Maritime containers how many types exist

Maritime containers: how many types exist

Freight traffic has evolved a lot since its inception. In the middle of the 20th century, a new standard began to be used, maritime containers.

Thanks to these standard containers, the loading, and unloading of ships in ports were simplified. Ships, cranes, trains, and trucks were standardized. In this way, Intermodal transport was created, which is the articulation between different modes of transport using a single measure of cargo, containers, which simplifies loading, unloading, and transshipment.

There are different types of shipping containers, all with standard dimensions and each designed to suit a specific need.

Types of maritime containers

Dry van containers

The Dry Van maritime containers are the most used containers; they are hermetic containers without ventilation. They are stackable up to 8 levels and are made of corten steel, which makes them very robust.

These containers have doors only on one side and standard dimensions with a width of 2.40m and a height of 2.60m. There are two typical models depending on the length, 20 feet and 40 feet which are equivalent to 6 and 12 meters respectively. There are also other less used models such as 30 feet or 10 feet.

High cube container

The High Cube maritime containers are very similar to the Dry Van except for their height since the High cube containers are 9’6 » (2,896 meters) high and the 40 ‘Dry Van containers are 8’6’ ‘( 2,591 meters). This extra height is ideal for bulky and oversized loads.

Open top maritime containers

The Open Top containers are also very similar to the Dry Van, with averages of 20 and 40 feet, with the difference that the Open Top has no roof. As they do not have a roof, they can be loaded above, making it easier to load heavy or bulky goods that can be difficult to get through the door. To cover the merchandise, a canvas awning is usually put on them.

Open side container

The Open Side maritime containers are another type of container very similar to the Dry Van, although the latter has large 4-leaf doors that allow easy access to the goods for loading and unloading. There are 20 and 40 feet.

They are very useful for loading long goods that cannot be loaded through normal doors or to be able to reach the goods at the back without having to remove all those in front.

Flat rack container

The Flat Rack container is a container without a roof and without sidewalls. It is used to transport heavy or oversized goods. The merchandise is lashed by chains or tapes to the flat rack.

Tank maritime containers

Tank containers are for transporting liquids in bulk. It is a tank contained within a structure of steel beams that make it the same dimensions as a standard container. In this way, the tank can be manipulated and loaded in transports as one more container.

Refrigerated / reefer container

The refrigerated container is a type of container intended for the transport of goods with temperature control, either cold or hot. They can maintain the temperature of the merchandise from -30ºC to + 40ºC, there are even some special models that can reach -60ºC.

We can find refrigerated containers of 20 and 40 feet, even some of 10 feet, although the latter are not usually used for freight traffic. Like the other containers, they can have the normal height or be a high cube.

Cross-docking what is it, types and advantages

Cross-docking: what is it, types and advantages

Cross-docking is a logistics technique where storage time is non-existent or very limited.

As we know, cross-docking allows us to reduce time and costs, how is it possible? All you have to do is transfer shipments from the means of transport in which they arrive at the means of transport in which they leave without intermediate storage.

This distribution technique seeks greater efficiency in the entire supply chain, involving customers and suppliers.

For this reason and to carry out cross-docking, it is important to synchronize the storage and distribution of the merchandise through the following activities:

  1. Pre-distribution. Suppliers prepare the goods to be distributed.
  2. Receipt of the merchandise.
  3. Information capture. Necessary for good control over the merchandise.
  4. Re-packing, cargo consolidation, and merchandise delivery.

Types of Cross Docking

Within this process, there are two variants, pre-distributed cross-docking and consolidated.

Predistributed cross-docking

In predistributed cross-docking, the units to be marketed are already organized by the provider according to their delivery points, therefore they are received and moved to the exit points, (the place where they are with units similar to different suppliers) ready to be shipped.

This model is the most basic to apply since the units do not require any additional handling.


In consolidated cross-docking, the logistics units are received and immediately sent to a conditioning area within the CEDI (Distribution Center), in which they will be organized into new logistics marketing units to be sent to their respective points of sale. destination.

This strategy is frequently used to put together offers for products that will be sent to chain stores or department stores.

Finally, it is important to note that both types of cross-docking provide great benefits: increasing the speed of product flow, reducing handling costs, promoting productivity, and reducing space requirements.

