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Long term partnerships relieve supply chain disruption

Maersk vessels pick up record export load, with highest-ever reefer lift.

  • Maersk vessels pick up record export load, with highest-ever reefer lift.
  • Two additional vessels relieve South Island demand.

A record volume of export containers departed Port of Tauranga last night, with further vessel capacity created in Tauranga and the South Island over the coming weeks as the partnership with Kotahi, Maersk and Port of Tauranga unlocks New Zealand’s congested export supply chain.

A New Zealand record volume lift of 5,326 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent) containers with a record 1,914 refrigerated containers, has loaded at the Port of Tauranga onto the Maersk Shams, with over 80 per cent of volume being Kotahi’s customers. A second vessel due in mid-June, Sally Maersk, will likely lift a similar volume of export containers.

David Ross, Chief Executive at Kotahi, said: “Exporters are seeing constant schedule slippage, loss of capacity and shortages of containers from lengthening cycle times as the global supply chain disruption continues. Our strong partnership with Maersk and Port of Tauranga continues to enable us to access additional capacity enabling trade between New Zealand and global markets, taking the pressure off the supply chain later in the season, across both the North and South Islands.”

“Exporters have been losing capacity and this network change is the start of a number of steps that will benefit New Zealand. Kotahi’s long-term partnerships has enabled additional capacity to be brought into New Zealand at a time when the rest of the market, if not the world, is seeing the opposite. It is a tremendous endorsement of our partnerships that we are able to find innovative ways to manage strong export volume,” he said.

Henrik Jensen, Managing Director at Maersk Oceania, added: “The all-time record loading of refrigerated cargo on the Maersk Shams is a great testament to Maersk’s ability to overcome significant supply chain disruption and to support our New Zealand customers no matter the challenge.”

“Maersk continues to make investments to support New Zealand exporters and importers. Over the past eight months we have deployed additional assets, both by introducing additional container shipping services to the country and significantly increasing empty container positioning around the New Zealand coast, despite the global shortage of empty containers and restricted vessel availability.”

The Maersk Shams and the Sally Maersk, which will call on 11 June, are vessels on the Triple Star service which calls at Port of Tauranga. These will be in the largest ever export loads from a single New Zealand port taking New Zealand product into international markets, in the most difficult supply chain conditions in 25 years.

The South Island’s capacity challenges will see two additional Maersk vessels call South Island ports during June, to lift Kotahi export dairy cargo. These vessels will clear cargo volume and are phased to reduce port congestion at key times.  

In addition, a seventh vessel has been added to Maersk’s Southern Star Service, as previously announced by Maersk, providing a boost in reliability and stability for the export supply chain network and capacity, as the Southern Star gains capability to deal with port related schedule delays.