Old News…

30/06/2015  – Changes to Australias Air Cargo Security Arrangements to the USA

Qantas Freight has released the following information in relation to upconing changes to Australias air cargo security arrangements to the USA.

The Australian Government recently informed all Australian cargo stakeholders that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will shortly implement changes to Australia’s air cargo security arrangements to the United States (US).  As this has the potential to significantly impact Qantas Freight operations and our customer requirements, we wanted to provide some detail in preparation for these changes.

To meet the new US security requirements, the TSA has advised:

  • Australia will need to screen 100% of our export cargo at piece level which is carried on passenger aircraft to the US.
  • Each individual box, carton or other item in a shipment must be examined by technology or physically inspected.

Impact of these requirements on Qantas Freight operations:

  • Qantas Freight will be required to invest in additional screening equipment and resourcing. To accommodate piece level screening, presentation requirements for freight may differ.
  • Increased cut-off times may be required for freight acceptance at terminals. Changes will be notified in advance of the requirement.
  • At peak times, the amount of freight we can accept and uplift could be impacted.
  • There may be a potential increase in the Export Security Fee to cover the additional handling of US bound freight.

The earliest these changes could take effect is 1 August 2015, and Qantas is working towards having contingency arrangements in place for this date. Our biggest priority is minimising the impact to our customers and we expect to have a plan to communicate to you within 3 – 4 weeks.

We will update you as soon as more information is available.

 

26/06/2015  –  ACCC decides not to oppose the proposed joint venture between Patrick and ACFS

The ACCC yesterday advised the details behind their decision not to oppose the proposed joint venture between Patrick and ACFS

Click here to view the News Release

 

19/06/2015  –  An Industrial Revolution Down at the Waterfront – Port of Botany

Check out the story aired on the ABC last week related to the new Patrick robotic terminal at Port Botany.  See the giant new robitics at work, made from Aussie technology, which it says makes it thirty per cent more cost effective that its competitors. Patrick is now owned by Asciano which forked out $500 to $600 million into the port upgrade.

View the story

 

19/06/2015  –  Australian Trusted Trader Program

The Customs Amendment (Australian Trusted Trader Programme) Bill 2015 has today passed both Houses of Parliament.

The Bill amends the Customs Act 1901  to establish the Australian Trusted Trader Programme which will 1) introduce a differentiated trust-based regulatory framework at the border for those entities that meet or exceed international supply chain security and trade compliance standards; and 2) permit the Australian Border Force Act 2015  to make a consequential amendment.

For further detail, please click HERE

We now look forward to the launch of the Australian Trusted Trader Programme in Melbourne on 8 July 2015 and the official announcement of the initial four (4) pilot partners.

AAW Global will continue to keep subscribers at the forefront of this important reform.

Source:  FTA

 

18/06/2015  –  China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA)

Yesterday, Australia signed a landmark Free Trade Agreement with China, our largest trading partner, with total trade worth almost $160 billion in 2013-14, and a growing source of investment.  The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) will lock in existing trade and provide the catalyst for future growth across a range of areas including goods, services and investment.

Commentary from Crowe Horwarth:

What does the Agreement mean for Australia?

  • 85% of Australian goods exported will be tariff free, rising to 95% on full implementation
  • Tariffs will be progressively abolished for Australia’s dairy industry
  • Australia’s beef and sheep farmers will also gain from the phased abolition of tariffs ranging from 12-25% and all tariffs on Australian horticulture will be eliminated
  • Tariffs will be removed on almost all Australian resources and energy products including coking coal
  • Tariffs will also be eliminated on a wide range of Australian manufactured goods, including pharmaceutical products and care engines

Government Media Release: Australia signs landmark trade agreement with China

Full Details: China-Australia Free Trade Agreement

 

15/06/2015  –  ACBPS – Protected Industrial Action

AAW Global Logistics has received advice that employees of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection Portfolio, including Australian Customs and Border Protection, will take part in protected industrial action at various work sites starting from today (15 June  to 25 June 2015).

The Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) has given notice of work stoppages at international airports, ports, container examination facilities and international mail facilities.
 
The Portfolio has contingency arrangements in place to protect Australia’s borders and minimise the impact on business operations. During protected industrial action, the health, safety and security of the public and our staff continues to be our priority.
 
The Portfolio is working closely with  stakeholders to minimise the impact on the travelling public and on cargo and mail operations and is ensuring appropriate contingencies are in place for visa and citizenship services.
 
We will continue to keep you updated on this situation.

Source: FTA

 

05/06/2015 – Joint Review of Border Fees, Charges & Taxes

AAW Global Logistics has received correspondence this morning from the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS) in relation the finalisation of the Australian Government’s Joint Review of Border Fees, Charges and Taxes.

In summary, (effective 1 January 2016) the main changes are:

  • alignment of air / post / sea Nature 10 / 20 import processing charges for consignments > $1,000 – <$10,000 – new price $50 per import declaration (submitted via the ICS)
  • alignment of air / post / sea Nature 10 / 20 import processing charges for consignments >$10,000 – new price $152 per import declaration (submitted via the ICS)
  • introduction of a new charge for Sec 79 warehouse licence variations – $300
  • introduction of a new charge for nominee broker’s licence application – $130
  • introduction of a new charge for Sole Trader or Corporate broker’s licence application – $1300
  • increase of nominee broker’s licence grant and renewal – from $120 (every 3 years) to $240 (every 3 years)
  • increase of Sole Trader or Corporate broker’s licence grant and renewal – from $1200 (every 3 years) to $2400 (every 3 years

Of interest is that no reference has been made to import processing charge concessions as a part of the Trusted Trader Programme and that low value consignments (<$1000) remain exempt of any import processing charge.

Source: FTA

07/05/2015  –  Patrick Side-Loader Fee Discontinued

The Freight & Trade Alliance (FTA) has supported the road transport sector with a maintained focus on removing the Patrick side-loader fee.

The FTA advocacy and submission focussed on the following issues:

  • Direct deliveries from wharf to importer would further decrease – the proposed fee would most likely force a greater use of “staging” solutions with transport operators using “conventional” trailers / vehicles for container receipt and completing secondary deliveries to importers with side loaders – this would add to the volume of containers being staged as many transport operators are already being forced to take deliveries at off-peak periods and complete next day deliveries.
  • Significant impact on short term business viability on smaller transport operators – the proposed fee will have a lesser impact for transport operators with sufficient resources to stage containers and in many cases their operations will most likely being “business as usual” – the real impact will be on smaller transport operators with the quantum of the fee and the short time frame before implementation jeopardising their ongoing commercial viability.

