Blog Sea Freight Shipping

Ocean Shipping Trends: Getting Better All the Time

Ocean Shipping Trends: Getting Better All the Time During the past few years, the international team at ICAT Logistics has witnessed and participated in major maritime trends — containerization and globalization, to name two —that are reshaping our industry. The maritime industry continues to evolve. As a result, the outlook for companies sending and receiving freight across international waters, or thinking about it, is also evolving and improving. Here are four positive ocean shipping trends destined to influence our industry in the near future. Big Data The sky’s no longer the limit for big data advances to increase shippers’ constant connection to their valuable freight – even while at sea. Beamed down from a series of well-positioned satellites known as the Automated Identification System, ship data will be integrated with a company’s specific freight documentation to offer a real-time picture of pricing and marketing trends as they evolve. The Benefits: Freight visibility, risk mitigation, fair…

The Canal Expands: What’s in it for You?

The Canal Expands: What’s in it for You? The long awaited expansion of the Panama Canal is complete and it is being hailed as a “game changer…a bridge between the present and the future.” The canal has been vital to international commerce for more than a century, but as the needs of global markets have grown, so have the ships that carry our freight. The expansion — the addition of mammoth locks — will now accommodate huge ‘neo-Panamax’ ships that could not reach the U.S. East and Gulf coasts through the canal before the new locks were built. “There’s no doubt that the expanded canal will benefit the international shipping industry over time,” says Chris Cser, director of International at ICAT Logistics DTW. “The question we have to answer now is: ‘What will it do for our customers?’” The biggest impact will be on freight shipments between the U.S. East and Gulf coasts and markets in Asia Pacific, Cser said. Freight carriers have already begun…

Safety at Sea

Safety at Sea If you and your business rely on international ocean freight shipping, this is news you can use. Beginning July 1, 2016, all packed shipping containers must be accompanied by a shipping document that lists the verified gross mass (VGM) of a container before it can be loaded onto ships operated by flag states that are party to The International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, or SOLAS, which flags approximately 99 percent of the merchant ships in the world. The new standard is designed to ensure that ships are not overloaded and prone to sinking. As a result, each shipper of origin, no matter where in the world they may be, is required to declare in writing the verified size of every ocean shipment, both LCL (less than container load) and FCL (full container load). “Several customers have asked us why this new regulation was added,” said Chris Cser, ICAT Logistics DTW Director of International. “The reason is simple: It was added to help ensure the safety of…

ICAT Logistics DTW Is at the Helm

ICAT Logistics DTW Is at the Helm If you’ve been following ocean cargo trends this past year, you may have the feeling that no one’s at the helm. Add together reports of ocean vessel overcapacity, the struggle to keep tabs on port productivity, the practice of slow steaming to save on fuel and the ever-changing alliances among the major carriers and we wouldn’t blame you for wondering whether it will be possible in 2016 to safely, efficiently and practically get your cargo from one place to the other. Not to worry. During the past two decades at ICAT Logistics DTW, we have developed strong relationships and networks in the ocean cargo industry and that means we are able to commit to the three things that differentiate one logistics firm from the next: Timely Performance – You want to know that the cargo you entrust to us will arrive when and where you want it. Reliability and Safety – That your goods will be in the same shape they were in when they left your facility. Price —That you…

Expanded Panama Canal Will Impact More Than Sea Freight

Expanded Panama Canal Will Impact More Than Sea Freight The project to expand the Panama Canal, forecast for completion in April or May of 2016, promises to set off a series of innovations for the supply and logistics industry in the U.S. and beyond. The expansion is a “game changer for U.S. trade,” say experts at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and at ICAT Logistics DTW, we agree. Starting with the basics, the enlarged canal will allow passage for massive freighters to the U.S. East and Gulf coasts. Those ships comprise about 16 percent of the world’s container fleet but they account for about half the fleet’s cargo capacity. Currently about 70 percent of the cargo reaching the U.S. is controlled by West Coast ports. But that’s only the beginning. Port cities along the East and Gulf costs will spend about $46 billion through 2016 to expand their multimodal cargo facilities and deepen their harbors. For example: the Port of Savannah is dredging its channel at a cost of $650 million; Baltimore will get a new CSX…


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