China’s critical export infrastructure was dealt another blow, with three ports including the world’s busiest shutting temporarily due to a typhoon.
The closures, even if they’re likely to be lifted soon as the storm weakens, is yet another stumbling block for global trade, which is facing record demand, soaring shipping costs, and repeated pandemic-related lockdowns and problems. There were also potential delays to air freight after the two airports in Shanghai were shut.
Such shutdowns tend to ripple across supply chains, causing goods to back up in storage and ships to divert or slow down. The net effect: slower exports to the U.S., Europe and elsewhere.
Part of Ningbo port was idled for weeks last month after a Covid outbreak. That also affected Shanghai Pudong airport, delaying shipments of higher-value goods such as electronic car parts.
Flights to Shanghai’s two airports were scheduled to resume by Tuesday afternoon local time, and a spokesman for Zhoushan port in Ningbo said operations might resume by Thursday, depending on the typhoon’s speed. The Meishan terminal in Ningbo port and Shanghai port said some operations would resume later Tuesday. Xiamen ports hadn’t made any new announcements saying they had reopened.
Read More: China Locks Down City of 4.5 Million Amid Delta Surge
Typhoon Chanthu will bring rain to eastern areas including Shanghai through Wednesday as it hovers off the mouth of the Yangtze River, before moving northeast and weakening, the official Xinhua News Agency reported, citing the National Meteorological Center.
After it leaves China, the storm is headed for another big Asian exporter — South Korea.
—James Mayger in Beijing
An index of air cargo rates from Hong Kong to North America hits a record
Source: TAC Air Cargo Price Index
A benchmark gauge of air freight costs on transpacific routes jumped to a new record this week. The TAC Air Cargo Price Index’s measure of rates from Hong Kong to North America rose to 9.7, topping the previous record set in May. The figure averaged 3.52 in the five years leading up to the pandemic. The latest increase lines up with record-high rates for ocean shipping as capacity remains constrained during a busy time of year for global trade.
Don’t keep it to yourself. Colleagues and friends can sign up here. We also publish the New Economy Daily, a briefing on the latest in global economics.
For even more: Follow @economics on Twitter and subscribe to Bloomberg.com for unlimited access to trusted, data-driven journalism and gain expert analysis from exclusive subscriber-only newsletters.
How are we doing? We want to hear what you think about this newsletter. Let our trade tsar know.