The decision by Hanjin Shipping to add a new service to the China-East Mediterranean trade by swapping space with Yang Ming Line, a CKYH alliance member, in May 2007,increased speculation in the Israeli shipping circle about the company's decision to nominate local agent.
Last week it was made known that Hanjin Shipping was negotiating with several companies for an agent to represent it in Israel on a full-time basis. A spokesman for Hanjin said recently that the new direct link between China and East Mediterranean will stabelise the company’s sales outpost in the Israel and Greece regions, where transport volumes are rapidly increasing.
The new service will commence on May 17th with the departure of M/V Jing Po He from Shanghai.
The new Greece & Israel Express (GIX) service will deploy seven 3,000 TEU vessels. The port rotation for the new service is: Shanghai > Ningbo > Hong Kong > Shekou > Singapore > Ashdod > Piraeus > Thessaloniki > Singapore > Hong Kong > Shanghai.
Israeli shipping users in general and exporters in particular believe that the entry of Hanjin is likely to reduce cargo freight tariffs to the Far East, as a result of the increase in competition.