SM Line and 2M end transpacific partnership

South Korean carrier SM Line and 2M Alliance partners Maersk and Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) have ended their collaboration on routes from Asia to the west coast of the US.

MSC said in a customer advisory that the slot exchange deal would end with effect from May 8, 2022, consequently ending MSC’s slot agreement with SM Line commercialised as the “Rose” service. “Current services covered by MSC, and those of the 2M network, will offer alternative coverage,” the Geneva-headquartered liner added. Upon the end of the two-year partnership, SM Line will begin providing standalone container service, integrating three routes to the south of the US west coast.

The move comes hot on the heels of the collaboration breakup between 2M and Israeli carrier Zim on Asia-Mediterranean and Asia-Pacific Northwest, which was terminated with effect from April 2022.

Commenting on the news via LinkedIn, container shipping expert Lars Jensen, the founder of Vespucci Maritime, hypothesised why Maersk and MSC had decided to jettison their junior partners.

“One reason could be that the 2M carriers would not want to make their network available to smaller carriers to the degree they have been in the past few years – especially not if they can fill their own vessels with highly profitable cargo. An entirely different reason could be that the smaller carriers, in this case, Zim and SM Line, have reached a conclusion that the terms with 2M were simply not attractive compared to the opportunities inherent in running your own services in the current market conditions,” Jensen suggested.

Adis Ajdin

Adis is an experienced news reporter with a background in finance, media and education. He has written across the spectrum of offshore energy and ocean industries for many years and is a member of International Federation of Journalists. Previously he had written for Navingo media group titles including Offshore Energy, Subsea World News and Marine Energy.
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