We would like to recognise Patrick management for positively engaging with industry and are pleased to advise that of 1 May 2015, the side-loader fee has been discontinued.

Transport operators should continue to manifest that they are using a side-loader as they would for other trailer configurations. Patrick should be contacted direct by the transport operator in the event that an invoice is issued for this fee after 1 May 2015.

 

02/04/2015  –  Trusted Trader Program

In July 2015 Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS) will commence the pilot implementation of the new Trusted Trader Program.   The changes associated with the overall program are shaping up to be the most significant reforms that we have experienced in Customs’ administration in the last decade (or more).

For further information, we highly recomend that you review the following Trusted Trader Program Inductry Advisor Group (IAG) documents recently published by the ACBPS.

NOTE – The next IAG meeting is scheduled for 9 April 2015. An update on key developments will provided via this page.

 

25/03/2015  –  USA Congestion Update

Ships at Los Angeles and Long Beach still at anchor in record numbers

DESPITE a tentative agreement on a new labour contract for longshore workers a fortnight ago, two dozen containerships were still stranded at anchor off southern California.

One of the vessels is the China Shipping’s 8,500 TEU Xin Da Yang Zhou which has been waiting to berth in Los Angeles for almost three weeks, according to UK’s Lloyd’s List.

Although operations in the giant LA/Long Beach complex are now returning to normal after months of work slowdowns, this has had no discernible impact yet on the number of ships at anchor in San Pedro Bay.

The two ports are managing the process to clear the backlog to ensure quaysides are not clogged with containers.

That has left the anchorages both within the harbour and just outside packed. At the last count, there were 23 containerships at anchor.

 

23/03/2015  –  DP World Easter Trading Arrangements 2015

Friday April 3 (Good Friday) and Monday April 6 (Easter Monday) are public holidays. Normal vessel operations will continue on both days and through the intervening weekend.  Landside operations will vary from port to port.

Fremantle

The terminal will be closed to gate operations from Friday April 3 resuming on Tuesday April 6.  Vessel operations will continue throughout the Easter period.

Melbourne

Road and Rail operations will cease at 0630 on Friday April 3 and resume at 0630 on Saturday April 4 when normal receival and delivery operations will continue throughout the remainder of the Easter period.  Vessel operations will continue throughout the Easter period.  Storage fees for Good Friday, April 3 will not be applicable however fees will be counted as normal working days on all other public holidays.

Sydney

Road and Rail operations will cease at 0600 on Friday April 3 and resume at 0600 on Saturday April 4 when normal receival and delivery operations will continue throughout the remainder of the Easter period.  Vessel operations will continue throughout the Easter period.  Storage fees for Good Friday, April 3 will not be applicable however fees will be counted as normal working days on all other public holidays.

Brisbane

Normal receival and delivery operations will continue throughout the Easter period with no break.  Vessel operations will continue throughout the Easter period.

 

20/03/2015  –  Patrick Port Botany prepares to launch Automation

Patricks Port Botany have released the following update for operations as they prepare to launch the new automated terminal.

Timeframe

  • Ramp down – 26 to 29 March
  • Closure – 29 March to 2 April
  • Re-open for business – 2 April
  • Port Botany Terminal will be open all Easter Long Weekend – 3-6 April

Final Preparations

  • The ramp-down period will restrict the capacity of yard
    slots; this will dictate the speed of processing cargo through
    the terminal as ships can only be unloaded as space becomes
    available landside.
  • Updates to transport carriers will be issued through 1-Stop.
  • All truck drivers need to have completed a new site induction
    in order to use the automated truck grids. 1-Stop will block the
    manifesting of cargo to any MSIC card that has not completed the
    training before 20 March. It is important to ensure that all providers
    are up to date with site inductions to prevent delays.
  • Free time for import cargo has been 4 days. This will now be reduced
    to the normal 3 days to ensure cargo flow through the Terminal during
    this period is optimized.
  • Import cargo needs to be delivered as soon as possible after discharge. It
    is important that cargo be removed form the terminal as soon as possible.
  • A new process for Out-of-Gauge cargo will be established when the
    terminal re-opens. Gate B110 will be designated for Out-of-Gauge. Terminal
    stakeholders will be provided with information updates at a later date.
  • The preparations for automation are well progressed with all systems now
    undergoing advanced testing. As part of our ongoing testing, loading and
    discharging a commercial vessel will be conducted next week.
  • Rail is closed for the duration of the terminal closure. Last rail exports arrive 28
    March. First rail exports or imports arrive 2 April.
  • Vessel Operators will be contacted in person ahead of ramp-down next week to
    advise of updated arrangements.

Click here to a view the full update from Patricks: 20150319 Customer Update 4-2015_V01

 

12/03/2015  –  Review of Border Fees, Charges and Taxes

The Australian Customs & Border Protection Service and the Department of Agriculture are completing a Joint Review of Border Fees, Charges and Taxes.

The following is the Freight & Trade Alliance (FTA) summary of the initial position papers and formal consultative forums conducted to date :

  • it appears as though exports will remain exempt from any new fees;
  • low value consignments will attract a new fee with periodic payments to made by the cargo reporter (consistent application across post, cargo and express);
  • high value consignments to have a modified model with fee variations based on the quantum of tariff lines declared;
  • Agriculture to move away from a per container fee charge to provide a more equitable regime across all cargo types;
  • Sec 79 Warehouse and Sec 77G Depot licence fees are likely to be relatively unaffected; and
  • increases to customs broker fees.

High Value Consignments

A view was expressed by an industry sector that fees be collected from all sectors of commerce that provide cargo reports rather a sole reliance on the Full Import Declaration (FID) as currently exists.

FTA position – in line with FTA subscriber feedback, we argued in our submission that there was merit in continuing use of the FID as the primary mechanism to collect fees on ‘commercial’ import consignments. Breaking down this structure with cost recovery fees payable by cargo reporters (shipping lines, airlines, freight forwarders, terminal operators and depot operators) is likely to lead to each supply chain entity adding administration charges for the fee collection and remittance. In effect, is likely that these fees would ‘cascade’ through the supply chain and significantly increase the ultimate cost recovery fee payable by importers.

