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  • 26 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Biggest plane in the world thronged by thousands on arrival in Perth
    source: Shippingazette
     
    A 117 TON generator aboard an Antonov-225 has landed for the first time in Australia thronged by thousands of onlookers in Perth.
     
    "The excitement was great, there were high expectations", said Ron Koehler, CEO of Schenker Australia Pty Ltd. 
     
    "To organise air freight in an Antonov 225 is an absolute highlight. The cooperation between our experts in Adelaide and Perth with Czech colleagues went smoothly," he said.
     
    Karpeles Flight Services, a specialist unit of DB Logistics subsidiary DB Schenker were responsible for the around the world trip.
     
    The transport of the generator started on May 10 in the city of Pilsen (Czech Republic), from where it was brought overnight by a special multiple-axles truck to Prague. 
     
     
     
    American Airlines, LATAM File For Joint Venture Antitrust Immunity
    source: CIFFA 
     
    The cargo operations of American Airlines and LATAM could soon be integrated into the airlines' "metal neutral" alliance, which allows both carriers to book passengers, and potentially freight on the same route and share the revenues regardless of the operator for each flight. Under the terms submitted on May 16 to the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) by the two airlines, the carriers would use each other's fleets and facilities to move freight along select routes. This development sets in motion, "the first broadly immunized joint business operating between North and South America." Once enacted, the two airlines anticipate a reduction in fares of up to 28 percent on connecting itineraries, according to documents submitted in the filing. (Excerpted from Air Cargo News)
     
     
    Air Traffic Controllers in France to Strike May 26 and Additional Days in June
    source: CIFFA
     
    French air traffic controllers (ATCs) are scheduled to strike again Thursday, May 26. Airlines for Europe (A4E) said in a statement that the air traffic controllers will work on reduced capacity for at least 24 hours starting Thursday morning. They (A4E) also said that there are further strikes scheduled from June 3-5 and again on June 14. The latest ATC strikes in Greece, Italy, Belgium and France in March, April and May have caused more than 2,500 cancellations among A4E members and more than one million minutes of delay (more than 16,000 hours) across all airlines operating in European airspace.


    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    CMA CGM announces new Westbound call at Port Kelang on REX 2
    Source: AJOT 
     
    CMA CGM announced the introduction of a new Westbound call at Port Kelang on its REX 2 service connecting Asia with Red Sea.
     
    To maintain and upgrade its service quality, CMA CGM has decided to replace REX2 W’B Singapore call by Port Kelang. This new routing grants the full coverage and transit time improvements through our advanced Feeder network in Asia.
     
    As from m/v E.R TIANSHAN voy. 125REW, expected to call at Port Kelang on June 16th, 2016, all Southeast Asia cargo will be routed via Port Kelang instead of Singapore, new REX 2 rotation being as follows:
     
    Shanghai - Ningbo - Kaohsiung - Shekou - Port Kelang - Jeddah - Ain Sukhna - Aqaba - Jeddah - Djibouti - Port Kelang - Singapore - Shanghai

     
    Importers Also Feel the Impact of the VGM Rule
    source: American Shipper
     
    The International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) July 1 deadline for ocean carriers to collect the certified weight of each container prior to loading is directed at exporters, but importers are indirectly affected too.
     
    Importers have a stake in the developments because they need their overseas suppliers – who are exporters – to provide the data so their goods get on the vessel and to stores as scheduled.
     
     Many retailers and manufacturers are checking with their vendors to make sure they are as ready as possible.
     
    In an interview at the US Chamber of Commerce’s Global Supply Chain Summit, Jon Gold, vice president of supply chain and customs policy at the National Retail Federation, complained that carriers have not made clear exactly how shippers are supposed to provide the verified gross mass (VGM) data they seek.
     
     
     
    Marine insurer fears VGM rule will bring short-term pain to supply chain
    source: Shippingazette
     
    SHIPPING and logistics companies as well as shippers will not be ready for the verification of the gross mass (VGM) of packed containers, and this will likely affect the cargo insurance sector, said the International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI).
     
    "Issues include increases in risk exposure due to disturbances in the supply chain, unweighed containers being refused on board with delays for perishables or time-sensitive cargoes and the consequent accumulation risk associated with more containers languishing in ports," said the IUMI press release. 
     

     
    Port strike adds to French transport woes
    source: Lloyd'sLoadingList
     
    A two-day port strike in France starting today is adding to the difficulties faced by the freight transport sector, which is already having to cope with fuel shortages due to industrial action at distribution depots and oil refineries.
     
    At the Port of Marseille, a strike by dockworkers has led to a total shutdown in activity, including at the major container terminal of Fos, and the stoppage is expected to continue tomorrow as well. Five containerships bound for Marseille have modified their itinerary, a spokesperson for the Mediterranean port confirmed.
     
    While Lloyd’s Loading List has been unable to obtain confirmation, it appears to be a similar situation at France’s other main container gateway, Le Havre, where last week 70 port calls were impacted by strike action.  
     
    At time of writing, no one at either Maersk or CMA CGM was available to comment on how its schedules were being impacted by the French ports strike. 
     

     
    MSC rationalises Americas services
    source: Lloyds Loading List
     
    MSC is to combine its Europe-North America and North America-west coast South America services into a single service.
     
    The  SAWC-USA-NWC consolidates the US east coast to South America west coast and northern Europe to South America west coast services and will launch when the 8,800 teu MSC Brunellasails from Rotterdam on June 14.  

    Read more here. 

     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    India could force Apple to alter supply chains for greater market share
     
    source: The Loadstar
    A new Indian regulation could have an interesting impact on Apple’s supply chain. For the hi-tech behemoth to open its own shops in India, it must source at least 30% of its components locally. As we all know, most of its products are made in China – or other Foxconn locations – and it would not be able to meet the Indian rule, just ratified by the finance minister. Apple has a relatively small market share in India, where less expensive devices are more popular, but the Californian company is eyeing growth there.  

    Read more here. 


     
    World better to forget oil at $100 a barrel, says Norway
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Oil prices are on the increase again, and pretty quickly too, leading some to wonder what will happen to carriers that have managed to overcome overcapacity woes via cheap fuel. What will happen to those balance sheets once fuel returns to the levels of a few years ago? In this fascinating Bloomberg interview, Norway’s petroleum and energy minister, Tord Lien, says it is unlikely and takes the unusual position – for a country dependent on hydrocarbon prices – that it shouldn’t happen.  

    Read more here.  

  • 25 May 2016

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    China approves CMA CGM acquisition of NOL
    source: Lloyds Loading List
     
    Container shipping group CMA CGM today received confirmation that its pending acquisition of south-east Asia’s largest container shipping company, Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), has been cleared by the Anti-monopoly Bureau of China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), with a binding offer expected by 2 June.  

    Read more here.  

     
    MSC Adds Osaka and Tokyo (Japan) To/From Canada
    source: CIFFA
     
    MSC (Canada) Inc. announced on Tuesday two new additions to the Origami Express, Osaka and Tokyo both in  
    Japan. Please see below the details of transit times from Canadian ports of load.
     
    FROM/TO:                    Via Transshipment     OSAKA             TOKYO 
    MONTREAL                  Antwerp/Ningbo            46                     47 
    PRINCE RUPERT         Ningbo                          28                     29
    VANCOUVER                Ningbo                          29                     30
    SAINT JOHN                 Freeport/Ningbo            50                     51
     
    (Export Transit Times in Days)
     
    For further information contact your local Sales team by phone at 1-800-634-3711 or email at canadarates@msc.com 
     
     
    Dockworkers Plan 48 Hour Strike In Greece Starting May 26
    source: CIFFA
     
    Dockworkers from Piraeus and Thessaloniki in Greece are planning 48 hour rolling strikes starting at 06:00 local time on  
    26 May. The strike action will impact porters, stevedores, cranes, gantry cranes, forklifts and the shuttle bus service  
    into the port. They are protesting against the Greek Government's privatisation of Piraeus and Thessaloniki's ports.
     
     
    IMO calls on member states to delay enforcement of VGM rule for 3 months
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE UN's International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has called for a three-month delay in implementing its July 1 rule that no container be loaded aboard ship without its weight being verified.
     
    The safety rule has triggered fears of widespread backups, reports the Wall Street Journal. Now the IMO's Maritime Safety Committee is urging member state governments to postpone enforcement of the rule until October 1
     
    Freight insurer TT Club urges governments to engage with industry to assist it with compliance.
     
    The circular will urge "practical and pragmatic" enforcement of VGM (verified gross mass) over the first three-month settling-in period.
     
    This has partly to do with problems with transshipment containers but also recognises teething problems in documenting, communicating and sharing VGM information. 
     
    "Like many others in the industry, we have been disturbed by the apparent confusion over how shippers will comply," said TT Club risk management director Peregrine Storrs-Fox. 
     


    GROUND AND RAIL


    Hauliers report further French fuel concerns
    source: Lloyds Loading List
     
    Despite the re-opening of a second major distribution depot that had been picketed by protesters, and assurances from the government that the country has reserve supplies in hand, more and more French service stations are reported to be running out of fuel while six of France's eight refineries have either stopped production or are operating partially because of striking workers.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Rail freight still losing market share in Europe
    source: RailJournal
     
    Rail freight still losing market share in Europe
    THE European Court of Auditors says rail's market share of European Union (EU) freight has fallen since 2011 despite the EU contributing €28bn to rail projects between 2007 and 2013 and a concerted effort since 1992 to encourage a shift of freight from road to rail.
     
    The auditors reviewed the performance of EU rail freight since 2000 and visited the Czech Republic, Germany, Spain, France and Poland between mid-2014 and mid-2015.
    The auditors found rail's overall performance "remains unsatisfactory" with the average speed of freight trains very low and averaging only around 18km/h on many international routes. They also discovered that many shippers prefer road transport to rail. However, the auditors did note that some countries, such as Austria, Germany and Sweden, have managed to achieve better results than the EU as a whole.
     
