Maritime transport is the lifeline of global trade since about 80% of tangible goods trade is completed via marine traffic. Among them, grain is one of major dry bulk goods transported on the sea route. The global grain supply chain will be disrupted in case the sea route is blocked.
In order to ensure the stability and security of global grains supply chain as well as availability, affordability and transportability of grains, COFCO International set up freight department at its headquarters in Geneva to jointly manage global maritime transport business with maritime offices in Turkey and Singapore.
As a maritime trader at Geneva headquarters, Tom Ravenacroft is the global head in charge of Panamax vessels (the main type of grain bulk carrier). His major responsibility is to provide the Company’s external and internal trades with maritime quoting services. By offering the most competitive freight costs, he ultimately helps clinch the deal.
Subject to the influence of multiple factors such as supply and demand, cost, weather and international situation, the international freight costs undergo constant changes. In order to avoid the risks caused by wild swings in freight costs, maritime traders also bet against the freight derivatives market to mitigate risks. This constitutes the major work for maritime traders.
In 2020, COFCO International’s maritime transport team dealt with about 1,500 vessels to transport 60 million tons of cargo. At any moment, about 200 vessels dispatched by COFCO International are sailing in the oceans to deliver agro-products or other products to countries around the world.
In 2021, COFCO International’s maritime transport team again overcame the adverse impact caused by the pandemic. After its maritime traders completed the front end deals, the operation team ensured the timely delivery of grains to clients in each country through secure, stable and efficient fleet management, making continuous contribution to the stable operation of global grains supply chain.
In the future, COFCO Corporation will continue to abide by the vision of “openness, circulation, mutual benefit and win-win” and to actively contribute to the maintenance of global grains supply chain and stabilization of global grains supply and demand balance, thus accelerating the development of a world class grains enterprise with global competitiveness.