Maersk is seeing extraordinary profits during the current period of elevated boxship freight rates. File Image / Pixabay
Container shipping giant AP Moller-Maersk saw an 8.3% rise in its bunker fuel purchases in the first quarter, compared to a year earlier.
The firm posted first-quarter bunker consumption of 2.7 million mt in a results statement on Wednesday, up from 2.5 million mt in the same period of 2020. The company also saw a gain in fuel efficiency, with fuel consumption per transport work slipping by 0.5% on the year to 41.8 grams per TEU per nautical mile.
Maersk paid an average of $398/mt for its fuel in the first quarter, down by 27.8% from an elevated $551/mt in the same period a year earlier while bunker suppliers were commanding significant margins during the uncertainty of the IMO 2020 transition.
The firm reported a profit of $2.7 billion for the first quarter, up from $209 million in the same period a year earlier and almost matching the $2.9 billion made during the whole of 2020.
"Strong demand combined with bottlenecks, lack of capacity and equipment shortage in the global supply chains drove freight rates up significantly," Soren Skou, CEO of Maersk, said in the statement.
"We now expect the current dynamics to last into the fourth quarter."