The economist, Marc Levinson, noted by Mr. Cowford has a guest column that appeared yesterday in The Times
The Ever Given fiasco will work out well for the container-shipping industry, by driving freight rates even higher as delays and detours reduce the number of voyages the vessels can complete between Asia and Europe.
But the good news for ship lines may be fleeting: After the pandemic-driven boom in Chinese exports subsides, trade in the sorts of goods that fill container ships is likely to be anemic in the years ahead. Many of the companies that traffic in those goods increasingly recognize that they’ve done their sums wrong: The long-distance supply chains that have defined globalization since the 1980s hide risks, of which the transport delays caused by the blockage of the Suez Canal are just the latest example.
While Mr. Levinson does set forth some well considered caveats, I continue to hold that any, and I think that is many, whose interest in the railroad industry goes beyond passenger trains and railfanning, recognize how the maritime shipping industry and railroads are "linked hand and glove". This will become even more prevalent as railroads lose "captive" traffic such as coal and the world's economy continues to globalize.
Just think; the m/v Ever Given was handling close to 20K TEU's, or 10K of what normally is thought of as a Container. Just think that is fifty trains of 100 cars each with two containers per car - and that is simply one of these ULCV's, with cargo which need be handled to inland destinations.