Reefer trades have something of a reputation for volatility both in terms of volumes and freight rates, yet Drewry’s Global Reefer Freight Rate Index has recorded only increases over the last 12 months, even during off-peak seasons.“The recent wave of carrier consolidation, which will continue well into 2018, is having a direct impact on global market structure,” said Stijn Rubens, senior consultant at Drewry Supply Chain Advisors. “As shipping lines gradually regain control of prevailing freight rates, the markets are becoming increasingly tight with behaviours one would more commonly associate with oligopoly conditions. The recent drop in investment in reefer containers only lends further weight to our expectations of further rate increases during 2018.”
Drewry’s Global Reefer Freight Rate Index reveals four quarters of uninterrupted increases in global average reefer freight rates.
“With this market context in mind, supply chain professionals should ask themselves two key questions; firstly, am I paying too much for my reefer container shipments in terms of how the rates I have secured compare to my competition and secondly, how do I lock-in the most favourable terms going forward,” added Rubens. “Answers to both questions are provided to members of our exclusive Reefer Benchmarking Club.”