    "A single European railway area is still a long way from being achieved," the auditors say. "The EU rail network by and large remains a system of separate national networks, with various national authorities and very different rules governing path allocation, management and pricing.
     
     


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    Is poor sourcing to blame for recent retail bankruptcies?
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Magnificent op-ed from the publisher of Sourcing Journal, a US publication for the fashion and apparel industry, on how rigid supply chains and set-in-stone sourcing policies and arrangements have led to many traditional clothing retailers being unable to compete with fast fashion houses such as Zara, resulting in some catastrophic financial losses.
     

  • 24 May 2016

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Transport Canada Publishes SOLAS Requirements of VGM of Packed Containers
    source: CIFFA
     
    Transport Canada has announced the release of its Ship Safety Bulletin RDIMS No.: 11733860.
     
    To help shippers comply with these new requirements, Transport Canada, Marine Safety and Security (TCMSS), in consultation with Measurement Canada, various stakeholder's groups and associations, has developed and published the final version of the Canadian Procedure for Obtaining the Verified Gross Mass of Packed Containers as Required bySolas VI/2 (TP 15330E).  
     
    As a reminder the new requirements become effective July 1, 2016. This is the final version of the Transport Canada document that was reviewed in the recent CIFFA workshops held in Montreal and Toronto. 
     
    In addition the International Maritime Organization (IMO) on Monday published guidance on the requirements, specifically for transhipped containers prior to the July 1, 2016 implementation date. The notice is published further below under Ocean Updates.
     
     
    IMO Advice Regarding VGM of Packed Containers and Transshipments
    source: CIFFA
     
    The following notice was issued by the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) on Monday and will be of interest to members.
     
    "An MSC circular on Advice to Administrations, port State control authorities, companies, port terminals and masters regarding the SOLAS requirements for verified gross mass of packed containers has been agreed by the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), following discussion on the pending entry into force of the requirements in SOLAS regulations VI/2.4 to VI/2/6 on the verification of the gross mass of packed containers on 1 July 2016. 
     
    Concerns were noted with regards to the application of the requirements to a container which was loaded before 1 July 2016 and then transhipped. The Committee, meeting for its 96th session (11-20 May), also noted delegations' comments that, in the first few months after 1 July 2016, some leeway should be provided in order for any problems resulting from software updates, required for the electronic collection and transmittal of verified gross mass data, to be rectified without causing delays to containers being loaded. 
     
    In this context, the MSC agreed that while there should be no delay in the implementation of the SOLAS requirements, it would be beneficial if Administrations and port State control authorities could take a "practical and pragmatic approach" when enforcing them, for a period of three months immediately following 1 July 2016. This would help ensure that containers that are loaded before 1 July 2016, but transhipped on or after 1 July 2016, reach their final port of discharge without a verified gross mass and it would provide flexibility, for three months immediately after 1 July 2016, to all the stakeholders in containerized transport to refine, if necessary, procedures (e.g. updated software) for documenting, communicating and sharing electronic verified gross mass data. 
     
    Notwithstanding the above, the MSC emphasized that the stability and safe operation of ships, including the safe packing, handling and transport of containers, is not limited to the provision and use of VGM information and is also covered by a number of SOLAS regulations, including SOLAS regulations VI/2.1, VI/2.2 and VI/2.3, and other IMO instruments, amongst others. MSC.1/Circ.1548 will shortly be available to download from the IMO website."
     
     
    Le Havre Braced For Fresh Strike Action
    source: CIFFA
     
    France's biggest container port Le Havre is bracing itself for fresh strike action later this week following several days of disruptions last week as port workers and other transport workers in France continue their protests against new labour legislation. Last week, a three-day strike affected 70 calls at Le Havre, roughly the normal volume of traffic handled over such a period. The majority of these calls were postponed rather than cancelled, the port operator said, with the port operating normally since last Friday. "We are awaiting confirmation later today that a 24-hour strike will go ahead this Thursday (26 May)," a spokesperson for the Le Havre Port Authority (GPMH) said. Meanwhile, France's biggest transport and logistics trade federation, Transport and Logistique de France (TLF), said prolonged industrial action, which continues to target blocking access to French ports, fuel depots and oil refineries, had already cost the sector "several millions of euros". (Excerpted from Lloyds Loading List)
     
     
    The Pros and Cons of Low Freight Rates
    source: Lloyds’ Loading List
     
    Shippers and logistics providers are ‘paying’ for the current unsustainably low container prices on major trades by having to adjust to lower service levels and reliability, according to some senior forwarding executives, although carriers can’t afford to let service levels slip too much for fear of losing business.  

    Read more here


    GROUND AND RAIL


    '3D printing will disrupt trucking, shipping and delivery industries'
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Although its methodology remains untested, new figures from one survey suggest that “3D printing could threaten 41% of air cargo, 37% of ocean container and 25% of trucking business”, as there is just less need for the transporting of finished or semi-finished goods around the world, other than the composite material that 3D printing uses. The long-term implications however, are about far more than the mere transport of stuff, as this long article from Trucks.com shows – for example, who knew that Amazon now has patents filed for mobile 3D printers housed in its delivery vehicles?
     
     


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    CBP - Updated ACE Development/Deployment Schedule Now Available
    source: CIFFA
     
    U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has posted an updated version of the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) Development and Deployment Schedule, which also contains a list of changes made with this update. The ACE Development and Deployment Schedule provides details on when upcoming capabilities will be developed and deployed in ACE.

    To download the document click here
     
     
    Vietnam is Globalisation’s Last Big Fan
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Leaving aside the less-headliney fact that there are probably a host of other developing countries that would love to welcome the sort of foreign direct investment (FDI) levels that Vietnam has seen over the past couple of years, there’s little doubt that Vietnam has been the major beneficiary of the recent decline in Chinese manufacturing.  

    Read more here
     
     
    E-Commerce Shippers Choose 3PLs On Price Alone, But are Warned ‘You Get What You Pay For’
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Cost is the sole factor when the majority of UK e-commerce retailers appoint a logistics partner, according to a new survey conducted by 3PL DK Fulfilment.
    And DKF executives also argue that failure to consider aspects such as service quality means many are likely to be disappointed with their 3PLs.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Container shipping: would a freight exchange drive rate volatility out of the system?
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Each week the Shanghai Containerised Freight Index (SCFI), along with other index providers and rate benchmarking platforms, provides market participants with rate transparency covering both spot and contracted rates in the ocean container freight market. 
     
    The SCFI is well established and is regularly quoted in the financial results of carriers as a bellwether to the market’s health.
     

  • 20 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    AC Cargo Notice - Effective Immediately Security Screening for Shipments from Canada to India
    source: CIFFA
     
    Air Canada Cargo has advised that Transport Canada requires that all shipments on flights from Canada to India be security screened by the carrier, regardless of the security status of the shipper or forwarder. To comply with these requirements, shipper loaded units cannot be accepted for carriage to India, since the contents must be screened at the piece level. Security screening is subject to additional fees. Contact your Air Canada Cargo representative for further information.
     
     
    Atlas, Southern and Polar pilots vote to authorise strike action
    source: AirCargoNews
     
    Pilots working for Atlas Air, Southern Air, Polar Air, ABX and Kalitta have voted in favour of authorising their unions to call strike action.
     
    Nearly 2,000 pilots, representing 93% of union members, at the five US cargo carriers voted online through anonymous balloting in April and May, with 99% of voters giving the go-ahead to take strike action if necessary.
     
    The vote to authorise strike action does not necessarily mean industrial action will take place, but can be seen as a useful agreement to have in place while negotiations are ongoing.
     
    The Teamsters union claimed that the five carriers account for approximately 70% of DHL’s total flying worldwide, while it could also have an impact on Amazon, which will lease aircraft from ATSG and Atlas.
     
    “This is truly an unprecedented situation where pilots across five different companies are standing up together to send a message that we refuse to be treated below industry standards,” said Captain Mike Griffith, an Atlas pilot.
     
    “By calling this strike vote, we are telling our respective companies – and DHL – that they need to listen to the pilots who keep them flying and help build their millions in profits.”
     
    In response, Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, which owns or has stakes in Atlas, Southern and Polar, said the unions had no right to call a strike.
     
     


    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Port of Calais Operating Normally Despite Strike Threat
    source: CIFFA
     
    Threatened industrial action aimed at blocking the Port of Calais Thursday failed to materialize, with the French Channel port's operator confirming that activity was normal at the time as of 11.00 UTC. French transport workers are staging strikes across the country this week in protest to new labour legislation and working conditions. Lorry drivers have been at the forefront of the action in several regions of France, setting up roadblocks and filtering traffic near strategic locations such as ports and oil refineries. Railway workers at state-owned SNCF began a 48-hour stoppage on Wednesday. A spokesman for its rail freight unit, Fret SNCF, declined to comment on the extent of the disruption to its schedules but did reveal that 25% of freight train drivers had been on strike yesterday. (Lloyds Loading List)
     
     
    Hong Kong Marine Department sets strict VGM box weigh-in rules for July 1
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Hong Kong Marine Department has set strict rules to enforce the requirement of the UN's mandatory verification of the gross mass of a container prior to loading on the vessels in Hong Kong from July 1.
     
    Unlike other strictures that leave wiggle room by allowing what amounts to a declaration of weight, the Hong Kong rules require scales and operators of scales to be numbered and registered with the Marine Department.
     
    The Marine Department authorises two methods under the "Guidelines on the Verification of Gross Mass of a Container with Cargo Packed in Hong Kong".
     
    "For a container weighed by the approved weighing scale, the shipper requires to have a weighing document showing the weighing scale's authorisation number, the name of weighing scale operator, the date of weighing, the container number and the seal number with signature of the weighing scale operating staff and company stamp. The sample of weighing document is available here," said the Marine Department website.
     
