Danish shipping major A.P. Moller - Maersk (Maersk) has announced an upgrade to its ME2 (ME2 ocean service (Westbound & Eastbound) ocean service. As of the third week of April, the ME2 service will include port calls to key destinations in North Europe, namely Rotterdam, Felixstowe, and Bremerhaven.

The changes to the ME2 Ocean service connecting India, the Middle East, and Europe. With the enhancements made to the ME2 service, the shipping line said, it would be able to reduce the transit times for cargo movement between India and North Europe, which will benefit the retail & lifestyle and automotive sector, said an official.

Transhipment delays

The new rotation of ME2 is Port Tangier – Algeciras – Rotterdam – Felixstowe – Bremerhaven – Port Tangier – Salalah – Jebel Ali – Mundra – Nhava Sheva – Port Tangier. Out of these, Rotterdam, Felixstowe and Bremerhaven were not on the rotation earlier, the official said. Earlier these ports would be connected through transhipment, leading to longer transit times, he added.

Both comparisons of timings are in the current situation of going around Cape of Good Hope. In the future, when the possibility of going through Red Sea is available, the transit times will drop further.

New format

In the old format, Mumbai to Rotterdam would take about 35 days, while it would now take about 30 days. Or a Mundra to Felixstowe would have taken approximately 41 days earlier, now taking approximately 34 days, the official said.

Main cargo varieties are retail and lifestyle goods from India to North Europe and automotive parts and components on the way back.

“Maersk is committed to delivering faster and more reliable ocean services. With the enhancements made to the ME2 service, we are emphasising our commitment towards one of the most important trade routes,” said Morten Juul, Head of Regional Ocean Management for Indian Subcontinent, Middle East & Africa at Maersk.