US container imports to the USA are at record levels at the present time. This comes as no surprise and is a direct consequence of the ‘Trump Tariff’, the threat of 25% surcharges on Chinese origin goods entering the United States after 1 January 2019.
The consequence, unsurprisingly, is a surge in rates into the USA as well as container ‘roll overs’, where bookings are postponed to a following weekly service due to overbooking.
We are clearly in a politically motivated environment with two heads of state locking horns, each with their own incompatible agendas that are about playing to a domestic audience as much as a genuine issue over trade imbalances.
Hopefully in the longer term this will settle down with and punitive tariff barriers will be removed, though of course this could go the other way with further surcharges applied both to Chinese and also to EU origin goods being sent to the United States.