The Port of Hamburg said that a flash poll it conducted last week, asking shipping lines about the current situation re containers, found that were experiencing no appreciable scarcity of equipment in Hamburg or other German seaports, and that no shortages were expected to arise.
The port was responding to reports of bottlenecks in the supply of empty containers.
Port of Hamburg Marketing said that shipping lines mentioned several factors that enabled a stable supply of empty equipment. Most shipping companies planned their disposition of empty boxes about three to four weeks in advance. Generally they took advantage of markets with an oversupply. Direct shipping of empties from China was rare and had not been necessary recently.
Axel Mattern, CEO of Port of Hamburg Marketing, said that “with the recovery of the Chinese economy, which is already making itself noticeable, shipping, cargo handling and seaport-hinterland transport in China will be heading back toward normal operations. In view of a slowing economy in Europe, we do not expect to see shortages in the supply of empty containers in Hamburg or the hinterland.”