HomeFutures and CommoditiesIsraeli port backlog increases as shipping supplies rise; challenges persist in meeting...

Israeli port backlog increases as shipping supplies rise; challenges persist in meeting demands.

Israeli Ports Face Backlog of Ships Amid Gaza Conflict

Israeli ports are experiencing a growing backlog of ships as military preparations for a ground assault in the Gaza Strip continue. Despite the ongoing conflict, most terminals are still operational. The Israeli government has vowed to retaliate against Hamas following a violent rampage that resulted in the worst attack on civilians in the country’s history. Heavy rocket barrages have forced the closure of Ashkelon port, the nearest terminal to Gaza. Furthermore, Ashdod port has imposed restrictions on hazardous material transport, leading to slower transits.

Operations Continue Despite Challenges

Ashdod port, in its latest statement, assured that it was operating normally even during wartime. The port emphasized its commitment to supplying the country’s economy around the clock to prevent shortages. However, the current situation has caused delays for ships heading to Ashdod. MarineTraffic data shows that several cargo, dry bulk, and container vessels are waiting to dock at Ashdod and Haifa ports. Increased security checks and labor shortages have contributed to longer waiting times.

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Challenges for Supply Chain and Logistics

Israel’s Economy Ministry noted the shortage of manpower, making it difficult to transport and replenish inventories due to higher consumption. Despite this, the ministry assured the public that there is no shortage of supplies and urged against hoarding food. It also emphasized that price gouging would not be tolerated. The privatization of ports and the opening of new terminals in recent years aimed to increase competition and efficiency but has not fully resolved the issue of long waiting times.

Potential Impact on Global Shipping

The recent attacks have led to a significant increase in marine war insurance rates. Underwriters are reviewing cover provisions for Ashdod, while Haifa remains unaffected. Container xChange, an online logistics platform, has warned that any expansion of hostilities beyond Israel’s borders could pose risks to vital shipping chokepoints in the region. Disruptions in the Suez Canal, a critical waterway for commercial vessels, and the Strait of Hormuz, an essential route for oil and gas shipping, could occur depending on the expansion and duration of the conflict.

Heightened Security Concerns

The Marshall Islands registry, a top shipping flag, has raised the security level for Israel’s ports and territorial waters to the highest level. The registry warned of an increased threat of attacks on vessels with links to Israel or the United States within Israeli territorial waters and other areas in the region.

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In conclusion, Israeli ports are facing challenges due to the ongoing conflict with Hamas. The backlog of ships and increased waiting times have disrupted the supply chain and raised concerns about potential disruptions in global shipping routes.

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