Mediterranean reluctance, Indian Ocean steady

Mediterranean reluctance, Indian Ocean steady
Published: 09 April 2014

Tagged Under: Freight Markets 

Owners of dry bulk vessels operating in the Mediterranean are reluctant to take short inter-Med cement or clinker voyages, due to poor rates and lack of cargoes, especially in the eastern Mediterranean, according to Clarksons, the international shipbroker.

Instead, owners are opting for cargoes with backhaul to the Atlantic as a first preference. Owners are rating spot cargoes from the Mediterranean to west Africa at reasonable rates, however, for forward cargoes to west Africa, charterers have to pay a hefty premium due to the general market sentiment that this market will only decline going forward.
 
Elsewhere, the US Gulf Coast and East Coast­–South America markets have steadily dropped in recent weeks, due to the long and increasing line up of open vessels, compared to the relatively short list of cargoes available for transport. This has allowed petcoke and coal cargoes leaving these areas to achieve very aggressive freight rates compared with previous months.
 
The market in the Persian Gulf and the west coast of India has been steady over the previous couple of weeks with enough cargoes around to keep rates buoyant. Clinker and cement cargoes are seeing competition from higher paying fertiliser and grain, although it is currently still possible to secure tonnage at reasonable rates. Iron ore exports from India are currently low, but an increase in volumes could quickly push rates up.