1. Home
  2. /
  3. News
  4. /
  5. Henning Harders Newsletter

New Zealand Overview

Rail capacity from Port of Tauranga to Metroport and vice versa has been reduced due to a softening of volume. This has led to a longer and inconsistent average transit time for Port of Tauranga to Metroport, for containers that have not been tagged for priority rail prior to discharge in Tauranga.

If you have urgent container(s) destined for Metroport, please reach out to your contact Key account Manager 2 days prior to the vessel arrival at Tauranga so we can arrange for priority rail northbound.

Kiwi rail have closed the rail link for maintenance over Matariki weekend which has resulted in further delay rail transit times

Airfreight Update

North America

Oceania to North America passenger aircraft capacity is down slightly. Some direct flights have been removed and redeployed for the Trans-Atlantic summer holiday season.


The good news is there have been some additional flights returning to the EU/AU market, which has kept rates stable.


Oceania to Asia has more availability open on many lanes. Rate levels reflect this with pre-pandemic rates, in most cases.

Oceania / Imports

Australia – Carriers are at Capacity and additional space is becoming harder to obtain for larger ad-hoc shipments.

Asia – there has been more Capacity over the EID holiday period, but it’s expected to tighten over the next few weeks

USA – reduced flights are causing some capacity issues, as well some delays in transit times.

Oceania / Exports

Australia and pacific – availability on most carriers.

Asia – Air NZ is full to some destinations but there is availability on other carriers. USA – still experiencing some capacity issues.

UK, EU – Bookings to Europe taking up to 2 weeks to be approved.

Ocean Freight Update


Market conditions from North America remain stable with space and schedule integrity maintaining availability and regularity. We are also seeing more vessels being allowed to transit through the Panama Canal each day, which will return services to this route.

The Europe to Oceania market is tightened due to the disruption in the Red Sea/Suez Canal. Carriers continue to implement contingency surcharges. This also affects transit times with the 14-day transit via the Cape of Good Hope.

European arrival schedules on relay services are experiencing disruption due to delays in Asian trans- delivery ports and subsequent routeing adjustments. Expect to see schedule disruptions continue throughout Q3. Consider forward planning ahead of the European summer high season, which has already begun.

Northeast and Southeast Asia capacity continues to tighten following blank sailings and port omissions. Rates remain unstable with the implementation of GRIs and high season surcharges (PSS) throughout July and continuing into August. The escalation in pricing is reminiscent of 2022 and is expected to continue.

There have been record volumes from China in 2024 with an increase of +17.5% January-April and +23.1% increase for the same period on import volumes from Southeast Asia to Australia based on Ports Australia trade data. There are continuing space issues, so forecasting and early bookings are essential. Schedule reliability is affected with transhipment delays and subsequent routeing adjustments. 

The Trans-Tasman market is affected by ongoing delays along the New Zealand (NZ) coast affecting schedule integrity. Delays at port have reduced and range from 0.5-1 day at DP World, Patricks Terminal and NZ ports. While schedule reliability is affected, space remains open with equipment readily available. 

Export rates are under pressure with strong load factors creating competition—this is expected to continue into July. Capacity is tightening from Australia and New Zealand. Plan to book 2-3 weeks in advance. New Zealand will be entering peak produce season, space to the United States is tightening. 

Trans-Tasman / Imports

  • Currently Maersk has no 20′ stock available for exports from Australia and have forecasted short 20′ supplies through June. Please speak with your Customer Service Representative for options. 
  • Late receivals for Export FCL from Melbourne will now incur a Late Receival Fee, payable when booking in a time slot for delivery into the depot. Please speak to your Key Account managers for applying for late receivals. 
  • WSI has announced they will cease operations effective 30th June. Please note the new depot changes for LCL imports and exports for Sydney as per the documentation received by Henning Harders staff. 

Trans-Tasman / Exports

  • Heavy rain and bad weather in NSW and QLD have impacted cartage.
  • Equipment availability has been an issue for 40′ containers country wide Ex Australia recently, and reefer equipment is also impacted by peak season.
  • We are also seeing availability issues regarding 20ft container Ex New Zealand. 


