Grand Alliance carriers Hapag-Lloyd, NYK and OOCL have suspended one of their weekly transpacific services for about 21 weeks.
The North China Express (NCX) has been cancelled until the week beginning Feb. 24. The last sailing was made by the 3,613-TEU Katsuragi, which departed Busan, Korea, on Oct. 4.
The NCX used five ships in the 3,600-TEU to 4,950-TEU range, and had a port rotation of Dalian, Xingang, Qingdao, Busan, Long Beach, Oakland, Busan and Dalian.
Japanese carrier NYK said the ports previously called in the NCX will be picked up by the Central China Express (CCX) during the winter months. The CCX previously used four ships averaging about 5,100 TEUs with a rotation of Ningbo, Shanghai, Los Angeles and Ningbo.
A fifth ship is being added to the CCX to cope with the extra ports, and it will revert back to its usual port rotation and vessel deployment once the NCX resumes early next year. According to AXS-Alphaliner the suspension of the NCX reduces the weekly capacity in the transpacific by some 3,700 TEUs, based on nominal ship capacities.