Shipping staying afloat as trade plunges

Published: September 25, 2020

The total economic cost of the coronavirus pandemic will take years to be fully realised, but one multi-industry spanning sector that acutely felt the effects is global trade. With trade volumes expected to see a double-digit percentage decline by the end of the year, numerous industries have taken a big revenue hit and will need ample access to finance to survive.

Global trade is expected to plunge by 12% this year because of the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, according to Moody’s. 

Other institutions such as the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund and European banks put the fall above 10%.

The knock on effect this will have in multiple sectors is profound, but perhaps the biggest impact will be in the industry that acts as the main courier for cross border trade – shipping.

“The shipping industry is very volatile, which can be good and bad,” Maria Maslovsky, shipping analyst at Moody’s, told EMEA Finance. “Freight and charter rates can deteriorate rapidly and have the potential to recover equally as quickly.”

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