Low Value Consignments

The express courier sector outlined difficulties that would exist in collecting a new proposed Self Assessment Clearance (SAC) fee and highlighted a need to be on a level playing field with Australia Post express services.

FTA position – we support the position that any new low value fee be applied equally across express, cargo and postal services.

Licensing

In context of customs broker licensing, there was general agreement that:

  • a new fee is warranted for applications;
  • a ‘reasonable’ renewal fee increase may be warranted pending further transparency of costs to be recovered; and
  • further efficiencies (costs to be recovered) may be achieved via automation and online access for industry to report licensing changes.

FTA position – that the renewal period remain on a three year cycle (rather than the proposed one year renewal period) to minimise administration costs.

Where to from here?

We understand that the Fees Review team has developed a series of recommendations which will be put forward for Government consideration in the coming weeks. Following the Government’s decision, more information will be made available on which recommendations will be pursued. Depending on this, the Fees Review team will undertake further industry engagement. Information once available for public release will be disseminated to all entities involved through the consultation process.

Source – FTA

 

11/03/2015  –  DP World Reaction to massive rental rate increase from PoMC

You may be aware that DP World Australia has been making headlines this week. The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian Financial Review, the ABC and other news outlets have been writing about a proposed rental increase for the land DP World occupy at West Swanson Terminal.

DP World have been asked by the Port of Melbourne Corporation to pay roughly eight times the amount of rent they currently pay (or 767 percent to be exact).

This it is unprecedented, and DP World are calling on the Victorian Government to step in to intervene.

The facts:

  • The cost of moving a container through the Port of Melbourne will significantly increase for exporters and importers – and the hundreds of transport and logistics companies that service them – making it  the most expensive port in the world.
  • To give you an idea, in the DP World global family, the Melbourne terminal will be the most expensive of 65 terminals and will cost more than twice as much as the second most expensive terminal to trade through.
  • DP World have been in discussions with the Port of Melbourne Corporation since Christmas 2014, working to reach a solution.
  • DP World are concerned, that if the rent hike goes through, the increases proposed by the Port of Melbourne will drive business, investment and jobs interstate.

DP World’s position is being well supported by the transport and logistics industry, which would also be negatively affected if the rent rise were to go ahead.

Source: FTA / DP World

 

23/02/2015 – Update on import regualtions on berries from China

AAW Global Logistics has received advice from the Department of Agriculture relating to all Full Import Declarations (FID’s) lodged in the Integrated Cargo System (ICS) from 21st February 2015 for consignments of berries imported from China that are decalred under tariff codes 08101000, 08102000, 08103000, 08104000, 08111000, 08112000 and 08119000.

Identifying the producer of the berries

For the purpose of lodging a FID for imported berries, the producer is the commercial or individual’s premises or area in the country of origin whee the berries were grown or processed.  The producer may also be referred to as the manufacturer, processor, packer or establishment.

Generally the producer will conduct the final processing or packaging of the berries and their name and contact details will appear on the final bulk or retail packaging.

The producer of the berries MAY be the same as the exporter/supplier. However, the producer is NOT a third party premises where finished berries are consolidated for export, such as a warehouse or freight forwarder

Source – FTA

 

05/01/2015  –  Quarantine Update: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Emergency Procedures

Notice to Industry 03-2015 – Brown Marmorated Stink Bug: emergency measures for break bulk and containerised vehicles, machinery, automotive parts and tyres.

Page Content

4 February 2015

Update to Notices to Industry 125/2014 and 2/2015?

Who does this notice affect?

This notice is of interest to clients in the import and shipping industry, including importers and customs brokers associated with the importation of break bulk and containerised vehicles, machinery, automotive parts and tyres shipped from the United States.

Background

Industry notice 125-2014 advised of new requirements for break bulk cargo imported from the United States port of Savannah following significant interceptions of Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs (Halyomorpha halys).
The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) is an exotic pest of biosecurity concern to Australia’s agriculture industry. Juveniles and adults feed on and severely damage fruit and vegetable crops, and adults can enter vehicles, machinery, homes and factories in autumn months in large numbers looking for warm places to hide over winter.

  • Industry notice 02-2015 advised of new emergency measures to be introduced from 23 February 2015 for all break bulk vehicles (including boats), machinery, automotive parts, and containerised machinery, automotive parts, and tyres being shipped from the east coast ports of the United States. This followed increased interceptions of the pest in break bulk imports arriving in Australia and New Zealand causing major treatment difficulties and logistic issues in the management of this risk onshore in both countries. The notice included interim measures for consignments in transit from the ports of Savannah and Baltimore.

Both notices are available on the department’s website.

What has changed?

  • Pre-shipment treatment requirements are being expanded to include high risk cargo arriving in Australia from ALL remaining United States ports after 9 March 2015.
  • In addition to the pre-shipment treatments outlined in 02-2015, the department will also accept methyl bromide treatment 40g/m3@16-20°C for 24 hours or 48g/m3@11-15°C for 24 hours.
  • The pre-treatment timeframe for break bulk cargo has been expanded from “within 48″ to “within 72″ hours prior to loading.
  • The pre-treatment time specifications for containerised cargo have been changed from “within 24 hours prior to being containerised” to “within 21 days prior to shipment providing containers are immediately sealed and arrive in Australia “seals intact”.

Emergency measures to manage this pest

1. US east coast ports from 23 February 2015

All break bulk cargo including machinery, vehicles, vessels and automotive parts, and containerised vehicles, machinery, automotive parts and tyres shipped from the east coast ports of United States and arriving in Australia from Monday, 23 February 2015, are required to be:

  • treated prior to shipping
  • accompanied by a certification of efficacy outlining the treatment completed
  • subject to on-arrival inspection as determined by the department.

Mandatory treatments must be applied to:

  • all break bulk vehicles (including boats), machinery, and automotive parts within 72 hours prior to loading
  • containerised shipments of vehicles (including boats), machinery, automotive parts, and tyres within 21 days prior to shipment providing containers are immediately sealed and arrive in Australia “seals intact”.

Acceptable pre-shipment treatments include:

  • heat (60°C/140°F) for 30 minutes in the coldest location of the cargo
  • methyl bromide (32g/m3@21-25°C for 24 hours, 40g/m3@16-20°C for 24 hours or 48g/m3@11-15°C for 24 hours)
  • sulfuryl fluoride (32g/m3@21-25°C for 24 hours, 40g/m3@16-20°C for 24 hours)
  • other pre-shipment treatments or management arrangements approved by the department.

