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Port of Hong Kong faces severe connectivity loss

Recent service networks released by the container shipping alliances reveal a noticeable trend: Major shipping companies are rapidly scaling back their presence in Hong Kong along East-West shipping routes.

Gemini’s latest network overview reveals no scheduled direct deep-sea calls to Hong Kong. Likewise, the Ocean Alliance’s 2024 network update shows a significant reduction in direct port calls, plummeting from 11 to just six. Additionally, in THE Alliance’s newly published 2025 Transpacific network overview, Hong Kong is notably absent from their Pacific South West and Pacific North West services, leaving only one Asia-US East Coast service remaining.

“Source: Sea-Intelligence.com, Sunday Spotlight, issue 658”

The latest data from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) on the Liner Shipping Connectivity Index (LSCI) also underscores a continual decline in connectivity for Hong Kong over the past decade, as depicted in Figure 1. The LSCI for Hong Kong hit its lowest point of 388 in 2023-Q4, with a marginal uptick to 390 in 2024-Q1. Despite slight fluctuations, the overarching pattern indicates a consistent and sharp decline.

“While this does not bode well for the Port of Hong Kong, it should also be seen as a sign that an element of network consolidation is afoot, especially as it relates to transshipment hubs,” said Alan Murphy, CEO of Sea-Intelligence, a Danish maritime data analysis firm.

He pointed out, “Analysis of network design and network efficiency will show that fewer, but larger, hubs are economically more efficient. Hong Kong appears to be the first major ‘victim’ of this. But as the new alliance constellations improve their networks in the coming years, more ports could likely risk the same fate as Hong Kong.”

Source: Container News

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