    "For any local weighing scale operator who is interested in getting the authorisation, please click here for the procedures of application. The approved weighing scale operator has to schedule an annual calibration within 12 months of the previous calibration. The calibration proof shall be issued by Registered Professional Engineer (Mechanical or Marine and Naval Architecture discipline)," the website said.
     
     
     
    With cargo still under pressure, Cathay Pacific chief demands spending cuts
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Cathay Pacific, which next week will receive its first A350-900, is looking to cut costs in all departments as revenues come under growing pressure – despite an April revival in cargo.
     
    Chief executive Ivan Chu told staff last week that “business challenges have become more acute in recent weeks, with continued pressure on the cargo side being compounded by a weakening trend in the passenger business”.
     
    Blaming a tourist slump in Hong Kong, combined with tough competition and a weak global economy, he said: “Over the past couple of months we have seen load factors in decline, with yield coming under ever-increasing pressure.”
     
     
     
    MOL, NYK, “K” Line, Hanjin, Hapag-Lloyd and Yang Ming ink “The Alliance”
    source: AJOT 
     
    Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL, President & CEO: Junichiro Ikeda), Nippon Yusen Kaisha, “K” Line, Hanjin, Hapag-Lloyd and Yang Ming have agreed to create a new alliance covering all East-West trade lanes namely, Asia-Europe / Mediterranean, Asia-North America West Coast, Asia-North America East Coast, Transatlantic and Asia-Middle East / Persian Gulf / Red Sea. A binding agreement has been concluded by all partners and “THE Alliance” is scheduled to begin operation in April 2017 subject to approval of all relevant regulatory authorities. The initial term of the cooperation will be five years.
     
    The new partnership will build one of the leading networks in the container shipping industry combining approximately 3.5 million TEU or 18% share of the global container fleet capacity. All six partners operate advanced and competitive fleets with more than 620 ships in total. This will become the basis of a dedicated fleet deployed into the groups’ future service portfolio. Clients will be able to enjoy an outstanding product characterized by fast transit times, high frequency sailings and expansive port coverage.
     
     


    GROUND AND RAIL

    CN Intermodal Gate Hours For U.S. Memorial Day, May 30th, 2016 Now Available
    source: CIFFA
     
    Please refer to the following link to access the list of Intermodal Gate hours for Memorial Day, May 30th, 2016. Memorial Day Intermodal Gate Hours.  


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Bright future predicted for offshore wind sector
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    A recently published report out by the OECD looks at the ocean economy in 2030. Among the biggest winners in terms of new job creation is anticipated to be the offshore wind sector.
     
    The report also warns that regulation and governance will struggle to keep up with changes in world trade.
     
    “The world is increasingly multipolar and is experiencing growing difficulty in forging international consensus on global and regional issues key to the ocean environment and ocean industries,” the report noted.
     

  • 19 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

    Hong Kong Airlines to launch first daily flight to New Zealand
    source: Shippingazette
     
    HONG KONG Airlines will launch its first daily direct service to Auckland on November 10, deploying an Airbus A332 aircraft on the route.
     
    "With the success of our service to Australia earlier this year, Hong Kong Airlines is delighted to announce this second long haul service," said chief commercial officer Li Dianchun. 
     
     


    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Germany's Hapag-Lloyd in merger talks with United Arab Shipping Company
    source: Shippingazette
     
    GERMANY's Hapag-Lloyd is in talks to merge with United Arab Shipping Company (UASC), representing the latest move in container shipping corporate consolidation, Reuters reports.
     
    Hapag-Lloyd gave no details on the talks, saying there was no certainty of a deal, though a successful merger would create a group with an estimated enterprise value in the region of EUR8 billion (US$9 billion).
     
    Kuwait-based UASC, owned by Gulf Arab states with Qatar holding the majority stake, was not available for comment. 
     
    "There is so much price pressure that all shipping groups are looking for mergers and this one won't be the last,?a transport banking source told Reuters. 
     
    "Hapag in particular had to look for a partner as it was left out of recent tie-ups and alliance regroupings. It was at risk of becoming a sub-scale player lacking the full range of destinations," said the banker. 
     
    However, a shipping industry source said it is unclear whether there would be sufficient benefit to UASC. 
     
    Read more here

     


    GROUND AND RAIL


    Portland boss sees trucking to port as cheap as shipping with today's low oil
    source: Shippingazette
     
    LOW oil prices has made the Port of Portland, Oregon, less economically viable for container shipping, said port boss Bill Wyatt.
     
    Low oil prices has caused trucking rates to drop well below expected levels, making direct container service to the Puget Sound region less competitive, he told the Portland Business Journal.
     
    "Trucking up to Puget Sound is a lot less expensive than people thought it was going to be a year and a half ago. Freight rates are very cheap right now, " he said.
     
    "I don't expect to see any new carriers here for a while," he said. "With the cost of oil where it is."
     
    Korean ocean carrier Hanjin Shipping in February 2015 stopped calling the Port of Portland from China and now calls at Prince Rupert, British Columbia; Seattle, Vancouver, British Columbia.
     
    Then Hapag-Lloyd of Germany pulled out of Portland on its Med Pacific Service (MPS), which connects the region with the Mediterranean, stopping in Central America and the north coast South America along the way. 
     
     
     
    Denmark to build fixed link underground tunnel to Germany
    source: CanadianShipper 
     
    LEIPZIG, Ger.—Denmark’s Minister for Transport and Building, Hans Christian Schmidt, announced that Denmark will construct an 18 km long fixed link, an immersed tunnel, to Germany. The tunnel is expected to be the world’s longest of its type and the biggest construction project in the history of Denmark. It will reduce the travel distance to Germany by some 160 km. It will be financed by Denmark’s ‘State Guarantee Model’.
     
    Schmidt spoke of the project at the opening plenary session of the 2016 International Transport Forum summit, held in Leipzig, Germany.
     
    Denmark holds the 2016 Presidency of the ITF summit and hosted a reception May 18 to welcome ministers, journalists and industry attendees.
     
     
     
    Rail freight volume staying down, Union Pacific says
    source: Omaha
     
    Union Pacific said Tuesday that it expects second-quarter freight volume to fall from a year earlier by a percentage that is in the low teens.
     
    The Omaha-based employer of 8,000 Nebraskans said that so far in second quarter, volume is down 14 percent. U.P., the nation’s second-largest railroad by ton-miles, made the forecast at a conference in Boston. It predicted freight volume for 2016 would be down by a percentage in the mid-single digits.
     
     


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

    International Transport Forum releases study on commercial transport apps
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    LEIPZIG, Ger.—The International Transport Forum has released findings from its study on commercial transport apps. The ITF’s Corporate Partnership Board presented the findings at a press conference the morning of May 18 at the ITF annual summit.
     
    José Viegas, Secretary-General of the International Transport Forum at the OECD, said there were many relevant questions to consider but that the report “doesn’t try to be a catalogue of ready-made measures for the governments” of the ITF’s 57 member countries.
     
    Four principles emerged from the report that “should inform thinking around regulatory reform” of for-hire transport.
     
    1)      Policy should enable innovations that contribute to policy objectives such as equitable access, safety and sustainability.
     
    2)      The regulatory framework should be kept simple and uniform.
     
    3)      Regulation approaches should be innovative and flexible.
     
    4)      Perhaps the “biggest” outcome of the report, according to its author, Philippe Crist, a Transport Analyst at the ITF, is that there is a tremendous amount of data to be mined from app-based use of transport and that data-led regulation can improve benefits for all.
     
     
     
    Mass lay-offs loom in South Korea as corporate revamp starts
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    It’s been like a game of massive macroeconomic chicken: who will blink first, the Chinese government or the state-owned South Korean banks? The story in shipping for the past decade is that there have been too many ships; and that’s because ship prices were exceptionally low, and that’s because there were too many shipyards; and there were too many shipyards because the Chinese have been producing far too much steel, so that has been ultra-cheap as well. The national and provincial Chinese authorities allowed this to happen because they needed to fill jobs. Unfortunately, as South Korea’s shipping and shipbuilding sectors now teeter on wide-scale bankruptcy, it would appear those jobs were originally held by the workers in Okpo, Masan, Ulsan and other places along the country’s heavily industrialised southern coast.
     

  • 18 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

    Air France - KLM Cargo Introduces "E-Quote"
    source: CIFFA ebulletin
     
    Air France - KLM Cargo has announced they have a new process for Quoting called "E-quote"!
    Please visit the website http://afklcargo.com/WW/en/local/homepage/homepage.jsp and go to "Get a quote ". After customers create an account, they receive an email asking to verify their email address, then click on the link to confirm and then are ready to submit quotes online! For questions or additional information, contact the Customer Service Team at 1-888 OK AF KLM (652-3556).
     


    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES

    China to Conduct Random Inspections on Export Containers
    source: BIFA
     
    From 1 July, as part of its enforcement of new container-weighing requirements, China will conduct random inspections on export containers at the country’s ports according to long-awaited industry guidelines issued by the Ministry of Transport.
     
    In a consultation paper sent to all agencies of the Transport Ministry, the guidelines stated that vessels and terminals could not load a container for which the verified gross mass, or VGM, had not been received.  Read more here.  
     
     
    Regulators downplay ‘tolerance’ in new SOLAS rules
    source: Lloyds Loading List
     
    Despite reports about ‘tolerance’ regarding the new SOLAS container-weighing rules that come into effect globally on 1 July, there is little room for manoeuvre for most shippers – at least in the UK.
     
    Keith Bradley, technical advisor at UK regulator the Maritime Coastguard Agency (MCA), told a packed seminar room at the Multimodal 2016 event last week that after 1 July, the only containers that would have the flexibility to be treated under the old rules allowing shippers to estimate container weights were those already at sea on 1 July and requiring transhipment.  Read more here.  

     
    UASC seeks approval for possible ‘business combination’ with Hapag-Lloyd
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Shareholders in United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) will vote soon to approve a “business combination” agreement with Germany-based container line Hapag-Lloyd.