2. All remaining US ports from 9 March 2015

Due to the widespread occurrence of this pest in the United States, all specified break bulk and containerised cargo arriving in Australia from 9 March 2015 from ALL REMAINING United States ports will be subject to the pre-shipment treatment requirements outlined above.

3. Interim measures for consignments in transit

For consignments in transit from the ports of Savannah and Baltimore (without pre-shipment treatment certificates), the on-arrival measures outlined in industry notice 02-2015 will continue to apply.

These consignments will require assessment in situ on the vessel by biosecurity inspectors and will not be permitted discharge until the inspectors are confident that any residual risks posed by the stink bugs are managed. This includes transhipped and transhipping goods and any other cargo on the contaminated vessel due to the significant cross contamination risk with this pest.

Goods on contaminated vessels will only be permitted discharge if the necessary treatment facilities on wharf are available and any mandatory treatments can be implemented within 48 hours of discharge. Complex machinery that cannot be fully risk assessed on board contaminated vessels may not be permitted discharge.

Goods that are permitted to be discharged can only be landed on the wharf and must not be moved from that wharf until the biosecurity officer has released the goods from quarantine following inspection and any treatments required.

Duration

The department anticipates that these emergency measures will be in place until at least the end of April 2015.

Further Information

Further information is provided in the Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs Frequently Asked Questions. If you have any other concerns or questions please contact your regional office or call the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Hotline on 1800 195 543.

While the department is taking every precaution to manage the risk posed by this and other pests, it relies on the cooperation of industry and the public to assist us by reporting any insect or other pest that may be of biosecurity concern.

If you see something that could be a Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, please report it to the See, Secure, Report Hotline on 1800 798 636.

 

16/01/2015  –  West Coast USA Congestion Update

There has been no improvement in the congestion situation that exists in the West Coast USA.  Since the Christmas and New Year’s holidays it has in fact worsened.  The entire supply chain is facing delays which are impacting both imports and exports along the entire West Coast.  This includes Seattle/Tacoma, Oakland/San Francisco and Los Angeles/Longbeach.

Factors contributing to the congestion include:

  • Vessels are unable to berth upon arrival and often at anchor for days
  • There is slow productivity with the loading / unloading of vessels
  • Containers are being buried in areas that are not easily accessible which can result in delays of collection of boxes
  • Continuing lack of availability of good chassis along with a lack of qualified drivers
  • Ongoing congestion at the rail
  • The labour dispute between employers (PMA) and longshoremen (ILWU) has worsened

The federal government in the USA has appointed a mediator to try to resolve the issues between employers and longshoremen however the battle has intensified this week with both sides blaming one another for the situation.

At this stage there is no sign of improvement in the short term.  It is our intention to continue to keep you informed of this unprecedented ongoing situation and do everything we can to minimise the impact on you, our valued customer.

23/12/2014  –  MSC launches worlds largest containership – MSC Oscar

It was reported in Lloyds List that a new world record is about to be set by MSC Oscar, Mediterranean Shipping Co’s latest vessel, whose nominal capacity of 19,224 TEU makes it the largest containership afloat.

Click Here to watch the launching of MSC Oscar.

 

19/12/2014  –  Industrial Action at DP World Fremantle

AAW Global has received the following update from DP World today 19 December 2014.

We regret to advise that industrial action being undertaken by the Maritime Union of Australia has severely constrained our labour supply on the day shift today. There have been no landside operations this morning with the gate being closed from 0600 until 1400. We have been able to continue some quayline operations but at a reduced level. We expect that normal operations both on the quayline and the landside will resume at 1400 today.

We apologise for this short notice. This action had previously been advised and then withdrawn before being reintroduced again late last night. This disruptive action concerns local issues and is not related to the EA related stoppages that we have seen in the East Coast terminals over the past few days.

 

19/12/2014  –  Japan Free Trade Agreement

The Japan Australia Economic Partnership Agreement, commonly referred to as the Japan Australia FTA or JAEPA, will come into force on 15 January 2015.

This will provide the benefit of two rounds of tariff reductions for importers and exporters in the first half of next year, the first on 15 January 2015 and the second on 1 April 2015.

This follows the commencement of the Korea Australia FTA on 12 December 2014, with another round of tariff reductions to occur on January 1 2015.

The full text of the JAEPA agreement is available on the DFAT website www.dfat.gov.au/fta/jaepa together with a range of fact sheets and explanatory materials.

Or please contact your local AAW Global office for further assistance.

 

19/12/2014  –  DP World Industrial Action Update

Good News!

Following the conference at Fair Work Commission on Monday 15 December 2014 and subsequent discussions between the parties, an agreed framework is now in place between DP World Australia, the MUA and Employee Bargaining Representatives.

“DP World welcomes these developments and a commitment from all parties to cease any further disruption over the festive season.  However, the MUA WA continue to press local issues which may result in minimal disruption.  The first conciliation is scheduled for 7 and 8 January and we look forward to resolving a number of issues early in the New Year.”

Further updates will be posted in due course

 

05/12/2014  –  Shipping Lines Announce Origin Terminal Move Charge for 2015

Shipping Lines have indicated, “Following market developments, we wish to advise you that effective from January 1st, 2015 the below surcharge will be applied to all cargo on the direct Australia/New Zealand trade lane”.

Origin Terminal Move Charge (OTMC): Will be applicable for all cargo from the United States (via Long Beach/Los Angeles and Oakland) to Australia and New Zealand.

Effective Date:  January 1, 2015

  •  USD 75/20’ containers dry / reefer / all equipment types
  •  USD 150/40’ containers dry / reefer / all equipment types

 

25/11/2014  –  Logging Import Regulatory Update

This notice updates the notice published on 19 August 2014 as 79/2014 and provides some additional information on the measures being undertaken by the department to help businesses adjust to the new requirements.

Who does this notice affect?

The illegal logging laws affect businesses who import certain regulated timber and timber products into Australia.

What has changed?

Under the Illegal Logging Prohibition Act 2012, it is a criminal offence to import illegally logged timber and timber products into Australia.  A new element of the laws, as outlined in the Illegal Logging Prohibition Amendment Regulation 2013 (the Regulation), will come into effect on 30 November 2014.  From this date, importers of regulated timber or timber products (as defined in Schedule 1 of the Regulation) will need to assess and manage the risk that the timber has been illegally logged before importing that product. This is known as carrying out ‘due diligence’.

