10 Januari 2014

[100114.EN.SEA] Shipper Supports Merger of P3 Operations To Gain EU Approval

THE formation by the proposed P3 of a part-owned operations entity - reportedly to be based in London - that will merge the operational activities of alliance partners MSC, CMA CGM and Maersk, is a "step in the right direction" to gaining regulatory approval.

That would make it possible for P3 (within the new entity) to discuss certain service amendments, but still under the surveillance of the European Union, if such amendments should result in prohibited pricing matters, according to senior advisor Shipping, Ethnic Food Solutions AB, Sweden, Ingvar Bergman.

Mr Bergman points out that there is a 'grey zone' difficult to circumvent. To completely clear the path towards gaining the EU's approval and lower costs, would require the P3 Alliance to merge its commercial activities, reports Lloyd's List.

"I opine such full-scale cooperation should really benefit the three (alliance partners), since they should operate under one entity, and they could freely operate with common freight tariffs," said Mr Bergman.

There is huge operational cost-savings in having one entity, taking care of not only vessel/space sharing but also sales/marketing instead of a three-folded organisation. The same goes for costs for abroad agents/offices where huge savings are waiting.

Such an organisation would put the three part-owners in the driver's seat and leave the competition (from 15 other players, more or less alliance-tied) far behind and EU, ESC and others would be pacified.

"The possibility to finally achieve stability in the Asia-Europe trade is obvious," he added.

Source : HKSG.

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