    The nature of such a combination has not yet been disclosed, but it could potentially include a merger. On April 21, the two lines said their merger discussions are based on a relative valuation of the two businesses at 72% for Hapag-Lloyd and 28% for UASC. Read more here
     
     
    Hyundai Merchant Marine may offer debt-for-equity swap in charter rate negotiations
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) must renegotiate a 28.4% cut in charter rates before May 20 or will likely enter court receivership, and could offer equity to its counterparties to sweeten the deal.
     
    Five unnamed shipowners from whom HMM has chartered vessels will visit South Korea today to wrap up discussions over the charter rates the company is paying, according to reports from the Korea Times.  Read more here. 
     


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

    Thieves 3D-print keys and locks to bypass container security
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Hot on the heels of yesterday’s news that cargo crime in the EMEA region rose 115% in the first quarter, comes an article which shows how it happened – and how 3D printing could have a negative impact on supply chains in more ways than one.

    Thieves are using 3D printers to manufacture copies of high-security cargo seals, which they then put onto the outside of already-emptied containers. And since someone posted CAD master files online, showing how anyone with a 3D printer can open a TSA-approved lock, the threat of theft has worsened. Read more here

  • 17 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Neutral Air Partner aims to revive specialisation and expertise in the air freight sector
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Neutral Air Partner is forming a group of specialists from all parties – except the end-user.
     
    “We believe that since the word ‘logistics’ became trendy, the industry has lost its identity as far as specialisation and industry expertise is concerned,” CEO and founder Christos Spyrou told The Loadstar.
     
    “We want to create a powerful grouping of leading and independent advanced air cargo specialists, each defined and selected by industry specialisation – airlines, tradelanes, commodity, etc.”
     
    For $500 a year, the network’s SAFE scheme offers member financial protection, which includes bankruptcy or bad debt by other members.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    ‘Too many cooks’: Drewry’s verdict on THE Alliance
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Shipping consultant Drewry has echoed comments made by other analysts on the potentially unwieldy nature of containershipping’s new grouping, THE Alliance.
     
    THE Alliance was announced last Friday and comprises six carriers: Hanjin Shipping, Hapag-Lloyd, K Line, MOL, NYK and Yang Ming. It will start in April next year.
     
    Drewry described the members of the new grouping as “orphans” and suggested there might be “too many cooks” involved. Moreover, two other carriers, UASC and HMM, could still join THE Alliance taking the number of parties involved to eight.
     
     
     
    Getting tough over weight at the gate may divert cargo, says exporter
    source: Shippingazette
     
    PORTS that insist on verified gross mass VGM at the gate will likely get the short shrift from exporters like STIHL Inc, maker of chainsaws another hand-held construction equipment, reports American Shipper.
     
    "If there is a port that said, 'We will not accept a box,' we may divert freight away from that port," said STIHL export manager Murray Bishop in a panel discussion at the Virginia Maritime Association's annual conference in Norfolk. 
     
    Mr Bishop's remarks are made in relation to the United Nations' regulation requiring verified container weight before loading by July 1. This is the result of an amendment to the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) convention.
     
    STIHL, of Virginia Beach, will only use ports with flexible policies towards meeting new international maritime safety guidelines for carriers to obtain the certified weight of containers prior to vessel loading. 
     
     
     
    CMA CGM to improve its services connecting North Europe with Middle East and Asia
    source:  AJOT
     
    CMA CGM announced the following changes to come on its services connecting North Europe with Asia.
     
    New rotation on FAL 1:
    Starting in Hamburg on May 26th, 2016 with m/v CMA CGM VASCO DE GAMA voy. 087 FLE, FAL 1 will include a new call at Jebel Ali on its rotation, now becoming the only service to offer connections with Middle East Gulf ports as follows….

    Read more here.  


    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Fraser Surrey Docks Victoria Day Gate Closure and Changes to Pre-book Times on the GRS
    source: CIFFA
     
    Please note that Fraser Surrey Docks will not have any gate operations on Monday May 23rd, for the Victoria Day holiday. Regular gate operations will commence on Tuesday May 24th at 8:00 am. Please also note that due to the gate operations closure on Victoria Day, the GRS pre-booking dates will be as follow.
     
    Pre-Booking requests for Tuesday, May 24th will be accepted on Thursday, May 19th between the hours of 11:00 to 13:00
    Pre-Booking requests for Wednesday May 25th will be accepted on Friday, May 20th between the hours of 11:00 to 13:00
     
    Regular pre-booking dates and times will resume on Tuesday, May 24th. If you have any questions or concerns with this notice, please contact the Gate Supervisor atfsdres@fsd.bc.ca or at 604-495-1191.
     
     
    Montreal Port Authority: Another Year of Growth In 2015 And Major Projects In The Works
    source: CIFFA
     
    In 2015, cargo traffic handled at the Port of Montreal rose 5.2% over the previous year to reach 32 million tonnes. This is a record high for the Port of Montreal. Containerized cargo grew 4.1% in 2015. Its volume reached 13.1 million tonnes, or close to 1.5 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units). Almost half of the goods that pass through the Port of Montreal are containerized, making it the Port of Montreal's largest sector of operations. Liquid bulk posted an 8% increase, with close to 10 million tonnes handled. This increase can be partly explained by the drop in oil prices, which favoured imports.

    Read more here.

     
    Global Affairs Canada Notice to Exporters Export Controls to Belarus 
    source: CIFFA 
     
    Export and Import Permits Act Serial No. 197 - Date: May 13, 2016
     
    This Notice is to advise exporters that Global Affairs Canada will initiate the regulatory process to remove Belarus from the Area Control List (ACL). 
     
    Background
     
    Pursuant to the Government of Canada's commitment to diplomatic re-engagement with the international community, and in response to recent positive developments in Belarus, Global Affairs Canada will initiate the regulatory process to remove Belarus from the ACL, thereby lifting sanctions that have been in place since December 14, 2006.
     
    This announcement is consistent with actions taken by the United States and the European Union since October 2015. It also reflects Canada's acknowledgment that the Government of Belarus has made progress in key areas in recent months, including the release of political prisoners and conducting a presidential election in October 2015, which demonstrated greater adherence to international norms and was not marked by the levels of violence and intimidation seen in past elections. Canada also recognizes the constructive role played by Belarus in facilitating negotiations toward a ceasefire and peace agreement in Ukraine-the Minsk agreements-in September 2014 and February 2015. 
     
    Administration
     
    This Notice replaces Notice to Exporters No. 148, "Export Controls to Belarus". As the regulatory process to remove Belarus from the ACL may take some time, as an interim measure, and effective immediately, Global Affairs Canada will normally issue permits for the export to Belarus of any goods and technology not specifically listed in the Export Control List (ECL). 
     
    For those goods and technologies that are listed on the ECL, applications for export permits will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Further information on how to apply for an export permit may be found at the links below.
     
    Information on how to enrol as a user of the Export Controls On-Line (EXCOL) system may be found at the links below. 
     
    General Information
     
    For further information, exporters may contact:
     
    Export Controls Division (TIE)
    Global Affairs Canada
    125 Sussex Drive
    Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0G2
    Telephone: 613-996-2387
    Facsimile: 613-996-9933
    Email: tie.reception@international.gc.ca 
     
     
    Government of Canada Creates Cape Breton Regional Municipality Foreign Trade Zone Point
    source: CIFFA
     
    Today (May 14), the Honourable Mark Eyking, Member of Parliament for Sydney-Victoria, on behalf of the HonourableNavdeepBains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, announced that the Government of Canada has created a Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) Point in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality (CBRM).

    Read more here

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    US National Retail Federation calls on Congress to enact trade pact
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE recently negotiated Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement will have a positive impact on both retailers and American consumers once enacted, according to a new report released by the National Retail Federation.
     
    "This report shows the importance of international trade to the US economy and how TPP creates economic growth and opportunity in the United States," said NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay.
     
    "Congress should move quickly to approve this agreement so American workers, consumers and businesses can begin to realise those advantages as soon as possible," he said.
     
    "The Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement holds potential for retailers and American families," the report said. 
     
     
     
    US Eases Sanctions on Myanmar in Bid to Promote Growth, Reforms
    source: Nikkei Asian Review
     
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- The United States eased some sanctions on Myanmar on Tuesday to support political reforms and economic growth in the country but retained other measures to discourage human rights abuses and military trade with North Korea, U.S. officials said.
    The moves include easing restrictions on the country's financial institutions, removing seven state-owned companies from the U.S. blacklist and extending a measure allowing shipments to go through ports and airports, the Treasury Department said in a statement.  

    Read more here

  • 16 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta aims to be major cargo airport
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE general manager of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Miguel Southwell, has vowed to make his gateway one of America's top five airports for cargo.
     
    Speaking at the recent annual ATL Cargo Awards co-hosted with the Metro Atlanta Chamber (MAC), MrSouthwell said he believed the world's busiest passenger airport could also become a major cargo player.
     
    "Atlantans are visionaries. Anything we say we're going to do, we're going to do it," he noted.
     
    "When we stand here, and we say that we're going to move from 10th in the nation in cargo movement to within the top five in the nation, we're going to do that, too."
     
    The annual awards ceremony honours businesses and leaders for their achievements in air cargo in addition to welcoming new cargo carriers to ATL and looking at burgeoning cargo opportunities at ATL, the Airport World of Airports Council International reported.
     
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo attains QEP Accreditation
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.– Air Canada Cargo has received QEP Accreditation from Envirotainer at its Canadian Global hub – Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) as well as six more stations across its network: Indianapolis (IND), Chicago (ORD), London Heathrow (LHR), Paris (CDG), Amsterdam (AMS) and Frankfurt (FRA). Qualified Envirotainer Provider (QEP) Accreditation demonstrates Air Canada Cargo’s competency in handling Envirotainer containers and cold chain shipments, the company said.
     
