2M Alliance Seemingly Gearing Up For Split
The Loadstar recently reported that 2M Alliance members – Maersk and MSC – have started to deploy their vessels separately on some service loops.
In the report they state that Maersk are now listed as the sole vessel operator for the Asia-Europe AE5/Albatross, AE10/Silk and AE7/Condor loops, and MSC are now shown as the operator of the AE55/Griffin and AE6/Lion services, along with their Swan loop.
The two largest global carriers are set to disband their vessel sharing arrangements in 2025. However, they seem to be gradually moving to one ship operator per loop, which has brought about speculation that they may be ending their working relationship earlier than originally announced.
Both carriers have set out clear intentions to operate using just their own networks when 2M breaks up, which means it is unlikely that either will be relying on partnering with other alliances.
The break up may also have been sped up by the European Commission’s recent announcement regarding the Consortia Block Exemption Regulation (CBER). The current legislation expires in April 2024 and will not be renewed. CBER, introduced in 2009, is the regulation that enables carriers to operate in the EU within alliances.
A carrier shake up would not come as a surprise, regardless of what happens with 2M. New containerships are continuing to flood the market despite low demand and unless the global economy upticks, something will undoubtedly need to give.