COVID-19 to Accelerate Digitalization, Automation of Container Shipping

COVID-19 to Accelerate Digitalization, Automation of Container Shipping

The world right now is in the grip of the pandemic spread — and the health situation is almost guaranteed to get worse in the coming weeks. The response to the spread has been an unprecedented lockdown of entire countries with either movement restrictions or outright curfews.

At the time of writing, this affects more than 2.5 billion people globally. The economic impact will be acutely felt for supply chain providers in the coming weeks and months, and we are likely to see some shipping lines not survive the impending cash-crunch.

The situation is unprecedented, especially the speed with which sizeable parts of the world economy are being shut down. There is no prior identical event with which we can accurately gauge how quickly, or slowly, consumers and businesses will regain confidence and bring the economy back up and running. Presently, my view is that the downturn for container shipping will be of the same order of magnitude as the financial crisis, and we will only see the rebound in earnest in 2021. Other analysts presently appear more optimistic both in terms of the magnitude and the speed of the recovery.

However, eventually there will be a rebound. Presently, most efforts are focused on managing a very acute economic crisis, and for good reason, but already the question is beginning to appear: How will this change the world?  I will not presume to be an expert on all global matters, and hence will confine the following to a look into a part of how container shipping and broader supply chains will be changed as a consequence of the pandemic. And herein also lies a view in terms of how to improve competitive positioning within the industry.

In this early phase of the crisis, we are seeing people suddenly having to manage their jobs sitting at home. This covers logistics managers on the cargo owner side as well as all office staff such as customer service, documentation, sales, and finance on the shipping side. What this is showing, so far, is that it is possible to keep the supply chain running and that online tools are indeed helping in this endeavor. Read more here


Original Source: Daily Newswire 3%2F27%2F2020_PC9156_e-production_E-59112_KB_0327_0617

By: Lars Jensen, CEO, Sea-Intelligence Maritime Consulting | Mar 26, 2020 10:28AM EDT



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