Maersk: Philippines Could Become Top Reefer Market

The Philippines can become one of the world’s top markets for refrigerated container services, given the potential of its agricultural sector and exporters’ recent willingness to shift away from break bulk shipping, according to officials from AP Moller-Maersk Group, BusinessWorld reported.

This segment has so far been a bright spot for the Maersk Line’s business in the country, as well as for the shipping industry in general which had been hit by the decline in global trade volumes last year.

“The Philippines could develop into the top three markets for reefer services,” Thomas Eskesen, senior director of Maersk Line’s reefer division said, referring to the country’s expected share in the global volume of refrigerated cargo.

“This could happen in the next one to five years,” Eskesen said.

The firm has recently been approaching commercial banana farms in Mindanao to encourage them to tap this service and thus penetrate the US and Europe, aside from exporting to nearby Asian destinations, he said.

Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) general manager Oscar Sevilla, for his part, said that the company will be carrying the country’s first pineapple and banana shipments to South Korea next month.

“Customers are now looking for modern containers. They’re shifting from break bulk to containers,” Eskesen added.

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