Congestion: Maersk Line, Safmarine deny dumping Lagos ports

Contrary to media reports, the world’s largest container carrier, Maersk and its sister company, Safmarine, have denied stopping their services to the ports in Lagos.

In a Customer Advisory issued separately at the weekend, both shipping lines said calls to Lagos ports will continue across their global network despite challenges facing operations at the ports in Lagos.

The Customer Advisory issued by Maersk reads: “The West Africa market continues to be dynamic and market demand fluctuates significantly from quarter to quarter. Currently, we are experiencing severe delays in Lagos due to highly utilised terminal yards, crane break-downs and long trucking queues. We continue to work proactively with all our terminal partners across West Africa and specifically with Nigerian Ports Authority to assist where possible to mitigate the congestion currently being experienced in Lagos.

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“As was communicated in early January, we would like to reiterate some adjustments made to various services across our Far East to West Africa network to deliver a stable and reliable product to our customers. Please find below the service rotations within West Africa before returning to the Far East:

“FEW1 will serve Cotonou, Abidjan, Tincan and Lome.

“FEW2 will serve Walvis Bay, Apapa, Tema, Apapa and Pointe Noire.

“FEW3 will serve Tema, Lome, Cotonou, Onne and Walvis Bay.”

Maersk said the changes to its service rotation was to ensure “we can continue to call at all West African ports that we have in the past whilst ensuring we limit the impact of the delays on your cargo.”

“Additional to the above mentioned we will continue to call in Lagos with our Middle East product (MESAWA) and our Europe service (WAF6),” Maersk stated further.

The world largest shipping line said it would continue to monitor the situation and will communicate any future changes to its vessel schedules, “as is the norm across our global network”.

Safmarine, in its own Customer Advisory, also said its service rotations within West Africa before returning to the Far East include FEW1 serving Cotonou, Abidjan, Tincan and Lome; FEW2 serving Walvis Bay, Apapa, Tema, Apapa and Pointe Noire; and FEW3 serving Tema, Lome, Cotonou, Onne and Walvis Bay.

Maersk is the world’s largest container shipping company by both fleet size and cargo capacity, serving 116 countries. It has more than 31,000 employees. Maersk operates over 786 vessels and has a capacity of 4.1 million.

Safmarine is present in more than 85 countries and has more than 1200 sailors selling its services.

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