Just a month ago, we announced that the prices of sea transportation jumped by 776% in less than two years, and today another figure shows how serious the maritime transport crisis is. In 2019, the transfer of a container from China to the US lasted only 40 days. With the outbreak of the corona crisis in March 2020, that time jumped to 56 days, but dropped to 44 days in July 2020. Since the traffic jams began to accumulate, By sea, when as of September 2021, transportation from China to the US takes 73 days – 82.5% longer than the pre-corona.
The shipping crisis consists of a long chain of factors, led by the closures in the West. They have led to a decline in the consumption of services, and an increase in the consumption of physical goods – most of which originate in the East, and in China specifically. Shipping companies are unable to meet demand, and the large ports are having a hard time clearing the huge traffic jams created at the entrance to them. The pressure is expected to continue due to US household savings that have grown significantly in the past year – both due to reduced spending on closures, and due to generous government support in the US. Therefore, it is hard to believe that demand will decrease soon, and the slow construction of ships naturally makes it difficult for supply to catch up.
Inflation between September 2020 and September 2021 stands at 5.4%, the highest annual rise in prices in the last decade. The maritime transportation crisis, in addition to the widespread printing of money by the US Federal Reserve, is leading to price increases whose end is not yet in sight. We may see significant price increases later on here as well.