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The Lloyd’s List Podcast: What US-China decoupling means for shipping

Listen to the latest edition of the Lloyd’s List podcast — your free weekly briefing on the stories shaping shipping

ONE chief executive Jeremy Nixon says carriers need to stay ‘lean and agile’ to deal with long-term geopolitical shifts, including widening divisions between the US and China that are changing container shipping trade flows



There is no shortage of risk factors creating uncertainty for shipping right now, but the widening divisions between the US and China and its impact of container trade flows was a hot topic this week around Singapore Maritime Week.

Ocean Network Express chief executive Jeremy Nixon was the first to call it out when he told the opening conference that many companies in the US are looking to reduce down the amount of imports they have got coming from China.

That trend is feeding into a longer-term pattern of shifting supply chains.

The evolution of international supply networks towards farshoring has stagnated since 2015.

International supply networks’ have generally become more decentralised during the past few years. But while some limited evidence of nearshoring and friend-shoring exists, it’s not a shift that is going to become clear overnight.

A meaningful alteration to current global trade patterns would require locating new reliable suppliers and creating the necessary trade infrastructure supporting such reorganisation.

Geopolitical tensions and the desire for secure supply chains are changing how the world trades, but this is going to be a slow burn issue over the next decade.

Jeremy joins the podcast this week to expand on his thoughts about evolving trade lanes, but he also discussed the more immediate concerns ahead for the box sector starting with the immediate rates outlook and the question of looming overcapacity on the horizon, as owners struggle with their ship addictions and the sizeable wad of cash burning a hole in their pockets.

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