For shipments on the sea, the shipping lines will need to divert to other ports where they most likely will declare an ‘end of voyage’. This means that the cargo will not move even when the situation gets resolved. It is on the initiative of the shipper or consignee, depending on the agreed terms, to return or sell the cargo. The shipping lines will not be responsible for any costs that occurred as a consequence (additional transport, storage, container rent,…).
For shipments already arrived in the Black Sea area, it is recommended that local consignees check the procedures. Most likely port operations will be suspended until further notice causing cargo to remain blocked in the port areas. Storage/Demurrage/Detention costs might occur. It is unclear what the policy will be on this from local terminals and shipping lines.
As several ports in the region were already full, this situation is expected to present additional challenges on top of existing global supply chain disruptions.
The Russian navy has shut down commercial shipping in the Sea of Azov. This sea connects the Black Sea and the Northern bank is Ukrainian. This is why the Russian navy is blocking this route. Ukraine has requested to Turkey to close the connection between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea for all Russian ships as a countermeasure. Turkey is one of the 3 NATO members touching the Black Sea. The 2 others are Bulgaria and Romania.
COSCO & Hapag are the first to have reported ceasing all activities to and from Russia. Shipping lines are updating their policy as we speak, so the situation can change rapidly.
The rail connection from China to Europe is for the moment stable and we have not received any reports about possible service disruptions although some routings will be diverted to other territories.
All airfreight is suspended from and to Ukraine as long as the military actions are ongoing.
The entire situation will indefinitely lead to higher insurance costs for all parties who have activities in the region. For the shipping lines, this might result in a typical ‘war risk surcharge’.
For all transport modes, the situation is very uncertain as new sanctions will most likely get implemented. Depending on these restrictions certain policies will need to be updated. We will follow up on the situation closely.