The regulated timber products are identified using Customs tariff codes and fit within Chapters 44, 47, 48 and 94 of the tariff codes. This includes most timber and wood-based products such as sawn timber, veneer, mouldings, wood panels, plywood, pulp, paper and wooden furniture.  Importers will also need to answer a simple declaration question about their compliance with their due diligence obligations. This will be via a community protection question as part of their full import declaration to Customs. Regardless of whether an importer answers yes or no to the declaration question, their goods will not be held up at the border.

Importers should be aware that the new due diligence requirements apply to all imports of timber arriving in Australia from 30 November 2014. This is irrespective of whether the order was placed before or after that date.

The department recognises it may take time for some businesses to transition to the new requirements. For this reason, for the 18 months following the Regulation’s commencement, the department’s focus will be on helping importers and processors to comply with the Regulation requirements.  During this period, the department will not be seeking to ‘catch out’ businesses who are trying to do the right thing. Instead its focus will be on working with businesses to ensure they have sufficient information to understand and comply with the due diligence requirements.

Illegal logging due diligence V1

 

10/11/2014  –  DP World Brisbane Storage Rates from December 2014

DP World Brisbane have issued a notification advising that effective from 1st December 2014 import storage rates for laden and empty containers held at DP World Terminal Fisherman Islands Terminal will be amended to reflect the increase in terminal occupancy costs.

Please follow below link to view the DP World notice.

DPW Storage Notice

 

05/11/2014  –  Update on Terminal Congestion in Los Angeles / Long Beach

Transportation specialists are urging the Los Angeles and Long Beach port authorities to rise above their landlord status and initiate immediate changes to improve truck turn times, or risk a total meltdown in the harbor.

“The landlord operation doesn’t work,” said Jon DeCesare president of WCL Consulting. “There has to be a sense of urgency. The ports must act quickly,” DeCesare told the Los Angeles Transportation Club Tuesday.

Coincidentally, while the LATC was discussing the ports’ congestion problem, the Long Beach Harbor Commission was voting Tuesday to approve a motion directing port staff to develop plans for purchasing and providing the harbor community with thousands of chassis to be used for congestion relief during peak periods.

The largest U.S. port complex continues to suffer from congestion caused by growing cargo volumes, chassis dislocations, vessels operated by carrier alliances calling at multiple terminals, cargo surges from big ships, gate hour restrictions at terminals, a truck capacity shortage, intermodal rail delays and labor uncertainties as the ILWU contract negotiations drag on.

While other large ports in Europe, the U.S. and Canada have also suffered from congestion problems that started with a flood of big ships entering the major east-west trade lanes, the problems in Southern California have been more intense and longer lasting, and congestion is threatening the viability of harbor drayage operators.

“The single biggest choke point in the global supply chain is drayage in Southern California,” said James Mucci, professor and adviser, EWH Assessment and Development.

The ports have no time to waste, said Mike Johnson, operations director, Port Logistics Group. The cycle of terminal congestion and excessive truck turn times that is present now during the peak shipping season will repeat itself in January-February when another spike in cargo occurs in the pre-Chinese New Year months, he said.

As landlord ports, Los Angeles and Long Beach are limited as to what they can do. They do not operate the marine terminals, but rather lease them to terminal operators, Historically, they have viewed their roles as that of facilitators.

For example, the ports two years ago formed a stakeholders’ group to work on the chassis issue. Long Beach two weeks ago formed a congestion relief team to address all congestion issues. One immediate result was a commitment last week by DCLI and TRAC Intermodal to inject 3,000 more chassis into their Southern California fleets.

On Tuesday, the harbor commission directed port staff within 30 days to develop a chassis purchase program, which could include establishing an organization to purchase, service and manage the equipment. Jon Slangerup, Long Beach executive director, said chassis dislocations due to a mismatch of where chassis are located and where they are needed are the root cause of congestion today. “This current peak congestion crisis is something that was avoidable,” he said.

If the ports are to be more proactive, they must use their tariffs or other means at their disposal to influence terminal operators, shipping lines, retailers and other beneficial cargo owners that ship their merchandise through the ports. All of those stakeholders contribute to the congestion problems.

Mucci said many BCOs know very little about marine terminal operations. Their main interest is to secure the lowest possible freight rate in their service contract negotiations with shipping lines. The BCOs often rely on freight forwarders or other intermediaries to deal with delays at the ports.

Retailers and other BCOs end up paying for this lack of involvement further along in the supply chain, Mucci said. They experience delays in retrieving their containers at congested marine terminals, and they incur demurrage and equipment detention charges, unless they pass those charges on to truckers.

BCOs that do not contract with quality motor carriers may actually end up paying higher drayage rates to secure last-minute capacity if the truckers with whom they contracted fail to perform during peak periods.

“I hope the BCOs understand this,” Mucci said. BCOs should study the performance of marine terminals where their ocean carriers call. If those terminals are always congested, or if the ocean carriers’ house truckers do not perform,the BCOs should switch to carriers that call at more efficient terminals. They should also do business with quality motor carriers. “The BCOs should look for value, not price,” he said.

Shipping line sales personnel compound the problem by guaranteeing large retailers extra free time for storing containers at the terminals, or extra days, or even weeks, to leave the container-chassis combos at the BCO warehouses. Mucci said the containers back up at the marine terminals, further aggravating the congestion problems, and the chassis sitting idle at the BCOs’ distribution warehouses are chassis that are not available for use by other shippers.

DeCesare suggested that the ports could dramatically reduce congestion by emulating Japanese ports. He said those ports tell BCOs, “Move the freight in three days or we will move it for you.”

The terminals also contribute to the problem by failing to keep their gates open longer, closing off sections of their terminals to trucks without giving prior notice and failing to adhere to what the industry considers to be an acceptable turn time at the terminal gates, Johnson said. “Our position is, one hour is that metric,” he said.

The ILWU further aggravated the congestion problem in Southern California last week by making some drivers go through extra and unnecessary safety inspections, possibly to secure leverage in the contract negotiations with waterfront employers. The California Trucking Association said it received numerous complaints from member companies, and the CTA emphasized that the delays caused by the dockworkers were terribly costly to drivers, who are paid by the trip.

In fact, delays and congestion at the ports are also quite costly for the terminal operators who employ the longshoremen. According to figures posted on the website of the Pacific Maritime Association for the four-week period ending Oct. 3, ILWU man-hours paid in Los Angeles-Long Beach were 25 percent higher than for the same period last year, but container volumes were up only slightly more than 1 percent.

