Courtesy of Lloyd’s Loading List
As Lloyd’s Loading List.com went to press, freight transport continued to be disrupted in the wake of Superstorm Sandy with the Port of New York and New Jersey’s maritime facilities remaining closed until further notice.
The facilities were shut down at midnight on 28 October.
In an update issued on yesterday evening, the Port Authority underlines that its staff and engineers continue to carry out inspections at the site and assess damage. “We will resume operations at our facilities as early as possible but only when it is safe to do so.”
However, all other ports along the US and North-East and mid-Atlantic coast had re-opened by yesterday morning.
Commenting on the impact of Sandy on Maersk Line’s activities, a spokesman told Lloyd’s Loading List.com: “All our vessels and their crews are safe. Due to the rough weather, there have been some minor damages to vessels – navigational lights missing, lost SATC antenna etc. But no cargo has been lost overboard.”
He confirmed that all terminals and ports on the US East Coast – except the Port of New York and New Jersey – are open for business as usual.
“The port authorities and terminal management in the New York/New Jersey area are currently assessing the impact to the port/terminal. At this time, we do not know when we will gain access to the Port Elizabeth terminal in Newark to access possible damage to container units on the ground or when we can resume normal terminal operation,” he added.
The picture is more positive for air transport, with New York’s main airports, JFK and Newark, having re-opened on Wednesday morning. Although flight services have not been fully restored and vary from carrier to carrier.
British Airways said it was aiming to operate a near normal schedule to New York, while Air France said its flights to and from New York, Washington and Boston had resumed.
In its latest update, issued yesterday, FedEx said that the severe weather system that brought hazardous conditions across the US North-East is still leaving difficult conditions and continues to affect FedEx operations. “Unavoidable” service delays should be expected, due to local road conditions across around 15 states in the region, it added.
While the situation appears to be improving generally, a key issue remains of the power outages.
On Wednesday an estimated 6.2 million homes and businesses were without power because of the storm.
As is to be expected with a storm of this size and severity, Hurricane Sandy has caused significant disruption to shipping throughout the US, impacted by the effects of the storm on ports and airports in the major hubs of the US North East.
Air, Ocean, Road and Rail networks are all affected.
We continue to keep our clients updated on the status of their specific shipments, but general update as at 12:00 hrs CST Wed Oct 31 :
– Many offices and warehouses throughout the affected region (NY, NJ, PA, NC) are without power and either remain closed or are operating under limited functionality. In many cases, operations have been transferred to other US locations where that has been possible.
– Landlines are generally working through the region, but cell traffic can be unreliable. Data networks and website operations have been significantly disrupted in the case where ISP’s are based in the affected region.
– Major roads throughout the region are working normally, but many local restrictions on side roads.
– Rail networks (Freight and Passenger) throughout the US are affected due to damage and delay in the affected region.
– Major freight airports at JFK and EWR operational, but a significant delay to uplift of cargo is expected to remain an issue from all US airports as airline networks come back in to complete service.
– New York / New Jersey ports – closed until further notice (for statement from Port Authority see below). It is reported that there has been mimimal damage to dry containers which were in port during the storm, and that refrigerated containers continue to operate well under their own gensets.
– Norfolk, Charleston, Philadelphia, Baltimore ports – gates are open and terminals are operational, but operations are slow, and vessels remain out of rotation. Delays are expected to continue for at least a number of days.
We have not been advised of the diversion of any inbound vessels from their originally scheduled ports, but we expect routings to be adjusted by the shipping lines as they work to bring their networks in to alignment.
We will continue to keep our customers updated, and will post additional information as the situation changes, but please do not hesitate to contact us should we be able to assist with any more specific questions.
New York / New Jersey ports – all terminals are currently closed until further notice, with no date being advised for the commencement of operations.
Statement from New York Port Authority 10/31 :
Staff have been on-site today to assess the damage and current status is as follows:
No electrical power and no time frame for repair
Roads covered with debris and traffic signals out of service
Rail track has been compromised
Fence lines – widespread disrepair
Port Authority staff is working to clear roads and is communicating with the container terminal operators and major tenants to coordinate the clean up and reinstatement of service. Only select essential personnel are permitted on port at this time. All non-essential personnel will be denied access by PAPD at port entrances.
Port Authority will provide an update by close of business tomorrow (Thurs)
The Office Exhibition joins the INDEX International Design Exhibition in 2013
|INDEX International Design Exhibition and The Office Exhibition will come together in 2013 to create an ‘Interiors Super Show’ for the Middle East & North Africa’s Architect and Design community.
The decision to bring these two established brands together was taken after several months of extensive research into the changing landscape of the global interiors market, and to further support the continuing evolution of the INDEX International Design Exhibition; an event that is already widely recognised as the region’s largest and most established interiors exhibition.
