IATA unveils online platform to ease Covid vaccine supply chain challenges

In preparation for global vaccine delivery, IATA has launched ONE Source, an online platform to match shipping needs with infrastructure capabilities and service providers.

The platform, which will independently verify information, will list the latest operational information on airlines, airports, handling facilities, forwarders, shippers and truckers and take into account security and risk analysis data. The API platform will be free for all service providers.

“ONE Source will give complete visibility of the capabilities and facilities across the supply chain,” said Glyn Hughes, head of IATA Cargo.

He pointed out the enormity of the vaccine challenge, which, with just a single dose vaccine for 7.8bn people, would amount to 8,000 747 flights.

But while much of the focus so far has been on available airline capacity, Mr Hughes said facilities also had to be in place.

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Source: The Load Star

THE Alliance blanks sailings due to Golden Week, Covid-19 in October

Container shipping grouping THE Alliance will be blanking 25 services in October in response to the Chinese Golden Week and the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

THE Alliance, which comprises container lines, Hapag-Lloyd, HMM, Ocean Network Express (ONE), and Yang Ming, said that while its Asia – North Europe FE4 loop was temporarily suspended it had been deploying an extra loader service since Week 30, and this would be voided in weeks 40 and 41. Also on Asia – North  and FE2 loop sailing will be blanked in week 40, and FE3 in week 41.

On the Asia – Med trade six sailings would be blanked in October.

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Source: Seatrade Maritime News

Trade war and tariffs fail to slow growing surge of US imports from China

US west coast ports, and rail and road links to the interior, are currently struggling with a surge of imports from Asia, mostly from China.

Despite all the fiery rhetoric and tariffs, the flow of goods from China to the US has not slowed down.

“We have not seen a major slowdown in business with China, it’s pretty steady, if not growing,” said Bob Imbriani, vice-president international services of forwarder Team Worldwide.

If anything, US appetite for goods from China has increased: the country’s trade surplus with the US reached $34.2bn in August – the highest level since November 2018, when the trade conflict ramped up.

US imports overall have continued to outpace exports in recent months. Exports increased 11.8% from June to July, ending up 15.9% below their July 2019 tally, while imports maintained their upward momentum to reach pre-pandemic levels.

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Source: The Load Star

Pandemic complicates supplier audits, increases modern slavery risk in Asian manufacturing hubs

Dive Brief:

  • The risk of modern slavery in Asian manufacturing hubs has increased “significantly” over the last four years, and the pandemic has complicated the auditing process for corporate procurement, according to the Verisk Maplecroft Modern Slavery Index, which measures a business’ risk with slavery, human trafficking and forced labor in supply chains, operations and service providers.
  • Manufacturing hubs like Bangladesh (18th highest risk globally), China (20th), Myanmar (23rd), India (25th), Cambodia (32nd), Vietnam (35th) and Indonesia (44th) dropped to their lowest level on the index since 2017 and have either extreme or high risk of slavery cases. Slavery cases are most common in North Korea, Yemen, Syria, South Sudan, Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Congo, the Gambia and Burundi, according to the index.
  • “Travel restrictions and other measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 have left the ability of companies to carry out audits to ensure ethical working practices in their supply chains in disarray,” Sofia Nazalya, a Human Rights Analyst at Verisk Maplecroft, said in a statement. “The reputational risk to brands from association with modern slavery is, therefore, now higher than at any other time over recent years.”

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Source: Supply Chain Dive

3PLs prepare to catch Damco shippers jumping ship

A.P. Moller-Maersk’s (OTCMKTS: AMKBY) announcement earlier this week that it will integrate the air cargo and less-than-container-load (LCL) services of its subsidiary Damco into the Maersk brand has some customers checking their options.

Shippers remain unclear how the absorption of Damco into Maersk will impact their overall logistics contracts with the longtime third-party logistics services provider (3PL), as well as what will happen to the customer service staff who were dedicated to their shipping requirements.

Other 3PLs say they are prepared for a possible migration of shippers from Damco.

“The last thing shippers need at present is further uncertainty,” said Thorsten Meincke, a member of DB Schenker’s management board for air and ocean freight, in a statement on Friday.

“We are making an offer to all those who are now looking for long-term security and reliability,” he added.

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Source: American Shipper