    “We are proud to receive QEP Accreditation from Envirotainer. This is an important acknowledgement of our commitment to maintaining the highest industry standards when it comes to the handling of temperature-controlled shipments,” said Lise-Marie Turpin, Vice President Air Canada Cargo.
     
    “AC Absolute° is a premium, quality-driven service that the healthcare industry can rely on when shipping healthcare products,” said Chris Fore, Compliance Manager at Envirotainer. “I am especially pleased to recognize Air Canada Cargo as a Qualified Envirotainer Provider.”
     
     
     
    Exec support for ICAO meeting on carbon offset scheme in air transport
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–A High Level Meeting being convened by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on May 11 has received executive-level support from the aviation industry, as leaders representing all parts of the sector encouraged governments to progress their deliberations on a global carbon offsetting scheme for air transport.
     
    The ICAO discussions have been gathering pace since the UN specialized aviation agency agreed to the development of an economic mechanism at its Assembly in 2013. The next such meeting, in September this year, will decide on the design of the scheme in which CO2 emissions growth from 2020 is offset through the international carbon markets, capping the growth in international aviation emissions. It is seen as part of a basket of measures to tackle aviation’s CO2 emissions, alongside new technology, use of sustainable alternative fuel, improved operations and more efficient infrastructure.
     
    “We are now less than five months away from the crucial ICAO Assembly, at which industry hopes governments will agree to go ahead with the global offsetting scheme. We have come a long way and made impressive progress. But key negotiating points remain and we encourage our government colleagues to spend the next few days ironing out any remaining differences at the ICAO High Level Meeting,” said Michael Gill, Executive Director of the cross-industry Air Transport Action Group (ATAG), at the Global Sustainable Aviation Forum.
     
    Read more here

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Port of Long Beach Shipments Decline Amid Weak Retail Sales
    source: AJOT
     
    Following a solid first quarter, Port of Long Beach container cargo volumes decreased in April compared to the same month in 2015, after lower-than-expected consumer spending in recent months. The decline also reflects evolving vessel alliances that have shifted ship deployments.
    Overall, Port container cargo volume was down 22.1 percent last month, compared to April 2015. Amid a soft retail climate in the U.S. and economic woes overseas, the decline in imports was accompanied by exports that were down 18 percent due to the continued strength of the U.S. dollar.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    Zhejiang Hexing Shipyard ordered to suspend operations over safety concerns
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Zhejiang local safety authority has announced that it found a series of safety issues at Zhejiang Hexing Shipyard during a safety inspection.
     
    According to the inspection report the shipyard has insufficient protection for the workers, some special equipment operators working without licenses and fire risks due to the incorrect storage of material.
     
     
     
    Wreck removal big money for salvors, but also needed to stop pollution
    source: Shippingazette
     
    SHIPWRECK removal, is not only one of the main sources of income for members of the International Salvage Union (ISU), but also one of the most important things its members do in fighting marine pollution.
     
    This surfaced in the ISU's Pollution Prevention Survey along with industry statistics for 2015, demonstrating a robust industry and its member’s role in environmental protection.
     
    "Yet again our members?operations have delivered great benefit in helping to protect the environment," said ISU president John Witte, reported the Maritime Journal of Fareham, Hampshire, England.
     
    Looking back, ISU members provided 185 services to vessels carrying two million tonnes of potentially polluting cargoes during 2015, slightly down from 216 in 2014. 
     
    Oil cargo showed more than a three-fold increase at 666,416 tonnes (194,880 tonnes in 2014) with chemicals down at 35,744 tonnes in 2015 from 102,939 tonnes in 2014. 
     
     
     
    Strikes Set To Hit French Transport Sector This Week
    source: CIFFA
     
    France's transport sector looks set for a week of disruption as trade unions representing rail workers, lorry drivers, airport staff, air traffic controllers, seafarers and oil refinery personnel stage strikes in protest against new labour legislation and working conditions. Two days of industrial action are scheduled for 17 and 19 May, although some of the unions have called for rolling stoppages starting Tuesday that could hit cross-Channel services at major Channel ports such as Calais and Dunkirk, while rail and air traffic schedules may also be affected.
     
    Unions representing lorry drivers are unhappy that they have received no response from France's Transport minister over their concerns that labour reforms include provision to lower the rate of pay for overtime work. Drivers in Normandy region are planning to block roads tomorrow, notably in the vicinity of the city of Caen, but it is unclear whether there will be similar action in other regions.


    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Canadian Shipper to attend International Transport Forum Summit in Germany
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    LEIPZIG, Ger.–The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development officially launches its 2016 annual International Transport Forum Summit May 18-20 in Leipzig, Germany. The Honourable Marc Garneau, Canada’s Transport Minister, is expected to attend.
     
    Canadian Shipper Editor Julia Kuzeljevich will also participate as part of the Media Travel Program.
     
    Since 2008, the Summit brings together ministers from around the world to share policy perspectives with CEOs, heads of international organizations, thought leaders from civil society and academia, and media.
     
    ITF’s 2016 Summit on Green and Inclusive Transport will explore the importance of low-carbon transport as an essential element in the transition to a green growth economy as well as the changes needed to make transport more inclusive and provide access for everyone to jobs, public services, and other opportunities.
     
     
     
    Montreal Port Authority announces major projects in the works
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.– In 2015, cargo traffic handled at the Port of Montreal rose 5.2% over the previous year to reach 32 million tonnes. This is a record high for the Port of Montreal.
     
    “This increase is very satisfactory. It reflects the fact that, more than ever, the Port of Montreal is a real growth force! Several structuring projects also progressed in 2015,” said Sylvie Vachon, President and CEO of the Montreal Port Authority (MPA) at the annual meeting held on May 13, 2016.
     
    Containerized cargo grew 4.1% in 2015. Its volume reached 13.1 million tonnes, or close to 1.5 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units). Almost half of the goods that pass through the Port of Montreal are containerized, making it the Port of Montreal’s largest sector of operations, the port said.
     
    Dry bulk, for its part, increased 3.6% to 8.7 million tonnes. The main products handled include grain and iron ore.
     
     

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    TAPA calls for more law enforcement agencies and insurers to share data on cargo crime
    source: AJOT
     
    Increased sharing of cargo crime data by law enforcement agencies will enable manufacturers and logistics service providers to further protect high value/theft attractive goods in supply chains and relieve the pressure on police forces that have to deal with the growing number of incidents in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, says the Transported Asset Protection Association (TAPA).  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    India Service Tax Revision
     
    The “Service Tax” has been Revised with effect from 01st June 2016, as detailed below: 
     
    01.  From 01.06.16 KrishiKalyanCess 0.5% is applicable, hence rate of Service Tax is 15% w.e.f. from 01.06.16. Notification attached for your reference. 
     
    02.  Service Tax 4.5% is applicable on freight from place outside India to the Customs Station of clearance relevant notification is attached for your information.
     
    03. Rate of Service Tax on Ocean import freight is provided in below link under 9.8
     
    Here is the Web Site Link.

  • 13 May 2016

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Mega-vessels ‘no benefit to shippers’
    source: Lloyd’s Loading List
    The introduction of ultra-large container vessels (ULCVs) may be good for shipping lines but they are not necessarily beneficial for shippers, ports, or hauliers.
    Speaking at the FTA session at Multimodal 2016 examining ‘The impact of mega shipping vessels and maritime alliances’, the Freight Transport Association (FTA)’s director of global policy, Chris Welsh, said: “The mega vessels reduce unit costs for shipping lines, but overall supply chain costs are increasing.”
     
     
    New containership grouping ‘The Alliance’ unveiled
    source:  Lloyd’sLoadingList
     
    Hapag-Lloyd is joining forces with five Asian container lines to form a new container shipping vessel-sharing agreement on the main east-west trades, the awkwardly named ‘The Alliance’.
    Featuring Hanjin, Hapag-Lloyd, “K”Line, Mitsui OSK Lines, NYK, and Yang Ming, ‘The Alliance’ will cover all the East-West trade lanes, namely: Asia-Europe / Mediterranean, Asia-North America West Coast, Asia-North America East Coast, Transatlantic and Asia-Middle East / Persian Gulf / Red Sea.  
     
     
     
    Port of Shanghai's April box volume rises 0.3pc to 3.12 million TEU
    source: Shippingazette
     
    CONTAINER volumes at Shanghai, the world's biggest container port, increased container throughput 0.3 per cent to 3.12 million TEU in April year on year, according to the Shanghai International Port (Group) Co (SIPG).
     
    On a month-to-month comparison, throughput also went up from 3.01 million TEU in March this year.
     
     

     
    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    GCT Canada Gate Schedule for Week 20 and Victoria Day Holiday
    source: CIFFA
     
    As a reminder, Deltaport and Vanterm truck gates will be closed on Monday, May 23rd in recognition of Victoria Day Holiday. Rail and Vessel operations will work as required. Please check GCT Canada Gate Schedule for updated Saturday, May 21st gates at Deltaport.
     
     
    CBSA Enhancing Trusted Trader Programs (FAST)
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) announced Thursday that it is expanding Free and Secure Trade (FAST) benefits for members of its trusted trader programs. The Agency plans to increase the number of dedicated FAST lanes to provide low-risk, pre-approved importers, carriers and drivers with expedited clearance at the border. By winter 2017, dedicated FAST lanes will be in operation at Fort Erie, Ontario, and at Pacific Highway, British Columbia. A new FAST lane will be opened at Emerson, Manitoba by spring 2018. Program eligibility requirements will also be expanded at existing FAST sites in Sarnia and Pacific Highway, and at future sites at Fort Erie and Emerson. These improvements will expedite commercial traffic at the border by allowing more trusted traders access to the FAST benefit. Want more information, read the Backgrounder: Free and Secure Trade (FAST)
     

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Consultancy offers snapshot on “future of trade”
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    DUBAI, U.A.E.—Global trade consultancy DMCC has released a report on ‘Exploring The Future of Trade,’ together with Futureagenda.org and economics consultancy Cebr.
     
