The Drewry Multipurpose Time Charter Index increased to USD6,530 per day in January, representing a rise of 3.8 percent compared to the previous month.

The maritime consultancy expects the index to rise a further 2.2 percent in February to reach USD6,675 per day.

Capacity problems in the container market are fuelling the rising rates, with multipurpose vessels being chartered to carry empty containers for repositioning purposes while also catering to an increase in breakbulk demand.

Going forward, Drewry expects this to continue, especially as there is already a market expectation that the usual slowdown for Chinese New Year holidays will not be taking place this year.