One of the largest shipping companies in the world, the French CMA CGM recently celebrated ten years of working in Serbia. In his speech during the celebration, Bine Štancar, General Manager of CMA CGM Adriatic region cluster, emphasized that the company has been much longer on the Serbian market and that it has been providing, all this time, an effective support to import and export companies.
This little jubilee was the occasion to talk to Štancar, who spoke to the PlutonLogistics about the results in Serbia, the potential of the Adriatic region, and the plans in the future period.
Otherwise, within the CMA CGM Adriatic region cluster are: Serbia, Slovenia, Hungary, and Croatia.
PL: You celebrate ten years of working in Serbia. Are you satisfied with the results?
– We are pleased with the achieved results, but I would like to emphasize that CMA CGM has been present in the Serbian market for more than 10 years, through various organizational forms of shipping agency work. In 2007, we established an independent CMA CGM own shipping agency at Belgrade. The company was all this time offering efficient support and shipping services to Serbian import-export companies through different ports in the region as per customers’ choice.
Following the development of the Serbian market / economy and the increasing overseas transport of cargo in containers, we are re-organizing our office in Belgrade to improve Customers experience and service offer by CMA CGM Group combining sea and land transport services.
PL: What services do you offer on Serbian market?
– CMA CGM Group is a major player in global economy and a leading worldwide shipping group. We are providing overseas transportation of goods in containers to Serbian Import – Export companies to / from all worldwide markets through different ports in the region as per customers choice. In addition to maritime transport services, we also offer a complete door to door service, which includes both maritime and land transport of containers within our organization under the unique multimodal Bill of Lading, which means that one carrier offers all transportation from an export warehouse to an importer’s warehouse and which is covered only by one transportation document – multimodal Bill of Lading.
Most important maritime service with which we are supporting Serbian market demand is our direct / weekly container line service“PHOENICIAN EXPRESS” established in 2003 connecting Adriatic and Far East, calling directly following ports in Adriatic:Koper, Rijeka, Trieste and Venice with vessel capacity of 6500 TEU. Port of Rijeka (Croatia) is a gateway on this service used by Serbian Import-Export companies with us in their own inland transportation arrangements or by use of CMA CGM intermodal solutions. In order to be able to accomplish this kind of service, we cooperate with a large number of truckers and railway operators, and we also have contracts with land depots/terminals in Belgrade and Sremska Mitrovica.
PL: Which goods from Serbia are most transported with your services? Which lines are the most interesting?
– CMA CGM Group as a leading worldwide shipping group we are in position to offer transportation of goods from all overseas markets to and from Serbiathrough different ports in the region as per customers’ choice.
It is known that the dominating share of cargo arrives to Serbia overseas from Far East, export represented by many different overseas markets like: Far East, Mediterranean, Middle East, India, North America, etc. Most imported goods into Serbia are: retail goods (clothes, shoes), pet resin, white goods, cargo of all kind etc. and export are: timber, new tires, cigarettes, food & agricultural products, cargo of all kind, etc.
PL: Can you compare the markets that you lead, markets of Serbia, Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia?
– There are many similarities, but also some special features. Serbia belongs to the group of landlocked countries and can therefore use more seaports as a gateway to/from overseas market. In our case themajority of volumes to/from Serbia we transport via Port of Rijeka (Croatia) and Port of Bar (Montenegro). Serbia with its favorable geographic position between the East and West, with dynamic economy, attracting Foreign Direct Investments environment,we could draw some lines with Central European countries like Hungary or Slovakia who managed to attract a lot of multinational recognized companies who are today “champions” of countries and force of economic development and international trade.
We are particularly pleased that there are several major international multinational companies operating on the Serbian market, with whom it is possible to contract regular transportation volumes of goods to/from worldwide markets.
PL: What ports do you use in the region? Are you satisfied with these services?
– CMA CGM provides maritime liner container services from all the East Adriatic ports (Koper, Rijeka, Split, Ploče, Bar & Durres), the Greek ports of Thessaloniki and Piraeus and the Black Sea ports. Our basic advantage is that we can adapt to all the needs of importers and exporters, not preferring any route or port. So every week we have the ability to load/discharge cargo in all ports by using our maritime regular weekly services. Some ports such as Koper and Rijeka we service with a direct / weekly container line service “PHOENICIAN EXPRESS” established in 2003 connecting Adriatic and Far East.With outports like Bar (Montenegro) we do service with feeder ships which first transport cargoes on CMA CGM hub Malta and then they are transshipped to another line service to reach the end worldwide destination/market.
PL: Did CMA CGM take over port of Thessaloniki? What is theadvantage of theport of Thessaloniki compared with port of Piraeus, which has been well promoted in Serbia?
– As I have emphasized, we as a shipping company provide service from all ports and we do not prefer any maritime route of ports in respect. It is on importers and exporters, they choose shipping line / service to entrust their goods for transport over a port that they consider to offer them the best total cost (freight cost efficient), total transit time to/from the ultimate destination, and the highest quality service.
PL: What are your plans for the next period – new projects, regular lines, services…?
We will continue to maintain weekly maritime liner container services from all ports and strengthen our office in Belgrade in order to meet the needs of Serbian importers and exporters, to strengthen the network of inland depots and terminals, to cooperate with road and rail operators more strategically, in order to improve the quality of the entire door-to-door transport service and to cooperate with all institutions on issues of easier and faster transit of all types of goods which are transported in containers.
CMA CGM Group / CMA CGM Serbia Shipping Agency is proud to support Serbian economy connecting Serbian market with overseas markets and we will continue with our efforts to support economic development of Serbia, at best also in the future.