Logistic News

Indian Subcontinent Container Logistics Update: Keeping the supply chain moving amidst the Sri Lanka crisis

Due to the economic crisis in Sri Lanka and the strict lockdown in China, the build-up of containers in Colombo has created port congestions and delays in the last few months. In our latest market update, we share with you how to remain abreast of the situation to prioritise your business operations.

Anna-Sophia Metzel, Isheeta Sengupta, 03 August 2022

At Twill, we continuously work with you to address the uncertainties and keep your supply chain moving globally.

Shortage of food and fuel cripples Sri Lanka market

Sri Lanka has struggled to import essential items with a large-scale fuel stockout in the worst-ever forex currency shortage. Container transport service providers have drastically reduced their operations, disrupting inland transportation and inter-terminal transfers. Recently, the Sri Lankan Government announced that it would launch a rapid renewable energy generation plan to overcome the country's ongoing energy crisis. The country welcomed investments, technology transfers, and financing for the country's sustainability efforts, as well as broader development assistance and cooperation for debt restructuring to support economic recovery during this critical time.

How are we addressing this to bring back normalcy?

We, at Twill, continue to deliver uninterrupted, continued services so that you, our customers, face little or no disruptions. The good news is in the last few days, the port operations in Colombo are gradually bouncing back to normalcy. Berthing and navigational activities are going as usual. Terminal yard density has also improved over the last few days.

The double impact of China’s rising Covid-19 cases and rupee depreciation

With the strict border guidelines and increased testing, the situation in China is stressing the export and import operations. Amidst this, as the rupee depreciates against the US Dollar, it’s unlikely to boost India’s exports due to the current global supply chain constraints. Experts believe this will likely add to India’s import bills instead of making exports more competitive as expected traditionally. This largely contributes to the acute headwinds faced by global supply chains owing to the problems in China and the shortage of containers.

India’s imports, on the other hand, are expected to grow rapidly, including increased demand for imported coal as thermal power plants are facing low coal inventory.

What are we doing to avoid all these supply chain disruptions?

  • Flexibility – Twill offers you as a customer an opportunity to buy detention free time at the destination based on the time needed for your cargo clearance. This has proved useful for consignees at ports prone to congestion and reduces the risks of additional costs. Moreover, you have the flexibility to opt either for a daily rate or a monthly fixed rate.

  • Easing Customs Clearance – Twill has a dedicated team to handle Customs Clearance for tea customers in Sri Lanka and Retail customers in Bangladesh. This gives clearance priority by ensuring relevant approvals.

  • Transparent vessel schedules - We provide a transparent update on our routes and vessel schedules. In Sri Lanka, there is a shortage of trucks due to the fuel outage in the country. We offered an extended cut-off for customers who are facing these challenges. On an exceptional basis at Colombo, we give early gate-in to customers. They can plan and gate the containers before vessel arrival to avoid delays or disruption.

  • Planning ahead - Our 6 weeks vessel schedules help you, our customers, to plan your cargo well in advance, and they can opt for pre-fixed rates. This helps you account for last-minute changes and reschedule the shipment to the vessel without extra costs within a calendar month. You can plan your productions with a flexible supply chain, which will translate into a healthy cash flow.

At Twill, we are here for you and will keep you updated. If you want to read logistics news and trends, head to our knowledge hub now.

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