MSC Unveils New Flexible Cargo Service to Meet Demand from Asia


MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company’s new “Suspension of Transit” (SOT) programme is a flexible cargo service that will help to fulfil the imminent resumption of demand from Asia and ensure service continuity. It includes container yard storage in six transshipment hubs across Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa and the Americas, ensuring that goods can be shipped close to their destinations as soon as possible and providing easier cargo flow for customers. MSC notes that:

  • China has shown signs of recovery with factories restarting production
  • The new SOT programme will help avoid high storage costs at ports of discharge

​As part of its ongoing response to the impact of COVID-19, MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company, a global leader in container shipping and logistics, has developed a Suspension of Transit (SOT) container shipping programme to prepare for a recovery in demand for freight services once the impact of the pandemic eases.

The programme builds on MSC’s ongoing efforts to ensure business continuity and the maintenance of vital container carriage services, such as the movement of food, fresh produce, medical equipment and other essential goods. The new SOT initiative is focused in particular on a resumption of demand of a wide variety of goods from Asia.

Signs of recovery

While positive signs of recovery have begun to emerge in Asia and factories have restarted production, major ports of destination may still not be ready to discharge containers. MSC’s new SOT programme aims to fulfil the resuming demand for raw materials and finished products from Asia by providing yard storage at major strategic points around the world: Bremerhaven in Germany, Busan in South Korea, King Abdullah Port in Saudi Arabia, Lome in Togo, Rodman PSA Panama International Terminal in Panama, and Tekirdag Asyaport in Türkiye.

The programme is aimed at all shippers for containers from Asia and all types of cargo, except reefer (refrigerated cargo), dangerous goods and project cargo (such as large, out-of-gauge pieces of heavy equipment that do not normally fit into containers).

Cost savings

The MSC SOT programme provides potential cost savings for customers faced with high warehousing storage costs at destination, demurrage, per-diem and other charges. It will also free up space at origin factories and warehouses and avoid excess inventory at site, bringing cargo closer to destination markets and alleviating the risk of congestion or closure at ports of discharge.

The lead time will be reduced once operations resume at destination ports, and the programme will also add storage for beneficial cargo owners (BCOs) and non-vessel owning common carriers (NVOCCs), who would otherwise reach their full capacity.

For more information on MSC’s Suspension of Transit programme:

For more information on MSC’s general global response to the COVID-19 situation:

For further information, accredited journalists may contact:

Giles Broom
Global PR Manager
MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company SA
m: +41 (0)79 754 8827

About MSC

MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company is a global leader in transportation and logistics, privately owned and founded in 1970 by Gianluigi Aponte. As one of the world’s leading container shipping lines, MSC operates 493 offices across 155 countries worldwide with over 70,000 employees. With access to an integrated network of road, rail and sea transport resources which stretches across the globe, the company prides itself on delivering global service with local knowledge. MSC’s shipping line sails on more than 200 trade routes, calling at over 500 ports.

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