With the summer holiday season in full bloom market participants discussing the situation with BMTI are running out of words to describe the lull presently dominating the northern short sea market. There is no sound balance between supply and demand with plenty of ships around but cargoes available not very abundant. At least spot freight rates are no longer declining as with the increasing bunker prices coaster rates have to adjust also. Some steels and ore cargoes are seen in the market with a pig iron load of 10,000mt from ARAG being concluded at some US$ 12.25/mt for a trip to Marmara. A steels shipment of 6,600mt loading in the Sea of Azov and heading to 4 ports in Northern Spain was talked at around US$ 33.5/mt and an iron ore load of 5,400mt has been discussed at about US$ 29/mt from Turkish Black Sea into ARAG region. Players advise that general cargoes of 3-4,000mt can see spot freight rates in a range of EUR 14.50-15.50/mt when delivery in mid Baltic and destination in ARAG. From ECUK shipments of some 4-5,000mt are talked at around EUR 11.50/mt at the moment. The flat demand is challenging and a change of trend is probably some more days away.
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