The global supply chain has been seriously disrupted by COVID-19 shutdowns. The United States ports are being flooded with containers since shipping has resumed. Rather than improving as time goes by, the condition at the ports is worsening. Due to import and export volumes hitting record highs, there has been a lot of shifts in supply chains to accommodate the volume of containers coming into the country. Ports that were not historically busy are quite busy now.
A big issue for the import and export market in the United States is not only the increasing international cost to ship a container but also the domestic drayage cost. On average, drayage rates have increased 42% as compared to drayage rates in 2020. This spike in pricing is due mainly to the high demand for shipping container space on vessels and the congestion at the ports once the containers arrive in the United States. Not to mention the climbing fuel costs.
COVID-19 sparked a high demand for a lot of products that come from areas of the world with insufficient supply chains to deliver on these requests. It is becoming very tough for the maritime vessels to meet expectations; as well as the rest of the parties involved in the transportation of international goods.
Global trade really needs to become less expensive and more accessible. The only way we are going to accomplish this is by improving our tracking abilities for containers, improving the accuracy of maritime shipping schedules, and ensuring the entire supply chain is communicating amongst their partners so everything flows smoothly throughout the entire transportation process.
If everyone in the global supply chain worked together to accomplish this, then this would greatly reduce congestion at all ports, domestic and foreign. Ultimately making shipping less expensive and more accessible.