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  • Writer's pictureabbyjanecrawford

Navigating International Shipping Challenges: Australian Power Equipment Offers Solutions

Last night was the 26th attack on commercial shipping on the Red Sea since 19 November, the largest to date. In recent weeks, the world has witnessed a surge in security threats impacting global trade routes, leading to significant changes in shipping dynamics. The assaults by Houthi rebels in Yemen on commercial vessels navigating the Bab al-Mandab Strait have triggered a ripple effect on the world’s busiest international shipping lanes.


The Houthi attacks, primarily targeting ships headed to Israel, have compelled numerous firms such as Maersk and BP, to alter their shipping routes, avoiding the Bab al-Mandab Strait and opting for a longer journey around Africa’s Cape of Good Hope. This shift has increased travel times from an average* of 25.5 days to approximately 34 days, affecting the 17000 ships that pass through the Suez Canal annually.  This represents 12% of global trade, valued at over $1 trillion.


While this situation undoubtedly affects international shipping to and from European destinations to Australia, the repercussions extend beyond the altered routes. Australian Power Equipment is witness to the multifaceted challenges placed on global trade and the impact this has on the shipments of high-quality, reliable infrastructure equipment from Europe to Australia. Working with the best advisors has seen them plan effective shipping methods and able to forecast and anticipate further delays.


Apart from the Red Sea assaults, the volume of shippers changing international routes has substantially increased traffic and caused delays in the alternative routes. The upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations pose an annual challenge notorious for its impact on manufacturing and shipping delays, further compounding the issue. However, the most pressing concern for Australia lies in the ongoing industrial action at its ports, presenting a significant barrier compared to the Red Sea attacks or Chinese festivities.


According to Freight and Trade Alliance director Paul Zalai, industrial action taken by maritime unions in Australia against stevedore DP World is costing the local economy an estimated $20 million per day**. Strikes and work bans across Australian ports have led to a backlog of tens of thousands of containers, causing week-long delays in shipping.


Facing the reality of these shipping challenges, Abby Crawford, Director of Australian Power Equipment, acknowledges the limited control over external factors. However, she emphasises the importance of proactive planning to mitigate disruptions: “We can’t do anything to overcome the reality of these international shipping delays.  The advice we give our clients is to expect increased shipping timeframes and costs, and factor this into the project deliverables”.


To address the evolving situation, Australian Power Equipment offers its Critical Sourcing and In-Stock solutions to businesses grappling with extended shipping delays. Director Andrew Cockbain highlights their ability to repurpose equipment and expedite delivery, ensuring minimal disruption for clients. “We have a healthy stock of both new equipment ready to go and second-hand equipment that can be adapted to purpose in a few short weeks. Our goal has always been to ensure our clients are not stuck, we can protect their operations whether by sale or hire of equipment until their shipment is fulfilled”


In the face of complex global challenges and local port disruptions, Australian Power Equipment remains committed to providing reliable solutions and supporting clients through their diverse range of in-stock equipment, ready for dispatch from their NSW warehouses.

Changing the Red Sea Suez Canal routes to Cape of Good Hope
International Shipping Paths


Contact Australian Power Equipment today for all your low, medium and high-voltage equipment needs for Infrastructure, Tunnelling and Renewable markets.

1300 040 500

*Based on ultra large container vessel’s average speed of 16.48 knots



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