Hapag-Lloyd and CMA CGM—two key market players who jointly led the prominent service network INDAMEX & INDAMEX 2 between India West Coast and the United States East Coast (USEC) for decades—are now withdrawing from the network and dismantling the service strings.

Hapag-Lloyd TPI Service

Hapag-Lloyd has announced the immediate discontinuation of INDAMEX 2 (IN2) but plans to revamp a standalone service named TPI (INDAMEX) starting August 8. The new vessel rotation will be as follows: Port Qasim (Pakistan), Nhava Sheva, and Mundra in western India, and then New York, Norfolk, Savannah, and Charleston before returning to Port Qasim.

This service change could be in preparation for the proposed rollout of the Gemini Cooperation alliance between Maersk and Hapag-Lloyd, which is designed to offer more integrated services across the market, starting early next year.

CMA CGM India-USEC Service

CMA CGM has followed suit and announced the launch of a revamped India-USEC string starting August 15. Per some local industry sources, COSCO shipping and their subsidiary OOCL will step in as a potential vessel and slot-sharing partner for CMA CGM’s reimagined loop. The vessel rotation will be as follows: Port Qasim, Nhava Sheva, Mundra, New York, Norfolk, Savannah, Charleston, and Port Qasim.

How Importers Should be Prepared

Volume projections—During the time that the market remains highly volatile, and space remains constrained, it is crucial that importers keep volume projections up to date and request bookings from their forwarder three to four weeks in advance.

Carrier diversification and risk management—In India, with recent alliance splits and merges in the offing, carrier diversification remains vital. To reduce cargo idle time at supplier’s factory, importers should be open to using carriers across multiple service networks. Relying on one ocean carrier can have increased exposure to void sailings, roll over, and more.

Rising spot market rates—Forwarders, and importers in India have been caught off guard as rates and capacity availability has worsened almost overnight. On the higher end of the spectrum, SPOT rates for early July sailings are captured at around $11-12k from NSA to USEC.

Through our India Center of Excellence, we can source space and capacity management on the ground, build relationships, and bring local knowledge and expertise to your shipments. As new services emerge on India’s US trade lane, Mohawk Global strives to offer the best ocean routings to our client base. Reach out to our India trade specialists for assistance with booking.

By Niket Panchal, Import Supervisor, India US Trade Lane

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