LITTLE more than an agreement that "uncertainty" exists in the international shipping market from the Sino-American trade war can be found in an IHS Media poll of major port operators, carriers and forwarders.
Hong Kong's global port operator HPH Trust said the Sino-Euro-American trade tensions introduced "an unprecedented level of uncertainty", but it's impact could not be "readily quantified". While agreeing "uncertainty" exists, the world's biggest seafreight forwarder Kuehne + Nagel said no impact could be discerned as yet, with its first half ocean cargo up eight per cent and air freight up 18 per cent.
Kuehne + Nagel's big Sino American gripe was China's ban on the importing recyclable material, which erased 25,000 TEU from K+N volume in the first half, but that had nothing to do with a trade war.
CEVA Logistics, the now Swiss-based but formerly Dutch forwarder, saw little impact. "Actually, we had an acceleration of air volume growth in recent weeks. Our ongoing cost reduction initiatives, we believe, will help us minimise any potential impact from tariffs."