    “Exploring The Future of Trade was a natural progression for us. We are in constant dialogue with our 12,000 or more member companies about how to improve their standing in the world of trade, so we thought it prudent to look ahead to the next decade to see the challenges and opportunities we will face. Together with Futureagenda.org and economics consultancy Cebr we embarked on a journey around the world that began in London, the historic home of global trade, and ended in Dubai, its modern day equivalent. On the way we stopped off in Hong Kong, Cape Town and Mumbai where we engaged at every turn with some of the world’s leading experts on global trade. We listened to them, we discussed the major issues they raised and our journey became a conversation that has led to a remarkable report packed with insight and valuable observation.
     
     
     
    Exis Technologies launches e-learning courses on CTU code, container VGM requirements
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    DARLINGTON, UK–Exis has announced the introduction of two new e-learning courses for safe handling and packing in accordance with the CTU Code and to assist compliance with the SOLAS Verification of Gross Mass (VGM) regulation. TT Club has provided sponsorship to support development of the courses, said a release.
     
    As consistently evidenced by the experience of both global freight transport insurer, TT Club and the Cargo Incident Notification System (CINS) Organisation, poor CTU packing is responsible for an alarmingly high number of incidents  leading to damage, loss, injuries and fatalities.  Additionally, the declaration of incorrect container weight (or Gross Mass) also contributes to adverse safety conditions, they said.
     

  • 12 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

     
    Australia Withdraws Ban on Air Cargo, UK Ban Expected to be Lifted Soon
    source: Shipping Online

    AUSTRALIA has withdrawn its ban on air cargo from Dhaka deciding that the Bangladesh government has made satisfactory progress in airport security.

    Australia and Britain both imposed air cargo bans from Dhaka airport, much relied up by fashion exporters, after screening procedures were deemed to run from inadequate to non-existent.  Read more here
     
     
    Myanmar Pushes Ahead With New Carrier, Airport
    source: CIFFA

    Asia's recently democratized nation, Myanmar (formerly Burma), is expanding its aviation capability with a new airline and the construction of an international airport. The new carrier, to be named Asian Blue Aviation, is joint venture (JV) between Japan's full-service carrier All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Myanmar-based banking, infrastructure and telecoms company Golden Sky World, a subsidiary of Myanmar conglomerate Shwe Than Lwin Co.

    Local media reports indicate the startup will focus on both regional and international operations in a market where relatively few operators fly direct to northeast Asia from Myanmar's international hub at Yangon. In addition, construction of a new international airport at Hanthawaddy, Bago, situated some 50 miles north of the capital Yangon, is scheduled to start in late 2016.
     

     
    Cathay Pacific and Lufthansa Cargo Announce Hong Kong– Europe Tie-Up
    source: Air Cargo News

    Cathay Pacific and Lufthansa Cargo have signed a partnership that will see the two airlines offer a joint network of more than 140 flights per week between Hong Kong and 13 European destinations.

    The “highly integrated bilateral co-operation” is due to begin early next year and will see the two airlines work closely together on network planning, as well as sales, IT and ground handling.  Read more here.

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Details of New Container Alliance Emerge
    source: Splash 24/7

    The make up of a third global container alliance has been revealed by the Wall Street Journal. Japan’s Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK), Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line) are joining forces with South Korea’s Hanjin Shipping and Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), Taiwan’s Yang Ming and Germany’s Hapag-Lloyd. An official announcement on the new alliance is expected within the next 24 hours.

    “Hapag-Lloyd is in separate merger talks with Dubai-based United Arab Shipping Co. UASC will either be part of the new alliance or join in after the completion of the merger talks,” the Wall Street Journal reported.  Read more here
     
     
    Cosco Pacific Buys into Rotterdam Terminal
    source: Splash 24/7

    Cosco Pacific has announced that it has entered into an agreement with ECT Participations, a wholly-owned subsidiary of port operator HPH, to acquire a 35% equity interest in Euromax, the operator of Euromax Terminal Rotterdam in the Netherlands.

    Cosco Pacific will pay EUR41.43m ($47.4m) for the acquisition of the shares and an additional EUR84m ($96m) for 35% of a loan owed by Euromax to ECT Participations.   Read more here
     
     
    CMA CGM Shelves Eastbound Mega-vessel Sailings
    source: DC Velocity

    Five months after placing in service the largest containership ever to call the U.S., French liner CMA CGM Group has pulled the plug.

    Marseilles-based CMA CGM, the world's third-largest liner company, has terminated sailings of the "Ben Franklin" megavessel that had been operating between China and the West Coast ports of Oakland, Los Angeles, and Long Beach, according to two sources. Also tabled were CMA CGM's plans to operate five additional megaships, each capable of carrying 18,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), eastbound into Long Beach and outbound from Oakland. That service was to start at the end of the month.  Read more here.  
     
     

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Vietnam the New Global Hot-Spot as Pirates Become Hi-Tech Hackers to Find High Value Cargo
    source: The Loadstar

    Piracy attacks in South-east Asia now account for 60% of global incidents, with a surge of activity in Vietnam marking it as a new global hotspot.

    Using data from the International Maritime Bureau (IMB), a new report by insurance firm Allianz shows global piracy attacks increased for the first time in five years in 2015, albeit by just one incident, up to 246 compared with 245 in 2014.  Read more here

     
     
    UK Faces Chronic Shortage of Warehouse Space as E-Commerce Boom Drives Demand
    source: The Loadstar

    The UK is facing a chronic shortage of warehouse capacity as years of under-development and growing demand, especially from e-commerce specialists, conspire to leave operators fighting for available space.

    This will likely lead to considerably higher rents, according to Kevin Mofid, director of logistics research at Savils.  Read more here

     
     
    US imports lower than last year, but still some of the highest ever
    source: Shipping Gazette

    IMPORT container cargo at US major ports is expected to be at some of its highest levels ever during the next few months despite a fall off from last year's record-setting numbers, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker from the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Hackett Associates.

    "Retailers are importing less merchandise than last year but these are still some of the highest numbers we've ever seen," said federation vice president Jonathan Gold.   Read more here.  

     
     
    Chinese exports stabilise in April as currency starts to weaken
    source: Shipping Gazette

    CHINA's exports stabilised in April as the value of the currency decreased, while imports extended declines to 18 months, reports Bloomberg News.

    "China's exports stayed positive in April, but with gains flattered by yuan depreciation," said Bloomberg Intelligence economists Tom Orlik and Fielding Chen.   Read more here

  • 11 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    IATA Puts Price On Carbon-Offset Deal
    source: AirWise
     
    IATA says a global market-based measure to curb aviation emissions would cost the airline industry up to USD$6.2 billion in the year 2025, but carriers could face higher charges if governments fail to reach a deal by October.
     
    Government representatives are gathering at the ICAO to negotiate a draft deal on carbon-neutral growth from 2020 which will be voted on later in the year at a full assembly.
     
    "That of course is the result the industry is counting on," IATA Director General Tony Tyler told participants at a global sustainable aviation forum in Montreal.
     
    By 2035, the deal would cost airlines up to an estimated USD$24 billion, as air traffic grows, according to figures from ICAO.
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    APM Terminals to Provide Container Weighing Services at 29 Locations
    source: AJOT
     
    The Hague, Netherlands - With just 50 days until SOLAS Verified Gross Mass (VGM) comes into force APM Terminals is taking the lead to ensure a smooth transition into the new regulatory environment facing over 120 million containers entering the international supply chain. Under international law from 1st July, 2016 shippers are required to provide a VGM for every container before it can be loaded with the shipping line.
    In 2014, the International Maritime organization (IMO), the agency of the United Nations responsible for regulating international seaborne trade, approved amendments to the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) which as of 1st July 2016 will require verification and documentation of loaded containers (Verified Gross Mass, or “VGM”) before they can be loaded onto vessels.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    Another 24-hour Greek seamen's strike as union stages walkout surprise
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Seamen's Union in Greece has staged another 24-hour surprise walkout, which affects domestic and local ferry routes though tug boats and pilots are not participating, reports Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS). 
     
     
     
    HK temporary navigational channels during bridge deck building works
    source: Shippingazette
     
    IN Hong Kong, the existing northeast-bound and southwest-bound temporary navigation channels across the works area of the Link Road has been shifted eastwards by 400 metres and 500 metres respectively, to facilitate bridge deck construction works, with effect from May 5. The relocated area will remain in place for three months.
     
    The lateral light buoys and fixed red lights marking the existing navigation channels will be relocated to the following positions (WGS 84 Datum) to mark the new navigation channels.
     
     
     
    New container alliance to be revealed this week
    source: Splash24/7
     
    A new container alliance will be revealed in the next couple of days.
     
    William Doyle, from the US’s Federal Maritime Commission (FMC), has revealed that representatives of a number of containerlines will meet with the FMC today to outline their new alliance and they could then announce the new lineup by the end of this week. Doyle did not give away which companies are involved in the new alliance, saying: “It may not include all of the remaining eight carriers, but it could eventually.”
     
    The eight carriers mentioned are those left out from new or existing alliances. 2M continues with Maersk and MSC, while the Ocean Alliance, comprising CMA CGM, China Cosco Shipping, OOCL, Evergreen and possibly APL, is set to start in Q2 next year, shredding the CKYHE and G6 alliances apart.
     
     
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    After A Challenging 2016, NFLD and Labrador Exports Set To Rebound Strongly Next Year
    source: CIFFA
     
    Newfoundland and Labrador will see Canada's most dramatic turnaround in export performance from this year to next, according to Export Development Canada's (EDC) semi-annual Global Export Forecast. Challenges in the energy sector, particularly weak commodity prices, are the primary force driving the province's exports down 11 per cent in 2016. However, Newfoundland exports are expected to rebound strongly with 18 per cent growth in 2017. 
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Australia withdraws ban on air cargo, UK ban expected to be lifted soon
    source: Shippingazette
     
    AUSTRALIA has withdrawn its ban on air cargo from Dhaka deciding that the Bangladesh government has made satisfactory progress in airport security.
     