The long turn times at many of the 13 container terminals in the harbor are devastating for truckers, Johnson said. In September, truck visits of two hours or longer, which truckers consider totally unacceptable, shot up to 28 percent of all truck trips in the harbor, compared with 24 percent in August.

Those numbers were gathered by the Harbor Trucking Association’s Truck Mobility Data project using GPS devices mounted on trucks. The project has shown continued deterioration of truck turn times since the beginning of the year, Johnson said.

Source:  US Lines

 

25/11/2014  –  Logging Import Regulatory Update

This notice updates the notice published on 19 August 2014 as 79/2014 and provides some additional information on the measures being undertaken by the department to help businesses adjust to the new requirements.

Who does this notice affect?

The illegal logging laws affect businesses who import certain regulated timber and timber products into Australia.

What has changed?

Under the Illegal Logging Prohibition Act 2012, it is a criminal offence to import illegally logged timber and timber products into Australia.  A new element of the laws, as outlined in the Illegal Logging Prohibition Amendment Regulation 2013 (the Regulation), will come into effect on 30 November 2014.  From this date, importers of regulated timber or timber products (as defined in Schedule 1 of the Regulation) will need to assess and manage the risk that the timber has been illegally logged before importing that product. This is known as carrying out ‘due diligence’.

The regulated timber products are identified using Customs tariff codes and fit within Chapters 44, 47, 48 and 94 of the tariff codes. This includes most timber and wood-based products such as sawn timber, veneer, mouldings, wood panels, plywood, pulp, paper and wooden furniture.  Importers will also need to answer a simple declaration question about their compliance with their due diligence obligations. This will be via a community protection question as part of their full import declaration to Customs. Regardless of whether an importer answers yes or no to the declaration question, their goods will not be held up at the border.

Importers should be aware that the new due diligence requirements apply to all imports of timber arriving in Australia from 30 November 2014. This is irrespective of whether the order was placed before or after that date.

The department recognises it may take time for some businesses to transition to the new requirements. For this reason, for the 18 months following the Regulation’s commencement, the department’s focus will be on helping importers and processors to comply with the Regulation requirements.  During this period, the department will not be seeking to ‘catch out’ businesses who are trying to do the right thing. Instead its focus will be on working with businesses to ensure they have sufficient information to understand and comply with the due diligence requirements.

Illegal logging due diligence V1

 

10/11/2014  –  DP World Brisbane Storage Rates from December 2014

DP World Brisbane have issued a notification advising that effective from 1st December 2014 import storage rates for laden and empty containers held at DP World Terminal Fisherman Islands Terminal will be amended to reflect the increase in terminal occupancy costs.

Please follow below link to view the DP World notice.

DPW Storage Notice

 

05/11/2014  –  Update on Terminal Congestion in Los Angeles / Long Beach

Transportation specialists are urging the Los Angeles and Long Beach port authorities to rise above their landlord status and initiate immediate changes to improve truck turn times, or risk a total meltdown in the harbor.

“The landlord operation doesn’t work,” said Jon DeCesare president of WCL Consulting. “There has to be a sense of urgency. The ports must act quickly,” DeCesare told the Los Angeles Transportation Club Tuesday.

Coincidentally, while the LATC was discussing the ports’ congestion problem, the Long Beach Harbor Commission was voting Tuesday to approve a motion directing port staff to develop plans for purchasing and providing the harbor community with thousands of chassis to be used for congestion relief during peak periods.

The largest U.S. port complex continues to suffer from congestion caused by growing cargo volumes, chassis dislocations, vessels operated by carrier alliances calling at multiple terminals, cargo surges from big ships, gate hour restrictions at terminals, a truck capacity shortage, intermodal rail delays and labor uncertainties as the ILWU contract negotiations drag on.

While other large ports in Europe, the U.S. and Canada have also suffered from congestion problems that started with a flood of big ships entering the major east-west trade lanes, the problems in Southern California have been more intense and longer lasting, and congestion is threatening the viability of harbor drayage operators.

“The single biggest choke point in the global supply chain is drayage in Southern California,” said James Mucci, professor and adviser, EWH Assessment and Development.

The ports have no time to waste, said Mike Johnson, operations director, Port Logistics Group. The cycle of terminal congestion and excessive truck turn times that is present now during the peak shipping season will repeat itself in January-February when another spike in cargo occurs in the pre-Chinese New Year months, he said.

As landlord ports, Los Angeles and Long Beach are limited as to what they can do. They do not operate the marine terminals, but rather lease them to terminal operators, Historically, they have viewed their roles as that of facilitators.

For example, the ports two years ago formed a stakeholders’ group to work on the chassis issue. Long Beach two weeks ago formed a congestion relief team to address all congestion issues. One immediate result was a commitment last week by DCLI and TRAC Intermodal to inject 3,000 more chassis into their Southern California fleets.

On Tuesday, the harbor commission directed port staff within 30 days to develop a chassis purchase program, which could include establishing an organization to purchase, service and manage the equipment. Jon Slangerup, Long Beach executive director, said chassis dislocations due to a mismatch of where chassis are located and where they are needed are the root cause of congestion today. “This current peak congestion crisis is something that was avoidable,” he said.

If the ports are to be more proactive, they must use their tariffs or other means at their disposal to influence terminal operators, shipping lines, retailers and other beneficial cargo owners that ship their merchandise through the ports. All of those stakeholders contribute to the congestion problems.

Mucci said many BCOs know very little about marine terminal operations. Their main interest is to secure the lowest possible freight rate in their service contract negotiations with shipping lines. The BCOs often rely on freight forwarders or other intermediaries to deal with delays at the ports.

Retailers and other BCOs end up paying for this lack of involvement further along in the supply chain, Mucci said. They experience delays in retrieving their containers at congested marine terminals, and they incur demurrage and equipment detention charges, unless they pass those charges on to truckers.

BCOs that do not contract with quality motor carriers may actually end up paying higher drayage rates to secure last-minute capacity if the truckers with whom they contracted fail to perform during peak periods.

“I hope the BCOs understand this,” Mucci said. BCOs should study the performance of marine terminals where their ocean carriers call. If those terminals are always congested, or if the ocean carriers’ house truckers do not perform,the BCOs should switch to carriers that call at more efficient terminals. They should also do business with quality motor carriers. “The BCOs should look for value, not price,” he said.

