Syrian uprising deals ocean shipping a major blow

By Freddie Pierce
Since the start of the 2011 Syrian uprising on January 26 earlier this year, the countrys economy has been dealt a heavy blow. The port city of Tartus...

Since the start of the 2011 Syrian uprising on January 26 earlier this year, the country’s economy has been dealt a heavy blow. The port city of Tartus, once an important ocean freight shipping hub in the Eastern Mediterranean, has seen its volume slip ever since the uprising began.

“At night, ship lights made Tartus extend into a city on the sea; now it’s like a small village,” one international shipper told Reuters. “The port’s sealine was full of vessels – now the berths are nearly empty.”

“We had 25 to 30 vessels daily arriving. This has dropped to between 10 and five daily,” another major shipping agent in Tartus said.

VIOLENCE IN SYRIA

Over six months have passed since the street protests began, as Syria’s citizens have demanded the removal of President Bashar al-Assad. In the meantime, Syria has failed to capitalize on its prime location as a Middle Eastern trading crossroads.

SEE OTHER TOP STORIES IN THE SUPPLY CHAIN DIGITAL CONTENT NETWORK

Libyan medical supply chain recovering from civil war

COSCO hurt by global shipping slip

Check out September’s issue of Supply Chain Digital here!

Shipping sources in the region told Reuters that ocean freight volume has fallen by 35 to 40 percent through the first eight months of this year.

“Importers and exporters are being very cautious, and that has led to imports of raw materials falling sharply as production slows down in many industries due to the troubles,” one Syrian transportation official told Reuters.

Trade has dropped considerably between Syria and its Arab trading partners, who are growing concerned over the number of logistical challenges within the troubled nation.

According to Reuters, analysts had predicted that Syria’s GDP would grow by 3 percent this year. Thanks largely to the supply chain and logistics problems posed by the unrest in the port cities, GDP is expected to fall by several percentage points in 2011.

Click here to download Supply Chain Digital’s iPad app!

Share

Featured Articles

UST webinar on managing supply risk available on-demand

Global CPO David Loseby and UST's Jonathan Colehower share insight on using technology, both to mitigate supply chain risk and to gain supply visibility

Global land, sea and air logistics news round-up

Global logistics IoT spend ‘will top $32bn by 2032’; UN $10mn grant for explosion-hit Port of Beirut; Costa Rica ransomware attack causes ports chaos

Comfort zones the enemy of sustainability - CIPS economist

Cranfield economist John Glen tells procurement & supply managers that comfortable routines and relationships are unlikely to deliver sustainability goals

Women in supply fare better in large firms - Gartner report

Digital Supply Chain

What can be done to avert food catastrophe foreseen by UN?

Logistics

UST's Colehower shares supply risk insights in webinar today

Supply Chain Risk Management