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Because of new COVID lockdowns in parts of China that are the strictest since the virus’s initial outbreak more than two years ago, 174 cargo ships were anchored off the ports of Hong Kong and Shenzhen last week, the most since 21 October, Bloomberg reported.

Ships queueing off Shanghai’s docks also are becoming more numerous, Bloomberg said.

“Shenzhen is the second-busiest port next to Shanghai, so we will expect to see significant volume shift to the other ports within China,” Ryan Closser, a director at data service FourKites, told Bloomberg. 

“A couple more weeks of shutdown may not have a huge disruption, but the longer the area is shut down, the more of a ripple effect it will have,” he warned.  

Shenzhen was beginning to ease its lockdown last week.

However, Shanghai’s virus caseload is still growing, increasing the chance that work at the world’s biggest port will continue to slow.

Virus cases and shutdowns have eased in the U.S., reducing clogs at the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports. 

Those blockages have now shifted across the Pacific Ocean, where China is seeing 14 percent more vessels than in April 2021, Bloomberg said, while commercial ship traffic at the U.S. coasts is 6.2 percent below the historical median.

TRENDPOST: We have noted implications of the latest round of China’s Zero-COVID lockdown policies in the “ECONOMIC OVERVIEW” section of this Trends Journal


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