Advantages of cross-docking

Cross-docking has many advantages, among which are:

  • It’s one of the strategies that can be framed within the Efficient Consumer Response philosophy.
  • It manages to improve efficiency and productivity within the supply chain.
  • It is an especially fast and profitable distribution model.
  • allows having an interesting cost reduction in storage, distribution, inventory, and personnel.
  • By reducing stocks, facilitates the task of handling and relocating merchandise, achieving fewer errors.
  • Get a greater freshness of the merchandise and increase its availability.
  • Facilitates meeting deadlines, which is a great advantage for the client.
Non-oil exports rise 1.7% in Singapore

Non-oil exports rise 1.7% in Singapore

Non-oil exports (NOX), which include both non-oil domestic exports (NODX) and non-oil re-exports (NORX), rose year-on-year by 1.7 percent in 2020, after 2019’s 1.9 percent decline.

On a quarter-on-quarter SA basis, NOX grew by 0.5 percent in Q4, following the 5.1 percent rise in the preceding quarter.

Following a drop of 9.2 percent in 2019, a growth of 4.3 percent in NODX last year was due to high shipments of both electronic and non-electronic products, Enterprise Singapore said.

Electronic NODX grew by 4.9 percent in 2020, after the 22.5 percent contraction in the previous year. Non-electronic NODX increased by 4.1 percent in 2020, after the 4.5 percent decline in 2019.

On a year-on-year basis, NODX decreased by 0.5 percent in Q4, after the previous quarter’s 6.5 percent rise, due to the decline in non-electronic NODX, which outweighed the increase in electronics.

Electronic domestic exports rose by 2.6 percent in Q4, following the previous quarter’s 9.2 percent growth. Non-electronic NODX declined by 1.4 percent in Q4, after the 5.7 percent rise in the previous quarter.

On a quarter-on-quarter SA basis, NODX decreased by 4.7 percent in Q4, after the 2.2 percent growth in Q3, due to the decline in both electronic and non-electronic NODX.

Electronic domestic exports declined on a quarter-on-quarter SA basis by 3.7 percent in Q4 2020, following the previous quarter’s 2.6 percent decrease. Non-electronic NODX declined by 4.9 percent in Q4 2020, after the 3.7 percent rise in the previous quarter.

Enterprise Singapore reported that NODX to all top markets grew as a whole in 2020 – however, exports to China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Malaysia declined.

The biggest contributors to the growth in NODX were the US (+38.3 percent), Japan (+26.1 percent), and South Korea (+27.2 percent).

Electronic non-oil domestic exports to the top markets also grew in 2020.

The biggest contributors to the electronic NODX increase were Taiwan (+27.9 percent), the US (+31.9 percent), and Thailand (+17.9 percent). The top three products contributing to the increase in electronic NODX were ICs to Taiwan and disk media products to the US and Thailand.

Non-electronic NODX to the top markets as a whole also increased in 2020, though exports to China, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and Malaysia declined.

The biggest contributors to the growth in non-electronic NODX were the US (+39.6 percent), Japan (+33.7 percent), and the EU 27 (+10.9 percent). The top three products contributing to the rise in non-electronic NODX were non-monetary gold to the US and EU and pharmaceuticals to Japan.

Source: Channel News Asia

The trade balance what it is and how it is calculated

The trade balance: what it is and how it is calculated

The trade balance is the record of imports and exports of a country in a given period. It is also called the balance of goods.

Through the trade balance, income from the sale of national goods abroad and expenses from the purchase of foreign goods are recorded and compared. In other words, the trade balance allows recording the value of a country’s exports and imports.

The trade balance serves to understand market supply and demand, as well as to identify possible signs of economic expansion or contraction.

Its importance lies in the fact that it helps to understand the economic potential of a country in relation to others, useful information to determine with which countries to establish trade relations or in which areas to invest.

The balance of the trade balance can be positive or negative, in which case we speak of a trade surplus or a trade deficit respectively. When the balance tends to zero, it is said that there is balanced trade.

How to calculate the balance of the trade balance?

It is calculated with a simple subtraction operation between the total income from exports and expenses from imports.

The formula is as follows:

Exports – Imports = balance of trade balance

For example: in 2019, the country registered revenues of 911,894.2 million dollars from exports. It also recorded expenses for imports of 917,456.1 million dollars. So if we apply the formula we get the following result:

911.894,2 M.$ – 917.456,1 M.$ = -5.561,9 M.$

Therefore, the country’s trade balance in 2019 was -5,561.8 M. €. It is, therefore, a negative balance of the trade balance or deficit.

