Major forwarders suspend Russia operations

By Damian Brett

Photo: Shutterstock

The world’s leading four airfreight forwarders have all announced a suspension of services covering Russia.

The move comes as transport operations face disruption due to sanctions and restrictions put in place as a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

In a customer advisory, Kuehne+Nagel said that most carriers – across land, sea and air – had stopped services to the Russian Federation. As a result, the forwarder has suspended all import shipments into the Russian Federation pending further notice, except for pharma, healthcare and humanitarian supplies.

“All goods that were booked before and currently still in transit, are managed to the extent possible,” the company said.

“To help our customers navigate the situation, our trade control experts closely observe the development of sanctions imposed by the US, the EU and certain states respectively providing all necessary trade control guidance.”

DSV said that it had decided to temporarily suspend shipments to and from Russia and Belarus.

“This applies to land, air and ocean transport,” the Copenhagen-headquartered company said. “This means that DSV is not taking in new bookings to these countries with the exception of food supplies, medical and humanitarian supplies.

“All goods currently in transit will be managed to the extent possible via open trade lanes.”

The advisory added: “Knowing that today’s decision to suspend transport to and from Russia and Belarus will further add to the supply chain disruption and complexity for our customers, we want to underline that DSV is fully aware of the impact and that we are doing our utmost to alleviate the negative supply chain effects from these measures.

“Our teams continue to have a close dialogue with our carrier partners, and we will keep monitoring any new sanctions imposed.”

DB Schenker said: “We have decided to temporarily suspend all shipments to and from Russia with immediate effect. This applies to land, air and ocean transport.”

DHL said that its inbound services to Russia and Belarus have been suspended and it would not accept shipments to those countries until further notice.

“We are closely monitoring the situation and we will keep you updated about any further developments,” the company added.

Geodis is also stopping its services to and from Russia, as well as Belarus.

“For customers with current shipments going to or passing through the affected areas, our teams will be reaching out to assess possible alternative transport solutions, in accordance with international regulations and sanctions.”

The forwarders have also closed operations in Ukraine.

Air Cargo News previously reported that freight forwarders were also warning of longer lead times and higher costs for shipments from Asia as airlines are forced to take longer routes and flights are disrupted.

The sanctions have also bought Russia-based freighter operators Volga-Dnepr’s and AirBridgeCargo’s Asia-Western Europe flights to a standstill.

Geodis said that it would expand its AirDirect airfreight charter operation between Asia and Europe with three additional B747F rotations.

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