Q4 boom in transport demand has calmed down, according to latest ‘Brexit Market Monitor’. Road freight rates on cross-Channel routes declined significantly last week on the elevated levels seen since the new, post-Brexit trading regime came into effect at the start of the year, according to the latest Brexit Market Monitor published by Tim Consult, a subsidiary of German cloud-based logistics software provider, Transporeon.
In the first five weeks of 2021, the cost of transporting a truck load of goods to the UK was much higher than the average in the third quarter, which serves as a benchmark because of the volatility in prices often seen in the final three months of the year.
The elevated rates have been viewed as a consequence of lower demand due to Brexit uncertainty and reduced capacity, with a reluctance among some international hauliers to serve the post-Brexit UK market because of the risk of delays at the border due to extra customs paperwork.
“In three major corridors (to the UK) – Germany, France and Poland – the markets keep steadily returning to the normal, pre-Brexit situation of Q3. The Q4 boom in transport demand has calmed down,” commented Nikolay Pargov, Transporeon’s Executive Director, Freight Procurement & Audit.
“Rejection ratios (of transport orders on the Transporeon (TP) Platform), as well as the spot rates, keep dropping, but are not yet down to Q3 levels. Import volumes from Italy are weaker than in Q3. The market is normalizing, with spot rates back to their past level, although the rejection ratio is still elevated.”
On Germany-UK road freight routes, spot rates last week (week 6) were up 8% on the Q3 average, compared to +23% for the previous week and for week 4, the Monitor noted.
As for France-UK routes, spot rates were still 27% above the Q3 average last week but this compares with +40% and 42% respectively for the two previous weeks.
On Italy-UK routes, spot rates last week were the same as the Q3 average in 2020 compared to +17% and +26% in weeks five and four respectively.
On Poland-UK routes, spot rates were 23% higher last week compared to the average in the third quarter of last year, up from week 5 (+19%) but in decline versus week 4 (+31%).