As the total spend on interior design in the GCC is expected to top US$56 billion in 2012, more and more manufacturers and suppliers are expanding and diversifying their range of products and services to target the entire spectrum of interiors fit-out and refurbishment projects.
Equally, more and more Architect and Design companies are expanding their consultancy capabilities to cross the boundaries between commercial, residential, hospitality and retail design in order to chase lucrative fit-out projects across the region, which last year were valued at an astounding US$8.6 billion.
INDEX Event Director Frederique Maurell commented, “I am delighted that The Office Exhibition will become part of the INDEX International Design Exhibition next year. The Office Exhibition has already cemented its place within the Middle East commercial design industry, but the synergy with INDEX makes perfect strategic sense, and we look forward to driving the show forward. By adding new profiles, developing the show and attaching the show to a larger regional design show, The Office Exhibition can only benefit and grow organically to become the region’s premier commercial design event”.
Maintaining its own brand identity, The Office Exhibition will however become an integral part of INDEX, and will remain fully focused on showcasing the most innovative and creative working environments for offices, sports venues, and education and healthcare facilities, as well as a range of other commercial environments.
INDEX will continue to focus on supporting the region’s demand for the latest residential, hospitality and retail-related interior products and services across its existing 9 show sectors (Furnishings, Furniture, Couture, Kitchen & Bathroom, Lighting, Outdoor Living, Textiles, Inspire and Surfaces & Finishes); whilst InRetail will move over to The Office Exhibition.
With an eleven-year history and an attendance of more than 4,200 architects, interior designers, specifiers and procurement managers at the 2012 event, The Office Exhibition will create an additional 9,800sqm of space at INDEX 2013. With 54% of the INDEX International Design Exhibition’s 27,000 visitors being involved in commercial interiors projects, The Office Exhibition will see its visitor numbers increase dramatically next year.
The INDEX International Design Exhibition 2013, incorporating The Office Exhibition, will take place from 20th-23rd May 2013 at the Dubai World Trade Centre and will feature more than 1,300 exhibitors spread across 45,000sqm, representing top international brands from more than 50 countries.
Ever Dynamic, from Evergreen Line docks at the new Khalifa Port in Abu Dhabi.
Abu Dhabi launched operations at a multi-billion dollar port facility on Saturday 1st September, seeking to diversify its oil-based economy with a project that could intensify competition for the region’s shipping traffic with neighbouring emirate Dubai.
Abu Dhabi Ports Co (ADPC) said Khalifa Port, built on a man-made island in the Taweelah area, and its adjacent Khalifa Industrial Zone would together be two-thirds the size of Singapore when fully built.
Khalifa Port’s container terminal currently has an annual capacity of 2.5 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU). This can be raised to 5 million TEU according to demand over the next few years. Abu Dhabi has said its long-term goal is to increase it to 15 million by 2030, depending on demand.
The port can also handle 12 million tons of general cargo annually in the first phase, including 4 million tons from an Emirates Aluminium berth that opened in 2010.
Khalifa Port will gradually take over all container traffic from Abu Dhabi’s existing Mina Zayed port, which has reached its capacity of 1 million TEUs.
“Over four to six months we hope to complete the migration of all traffic that goes into Mina Zayed to the new port,” said Douglas. Mina Zayed will continue handling some commercial cargo and concentrate on developing a cruise liner business.
Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates, is investing billions of dollars in infrastructure, real estate and tourism to diversify its economy. In shipping, the obvious challenge to its growth comes from Dubai, whose much larger Jebel Ali port is only about 40km north along the coast.
Last December DP World , the world’s third-largest port operator and owner of Jebel Ali, said it would invest $850 million over three years to boost the port’s capacity by 4 million TEU to 19 million.
Both companies have dismissed suggestions that they could end up competing for market share. ADPC maintains that Khalifa is a destination port, unlike Jebel Ali which focuses on transhipments to other ports.
“We are still growing to the extent of 7 to 9 percent this year. Also, what we foresee in terms of productivity being expanded in basic industries like aluminium and others will bring more capacity on line, and that will drive our growth,” said Martijn Van De Linde, chief executive of Abu Dhabi Terminals.
Noting that the export-import ratio at Mina Zayed was about 80 to 20, he said Khalifa’s growth would be driven by exports.
“Industries based here are now starting to produce and export to China, Europe, Mediterranean and other regions. So our growth is being driven by exports and we have healthy imports as well.”
However, the unstable global economic climate could pose challenges for both Abu Dhabi and Dubai. DP World posted flat half-year profits on Wednesday and said uncertainty in the world economy was slowing growth of the industry.
Within the UAE, Dubai has taken the lead in areas including aviation, tourism and trade but Abu Dhabi is gaining momentum in those industries on the back of its oil-based wealth. Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways, launched in 2003, is competing aggressively with well-established Emirates in aviation.