Variables that affect the balance

Although it allows us to get a fairly approximate idea of the economic direction of a country, by itself it is not a sufficient indicator to interpret the behavior of the general economy.

This is because, on the one hand, it only reflects one aspect of the economy and, on the other hand, this aspect is affected by various variables.

Among some of the variables that affect it we can mention:

  • The consumption preferences of the population with respect to national and foreign products.
  • The sale price to the consumer of imported products.
  • The average income of consumers from imports or exports.
  • Government policies regarding foreign trade.

Balance of payments

The balance of payments consists of the total record of commercial operations, services, and movement of capital between a country and the countries with which it has commercial relations.

The trade balance is one of the components of the balance of payments, and it is the most important since it is an indicator of the country’s commercial functioning.

Other components of the balance of payments are the income balance, the transfer balance, and the services balance.

Bill of Lading functions and items

Bill of Lading: functions and items

The bill of lading is a standardized international transport contract that contains the general declaration of the transported goods.

This document is an instrument used to verify the receipt and delivery of the merchandise transferred by a carrier. There, the relevant aspects of the load are specified so that there is proof of the transported material.

In this way, at the time of delivery, only the consignee of the bill of lading can claim ownership of the cargo. In this sense, it constitutes a binding document for the contracting parties.

Bill of lading functions

Some functions of the bill of lading, which make it so important in the transportation of merchandise, are the following

  • Receipt of merchandise: to receive the merchandise, the consignee must present this document. In this way, the carrier transfers responsibility for the cargo to its owner. Also, he has a signed legal document that declares that he has delivered the agreed order in full.
  • Ownership of the merchandise: the bill of lading serves as evidence for the consignee to show ownership of the cargo at its destination. It also allows the carrier to release the cargo to its legal owner according to the contract.
  • Endorsement of the carrier’s rate: this document also serves to establish the price of the carrier’s service in a legal document. That is the price of the freight. It also establishes the calculation method, for example, if the cost is by weight, volume, or transport units.

Items included

  • The information contained in a bill of lading must be duly detailed. In this sense, the objective is to avoid, as far as possible, a delay in the clearance of the cargo due to a customs inspection.
  • Therefore, the standard information found on the bill of lading is as follows:
  • Name, address, telephone, and email of the exporter, final recipient or consignee, and the notifier of the status of the shipment.
  • Mode of transport through which the goods will be transported to the port of loading.
  • The place where the shipping company takes possession of the cargo.
  • The name of the ship and the identification number of the voyage in which the cargo to be delivered to the consignee at the destination is transported.
  • Port in which the merchandise will be loaded at the origin.
  • Port of destination where the merchandise will arrive.
  • Unique reference number of the Bill of Lading.
  • Complete details of the freight forwarder and license number.
  • Point and country of origin of the merchandise.
  • Full details of the agent at the destination that will manage the release of the cargo. The terminal where the merchandise will be loaded onto the ship.
  • Shipping method.
  • Visible marks and indications on the external part of the load made in order to identify the goods.
  • Description of each package, including details of the type of merchandise, type of packaging, the quantity for each package, and the number of units in its smallest measure. Cargo handling instructions, if any, are also included in this field.
  • Complete list of surcharges and surcharges such as ocean freight.
  • Signature and stamp of the shipping company.
China to increase imports of Indonesian products

China to increase imports of Indonesian products

China would import more Indonesian products and increase investment in Southeast Asia’s largest economy, a top Chinese diplomat said, as Jakarta urged Beijing to remove barriers to make trade between the two countries more balanced.

«We look forward to expanding imports from Indonesia and the Chinese investments in Indonesia so that we could bring about a healthier and balanced growth of trade between our two countries,» visiting State Councilor Wang Yi said in a joint statement with the Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi.

China and Indonesia relations

China is Indonesia’s biggest trade partner and an important source of investment, but the large trade deficit with China has often been a source of concern in Indonesia.

The deficit shrunk considerably between January to November 2020, falling to US$7 billion from US$15.4 billion in the same period in 2019, as Indonesia’s demand for imported products plunged amid a coronavirus epidemic and its first recession in 22 years.

