Analysis: How Bad Is It?
By and large, logistics providers and shippers avoid getting accurate weights for FCL shipments at the freight quoting and procurement stage. And soon after, when forwarders need a weight to book the ocean slot, shippers often provides an estimate.
But even at that first stage, it seems that available weights – even estimates – are lacking. Freightos measured the percentage of freight quotes with weights from dozens of freight forwarders currently using Freightos AcceleRate‘s rate management platform.
Over the past year, only one third (36%) of FCL freight quotes were saved with a weight. This is consistent by company size – the combined percentage for top 20 global forwarders is about the same as that of mid-sized forwarders.
But the range expands across different companies. For forwarders averaging more than 4,000 quotes per month, the lowest weight reporting frequency is 16%, compared to the highest of 100%. There is also a marked range between countries. For example, in France a full 70% of FCL quotes include weights, but in the Netherlands it’s only 20%.
So current freight quote weight reporting earlier in the process remains low, despite growing media attention to SOLAS, and despite the looming deadline. What’s more, without much real accountability so far, it seems likely that many of the weights may be estimates, rather than hard data.
The IMO’s recent recommendation to relax enforcement for three months, to allow time for new processes to bed down, will be well received – because Freightos research reinforces concerns from other sources that many forwarders, importers, and exporters are not yet ready.