Lines within the Grand Alliance are examining the possibility of launching a new bimonthly all-water service between China and the US Gulf/US East coast via Panama.
The new service, which would act as a sweeper alongside the existing East Coast Express and Pacific Atlantic Express, would deploy four ships of around 3,000 teu capacity. However according to a source from the alliance, only OOCL and NYK would provide the capacity, and Hapag-Lloyd would operate under a slot charter agreement with those two lines.
The introduction of this new service is in response to increased demand for capacity on the all-water route, particularly serving the China export market to retail outlets on the US east coast.
Last month, OOCL's largest container vessel left Shanghai on her maiden voyage under OOCL's China/Europe express loop. The 8,063 teu OOCL Shenzhenis the first of eight new vessels being built for OOCL by Samsung Heavy Industries.