In the face of increased congestion at Chinese ports following the outbreak of the coronavirus, shipping lines have no alternative but to take action to mitigate their losses.
Shipping giant the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) announced last week that if they could not secure the discharge of reefer containers, they would have no choice but to apply clause 19 of the Bill of Lading and Sea Waybill.
“It means that your reefer container(s) may be discharged at an intermediate or alternative port and held there until it is possible to forward them to the designated port of discharge. In case the situation remains unchanged it may be necessary to abandon the voyage and advise you from where your container(s) may be collected,” according to a statement from the line.
MSC cited a lack of available plugs for reefer containers as the main issue at the ports. – Bjorn Vorster