Container Line Hapag-Lloyd to Continue Avoiding Red Sea and Suez

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Thursday December 28, 2023

Container line Hapag-Lloyd is set to continue instructing its vessels to avoid the Red Sea and Suez Canal after the recent spate of attacks, favouring longer routes around Africa instead.

The company announced the decision in a note to customers on Wednesday.

AP Moller-Maersk announced on Sunday that it would be resuming Red Sea voyages, and CMA CGM made a similar announcement this week, but these companies' vessels have been receiving escorts through the area from US and French warships, respectively.

It is unclear to what extent this military assistance can be applied to the shipping industry more widely.

MSC, the world's largest shipping company, has said it will continue avoiding the Red Sea for the time being.

"Considering the safety of our vessels, our crew, and your cargo, we have currently decided to continue our passage via the Cape of Good Hope but are reviewing this on a daily basis to decide when we can safely revert back to the Suez Canal," Hapag-Lloyd said in Wednesday's note.

The container industry en masse avoiding Suez could add 2% to global bunker demand, according to a Ship & Bunker analysis, while tankers and dry bulk following suit could double this figure.

Hapag-Lloyd is the world's fifth-largest container line by capacity.