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by Samantha Greene / Oct 31, 2023 / 5m

Once a month we share here all the news in global trade and logistics that attracted our attention. Catch up, if you are not signed up for our Fecebook or LinkedIn pages. 

News of boxed rail freight peak season surcharge shocked shippers in India

At the very end of September, it was announced that since October 1, the traditional “busy season surcharge” would be implemented on containerized rail freight.  Indian Railways said the 10% surcharge would run until further notice.

According to the Loadstar, this had never happened before. Container freight, as well as road freight, had always been exempt from the peak season surcharges traditionally introduced from October to June each year.

The implementation of the surcharge was met with protests from the Association of Container Train Operators (ACTO). They insisted that the move was discriminating against the container sector, which would harm their efforts to attract cargo migration from road to rail.

RCL to open first direct route from Qingdao to Dar Es Salam

In November, the Thailand-based RCL shipping line will launch a new Far East-Africa (REA) shipping service that will connect Qingdao, China, and Dar es Salam, Tanzania.

The rotation will take 56 days and will go as follows: Qingao, Shanghai, Ningbo, Nansha, Port Klang, Mombasa, Dar Es Salaam, Port Klang, and Qingdao.

RCL says they will put one vessel of their own on the new service next to the vessels from Emirates Shipping Line, Global Feeder Shipping, Interasia Lines, KMTC Line, and TS Lines.

The line aims to expand its services to East Africa but also has plans for land-locked countries like Uganda and Rwanda.

India poised to overtake Japan as the world’s third-largest economy by 2030

According to the latest report from S&P Global Market Intelligence, India is poised to displace Japan from the pedestal and become the world’s third-largest economy by 2030.

India is currently in the fifth place with a GDP of $3.5 trillion. The country has had two very successful years of rapid economic growth (2021 and 2022). It is expected to become the fastest-growing major economy when this fiscal year ends in March of 2024, with its GDP growing somewhere between 6.2% and 6.3%.

Overall, both the short-term and long-term outlooks for India are very positive, according to S&P. In the last decade, India has seen an influx of foreign direct investments; its middle class is growing rapidly, which fuels consumer spending. By 2030, the country’s projected GDP should reach $7.3 trillion.

Global blueberry trade to decline for the first time in history

Blueberry has been the most trending berry of the last two decades, with new plantations established wherever it can grow. But, according to the report from EastFruit, in the 2023-2024 season we will see the blueberry trade decline.

The demand for the very expensive and popular berry is as high as ever, but its production has dwindled this year in Peru, bringing down the whole market with it. Peru is the largest producer of blueberries, accounting for 30% of global blueberry exports.

The drop in Peru’s production is explained, in short, by climate change and specifically the natural phenomenon El Niño. They led to an abnormally high temperature that harmed the yields.