Q2 Shipping Container Volume Weakens

MANILA, Philippines - The latest report from Container Trade Statistics (CTS), confirms a weaker second quarter in terms of shipping container volumes

The data shows that exports from Europe in terms of TEUs grew 3.0% in the second quarter of 2012. This marks a slowdown from the revised first quarter figure of 9.7%.

Imports to Europe fell 5.3% in the second quarter of 2012, as the region's economic difficulties continued to act as a burden on demand.

Asia's weaker economic performance in the second quarter of the year compared with a stronger first quarter is reflected in the figures. Initial data shows imports to the region fell 4.2% in the second quarter, compared with growth of 5.8% in the first quarter. Meanwhile, export volumes increased just 2.8%.

Container exports from North America fell 6.5% in the second quarter of 2012. By comparison, exports in the first quarter of the year were almost flat (-0.6%).

However, import figures indicate a much more positive picture, up 9.9% in the second quarter, compared with growth of 3.7% in the first quarter.

Elsewhere in the world was a similar picture. Negative export growth was reported in South America, the Middle East and Africa.

In terms of imports, growth rates slowed considerably - however they remained positive. As global economic recovery remains weak and uncertain, it seems the second half of the year is likely to remain tough for shippers, the report added.