    Australia and Britain both imposed air cargo bans from Dhaka airport, much relied up by fashion exporters, after screening procedures were deemed to run from inadequate to non-existent.
     
    "We received a letter from the Australian High Commission here. We have made significant progress on airport security that will also help us to get cargo ban withdrawn from the UK soon," said Civil Aviation Minister Rashed Khan Menon.
     
    But the Australians insist that cargo from Bangladesh has to be rescreened wherever it takes stopover on the way to Australia.
     

  • 10 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    WestJet launches its first wide-body transatlantic service
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    CALGARY, Alta.–WestJet will launch its new non-stop service between six Canadian cities and London (Gatwick) beginning this weekend.  Flights from Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto begin tomorrow, while service from Edmonton, Winnipeg and St. John’s begins on Saturday, the airline said.
    “The launch of wide-body transatlantic service this weekend ushers in a new era in the history of  WestJet,” said Gregg Saretsky, WestJet President and CEO.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    Tianjin Cargo Airlines launched to tap into exploding e-commerce growth
    source: Shippingazette
     
    HAINAN Airlines has launched a new cargo airline in Tianjin given that Beijing airport is said to be too ill-equipped to fulfil anticipated demand for cross-border airlift in China. 
     
    The new airline, Tianjin Cargo Airlines, registered on April 27 with initial operating capital of US$107 million, is a joint-venture between Hainan Airlines Group and the Tianjin local government, through the Tianjin port free trade zone.
     
    Tianjin Cargo Airlines plans to capitalise on the capacity limitations and congestion issues that plague the airport in Beijing. Within five years, the venture is expected to operate a fleet of between 50 and 100 aircraft, operating mainly on international routes between Tianjin, Northeast Asia, Europe and the Americas, New York's Air Cargo World.
     
     
     
    Air France-KLM Cargo exec warns that boom years will not return
    source: Shippingazette
     
    EXECUTIVE vice president of Air France-KLM Cargo, Bram Graeber, who steps down on June 1 to take up a role in the maritime sector at Royal Boskalis Westminster, has warned that the strong growth in the air cargo sector experienced over three decades prior to 2008 is not going to re-emerge any time soon.
     
    "We have had the idea for a long time that we could escape from margin pressure by adding extra services and quality to our products," he said in London's Air Cargo News. "Instead we have to offer very sharp service at a very good price."
     
    He said the demand-supply balance has changed forever. "Growth on the back of hi-tech shipments and China is not there anymore."
     
    In a bid to adapt to the reality that the passenger side of the business is outstripping cargo, Air France-KLM has made massive cuts to its freighter fleet. 
     
    This will come to an end in June when the last MD-11 departs, leaving just two Boeing 777 freighters at CDG and four B747Fs (operated by Martinair) at Schiphol.
     
    That strategy, said MrGraeber, should help the freighter operations to return to profit next year. The focus will then switch from re-sizing to being more efficient - doing things in a more cost-effective way through better planning and improved sharing of data with forwarders.
     
    MrGraeber admits that he is amazed at how slow cargo has been to adapt to new electronic ways of interacting. "Things are changing now, but the system is still very inefficient," adding that some "companies still do everything by phone".
     
     
     
    Lufthansa Cargo takes a hi-tech route to give logistics start-ups a better chance of success
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Lufthansa Cargo is making a pre-emptive move towards the potentially disruptive tech sector, launching a Logistics Tech Accelerator with San Francisco-based RocketSpace, a technology campus which helps start-ups.
     
    The collaborative effort makes Lufthansa the first cargo airline to embrace disruptive tech start-up culture for supply chain management.
     
    The Accelerator programme’s straplines are: “Be part of the disruption in logistics technology”; and “it’s time to rethink logistics”.
     
    The initiative aims to deliver innovative, tech-driven supply chain solutions, to respond to growing digitalisation trends and an increased need for real-time visibility.
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Gothenburg strike forces APM Terminals to close doors
    source: Lloyds Loading List
     
    APM Terminals has stopped taking export containers in Gothenburg after becoming overwhelmed with boxes following industrial action last week and continuing absenteeism issues with staff.
     
    Carriers reported yesterday that the terminal operator had stopped accepting export containers, with APM indicating that it would resume accepting export containers early on Thursday morning.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Despite 'early gains', container lines are in for another year of losses, says Drewry
    source:TheLoadStar
     
    Despite Maersk Line’s better-than-expected $37m first-quarter net profit, Drewry today reiterated its view that ocean carriers would collectively record a significant loss this year.
     
    “Carrier profit margins this year will be influenced by big swings on both prices and costs, but as things stand carriers will lose between $6bn-$10bn this year,” it said in analysis published this morning.
     
    It described the Q1 results that have so far been published as “patchy”, in as much as Maersk and US Jones Act carrier Matson made operating profits while others “sank further into the red”.
     
    Indeed, on Friday NOL posted a first-quarter net loss of $105m by its APL container division, compared with an $11m loss in the same period of 2015 – and with the exception of Maersk and Matson, all other carriers reporting so far have recorded Q1 losses. 
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    City of Montreal, CN strengthen safety partnership
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.– On his visit to CN Headquarters in Montreal, the Honourable Denis Coderre, Mayor of Montreal, joined Sean Finn, Executive Vice­-President, Corporate Services and Chief Legal Officer at CN in announcing the areas of safety that the City of Montreal and CN will continue to focus on together.
     
    Mayor Coderre began by pointing out that “CN is a great economic partner of the City of Montreal with some 2,000 employees in its Montreal headquarters building alone. Its North American network is also a key enabler for our businesses. Our partnership on safety announced today shows great collaboration between CN and local authorities.”
     
    Finn also emphasized the strategic nature of the partnership between CN and the City of Montreal.
     
    “We are very proud to be headquartered in Montreal and work with our logistics chain partners, including the Port of Montreal, to enhance the economic vitality of the city and the region. Montreal is more united and driven than it has been in a long time, and that’s mostly due to Mayor Coderre’s efforts to reach out to all stakeholders,” he said.
     
     
     
    CN recognized for safe movement of chemicals
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–CN has been recognized as one of the three recipients of the prestigious Responsible Care Partner of the Year award of the American Chemistry Council (ACC). The award recognizes the strong performance and safety record of companies involved in the transportation, handling and marketing of chemicals.
     
    Responsible Care is a global voluntary initiative to guide member organizations in safely managing chemicals through creation to manufacturing to disposal or recycling, said the release.
     
    CN has also earned a 2015 National Achievement Award from Transportation Community Awareness and Emergency Response (TRANSCAER) in recognition of its ongoing work to help communities understand the movement of dangerous goods and what is required in the event of transportation incidents.
     
    Through TRANSCAER, whose sponsors include the ACC and the Association of American Railroads, CN works with partner chemical companies to support communities with information sessions and training and simulations for community leaders and first-responders about hazardous commodities.
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Canada Finalizes New Agreement for Exportation of Untreated Sawn Wood to Australia
    source: Government of Canada
     
    May 9, 2016 – Ottawa, Ontario – The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and Australia's Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR) have established a national certification program that ensures untreated Canadian sawn wood can continue to be exported to Australia. The establishment of the Canadian Untreated Sawn Wood Certification Program is an important achievement for Canada as over $40 million worth of untreated sawn wood is exported to Australia annually.

    Read more here

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    NGOs call on the US and Nordics to ban use of HFO in the Arctic
    source: Splash24/7
     
    NGOs have written an open letter to the leaders of the US, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, calling on them to work towards banning the use of heavy fuel oil (HFO) in Arctic waters in order to prevent a potentially “catastrophic” oil spill, which the organisations say is becoming statistically more likely.
     
     
     
    China's demand for foreign goods still high despite new taxes
    source: ShippingGazette
     
    CHINESE consumer demand for foreign goods remains high despite new taxes, according to a survey by FT Confidential Research, a unit of London's Financial Times. 
     
    Recent government tax increases and tighter customs treatment of business-to-consumer cross-border ecommerce, dubbed haitao in Chinese, may appear to threaten surging demand for international goods, but the survey shows that consumers are motivated by more than price. 

    Read more here

  • 9 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Analysis: it's all about costs at AF-KLM, but angry unions may blunt its cutting edge
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Air France-KLM is still operating under great financial pressure, in spite of a decent trading update this week, particularly if oil prices keep rising and costs are not carefully managed over the next couple of years.
     
    Its shares plunged more than 4% on Wednesday, in the wake of a quarterly release that turned out to be worse than it looked at first sight, and its valuation was still under pressure yesterday, underperforming a flat stock market by two percentage points. 
     
     
    Qatar to Reduce Flights Because of Aircraft Shortages
    source: Airwise
     
    Qatar Airways is reducing flight frequency on more than a dozen routes from Doha because of hold-ups in the delivery of new aircraft from Airbus.
    The 15 affected routes include the carrier's recently launched service to Adelaide in Australia, flights to Boston, Houston and Miami in the United States, and services to Copenhagen, Jakarta and Manchester.  

    Read more here.  

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Fire hits Maersk ship involved in collision with another containership off Ningbo
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Maersk Line containership Safmarine Meru and another containership Northern Jasper, owned by German company NorddeutscheReederei, collided off Ningbo on Saturday.
    The collision caused a fire on Safmarine Meru, which was en route from Qingdao to Ningbo, leading to all 22 crewmembers onboard abandoning the ship.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    Union Announces Another 48 Hour Strike In Greece 
    source: CIFFA
     
    A 48-hour strike by the Seamen's Union in Greece was announced Friday (May 6). The strike is expected to affect all domestic and local ferry routes as well as commercial vessels calling at Piraeus, Aspropyrgos, Eleusis, Pachi and Megara ports for cargo discharging. The Crew Union of Towage and Salvage has also confirmed participation in the strike which started at 06:00 local time and is scheduled to finish at 06:00 on 8 May. It is expected that a second 24-hour strike will also be announced from 06:00 on 8 May until 0600 on Monday 9 May, directly following the first strike. During the stoppage period, vessels will not be able to berth, shift or sail from the affected ports.

