Success in the most challenging year in freight forwarding

Throughout 2021 our Freight Forwarding operations have battled to adapt, innovate and deliver, in what has proved to be one of the most challenging years in global supply chain history.


A quick summary of some of the freight forwarding challenges of 2021

When you review the challenges of the past 12 months, it’s incredible to see the quantity, overlap and consequences for shippers and importers;

  • Pandemic lockdown here in the UK and elsewhere
  • Unexpected closures across the busiest Asian ports and airports due to COVID spikes and quarantines
  • Supply chain wide UK labour shortages particularly drivers, followed by specific labour related surcharges
  • The Suez Canal blockage
  • Short validity on prices and availability for FAK containers in all directions
    • Delayed shipments and increases in cargo rollover
  • Lost containers and a global container shortage
    • Congestion at most large container ports around the globe
    • Leading to increased delays in releasing containers and associated demurrage and detention charges
  • Vessels frequently skipping the port of loading or unloading or waiting for days to discharge
  • Port congestion, loading and unloading delays leading to vessel scheduling problems
  • The highest sea freight container rates in history, 500% above 2019
  • Continuing air cargo passenger freight capacity shortages and resulting higher costs and longer lead-times
  • Brexit and the biggest changes in UK import and export regulations

The last 18 months have put tremendous pressure on freight forwarders, compounded by the capacity issues across all transport modes, this has been caused by the rapid changes in consumer behaviour and dramatic increase in ecommerce.

Yet our team has remained positive and never failed to deliver a shipment

It has been a challenging time for everyone, whatever your profession. However, when I consider the perfect storm our freight forwarding team have had to deal with - I'm immensely proud of what we've achieved in what have been the most challenging times in the history of freight forwarding.


We look forward to working with you in 2022


Mike Wallis LLB, FCILT Executive Chairman Spatial Global
Main Board Director of parent company The Keswick Enterprises Group

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