The space situation on the vessels from Asia to Europe has continued to become increasingly tight during the past weeks. Vessels are running out of capacity many weeks in advance and free space aboard is accordingly difficult to obtain. In addition the annual Monsoon is about to arrive in India, which seasonally always lead to bottle-necks in the main ports. Important to take into account is that certain regions (West and East coast India, East-Asia, part of Central and North China), most of the carriers are running out of equipment. Please keep imminently in mind that backlogs and delays are likely and consider this, by a way of precaution, into your planning. A close understanding of the situation and a proper planning with our contracts and logistics department is imperative. Lead-time and co-ordination: We furthermore ask you to inform our execution department to book / call of your demand / contracts as early as possible, so that the shipments will be executed as smoothly as possible. Urgent bookings should be given special attention, so please keep the close dialogue with the OPW TEAM so we can react promptly and take any necessary actions. Please take into account that many containers with for example Castor oil, Castor oil derivatives (12 Hydroxy stearic acid / Hydrogenated Castor oil) from India, Sebasic acid from China and Coconut oil from the Philippines and Sri Lanka are at least 4-5 weeks afloat. With the preparations in the origin market and the handling in the European ports, it is advisable to plan ~8 weeks! Freight-rates: Based on the current utilization factors and the positive volume forecasts for the coming weeks the container carriers have announced to implement a GRI (general rate increase), effective 1st of June 2014. The amounts do vary from carrier to carrier; therefore we recommend you to precautionary consider a GRI (General Rate Increase) of USD 250 - 350 per TEU. We will keep you informed as soon as we can recognize a clear trend, and our deals with the carriers are fixed. Please be assured that OPW Ingredients GmbH will be able to offer you market conform prices and that we shall do everything within our powers to support a shipment and supply chain with a maximum of reliability and flexibility from our warehouses in Germany and the Netherlands. In line with our company slogan “Simple things done well … “ we will continue to monitor the markets closely and shall publish up-to date information in our regular FREIGHT BLOG. We trust that we will substantially improve the communication on the global shipping developments.