacity have a notable impact on global toy companies Mattel and Hasbro, the manufacturers of Barbie and Peppa Pig. Price increases and new production set-ups are among the responses.

Shipping chaos here to stay with most seafarers unvaccinated

As global vaccinations of seafarers move too slowly, Covid-19 outbreaks in ports and on ships continue to create trade disruptions, endangering maritime workers and potentially slowing economies trying to pull out of pandemic slowdowns. "It's a perfect storm," says Chair of the International Chamber of Shipping.

Indicator shows worsened crew change crisis

The dire crew change crisis that has been the harsh reality for seafarers globally since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic shows no signs of improvement, shows this month's indicator from the Neptune Declaration.

Argentine port workers strike for access to Covid-19 vaccines

Nine unions representing Argentine port workers have announced a 24-hour strike in protest against the lack of access to coronavirus vaccines. The strike takes place amidst a new coronavirus outbreak in the country, which is a major dry bulk exporter.

Shortage of naval officers on track to record levels

The global merchant fleet could fall short of a record number of naval officers in coming years. The global fleet is growing, while a career at sea has become less attractive, assesses Drewry, while pointing to effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Shippers fear container capacity shortage will stunt growth

The overheated container market, marked by enormous demand and resulting bottlenecks and capacity shortages, could make it harder for many countries to revive growth after the prolonged Covid-19 lockdowns, according to shippers of Global Shippers' Forum.

Covid-19 cases will affect Gard's business well into 2021

Since the Covid-19 pandemic erupted, Norwegian insurance company Gard has received 1,000 claims from complications related to infections aboard vessels. The annual results for 2020 were saved by the stock market and fewer major claims in the second half of the year, the CEO tells ShippingWatch.

Crews from Torm and Anglo-Eastern ships to be vaccinated under new US program

Seafarers from two Torm ships will be vaccinated against Covid-19 today and tomorrow under a new US vaccination program. CEO Jacob Meldgaard, who also chairs Danish Shipping, urges other countries to follow suit. "This is really important for seafarers," he tells ShippingWatch. Anglo-Eastern has also accepted the vaccine program.

Empty inventories could extend container upturn even further

As soon as consumption, bottlenecks and container shortages subside, companies will have to rebuild inventories. This could be the reason why Maersk estimates market expectations all the way until the fourth quarter, assesses SEB. Scan Global criticizes the high freight rates.

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