Container freight rate hikes continue. Carriers are pushing for further rates hikes with 1 July and 15 July general rate increases (GRIs) across the Asia outbound trade lanes, (i.e., Trans-Pacific, Asia-Europe, Asia-LATAM and Asia-Oceania). In addition, Asia-ISC and Asia-Middle East/Africa trade lanes have been affected, following the same trend since the second half of June. 

For Asia-Europe, spot rates continued to surge and the gap between Mediterranean and North Europe rates is narrowing. North Europe rates are rising faster than Mediterranean rates. On the Trans-Pacific lane, the high season surcharge that carriers are implementing would also apply to contract rates that did not include a no-PSS clause. 

Rising port congestion has added pressure to the already over-stretched container market that is reeling from a shortage of container equipment and vessel space. Singapore has become the new congestion hotspot, with berthing delays of up to seven days. The total capacity waiting to berth has been as high as 450,000 TEUs. This has forced some carriers to omit their planned Singapore port calls, which will exacerbate the problem as downstream ports will have to handle additional volumes.


United States – Asia

Carriers are starting to see more demand for services via the U.S. West Coast (USWC) due to the continued challenges with obtaining appointments through the Panama Canal and extended transit times through the Cape of Good Hope. Volumes at USWC ports have increased approximately 20% compared to the same period in 2023. 

Demand has continued to show some strength on the Trans-Pacific eastbound (TPEB) lane, therefore the number of planned blank sailings continues to be relatively low. However, port congestion in Asia and at some U.S. East Coast (USEC) ports is causing schedule unreliability, which can lead to blank sailings. 

Congestion at transhipment ports in Asia remains an important and growing issue. Deliveries can be delayed as much as three weeks at many major transhipment ports, such as Busan, Shanghai and Singapore. This is mainly due to the increase in transhipment services caused by carriers that choose to omit port calls to re-establish schedule integrity and catch Panama Canal transit appointments. 

There have also been severe weather events in the past few weeks, specifically at China ports, which has added to the port congestion. Carriers are reporting it is taking as much as one week to have their vessels worked at some large Asia ports like Singapore and Shanghai. 


Cargo demand is likely to pick up beginning in June, after the general assembly election in India. There is currently a shortage of 20′ dry containers at major inland container depots in India. 

The export market to North America remains stable with minor fluctuations, while the intra-Asia market is seeing continued blank sailings. 

Rates are expected to remain flat or drop further due to excess capacity and low cargo demand. Rates for the Asia to Europe/Mediterranean trade lane show slight increases amid weak demand. In June the market will likely go up due to high season surcharges, especially for Europe/U.S. Lane. 

ONE/HMM/COSCO has launched a brand-new service called WIN (e.g., India to North America) effective this month. This will be an additional ocean service from India to USEC. 

For ISC to Oceania, there are some challenges at transhipment ports. Transit times and vessel schedules will remain volatile until the situation in the Red Sea improves.

Customs Update Oceania

Goods Clearance Fees effective 1 July 2024

  • Customs’ goods fees increased by $1.55 including GST on the 1st July 2024 to reflect inflation.
  • The new Import Entry Transaction Fee will be increased from the current $38.53 to $40.08 including GST 
  • The Biosecurity System Entry Levy remains unchanged at $46.40 excluding GST 
  • Import Entry Transaction Fee $40.08 + Biosecurity System Entry Levy to $53.36 = $93.44 including GST 
  • Import Entry Transaction Fee $34.85 + Biosecurity System Entry Levy to $46.40 = $81.25 excluding GST  

These increases are interim, pending a longer, more comprehensive review of Customs’ goods fees. These interim fee adjustments will reflect the rate of inflation since the fee levels were last agreed in 2019, maintaining the real value of the fees. 

**For more specific information / requirements please ask your Henning Harders NZ Key Account Manager.

We will continue to evaluate all market options and work with you to provide individual solutions for your business. 

Share this page