Shipping line sales personnel compound the problem by guaranteeing large retailers extra free time for storing containers at the terminals, or extra days, or even weeks, to leave the container-chassis combos at the BCO warehouses. Mucci said the containers back up at the marine terminals, further aggravating the congestion problems, and the chassis sitting idle at the BCOs’ distribution warehouses are chassis that are not available for use by other shippers.

DeCesare suggested that the ports could dramatically reduce congestion by emulating Japanese ports. He said those ports tell BCOs, “Move the freight in three days or we will move it for you.”

The terminals also contribute to the problem by failing to keep their gates open longer, closing off sections of their terminals to trucks without giving prior notice and failing to adhere to what the industry considers to be an acceptable turn time at the terminal gates, Johnson said. “Our position is, one hour is that metric,” he said.

The ILWU further aggravated the congestion problem in Southern California last week by making some drivers go through extra and unnecessary safety inspections, possibly to secure leverage in the contract negotiations with waterfront employers. The California Trucking Association said it received numerous complaints from member companies, and the CTA emphasized that the delays caused by the dockworkers were terribly costly to drivers, who are paid by the trip.

In fact, delays and congestion at the ports are also quite costly for the terminal operators who employ the longshoremen. According to figures posted on the website of the Pacific Maritime Association for the four-week period ending Oct. 3, ILWU man-hours paid in Los Angeles-Long Beach were 25 percent higher than for the same period last year, but container volumes were up only slightly more than 1 percent.

The long turn times at many of the 13 container terminals in the harbor are devastating for truckers, Johnson said. In September, truck visits of two hours or longer, which truckers consider totally unacceptable, shot up to 28 percent of all truck trips in the harbor, compared with 24 percent in August.

Those numbers were gathered by the Harbor Trucking Association’s Truck Mobility Data project using GPS devices mounted on trucks. The project has shown continued deterioration of truck turn times since the beginning of the year, Johnson said.

Source:  US Lines

 

04/11/2014  –  Announcement from Dept. of Environment

The following information has been provided to you by The Department of the Environment.

“The Department of the Environment has advised that from today (4 November 2014), a licence is no longer required for a low volume import of equipment containing Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) or Synthetic Greenhouse Gases (SGG), if all of the following conditions are met:

  • there are no more than five units of ODS/SGG equipment in a single consignment; and
  • there is less than 10 kg in total of HCFC, HFC, PFC, or SF6; and
  • the importer has not had an import of ODS/SGG equipment in the past two years.

Ozone Depleting Substances and Synthetic Greenhouse Gases are commonly found in refrigeration and air-conditioning equipment (as well as in electrical switchgear, aerosols and a wide range of other products).

Previously, one-off, low volume importers of ODS/SGG equipment required a Low Volume Import Licence (LVIL) costing $400. From 4 November 2014, this licence has been abolished (low volume imports arriving before this date still need to be licensed).

Regular importers of ODS/SGG equipment or importers exceeding the above threshold will continue to require a full ODS/SGG Equipment Licence (EQPL), costing $3,000. The online application for an EQPL can be found on the Department of the Environment’s website (under the heading ‘Licence Application Forms’) at:

http://www.environment.gov.au/protection/ozone/licences-and-reporting/forms

General information for Customs Brokers is on the Department’s website at:

http://www.environment.gov.au/protection/ozone/licences/customs-brokers

For further information please contact the Department of the Environment’s Import Operations Section on (02) 6274 1373 or email: ozone@environment.gov.au

 

21/10/2014  –  Terminal Congestion Update in Los Angeles / Long Beach

Congestion at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach grew worse over the weekend, as late peak-season container volumes descend on the largest U.S. port complex.  In an article published in the Journal of Commerce yesterday, Bill Mongelluzzo indicated that the current LA-LB Port Congestion has no relief in sight.  More from the article below:

“The vessels keep arriving and the trucks keep arriving,” said John Cushing, president of PierPass Inc., which manages the extended gates program for the 13 container terminals in the port complex.
Cushing said terminal operators are spending millions of dollars and taking extraordinary steps, including running very costly “hoot owl” shifts from 3 a.m. to 8 a.m. to relieve congestion in their container yards. But the cargo keeps building up at the terminals. According to the individual ports, combined container throughput in 2014 through August at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are 4.5 percent higher than the same period in 2013.

Each terminal operator has a slightly different story to tell. Some terminals say the congestion ebbs and flows depending upon chassis availability. A terminal will get enough chassis for several consecutive days to clean out its yard, but then the equipment supply dries up and the terminal is congested again.
“There are times when the imports are not moving. The numbers are outrageous —6,000 to 7,000 containers just sitting at the terminals,” he said.

Another terminal operator said he is working only two cranes each week against a vessel with a capacity of 10,000 20-foot containers, rather than five cranes as he should be, because the yard can not absorb any more boxes. Vessel operations are slowing down to the point where some terminals are in danger of having to tell vessel operators to slow down their arrivals because the ships can not be handled on schedule.

Large North American gateways such as Los Angeles-Long Beach, New York-New Jersey and Vancouver, Canada, have been struggling with congestion problems on and off throughout the year. The ripple effect of brutal winter weather in the eastern half of the continent, congestion and rail car shortages on the rail networks, truck and driver shortages and chassis dislocations are well documented.

In Southern California, truckers and terminal operators point to point being in short supply, in the wrong place at the wrong time or chassis being out-of-service as being the main culprit.  “Chassis are the Achilles’ Heel here,” said Fred Johring, president of Golden State Express and chairman of the Harbor Trucking Association of Southern California.

Ocean carriers earlier this year exited the chassis business in Los Angeles-Long Beach and New York-New Jersey, selling the assets to chassis leasing companies. Terminals on both coasts immediately began to report that they did not have enough chassis, not because the overall supplies in the harbors were reduced, but because the business relationships involving cargo interests, shipping lines, terminal operators and chassis providers had changed.

Suddenly, truckers were told by a terminal that the chassis they needed were no longer being stored at the terminal, so the truckers had to make an extra trip to a location where the chassis suppliers stored the equipment. In instances where a terminal had chassis, many more chassis than usual were being “red-tagged” as being out of service and in need of repair.

Terminal operators say the chassis providers are refusing to pay the suddenly high repair costs that terminals with International Longshore and Warehouse Union labour are charging, or the chassis providers would only authorize repairs during the 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. day shift to avoid overtime pay. Chassis providers say they are authorizing repairs as quickly as they can, and have indicated to the ports that there are not enough skilled mechanics at the terminals to do the work.

