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Table 3 Explanations and abbreviations of the solution alternatives determined in the study

From: Investigation of empty container shortage based on SWARA-ARAS methods in the COVID-19 era

Resolution criteria Abbrev Definition
Shipper-owned containers SOC When empty containers cannot be supplied, an important solution would be to purchase them. Moreover, there are various advantages of purchasing containers for the shipper, such as the demurrage and detention costs, which have to be paid to the container shipping company because of excess free time, are eliminated
Inducement call IC By announcing periodic blank sailing within the services with decreased demands, shipping lines can direct ships along this service route to the ports with high demands. Thanks to the increase in the number of ships in the itinerary, BCOs can continue their activities within regions of high demands
Information communication technologies ICT COVID-19 has led to major changes in the structure of business models and global trade, emphasizing that information and communication technologies should be at the center of container transportation, not as an alternative method. Especially during this process, shipping lines benefit from technologies with block chain infrastructure to provide continuous connection in the container transport chain
Shipping guarantee booking SGB This application developed by shipping lines contributes to BCOs’ struggle against uncertainties in the supply chain by preventing container rollover during the uncertainty period because of COVID-19, especially during the high-volume raw-material import period
E2E delivery services E2EDS Demand uncertainty because of communication gaps is among the main reasons for the container shortage. Shipping lines provide logistical services to prevent communication gaps in the chain and provide direct communication with the shipper throughout all processes, including the shipment and delivery of the cargo to the customer (end-to-end; E2E), rather than just providing container transportation services