April 27, 2020 / 12:44 PM / a month ago

Low water hampers Rhine river shipping in Germany

HAMBURG (Reuters) - Low water levels after recent dry weather are preventing cargo vessels from sailing fully loaded on the Rhine river in Germany and adding surcharges to the usual freight rates, traders said on Monday.

Low water is hampering shipping on the entire German section of the river, traders said.

Shallow water means vessel operators impose surcharges on freight rates, increasing costs for cargo owners.

The Rhine is an important shipping route for commodities including grains, minerals, coal and oil products including heating oil.

German companies faced supply bottlenecks and production problems in 2018 after a drought and heatwave led to unusually low water levels on the Rhine.

Reporting by Michael Hogan, editing by Louise Heavens

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