The Shanghai Containerized Freight Index (SCFI), an indicator for spot rates for container exports from Shanghai that do not include terminal handling charges (THCs), came to 974.66 points in Week 7, according to the Shanghai Shipping Exchange (SSE). The composite index, which was set at 1,000 points on Oct. 16, 2009, has remained on a downward trend for six consecutive weeks and below the 1,000-point line for two straight weeks. Spot rates declined on the routes to North America, Europe and other distant destinations as exports from China did not fully recover yet, although factories had gotten back in business. Spot rates for exports from Shanghai, however, improved for exports to Japan and Southeast Asia and stayed flat for those to South Korea.

On the trade route to North America, demand has been picking up to some extent since the end of Lunar New Year but not powerful enough to raising freight rates. In Week 7, spot rates for container exports from Shanghai to the west coast of North America fell 1.5% to $1,273 per FEU, and to the east coast, 2.2% to $2,496 per FEU.

For shipments destined to Europe, spot rates stood at $910 per TEU, down 1.6%, and for those to the Mediterranean, $1,633 per TEU.

On north-south routes, spot rates waned 4.7% to $1,079 per TEU for exports to the Middle East Gulf, 10.9% to $369 per TEU for those to Australia and New Zealand and 1% to $1,508 per TEU for those to South America. Spot rates went down across the board for those to Africa.

In intra-Asia waters, spot rates sank 0.6% to $331 per TEU on the trade to Japan's Kansai region but improved 4.9% to $340 per TEU to the Kanto region. Rates increased 3.9% to $161 per TEU on the route to Southeast Asia and remained stable at $211 per TEU on that to South Korea.




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