The head of German shipping firm Hapag Lloyd, Rolf Habben Jansen, expects the next three years to be difficult because demand for shipping services is growing more slowly than available shipping capacity, he told the Welt am Sonntag newspaper.

Despite that, he thought the downturn in the sector would be less severe than in the period following the global financial crisis in 2008 when new capacity due to launch amounted to 55% of the existing fleet. Now, the equivalent figure is just 27%.

Freight rates had fallen by around 60% year-on-year, he added.

“Container shipping has always been a cyclical business,” he told the newspaper. “I don’t think it will be as bad as in 2008 and 2009, though.”

Source: Reuters