As containers back up at the terminals, ILWU labour is working overtime just to do the normal work of unloading vessels, cleaning out the yards and processing trucks into and out of the facilities. According to figures posted on the website of the Pacific Maritime Association, the container volumes handled in Los Angeles-Long Beach in August were up 1 percent from August 2013, but the man-hours paid by the terminals were 20 percent higher.

Citing those numbers, PMA President Jim McKenna said, “when we’re using 20 percent more labor to do 1 percent more volume, we’re doing a lot of work.”

McKenna put the problems at the ports squarely on the shoulders of the chassis issue. “The root of all evils in the harbor is the chassis shortage,” he said.

The extra moves that longshoremen must make each day to clean up the container backlog are sucking up skilled labor, and terminals are reporting that the PMA has begun to rationalize the dispatching of positions like top handlers and rubber-tired gantry operators. Those positions can not be handled to part-time workers, known as casuals.

The extra work is also forcing terminals to use a higher percentage of casuals for driving yard tractors and other positions they can fill, but productivity normally drops when the percentage of casuals increases.

Terminal operators say a shortage of truck drivers both in the harbor area, and at the warehouses in the Inland Empire 50 miles from the ports, is causing the dwell times for containers and chassis to skyrocket.  Alex Cherin, executive director of the Harbor Trucking Association, said the HTA saw the driver shortage surface several years ago as a result of the clean-trucks program in Southern California. The truck and driver population of mostly owner-operators went from 15,000 to less than 10,000 as non-compliant trucks were phased out.

HTA took actions such as helping to develop a driver training program at a local community college, but the overall problem was masked by the economic recession. Now that the recession is over, the driver shortage is all too apparent, he said.

“You hear more about it on the drayage side, but it exists throughout the industry. It’s a national problem,” Cherin said.

As a result, hundreds of chassis with empty containers are sitting idle at the 1.5 billion square feet of warehouse and distribution facilities throughout Southern California, effectively taking the chassis out of use. Trucking companies say the beneficial cargo owners are so desperate to get their inbound loads that they are telling drivers not to bring the empties back to the harbor and be forced to wait two hours or longer to be processed, but rather to go “bobtail” right to the harbor as soon as the inbound containers are cleared for pickup.

Terminal operators confirm that the number of dual transactions (empty container into the terminal and loaded import container out of the terminal) have plummeted. Cushing said that PierPass is meeting with chassis providers, truckers, shipping lines and terminal operators in an attempt to work out at least a short-term solution to problem. After having met with executives of the three largest equipment providers — Direct ChassisLink Inc., Flexi-Van and Trac Intermodal — PierPass was told a long-term solution to the chassis problems will not materialize until early 2015, Cushing said..

 

13/10/2014 – USA Labour Update / Chassis Imbalance leads to Terminal Congestion

FAILURE to reach an agreement by west coast waterfront management and labour is damaging port operations and contributing to congestion, says the US National Retail Federation (NRF).

In a letter to the leaders of the employers group, the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA), and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU), retail NRF president and CEO Matt Shay said:

“Whether intentional or not, the fact that neither the PMA nor ILWU has made any public progress report in more than a month is sending a very troublesome and disconcerting signal.

“We urge the parties to quickly come to a conclusion on a new labour agreement as a means to resolve the ongoing congestion issues impacting the west coast ports,” he said.

“At a minimum, we ask that the parties extend the expired contract through November in order to reinstate arbitration agreements, which are preventing many issues at the ports from being addressed, said Mr Shay.

“Retailers are now in the midst of their heaviest shipping season of the year preparing for the upcoming holidays, which are a take it or break it? time for merchants,” he said

Mr Shay said retailers were instituting costly contingency plans in early 2014 to ensure that merchandise would reach stores in time for the critical holiday shopping season.

Finalising a new contract is an “absolutely critical component” to working through the backlog of shipping containers now piling up, he said.

“We are deeply troubled by the fact that no apparent progress has been made in the negotiations since August, when the PMA and ILWU announced a ‘tentative deal’ on health benefits,” said Mr Shay.

Source: HKSG Group Media Ltd

Long Beach: Bigger ships and poor chassis accessibility cause congestion

THE Long Beach Harbour Department, having formed a “congestion relief team” see two main causes of current congestion problems – bigger ships dumping masses of cargo at once and a lack of chassis to get it off the docks.

“There is a chassis imbalance,” said Long Beach port chief operating officer Noel Hacegaba. “This is a big part of the congestion issue.”

A surge of larger ships has taxed terminals, reported the American Journal of Transportation, a reflection of problems around the world of big ships unloading cargo without adequate takeaway facilities.

Long Beach is also seeking talks with the Federal Maritime Commission to hold talks about congestion with the Port of Los Angeles with which it share San Pedro Bay.

Source: HKSG Group Media Ltd.

 

08/10/2014 – Terminal congestion in Los Angeles and LongBeach continues

The LA-LB port congestion is getting steadily worse and was the key topic at the annual WESCCON (Western Cargo Conference) for freight forwarders, NVOCCs and Customs Brokers from October 16-19 in San Diego. Mr. Gene Seroka, Executive Director of the Port of Los Angeles, expressed serious concerns to the WESCCON audience regarding the Southern California port congestion.

Today, The Journal of Commerce is reporting that some harbor truckers are now imposing their own congestion surcharges on importers between $50 and $100 per hour.

Until the ILWU/PMA contract issue is resolved and signed, there can be no workable solution as negotiating parties will not commit to any solution that may impact their bargaining leverage. Even after the contract has been mutually accepted, Mr. Seroka speculated that it would take 30 days for ILWU’s members to ratify it, putting a possible labour agreement in place maybe by the end of 2014.

Mr. Seroka suggested a non-profit container pool and the idea of utilizing an existing 13 acres at the Port of Los Angeles for an extra container yard. Terminal operators are still hesitant, however, to make any constructive changes regarding the additional acreage. They are unsure whether and how the PMA would be willing to share the maintenance and repair of containers moved to off-dock facilities.

As a result of the congestion shipping lines are now rolling containers (delay in shipping until next sailing),

The Port of Oakland and other West Coast ports are preparing to handle the possible influx of new inbound ocean traffic from Asia.

 

Source – Capital Distribution Services