May 08, 2020

With nearly 200 countries affected, the Coronavirus pandemic is applying pressure on global logistics. 

In addition, with approximately 90% of the world’s population being subjected to international movement restrictions, demand for air transportation has drastically reduced, resulting in severe implications for carriers like Air Mauritius and Virgin Australia – put into voluntary administration.

Based on market insights, the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on both supply and demand side are now becoming much apparent. Latest research reveals that the global freight forwarding movements could recessed by 7.5% in 2020 on average, with territories like USA predicted to potentially contract by 10.8%.

While some airlines are adapting their planes to operate as cargo flights to avoid disruptions, much of the volumes of the global trade are still being transported by sea freight – which are impacted by blank sailings or removal of capacity from certain sea routes.

While our global teams prepare to address the future disruptions, which may affect our customers’ supply chain, please find below the latest situation update in the various territories we are present:

Mauritius

Earlier this week, CMA CGM has announced that following the exceptional waiver on demurrage and detention charges up to May 04, 2020, it will unfortunately not be in a position to sustain the same measure afterwards.

It is therefore highly recommended that importers take delivery of their shipments and arrange for return of containers during the free time, in view of avoiding additional charges.

On the air freight side, in aim to pursue the transport of essential and urgent orders, various adhoc flights are being operated.

Air Mauritius is presently having two weekly flights to Paris (CDG) and the expected dates of future departures for May 2020 are: 12th, 15th, 19th, 22nd, 26th and 29th May. 

The return flights are planned to depart from CDG on 13th, 16th, 20th, 23rd, 27th and 30th May.

Flights to Rodrigues remain suspended.

France

The end of lockdown period is scheduled for May 11, 2020. However, home office practices are being recommended as far as possible.  Stores, companies and schools will re-open while restaurants and bars will remain closed, at least until June 01, 2020.

Some of our customers have started placing new orders by sea and air mode but the scheduled volumes are very low as compared to usual.

Masks import business is booming in France.  An official Covid-19 customs office has been set up in order to ensure compliance on the import of masks.  Therefore, an authorisation is compulsory for every order.

Pertaining to the new customs regulations regarding the importation of masks and the situation in China, Velogic France team is helping its customers to obtain approval of all their documents prior to shipment. They are also facilitating the import of masks from other countries like Madagascar, Mauritius, Turkey and Bangladesh rather than China.  The team is also providing sea-air solution via Korea and encouraging the use of rail freight for imports of masks coming from China.

India

The lockdown period is maintained until May 17, 2020. Based on the number of cases, the country has been divided by zones – namely green, orange and red zones.

While the green zone is open for almost all activities with social distancing, there are restrictions on the orange and red zones.

Private companies are allowed to open office with 33% of their workforce, even in the red zone. Velogic India is also operating with 33% of the employee base on rotation.

From a logistics perspective, all movement of goods are allowed. States / UT have not halted transport of cargo for cross-land border trade with neighbouring countries whereby treaties apply. Such transportations do not require a separate pass since the continuity of supply chain is considered as essential across the country, especially during the lockdown period.

There are however some limitations to the movement in Delhi and please click here to read more.

Kenya

There has been an increase in cargo handling charges by transit sheds with the recent development at JKIA.  For example, AFS transit shed has introduced a Covid-19 charge of USD 0.00075 /KG with a minimum USD 25.00 per airfreight shipment.  

All truck drivers going in and out of Mombasa are required to be tested.  

Various challenges are being experienced, with delays of trucks at the container depot.

Madagascar

The partial lockdown remains enforced until May 17, 2020.  Public services including port and custom offices are working until 01:00 p.m, daily.  Weekly cargo flights are being operated by Air France and Turkish airlines only, while international passenger movements remain suspended.

As from this week, customs authorities shall be suspending once more the export of essential oils. The freezone companies which are still operating are those exporting textile barrier masks to France, Reunion and Mayotte.

Reunion

The end of lockdown is expected on May 11, 2020 while work from home is still recommended as much as possible. Similar to France, all bars and restaurants will remain closed until end of May 2020. Incoming travellers shall undergo a 2 weeks’ quarantine.

Our express service is operating with two weekly flights of Air Austral.  The normal flight schedule is expected to resume after one month.

As far as air freight is concerned, with the reduced number of flights, shipments are being subject to delays.

Bangladesh

The government of Bangladesh has extended the lockdown till May 16, 2020.  However, export oriented industries like pharmaceutical and manufacturing industries are allowed to resume operations. 

All international and domestic passenger flights are suspended until May 16, 2020 except for China.  Special flights, air ambulance, emergency landing flights and cargo flights remain operational. 

In spite of Chittagong port gradually improving on productivity and yard density level, vessel operations are still facing challenges  in completing operations within standard port stay of 72 hours.

Warehouses, depots and all other facilities related to shipping continue to operate with lesser workers at reduced number of hours.

Please do not hesitate to liaise with your usual contact person at Velogic, should you have any queries regarding this announcement.