CMA CGM levies low-sulphur surcharge on Europe-Asia November 15

  Nov.1--FRENCH shipping giant CMA CGM will levy a low-sulphur fuel surcharge from November 15 for all containers shipped from Europe to Shanghai and Ningbo.

  Since October 1, China has mandated carriers calling at those two ports to switch to fuel containing a maximum 0.5 per cent sulphur content, thus a US$20 per TEU surcharge will be applied on cargo from north Europe.

  Next January, the sulphur limit will be applicable to other ports across China, and CMA CGM has warned shippers to expect a separate announcement regarding container shipping for the headhaul Asia-North Europe trade.

  China is the latest country to impose emission control areas (ECA) that already include North Europe (Baltic Sea, North Sea, and English Channel), North America (200 nautical miles from the US and Canadian shores), and Australia. Most of the ECAs require ships to use fuel with a maximum sulfur content of 0.1 per cent.

  Bunker fuel cost has risen 25 per cent in Houston over the past six months, by 21 per cent in Shanghai, and by 24 per cent in Rotterdam. Bunker fuel cost $490 per ton in Houston on Monday, up 50 cents from Friday, at $516.50 per ton in Shanghai, up $5 from Friday, and $474.50 per ton in Rotterdam, up $12 a ton.

  Maersk Line estimates its bunker adjustment factor (BAF) will add between $90 and $1,050 to the cost per FEU, with a rough TEU conversion coming at a range of $45 to $1,025.

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