Again?! Ningbo is Facing Covid Challenge

Ningbo, China, as the world’s third largest container port of 30 million, is one of the most important ports of import and export. According to incomplete statistics, in the past 12 months, there have been 3,084,759 containers exported from Ningbo to the whole world.

With such a vital role, Ningbo is facing a similar challenge which just happened last year in Dalian, that is, Covid-19 crisis.

What happened in Dalian?

Back to November of 2021, when most people were enjoying the end of the year and preparing for Christmas and New Year, a disaster that could last more than half a year was about to happen. Originated by the cold chain (Virus prefers low temperature), the Covid-19 virus Initially spread in a small area with limited infection, and then spread in a large area very quickly. The government promptly took actions and gave extremely strict restrictions to the ports in order to cut the spread chain (by cutting the cold chain and lowering the risk of foreign input).

However, the cost was also huge. Since Dalian locates at the center of North-west Pacific, it is the most convenient port for transshipment of goods from South Asia, North America, Europe and other places, bears the gateway function of Northeast Asia Economic Zone to enter the Pacific Ocean. Although the spread was cut by the end of November (as is shown in the graph above), the lockdown did not over until April of 2022, as there remained sporadic cases and the government was afraid of similar things happening again.

According to estimation, the restrictions had directly put more than 40,000 at the risk of unemployment, not to mention the other workers involved in the whole industrial chain (approximately 600,000 workers in the chain according to the report released in 2020). Also, the restrictions had made all companies related to cold chain in Dalian shut down for more than 5 months.

Considering the role of Dalian ports in the global cold chain market (especially in seafood), this wave had brought severe impact to the international seafood market. So far, no precise data can be found about the loss brought by the latest restrictions, but still, we can make a rough estimation according to the report of 2020, when more than 500,000 tons of frozen cargoes were blocked at the port and could only enter the customs after 40 days of waiting.

Will Ningbo recommit the same error as Dalian?

According to the news, Beilun district, where several container terminals of Ningbo-Zhoushan port are located at, had upgraded its epidemic-management level on 16 October. The city has reported 47 infections in the latest wave of Covid pandemic by the end of 18 October.

The beginning of the latest wave in Ningbo is very similar to Dalian, and Ningbo is also the main port of seafood trades. According to customs data, the seafood exported in 2021 is around 141.1 thousand tons. The main seafoods through Ningbo port are herring, squids and shells. With such an important role, everybody starts to be concerned: Will Ningbo recommit the same error of Dalian?

Luckily, the answer is ‘NO’

Considering the costs and the past experiences, Ningbo this time has abandoned the conservative policy. Instead of strict restrictions, the Ningbo Government decided to control the spread of the virus under the premise of ensuring logistics. At present, the port production is still on track and container liner berthing is unaffected. Each port area of Ningbo Port implements strict control according to independent units, and orderly organizes port production on the basis of various epidemic prevention measures. The production and operation of each port area are basically stable, and the operation of ships arriving at the port is all green.

Such kind of hush is the result of past experience. In order to make everything normal as usual, Ningbo designed multiple measures to control the spread at lowest cost. For example, since October 15, the two-way special channels for container vehicles entering and leaving the port have been opened from four expressways including Beilun, Chaiqiao, Chuanshan and Guoju to each container terminal. The whitelist system of “health code” for truck drivers has been implemented, and the “Harbor Group Epidemic Prevention Pass” has been issued to eligible trucks, forming a closed loop control of the special channels, so as to ensure that the port transportation is smooth.

Ocean Treasure’s View

As our client’s eye in China, Ocean Treasure will keep following up the latest news about Ningbo. Since we are always on behalf of our clients, in spite of the policies and efforts made by Ningbo Government this time, Ocean Treasure sincerely suggests putting orders as soon as possible. Even though there’s no sign for Ningbo to follow the track of Dalian, it is always better to take precautions. Plus, Chinese New Year is coming, and the holiday will delay the ETA. The World Maritime Routes are already crowded due to Christmas. Early order gets early ETA! Here are some popular products considering the preference of several big markets, kindly see the specification below:

Tilapia Fillets (Oreochromis Niloticus)
Natural fillet, IQF
skinless, boneless, PBO
normal skinned, normal trimmed, STTP Treated
IVP with lot number printed, 10kg master carton
Glazing: 25%, 30%, 35%
Size Before glazing: 3-5oz, 5-7oz
1×40’ FCL

Frozen vegetables – Broccoli
size 3-5cm, Grade A
China origin
10kg bulk
1×40’ FCL

Other fishes, cephalopods, shrimps, bi-valves, and vegetables are also available!

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