Alphaliner: Pacific will be the new battleground in 2017

The smaller and independent container carriers outside the alliances have a combined market share of 13 percent on the trade routes between the Far East and North America, and this could undermine attempts to increase the rates.

Photo: Zim Integrated Shipping Services

The Pacific looks set to become the new battleground for container carriers in 2017 in a price war dominated by the three major alliances, 2M, Ocean Alliance, and The Alliance.

Smaller non-alliance carriers in particular, such as South Korea's Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) and Israeli Zim, could intensify competition on the routes between the Far East and North America, thus undermining the major carriers' attempts to increase the freight rates when the annual contract negotiations begin in May 2017, projects Alphaliner.

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