OZ Retailers Hit By Global Shipping Collapse
Australian retailers of consumer electronics and appliances are set to be hit by the collapse of Hanjin Shipping. Already two of their ships sitting off the coast of Australia with millions of dollars’ worth of stock in their holds.
Observers claim that over $18 billion worth of cargo is stranded at sea in various ships around the world, Samsung Electronics, which makes the Galaxy smartphone and other devices, said it has cargo valued at about $38 million stranded on Hanjin ships in international waters.
Distributors and manufacturers that ChannelNews has spoken to claim that there is millions of dollars’ worth of stock bound for Australia for the peak Christmas New Year shopping period “potentially impacted”.
Since Hanjin Shipping Co. of South Korea filed for bankruptcy protection their last week, dozens of ships carrying more than half a million cargo containers have been denied access to ports around the world because of uncertainty about who would pay docking fees, container-storage and unloading bills. Some of those ships have been seized by the company’s creditors.
At the weekend the company found at least temporary reprieve off the coast of California as the Korean giant fights worldwide against creditors seizing its assets out of worry that Hanjin won’t be able to pay its bills.
Hanjin Greece, which has been at sea since leaving Busan on Aug. 21, began unloading its cargo of clothing, electronics, furniture, and plastics goods at the Port of Long Beach on Saturday, according to ABC News.
That came after a U.S. Bankruptcy court in New Jersey allowed Hanjin to dock without having its assets seized in the country Friday, while Korean bankruptcy courts allowed Hanjin to spend $10 million to unload Hanjin Greece among others.
“This is good news for cargo owners and American consumers, just in time for the holiday shopping season,” Noel Hacegaba, the port’s chief commercial officer, said in a statement to ABC.
The ship is expected to leave after unloading. It’s not been announced when the two other ships currently of the coast of California, Hanjin Montevideo and Hanjin Boston, will be unloaded, the LA Times reported. In the three ships, there are millions in cargo bound for big retailers including Walmart and J.C. Penney.
It’s also a glimmer of hope for Hanjin, which has been facing gridlocks in ports around the world amid uncertainty about who would pay docking, container-storage, and unloading fees.