Ocean and Key Ports Update

The tragic accident involving a container vessel and the Francis Scott Key bridge in Baltimore at the end of March continues to have an impact on logistics services to and from the east coast of America.

At this time while recovery efforts are ongoing, no new bookings between Europe and the Port of Baltimore will be accepted until further notice, however Maersk will continue to serve Baltimore through alternative east coast ports such as Newark, Norfolk and Philadelphia via road and rail subject to available capacity. Please click here to visit our dedicated advisory page for the latest updates.

In the north of Europe, the situation across hubs and gateway terminals is stabilising in the wake of seasonal schedule adjustments, although some waiting time still remains in Antwerp, London and Felixstowe due to a combination of weather-related line-up congestion and clashes between services.

Birdseye shot of Maersk vessel

In Finland, strike action across terminals has meant cargo operations have stopped altogether, causing a ripple effect on schedules. In Bremerhaven, for example, delays in vessel arrivals have meant that yard density levels are expected to reach their peak in the first half of April. To support terminal operations and a healthy yard density, customers are kindly asked to please clear their import units as soon as possible after discharge.

Likewise in Rotterdam, an increased number of port calls combined with the number of longstanding units is expected to result in an increased yard density. Customers are also asked to clear their longstanding and new import units as soon as possible to help maintain healthy yard density levels.

Meanwhile, in west Mediterranean hubs, our teams continue to monitor yard density levels, especially in Barcelona, Tangier, and Algeciras. Due to a congested line-up and increased waiting times at the Port of Barcelona, yard density has increased, and customers are kindly asked to pick up both their import units and empty containers as early as possible. In Algeciras and Tangier, adverse weather conditions and flow delays have contributed to a similar outcome. Our teams are working on improving the density levels by optimising connections and reducing transshipment moves, as well as obtaining additional moves, which is expected to result in reduced density levels over the next few weeks.

Our teams across Maersk have already developed several measures to mitigate the pressures of high yard densities, including a number of omissions, diversions, and flow adjustments. If your cargo is directly impacted by any of these measures, you will receive an ETA notification as soon as the booking is updated. To receive the latest updates, sign up for ETA notifications.

Maersk air cargo Seoul

Air Freight Update

The global air freight market has enjoyed a fruitful start to the year, despite early months traditionally being a slower period for the industry. Xeneta reports that demand increased by 11% in February compared to the same period in 2023, following on from a similar rise in January.

The situation around the Red Sea remains a contributing factor, and we are continuing to offer our dedicated Sea-Air product from Asia to Europe via our Middle Eastern hubs in Dubai, Salalah and Muscat. 

Cargo is shipped via ocean freight to the hubs, before switching to air freight to complete the journey. Please reach out to your local Maersk representative to assess options for your cargo and find out how Sea-Air could benefit your supply chain.

Please click here to find helpful information about our air freight network and our services to and from Europe.

Inland Update

In a continuous effort to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent, projects to ensure climate protection are gaining traction across the continent. In Germany, the four billion euro German infrastructure program “Small and Medium Measures” for the rail network is making progress and should see the elimination of bottlenecks and increased network resilience.

Truck with Maersk container driving in Seoul

Other projects include new track connections and the expansion of the network for long freight trains, creating more opportunities for businesses across the country.

Elsewhere, the tragic accident involving a container vessel and the Francis Scott Key bridge in Baltimore at the end of March continues to have an impact on logistics services to and from the east coast of America, highlighting the need for inland solutions in the face of disruption. To continue serving Baltimore through alternative ports, our teams are working on securing rail and road capacity to continue to serve customers. Please click here to visit our dedicated advisory page for the latest updates.

Find out more about Maersk’s inland transportation solutions across Europe.

Customs Update

On 30th April 2024, new rules for Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) exports to Great Britain from EU and non-EU countries will come into effect. SPS products are categorised into animals, animal products, plants, plant products and composite products containing both plant and animal products. Non-EU exporters of SPS goods from 23 listed and risk-assessed countries can benefit from simplified requirements based on product risk. Non-listed countries follow existing import processes. Medium-risk SPS goods from the EU must enter Britain via a Border Control Post, may have to undergo checks and charges may apply. Click here for more information.

Elsewhere, the EU’s trade deal with New Zealand is set to come into effect from 1st May 2024. Once the European Parliament has given its consent, the deal will allow EU exporters to trade tariff-free with New Zealand, while EU importers can also benefit from reduced or eliminated EU duties on most New Zealand goods. More information can be found here.

Meanwhile, the Council of European Ministers has adopted a revised regulation on waste shipments to reduce problematic waste shipments outside the EU, align procedures with circular economy goals, enhance electronic submissions, boost enforcement and tackle illegal shipments.

The regulation ensures waste is only sent where it is appropriately treated. Non-OECD waste import requires prior auditing and Commission monitoring. Click here to find out more.

Ecommerce Update

Volumes of letters and cards are constantly decreasing worldwide, and European networks are no exception. At the same time, parcel volumes are constantly increasing – a trend specifically boosted by companies specialising in ultra-fast fashion, with low average item cost, who are pushing distribution costs to low rates.

Male and a female having a conversation

To provide competitive solutions for lite parcels, postal operators will need to adapt their extensive networks. Especially when it comes to parcel traceability, postal companies tend to operate in more mature systems that fall behind private couriers that are able to provide the traceability that consumers have come to expect. At the same time, their strength lies in the extent of their network with numerous postal offices that support pick-up-drop-off deliveries and easy returns.

When it comes to deciding on the courier, ecommerce businesses need to be aware whether the courier specialises in a certain industry – those specialised in low-cost items might not be able to provide the traceability that businesses with higher cost items require.

It is also important that businesses measure the different key performance indicators (KPIs) such as transit times and effectiveness of delivery, as well as product features like personalisation and traceability, to select the partner with the right mix of features that will ensure the desired level of consumer experience, at an acceptable cost.

Our teams work with multiple last-mile solutions and providers and are able to advise customers on the ones most suited to their customer profile. To find out more about how our teams can help provide the best last mile solution for your business, head to our E-Delivery page.

Useful Links

To sign up for the Maersk Europe customer newsletter, click here and update your preferences when prompted via email.

Check Maersk market updates from across other regions by clicking here.

Anything you need, we’re here to help


Logistics solutions

We meet customer needs from one end of the supply chain to the other.

Contact us

Our dedicated team of experts are here for you.
Find Prices

Ready to ship?

Look up rates for new shipments and inland tariffs.
Stay informed
Sign up for news and insights
Stay ahead of the curve with valuable supply chain trends sent directly to your inbox

By submitting this form, I agree to receive logistics related news and marketing updates from A. P. Moller-Maersk and its affiliated companies via e-mail. I understand that I can opt out of such Maersk communications at any time. To see how we process your personal data, please see our Privacy Notification.

Thank you for signing up
You have now signed up for newsletters. You will shortly receive an email which will explain how to set your newsletter preferences.
You can unsubscribe anytime.