“I’m sure that it would cause some delays since BVI has… persons [who] order goods from all over the world. So I am sure that it will affect the receipt of goods coming through,” Hon Flax-Charles told VINO in an invited comment.
Lodged on Tuesday, March 23, 2021, and pulled only yesterday March 29, 2021, after blocking traffic for 6 days, over 350 ships were backed up outside of the canal as a result of the Ever Given, according to a report from the BBC.
Hon Flax-Charles remarked, “Of course, there’s also the hundreds of other ships that were outside waiting, so I would anticipate probably a week or two of delays. The good news is, that it's free so shipping would now resume,” the Minister said.
Meanwhile, experts have already warned that supply chain impacts that will come as a result of the blockage could last for months.
“The disruption of a week of this size is going to continue to have cascading effects ... it’s got to be at least 60 days before things get sorted out and appear to be a bit back to normal,” Stephen Flynn, professor of political science at Northeastern University told CNBC.
“This level of disruption cascaded after every 24 hours,” he added. The domino effect will include congestion at ports, in addition to vessels not being in the right place for their next scheduled journey.
More challenges are also forecasted to arise from supply chains already reeling from a container shortage amid the COVID-19 buying boom.