Logistics Global News Roundup: Maersk, Lean Solutions Group

Maersk Seals Yokohama Methanol Production Agreement; Lean Solutions Group Cements Mexico Expansion; Global Air Freight Tonnage Down 5% Year-on-Year

Maersk seals Yokohama methanol production agreement

Maersk has entered an agreement for the development of green methanol bunkering infrastructure at the Port of Yokohama, Japan. The move is designed to support Maersk’s growing fleet of green methanol-powered container vessels.

Under the terms of the partnership with the port and Mitsubishi Gas Chemical, the carrier will equip 25 container vessels with dual-fuel engines capable of sailing on green methanol, reports Port Technology.

Yokohama aims to spearhead the development of Japan’s green shipping corridors.

Masashi Fujii, President of Mitsubishi Gas Chemical, said: “We believe the establishment of methanol as a ship fuel supply base in Japan is an important initiative that will contribute to international maritime transport and carbon neutrality of Japan.”

The announcement comes at a time when the maritime sector is under pressure to decarbonise. The International Maritime Organisation recently set a target of a 10% cut in GHG emissions in the sector by 2030. The target has been widely criticised as being unambitious.  

An estimated 90% of the products and goods the world consumes travel by ship, and today’s vessels frequently burn highly polluting heavy fuel-oils –  also known as residual fuels – that have a high sulphur content. These contribute as much as 3% of the world's global carbon dioxide emissions , which is roughly the same volume of CO2 in a single year as Germany produces. 

Lean Solutions Group cements Mexico expansion

Lean Solutions Group – a nearshore and offshore services provider to the transportation and logistics industry – has cemented its growing presence in Mexico with an eighth satellite office in Mexico City.

The Florida-based company, which has a workforce of 10,000, has recently increased its offerings to include warehouse and distribution services, while also supporting other sectors including retail, manufacturing, software as a service, hospitality and healthcare solutions.

It sees big opportunities in Mexico, which has more than 49 million workers between the ages of 20 and 49. 

“We have worked to diversify our locations to better serve our clients, and Mexico is a great extension to those efforts,” said Robert Cadena, Lean Solutions Group CEO. 

He added: “In Mexico, we can find a large, skilled and highly educated workforce that excels within a variety of industries.”

Global air freight tonnage is down 5% year-on-year

Global air freight tonnages tonnages for 2023 are expected be down by 5% year-on-year (YoY), according to the latest figures from WorldACD Market Data.

The figures show that Q4 2023 was the first quarter of 2023 that showed positive growth (3%) compared to 2022. Q1 2023 was down by 11% YoY, Q2 was 8% down and Q3 saw a 3% fall. 

This means that global tonnages for the full year 2023 ended up being 5% lower than in 2022. 

While the first half of 2023 was still at minus 9%, the second half saw an improving YoY performance for each consecutive month, closing at flat YoY growth.

Comparing weeks 50 and 51 in 2023 with the preceding two weeks, Asia Pacific to Europe routes saw fall of 15% in tonnage, and notable declines were also seen in Middle East & South Asia to Europe (-9%), Africa to Europe (-8%), Asia Pacific to North America (-7%).

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