Yangtze River pilot lockdown intensifies China port congestionVessels are being stranded at ports on the river due to the lack of pilots and the line-up of vessels forced to wait in the anchorage outside the estuary is increasing rapidly. Owners are unclear how long the problem will last.
According to informa.com: At least 200 pilots at Nanjing and Jiangyin stations have been quarantined by Chinese authorities after two tested positive for coronavirus earlier this week. Operations are almost entirely halted, causing widespread delays in one of China’s key maritime waterways.
Traffic has began to become congested and slowed due to specialized river pilots being mandated to quarantine due to Covid-19 regulations when returning from duties along China’s Yangtze which happens to be the longest river in East Asia.
The Yangtze moves an approximated 3bn tonnes of cargo a year and at this time, due the pilot shortage, time spent on a vessel has increased astonishingly. A data report from Eastport states up 169% year-on-year for Jiangyin, 154% year-on-year for Nantong, 41% year-on-year for Ningbo and 190% year-on-year for Zhangjiagang in the month of October.