Africa develops as a container bright spot

  • October 23, 2023
  • News

According to a report, containerised imports into Africa have grown by 10.1% in the first seven months of the year when compared to the same period in 2019 and by 6.7% compared to the historically high 2022. The main reason for this high has been the trade from Asia to the African west coast which is around 20.9%. The volumes from the Middle East and South America have also added to the increase.

Asia-Africa market has been the strongest growing ex-Asia market in 2023 according to the data research by Container Trade Statistics, having seen August 2023 year-to-date, year-on-year volume growth of 19.6%, far better than the global contraction of -3.3%, even though, the Asia-Africa trade only accounts for 3.2% of the global deep-sea volumes in 2023 year-to-date, compared to the 17.9% market share of Asia-North America or 14.7% of Asia-Europe.

As most parts of Africa are undergoing rapid urbanization, the demand for construction materials, electronics, furniture and other containerised materials has been continuing to rise. Of all the trade lanes analysed by the UK consultancy Maritime Strategies International (MSI), the Asia to Africa trade route has experienced the highest growth this year up to seven months. There has also been a discussion that this same trade route had an impressive 7% growth in 2019 before the pandemic and now it has started catching up again. Most analysts believe that the Asia-Africa route is quite challenging to operate as it’s continually been suffering from high vessel delays poor schedule reliability & regular disruptions and exception handling.