June 15. China again threatens all world trade

The partial closure of the Yantian terminal at the Chinese port of Shenzhen is putting the entire global container trade at risk. Experts note that the consequences of such a failure could be much more serious than the blocking of the Suez Canal by the ship Ever Given in March this year.

Recall that the blockage of the Suez Canal affected 55 thousand TEU (a unit of measurement for the capacity of freight vehicles) per day and lasted six days. Problems in Yantian can affect 25.5 thousand TEU per day, and they have been going on for more than two weeks.

The reason for the closure of the terminal was the outbreak of coronavirus in the Chinese province of Guangdong, where the port is located. In addition to Yantian, problems arose in the nearest terminals Shekou (Shenzhen city) and Nansha (Guangzhou). It is worth noting that these are the third and fifth largest ports in the world.

A large amount of cargo has already accumulated outside the port, some of which is being redirected to the ports of Nanshu, Shekou and Hong Kong, but their capacity is no longer enough. Complicating the situation is the fact that customs requirements differ in Chinese ports, which also limits the possibility of redirecting cargo flows.