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CMA CGM Ramps Up Asia-Europe Capacity Amid 'Unprecedented Demand'

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

December 14, 2020

(Photo: CMA CGM)

(Photo: CMA CGM)

One of the world's top container shipping companies said it is ramping up its capacity between Asia and Europe in response to unprecedented demand.

The French-based CMA CGM Group said Monday it has accelerated the redeployment of its capacity, increasing tonnage assigned to lines between Asia and Europe by 6% for the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to the same period of 2019. It will also make further additions in the first quarter of 2021, when capacity will be 10% higher than in the current quarter.

The Asia-Europe trade will be serviced by CMA CGM's new class of nine 9 23,000-TEU liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered vessels, three of which are already in service. Two extra loaders will operate on routes between Asia and Europe, providing over 9,000 TEU in total capacity, with special departures from China to France and the Netherlands in late December 2020.

There has been no blank sailing departures on the FAL 1 and FAL 3 lines since the recovery began in Asia in mid-May, CMA CGM said.

The CMA CGM Antoine de Saint Exupéry will call at Le Havre on Sunday, December 13, adding another weekly import call in France to CMA CGM’s illustrious French Asia Line (FAL 1), which connects Asia to Europe in an 84-day rotation. This direct connection can ship a container from Shanghai to France in barely 27 days. In parallel, the FAL 3 service will make a weekly export call in Le Havre bound for ports in the Red Sea, the Persian Gulf and Asia. Under these new arrangements, the CMA CGM Group’s vessels will make four weekly calls in France — two at Le Havre, one at Dunkirk and 1 at Marseille/Fos-sur-Mer.

In an effort to address the container shortage and port congestion, CMA CGM has taken several measures to speed up the return of empty containers to Asia and to cut delays at the ports it serves in Asia and Europe. It has arranged special services for our customers to ports less affected by the congestion. During the second half of 2020, CMA CGM has increased the size of its container fleet by 8.7%, services have been rerouted to clear the build-up of empty containers and CMA CGM is offering its customers alternative solutions that use other types of containers to meet their needs.

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