Logistics Update: Update on Container Availability

The container shortage and the resulting logistics bottlenecks have been an ongoing problem for the toy industry and consumer products manufacturers in general. Here is how Bloomberg Supply Lines expressed the resulting pressure on Chinese factories in the January 26, 2021 edition.

While orders have flooded in as the Chinese economy recovered quickly from the effects of the virus, the nation’s small- and medium-size manufacturers are reeling … rocketing shipping costs. Businesses can’t get their hands on containers fast enough and congestion is building at key ports around the world because of virus restrictions. Even though shipping costs are usually paid by importers, the chaos forced some Chinese factories to cut prices to stay competitive.

It appears, however, that there is an increasing availability of containers. That’s according to a Bloomberg Supply LInes report published on January 25, 2021 and written by Brendan Murray. The article, “Shipping Container Crunch Shows Signs of Easing, Index Shows,” explains it this way:

A global shortage of shipping containers that’s sent ocean freight rates skyrocketing shows signs of easing, according to an index that tracks the steel boxes used to transport 90% of the global trade in goods.”

The article indicates a turnaround taking place over the course of the Chinese New Year celebration (February 11-17).

Any news regarding container availability loosening up is good news for retailers, toy companies and manufacturers in China. Let’s just hope that the current logistics challenge becomes a memory by the time we reach Spring.

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