May 29 - Speaking at this week's Breakbulk Europe conference in Antwerp, Arie Peterse, managing director of BigLift Shipping suggested that shipping lines that focus on heavy lift and over-dimensional cargoes, blessed with many years of capacity shortages


Predicting that in considering supply and demand, freight rates will trend lower in the next two years, Mr Peterse advised that that whilst his own company still has a backlog of contracts of affreightment from the past two years, it only provides employment for a small portion of the fleet until 2011. Which does suggest that BigLift, along with the other lines will have to rely more on the weakening spot market to contract cargo.
One specialist multinational project forwarder who wished to remain anonymous said that whilst the coming years are expected to be more difficult for all involved the project and heavy lift business, he anticipated that as freight rates for over-dimensional and heavy lift are likely to continue falling as investments in projects stall, this might sway things in favour of companies such as his.
Mr Peterse concluded: "It will be survival of the fittest again." Which reminded us of the headline on the front cover of our Jan/Feb 09 edition.