Indonesian minister Retno urged China to remove trade barriers for the country’s top products, such as palm oil, fisheries, fruits, and bird’s nest, as a way to address the trade imbalance.

«Efforts should be made to pursue an improving and more balanced trade,» she said.

Ms. Retno said Indonesia also agreed to a Chinese study over the Lambakan dam project in East Kalimantan. The dam is one of Indonesia’s main projects to control floods and is worth around US$400 million, according to local media reports.

Mr. Wang did not mention the dam but said China and Indonesia should have synergy with their respective infrastructure programs – the Belt and Road Initiative and the Global Maritime Fulcrum program.

Mr. Wang also said he supported Indonesia’s plan to become a regional hub for the production of vaccines.

Indonesia on Wednesday began a campaign of mass Covid-19 immunization with a vaccine supplied by China’s Sinovac.

Source: The Business Times

World trade forecast by the WTO part 2

World trade forecast by the WTO: part 2

As already indicated in the forecast update published on June 22, there is a clear possibility that the reactivation of world trade will not be enough for it to regain its pre-pandemic trend.

This would lead to merchandise world trade growth of around 5% next year, instead of the 20% expected in the case of a rapid return to the previous trajectory. The current trade forecast of 7.2% for 2021 seems to be closer to the hypothesis of a «weak recovery» than to that of a «rapid return to trend».

Crisis difference

Although the decline in world trade during the pandemic is similar in magnitude to that recorded in the 2008-2009 global financial crisis, the economic context is very different. The contraction in GDP has been much greater in the current recession, while the decline in trade has been more moderate. Consequently, the volume of world merchandise trade is projected to shrink only about twice as much as world GDP at market exchange rates, rather than six times as it did during the 2009 crash.

These divergent world trade outcomes during the pandemic are largely due to the nature of the pandemic and the policies applied to combat it. Containment measures and travel restrictions have imposed significant supply constraints on national economies, leading to significant reductions in production and employment in sectors that tend to resist business cycle fluctuations, particularly those of services not traded internationally. At the same time, the application of sound monetary and fiscal policies has stimulated revenues, which has made possible a rebound in consumption and imports once containment measures have been relaxed.

Whether the recovery can be sustained in the medium term or not will depend on the strength of investment and employment. This could be undermined if confidence breaks down due to the emergence of new outbreaks of COVID-19, which could force governments to impose new containment measures. Therefore, the risk that the results will be less favorable than expected is very considerable. There is some chance that projections will improve slightly if a vaccine or other effective medical treatments are found, but their impact would be less immediate.

What could influence the recovery of world trade?

A large increase in public debt could also influence longer-term growth in world trade and GDP. While rich countries are not likely to face a sovereign debt crisis as a result of fiscal expansion, rising debt burdens can be extremely burdensome for poorer countries. Deficit spending could also influence trade balances, reducing national savings, and increasing trade deficits in some countries.

Read part 1 here: World trade forecast by the WTO: part 1

Source: WTO

World trade forecast by the WTO part 1

World trade forecast by the WTO: part 1

The WTO (World Trade Organization) forecasts a decrease in the volume of world trade of 9.2% by 2020, followed by an increase of 7.2% in 2021. These estimates are subject to an unusually high degree of uncertainty, as they depend on developments of the pandemic and the responses of governments.

According to current data, the expected decline for the current year is less marked than that announced by the more optimistic of the two hypotheses set out in the WTO’s April trade forecasts, which was 12.9%. Strong trade results in June and July instill some optimism about global trade growth in 2020.

What changed the world trade forecast made in April?

The growth in world trade in COVID-19-related products was especially strong in those months, illustrating that trade can help governments obtain needed supplies. In contrast, the forecast for next year is more pessimistic than the previous estimate of growth of 21.3% and places merchandise trade in 2021 well below the trend it showed before the pandemic.

World trade results so far this year have exceeded expectations due to the sudden increase recorded in June and July when containment measures were relaxed and economic activity accelerated. The pace of expansion could slow down sharply once pent-up demand is exhausted and companies’ inventories have been replenished. Results may be more negative if there is a COVID 19 outbreak in the fourth quarter.

