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Review of Maritime Transport 2011 - Unctad

Review of Maritime Transport 2011 - Unctad

CHAPTER 3: PRICE OF

CHAPTER 3: PRICE OF VESSELS AND FREIGHT RATES 81 the highest in the world. Freight costs for African countries constitute a higher proportion of total import value than those of other regions. The data suggest that it costs more to ship to Africa than to developed countries, on average 10.6 per cent of the price of final goods for Africa, as opposed to 6.4 per cent on average for developed countries. �� The drop in shipping costs has been influenced by the global transformation of maritime transport spurred by globalization over the past two decades. Several factors have contributed to this decline, including: the growing market of container traffic, which has been the fastest-growing segment of maritime transport. As a result, and in order to benefit from economies of scale, container ships have been growing in size surpassing 10,000 TEUs per vessel, compared with the late 1990s, when the largest vessels had a capacity of 4,400 TEUs – Panamax. �� Moreover, developments in cargo handling, new technologies and reduced crew sizes have had an impact on the operational costs and per-unit cost of ocean cargo transport. Port reforms and increased investment in information and communication technology, innovation and new technologies have also led to greater efficiency and productivity at the port level, reducing the time of cargo handling, and in turn affecting terminal charges and reducing overall cargo prices. Outlook for vessel prices and freight rates Tables 3.8 and 3.9, and figure 3.8 describe world fleet performance. Table 3.8 reveals that the world ratio of world fleet to volume carried was at 1:6, meaning that over the course of the year, each vessel carried on average six times its maximum capacity – six full journeys a year – to produce the total volume of cargo carried by sea. This figure is below 6.6, which was achieved in 2009, and down from the 2006 ratio of 1:8. The increase in the world total of cargo moved by maritime transport shows the expansion of the world fleet with significantly more ships and ship capacity chasing only slightly more cargo. Table 3.9 and figure 3.8, derived from the same data, provide a breakdown of table 3.8 by general vessel type. For instance, it reveals that the productivity Table 3.8. Cargo carried per deadweight ton of the total world fleet, selected years Year World fleet (millions of dwt, beginning of year) Total cargo (millions of tons) Tons carried per dwt 1970 326 2 566 7.9 1980 683 3 704 5.4 1990 658 4 008 6.1 2000 799 5 984 7.5 2006 960 7 700 8.0 2007 1 042 8 034 7.7 2008 1 118 8 229 7.4 2009 1 192 7 858 6.6 2010 1 395 8 408 6.0 Source: Calculated by the UNCTAD secretariat, on the basis of UNCTAD data on seaborne trade (in tons) and IHS Fairplay data on the world fleet (in dwt). of the tanker and dry bulk sectors has decreased considerably over time. Tankers that used to carry 9.74 tons per dwt in 1970 carried only 6.12 tons in 2010. For the dry bulk sector, the corresponding figures are 6.21 tons per dwt in 1970 to 5.11 tons per dwt in 2010. However, fleet productivity relating to dry cargo almost doubled from the 6.38 tons per dwt that were carried in 1970, to the 11.69 tons per dwt that were carried in 2010. One explanation for the high productivity rate of container ships is that container shipping can often benefit from return cargoes, whereas oil and bulk vessels tend to move cargo from extraction to consumptions points and return in ballast. With an increased number of production centres, the distances between source and consumption have grown, resulting in a lower measured tanker fleet productivity. In 2010, tanker fleet productivity declined, whereas the productivity of dry bulk and containers fleets increased. The year 2010 was the most productive for the container fleet since 2006, suggesting that the container fleet might need to expand.

82 Figure 3.8. Tons carried per deadweight ton (dwt) of the world fleet, selected years Source: UNCTAD secretariat. REVIEW OF MARITIME TRANSPORT 2011 Table 3.9. Estimated productivity of tankers, bulk carriers and the residual fleet, a selected years Year Oil cargo (millions of tons) 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Tanker fleet (millions of dwt, beginning of year) Tons carried per dwt of tankers Main dry bulks (millions of tons) Dry bulk fleet (millions of dwt, beginning of year) Tons carried per dwt of bulk carriers All other dry cargoes (millions of tons) Residual fleet a (millions of dwt, beginning of year) Container, general cargo, and residual fleet Oil tankers Main dry bulks 1970 1980 1990 2000 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Tons carried per dwt of the residual fleet a 1970 1 442 148 9.74 448 72 6.21 676 106 6.38 1980 1 871 339 5.51 796 186 4.29 1 037 158 6.57 1990 1 755 246 7.14 968 235 4.13 1 285 178 7.23 2000 2 163 282 7.66 1 288 276 4.67 2 532 240 10.53 2006 2 698 354 7.62 1 836 346 5.31 3 166 260 12.19 2007 2 747 383 7.17 1 957 368 5.32 3 330 292 11.41 2008 2 742 408 6.72 2 059 391 5.26 3 428 319 10.75 2009 2 642 418 6.32 2 094 418 5.01 3 122 355 8.80 2010 2 752 450 6.12 2 333 457 5.11 3 323 284 11.69 Source: Calculated by the UNCTAD secretariat, based on UNCTAD data on seaborne trade (in tons), and IHS Fairplay data on the world fleet (in dwt). a The residual fleet refers to general cargo, container ships and other vessels included in annex III (b).

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