Update on war in Ukraine

Wiebe van Bockel – CCO Voerman Update on war in UkraineGroup, provides an update on the situation in Ukraine

In this special update we would like to give you an overview of what we see as early consequences of the war in Ukraine. The consequences are way beyond Ukraine and Russia alone as this war progresses. As we have a large relocation, moving & logistics company in Russia, we see the impact daily with our own staff, but also with the clients we serve. We will continue to monitor the developments and keep you informed in the coming weeks on what is going on and what the impacts are due to this war in Europe. It is likely that this will have an influence on all our clients in one way or another.

From a client perspective, we were able to get all our shipments out of the Ukraine prior to the war starting and re-routed moves & logistics projects which were already in process.

Initial consequences

The situation at present is changing very dynamically, so we can only give information as per the current situation. This is what we are facing at the moment:

  • All business has stopped to Ukraine and Belarus due to the security situation. And almost all business to Russia is halted indefinitely due to legal sanctions.
  • Swift bank transfers and transmittals are blocked for Russia, making payments to and from Russia very difficult.
  • The trucking prices in Russia have increased up to 400% for import and 300% for export since the war started.
  • Trucking companies are defying the contract terms, and demanding prepayments; some will only accept cash.
  • Many transport companies are refusing to travel through Belarus and opting for transit through the Baltic countries, thus making a detour (resulting in much longer transit) and making the tariffs more expensive. However, the transit through Baltic customs is also hectic as the customs inspection is conducted for 30% of the trucks especially with household goods shipments.
  • Russian truckers are facing difficulties in moving around the EU due to strict regulations which is leading to more scarcity in transport availability.
  • A serious shortage of drivers in international road transport is looming in the coming weeks. Many companies in Central and Eastern Europe are making use of Ukrainian drivers and they are currently being called upon to join the fight against Russia.
  • According to an international estimate, there are also approximately 12,000 drivers stranded in and around Ukraine. That is why shippers all over Europe are asking governments to take appropriate measures quickly.
  • Ukraine Hapag-Lloyd will implement a complete booking stop to/from Black Sea ports of Odessa & Novorossiysk with immediate effect. St. Petersburg & Korsakov are OK for now, but with international sanctions/ embargoes likely to be increased, the situation may change very rapidly and maybe even without a pre-advice.
  • Air shipments are only possible to a few locations where countries still allowing flights to Russia, but effectively all commercial air traffic has stopped from the EU and most NATO countries with few pending exceptions (such as Turkey).
  • For international staff, we are getting reports that it is increasingly difficult to transfer in and out of Russia.

We Will Keep You Informed

We realize that communication remains key. Although it is difficult to predict all the developments and their effects, we have a dedicated team assessing the situation daily to be able to provide necessary support where it is needed most. We are also in contact with our affected clients to serve their needs in the best possible way.

We will continue to keep you updated regularly and please reach out with any questions or concerns you might have.