Unlike world trade, GDP fell more than expected in the first half of 2020, which caused the forecasts for the year to be lowered. According to consensus estimates, the decline in GDP weighted according to the world market in 2020 is now -4.8%, compared to the -2.5% expected in the most optimistic hypothesis set out in the April WTO forecasts. GDP growth is projected to rebound to 4.9% in 2021, but that largely depends on policy measures and the severity of the disease.

Source: WTO

steps to export successfully and not fail in the process

Steps to export successfully and not fail in the process

Exporting today becomes a requirement to survive as a company. Undoubtedly, the internationalization of the company, if the correct steps are followed, will generate risk diversification, greater brand recognition, income in foreign currency, improvements in negotiation capacity, strengthening of competitiveness, and greater profitability, among other benefits of this activity.

However, many companies have failed in the internationalization process mainly due to a poorly defined strategy, so below we will detail three simple steps that the exporter must take into account before crossing borders.

3 steps to follow before exporting


The first of the steps is to know, since it is the first scenario that we must analyze on a large scale, starting with an internal study of our company, observing production capacity, sales volume, product potential, human and financial resources and in turn, and not least, motivation, where the people who are part of the organization must be aware of the change sought so that there are collaboration and synergy.

Once the internal analysis of our company has been carried out, we must make known the potential market, that is, we will identify the destination country of our product based on cultural, geographical, demographic, macroeconomic indicators, existing trade agreements, political factors, existing competition from the same or similar product at destination, regulations and technical barriers among other important aspects to developing our approach strategy.

Once the global analysis of the company is finished, we will be in a position to build the SWOT matrix (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats), essential to determine the competitive advantage we have against the target market and when I refer to this type of advantage, we will not We are talking only about the price, but also, we can be competitive at the level of product quality, supply chain or financing methodology.


Another of the steps in our process will be planning. The export business plan seeks to systematically penetrate a product or service in the target market. To carry out this process, it is necessary to carry out an action plan where we will establish, how and by what means we will supply the new market, as well as we must anticipate future modifications of the product if necessary, in order to follow the requirements and restrictions of the target market. On the other hand, we will create a detailed budget, necessary to financially plan the operation where we will include general costs, transportation, insurance, taxes, intervening agents, margins, etc.

3. ACT

The last of the steps in this process is to act, whereby by means of an execution schedule we will implement the approach plan.

Several companies usually designate a person specifically in charge of this activity, who will designate collaborators along with their respective tasks, determining deadlines and periodic reviews to demonstrate the progress obtained.

Following these three steps aims to reduce the risk of the operation, companies do not always manage to land successfully within the target market, but through a properly carried out market study, we will have the necessary tools to make an appropriate decision.

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Automatic permits what are and what is its importance

Automatic permits: what are and what is its importance

As part of the trade facilitation scheme, automatic permits allow the customs authority to carry out better statistical control of import and export operations.

The nature of this regulation is set out in article 21 of the Regulations of the Foreign Trade Law.

In this article, we tell you what they are and what is the importance of automatic permits for your imports and exports.

What are automatic permits?

Automatic permits for statistical monitoring purposes are a mandatory measure for companies or individuals who request entry to the registry of importers and exporters of specific sectors.

The objective is to use this information as an instrument to prevent and combat recurrent harmful practices such as the incorrect tariff classification of goods, undervaluation, and triangulation of origin, which can affect the operation of strategic industries for national economic activity. , such as the footwear and textile industry and the steel industry.

Although not strictly about non-tariff regulations or restrictions, failure to apply for permits can lead to delays in your shipments through customs.

What are they for?

In essence, automatic permits provide the possibility of having advanced information, at the tariff fraction level, to facilitate the identification of goods.

And they can only be applied when the unit price of the goods is lower than their estimated price; in this way, the payment of contributions on merchandise subject to estimated prices can be guaranteed.

What is its importance?

Knowing how to identify the goods that require this document is very important for any operation since the authority can often maintain that automatic permits are part of the provisions of Articles 16 and 17 of the Customs Law.

Which would be a mistake, since the automatic permits do not fall under any condition of the provisions of article 16 of the Customs Law, and only function as a registry, in accordance with the provisions of article 21 of the regulations of the Customs Law.

Consulting in foreign trade is vital in this process because your customs agent must have the power to prevent this type of situation, since they are the difference between avoiding important penalties, optimizing resources and times, as well as carrying out safer and more efficient operations.

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