Congestion at Asian coal ports continues to build

Between 400 and 500 large dry bulk carriers are waiting to unload coal in Chinese waters as congestion at Asian coal ports builds, reports Reuters.

The ships are reported to be idling outside Shanghai, Ningbo and in the Gulf of Zhili, serving the ports of Tianjin, Coafeidian, Qinhuangdao and Bayuquan.

The figure has jumped sharply in recent months, and delays have also been reported at ports in Indonesia’s Kalimantan island, caused by rainfall.

About 100 bulkers, predominantly located at Samarinda and Taboneo, are waiting to load cargo. Some have been waiting for more than two months.

The surge in idle vessel numbers comes after an introduction in August last year of restrictions on coal imports at a number of China’s major ports, including Guangzhou, Xiamen and Zhoushan.