On the 9th week freight rates in the Azov-Black Sea region continued to decline. Contracts for the shipment of 3,000 tons of wheat from the Azov Sea to the ports of the Marmara Sea are already concluded at the level of $ 26 per ton and below. At the same time, the drop in rates is not so great for long-distance destinations, such as Italy, Israel or Mersin, which are quite in demand in recent days. This is primarily due to the small number of spot fleet ready to call these areas. In addition, the market is heated by wheat from Kazakhstan, which is not subject to export fees and is now beginning to appear more often on the market. Among other things, due to the approaching start of river navigation, shipowners with a Russian-flagged fleet prefer to take short voyages to Turkey in order to be able to take cargo to the ports of the Caspian region.
There is a slight increase in rates in the short sea market in the Baltic region. This is facilitated by rising fuel prices and an increase in contract shipments. Due to warming, more vessel positions are opening in the Gulf of Bothnia and the Gulf of Finland, plus queues in ports are also decreasing. In terms of cargo, due to the imposition of a grain quota, there is a decrease in the amount of grain cargo, while the fertilizers market is quite active.
Basically, fertilizers are shipped the ports of Great Britain and Ireland in the amount of 3-5 thousand tons.
High rates are remaining in the deep market both in the Baltic and the Continent and in the Black Sea. The abundance of various shipments from the ports of the Baltic sea, Norway and the North Sea, and consistently high fuel prices give the freedom for handy / supramax shipowners to request higher rates and trade their vessels for the most profitable cargo.
A similar situation can be observed in the Black Sea. Due to the active shipments of steel, fertilizers and grain, freight rates are being kept at a high level. This urges some charterers to hold off shipments of already purchased / sold cargo, waiting for a drop in freight.