The Earthquake in Turkey and Syria Impact on Ports and Shipping

The shipping industry has been affected by the earthquake, and it could be some time before normal services are fully resumed.

The news of the recent earthquake in Turkey has been devastating, and our sympathies are with those who have been directly affected, those who have lost their homes and their loved ones. A natural disaster on such a scale is thankfully rare, but when it does happen, the impact is felt far and wide and has consequences that reach much further afield than the initial impact zone. The shipping industry has of course been affected by the earthquake, and it could be some time before normal services are fully resumed.

As a global moving business, we are ensuring that we keep abreast of all the news and developments with regard to port closures, and access to port facilities, and we will keep all our customers informed of anything that could impact or delay container shipping schedules.

Turkish port closed until further notice

Currently, the Port of Iskenderun has been shut down and there is currently no scheduled date for reopening. The port suffered significant damage during the earthquake, which resulted in a large-scale fire at the terminal, and so it has been closed for safety reasons. In addition, the terminal and its personnel are focusing their efforts on humanitarian aid efforts as a priority for the foreseeable future. As yet, the full extent of the damage has not been officially assessed and so it is still unclear when we can expect the port to reopen. However, we can report that all shipments bound for the port are being successfully redirected to other hubs in the area such as the Port of Mersin and Port Said.

Other major ports are running with full or reduced efficacy

The country’s largest container port, located in Istanbul was not affected by the earthquake and so is running as normal. The Port of Mersin which is up and running, taking over some of the overflow from the now-closed Port of Iskenderun, has been experiencing some delays which may in turn impact the global oil shortage. But overall, the impact on global shipping should be able to be kept to a minimum with some rescheduling and relocating.

Zhong Zhechao, founder of the international logistics service consulting company One Shipping had this to say: “The natural disaster has limited impact on global shipping given the distance from major container ports and the overall cargo volume via Turkey, which is not that large. Instead, concerns are now concentrated on the secondary impact of the earthquake on Turkey itself, especially its inner logistics and transport infrastructure”.

The impact on Chinese shipping to and from Europe

With regard to the impact on the Chinese shipping industry, shipping analyst Wu Minghua confirms that there is limited impact as the Port of Iskenderun now closed due to damage from the earthquake, is not a highly important location for the shipping routes between Europe and China.

Rest assured, our services are unaffected

When you entrust your global shipping to Columbia Worldwide Movers, you can rest assured that we are constantly monitoring ports globally, keeping a close eye on the effects of disasters such as this, and any other overseas events that can impact shipping. As our client, you have nothing to worry about and we will keep you informed every step of the way. We will continue to keep you updated, but if you have any questions or concerns don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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