     
    Port of Savannah will continue weighing containers at no cost to shippers
    source: Shippingazette
     
    NOW that the US Coast Guard has declared that the scales at the Port of Savannah meet a new UN's Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention requirements, the Georgia Port Authority (GPA) says it will weigh all export containers free of charge.
     
    "We would like to commend the US Coast Guard for bringing clarity to the SOLAS issue," said Griff Lynch, incoming executive director at Georgia Ports Authority. 
     
    "In conjunction with the International Longshoremen's Association, the GPA currently weighs all loaded export containers, and will continue to do so at no cost to the customer."
     
    An amendment to the international SOLAS Convention, effective July 1, called for shippers to either weigh loaded containers or weigh empty containers and cargo separately, and provide a verified gross mass total to shipping lines. 
     
    A Coast Guard bulletin issued April 28 explained that the current practice of weighing containers at terminal gates delivers equivalent data.
     
     
     
    The new Panama Canal is opening soon and will cause an 'evolution' in a vital US industry
    source: BusinessInsider
     
    100 Years After Its Birth, The Panama Canal Is On The Verge Of Creating A Huge New Opportunity For US Exporters
    On October 9, 1913, President Woodrow Wilson opened the Panama Canal by dynamiting the final dikes holding the water at bay.
     
    He did it from the comfort of the White House, keying a telegraph transmitter that set off the explosion from over 4,000 miles away.
     
    In the 103 years since Wilson pushed that button, the Panama Canal has become an international shipping bottleneck, as container ships grew too large for its aging locks.
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Trucking Chief ponders “good, bad and ugly” of Canada-US border
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    TORONTO, Ont.–Canadian Trucking Alliance CEO David Bradley evoked a spaghetti western theme in a speech to the Canadian-American Border Trade Alliance this week by describing the “good, bad and the ugly” of Canada-US border and trade issues.
     
    The good, according to Bradley: The Free & Secure Trade (FAST) program and the e-Manifest programs in both countries, the soon to be commenced in-transit pilot program in the U.S., progress on the Gordie Howe International Bridge and continuing work towards a ‘single window’ concept.
     
    However, Bradley lamented the fact that “security still trumps trade and there is no denying the so-called security measures that have been introduced over the past 15 years have reduced efficiency and productivity at the border.”
     
     
     
    Truckers call for dedicated truck lanes as freight expected to double
    source: TheSun
     
    Trish Anderson, 53, a truck driver from Mississippi, dreams about dedicated truck lanes. A lot.
     
    “Dedicated truck lanes that are only for trucks should be everywhere. Seriously, that’s the first thing I think of and that should be everywhere, not just even because the ports are going to be congested,” she said while resting at an Ontario truck stop.
     
    ”It would make it easier because you don’t have to deal with all the cars. If it’s all trucks, and everyone’s in the same mindset, you don’t have to dodge traffic.”
     
     
     
    CN Intermodal Gate Hours For Victoria Day, May 23rd, 2016 Now Available
    source: CIFFA
     
    CN has advised the Intermodal Gate hours of operations for Victoria Day, May 23rd, 2016. 
     
    The hours can be found at Victoria Day Intermodal Gate Hours (PDF)
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Transportation industry responds to help Canadians affected by Alberta fires
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    TORONTO, Ont. and MONTREAL, Que. and CALGARY, Alta.–The trucking and rail industries in Canada are responding to help the tens of thousands of Canadians whose lives have been turned upside down by the devastating fires in Alberta.
     
    The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) is asking its membership of 4500 Canadian motor carriers to help these Canadians in need by making donations to the Red Cross. To kick-off the donation drive CTA is contributing $12,000 to the Red Cross Alberta Fires donation appeal.
     
    “We appreciate the effort from everyone across Canada. It is a dire event and any help we can get is appreciated greatly,” said CTA Chairperson Gene Orlick. Orlick runs a trucking company in Rocky View, Alta. and is also Chair of the Alberta Motor Transport Association (AMTA).
     
     
     
    Canada To Lift Sanctions On Belarus
    source: CIFFA
     
    Pursuant to the Government of Canada's commitment to diplomatic re-engagement with the international community, and in response to recent positive developments in Belarus, Global Affairs Canada will initiate the regulatory process to remove Belarus from the Area Control List (ACL), thereby lifting sanctions that have been in place since December 14, 2006.
     
    This announcement is consistent with actions taken by the United States and the European Union since October 2015. It also reflects Canada's acknowledgment that the Government of Belarus has made progress in key areas in recent months, including the release of political prisoners and conducting a presidential election in October 2015, which demonstrated greater adherence to international norms and was not marked by the levels of violence and intimidation seen in past elections. Canada also recognizes the constructive role played by Belarus in facilitating negotiations toward a ceasefire and peace agreement in Ukraine-the Minsk agreements-in September 2014 and February 2015. 
     
    As an interim measure while the regulatory process to remove Belarus from the ACL moves forward, Global Affairs Canada will normally issue export permits for the export to Belarus of goods and technology that are not specifically listed in the Export Control List. This practice will take effect immediately.
     
    Going forward, Canada will continue to monitor the evolving situation in Belarus and will engage with the Government of Belarus in order to advance human rights, democratic standards and norms, and respect for the rights of civil society.
     
    Associated links
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Strikes protesting austerity likely to cripple Greek transport in coming weeks
    source: Shippingazette
     
    GREEK workers walked off the job in a general strike over the weekend at the call of unions to protest pension cuts and tax increases, reported the New York Times.
     
    The strike hit all ferry routes as well as commercial vessels calling at Piraeus, Aspropyrgos, Eleusis, Pachi and Megara ports for discharging cargo.
     
    The Crew Union of Towage and Salvage has also confirmed participation in the strike, reported Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS). 
     
    It is expected that a second 24-hour strike will also be announced from 6am May 8 until 6am Monday May 9, directly following the first strike.
     
    During the stoppage, vessels were unable to berth, shift or sail from the affected ports. The action has been called by the union in response to the government's planned changes to labour and insurance rights, pensions and retirement ages.
     

  • 6 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Air Canada, Cargojet to launch freighter from DFW Airport to Mexico City
    source: Shippingazette
     
    AIR CANADA Cargo and Canada's Cargojet Airway have finalised new dedicated freighter service from Toronto to Mexico City via Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), reports the Dallas Business Journal.
     
    The service will begin June 9 and will be operated with Boeing 767-300ER freighter aircraft. DFW handles 60 per cent of all air cargo originating in Texas and is a top inland cargo hub in the United States.
     
    "This addition to our air cargo network builds upon our solid relationships with Mexico and Canada while further strengthening the Dallas Fort Worth market," John Ackerman, executive vice president of Global Strategy and Development for DFW Airport, said in a statement. 
     
    With the new service, Air Canada Cargo becomes DFW's 19th cargo carrier. The new route adds 52 tons of net cargo capacity and connects shippers from the DFW catchment area to more than 150 destinations in the carrier's global network.
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    US port results hit by comparison with 2015 west coast labour strife
    source: Shippingazette
     
    OUT of the 22 major ports in North America that handled 85 per cent of containers in 2015, the top performers were LA and Long Beach, after achieving record container throughputs in January and February. 
     
    But these ports and others experienced marked year-on-year declines in March.
     
    The volatility in the first quarter was largely attributed to comparing this year's results to the volume growth seen on the US east and Gulf coasts in 2015 as cargo was being diverted from congested US west coast ports in the throes of a dock labour dispute, reported Seeking Alpha. 
     
    This year, six of the 10 leading seaport performers were on the US west coast. Other standouts continued to include the Northwest Seaport Alliance, Oakland and Lazaro Cardenas. 
     
    Most west coast ports witnessed solid export performance of between three and 10 per cent with exceptions being Long Beach and Prince Rupert with flat to negative 31 per cent performance. 
     
    All west coast ports witnessed substantial decreases in imports from 25 to 30 per cent.
     
    For the east coast, Baltimore and Miami followed by Virginia continued to achieve positive results throughout the first quarter. However, most east coast ports saw marked fall in both import and export volumes during March of between five and 14 per cent, with Charleston, Savannah and Montreal being exceptions. 
     
     
     
    Dredging work off Hong Kong Coliseum, Hung Hom to take 13 weeks
    source: Shippingazette
     
    VESSELS navigating in the vicinity of Hong Kong Coliseum, Hung Hom should proceed with caution because dredging operations and modification of the finger pier will be carried out over the next 13 months.
     
    The works will be carried out by a flotilla of vessels including one grab dredger, two hopper barges, two derrick barges, one guard boat and one tug, said the Hong Kong Marine Department. 
     
    The number of vessels engaged in the works will change from time to time to suit operational requirements.
     
    A working area of 50 metres around the dredger and barges will be established. Yellow marker buoys fitted with yellow flashing lights will be laid to mark the positions of the anchors extending from the dredger and barges.
     
     
     
    Panama's emission reduction cited at UN's marine environment session
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Panama Canal Authority (ACP) joined Panamanian delegation at the UN's International Maritime Organisation (IMO) Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) for ship pollution talks. 
     
    During this five-day meeting in London, delegates discussed the energy efficiency and fuel consumption data collection.
     
    The Panamanian delegation supported a joint statement on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from waterway, making the canal committed to "reducing the effects of climate change".
     
     
     
    Another 48-hour strike begins at Greek ports
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Strikes have commenced at major commercial ports in Greece, which will stop work for up to 48 hours.
     
    The Seamen’s Union and the Crew Union of Towage and Salvage commenced industrial action at 06:00hrs (local time) today at the ports of Piraeus, Aspropyrgos, Eleusis, Pachi and Megara.
     
    The work stoppage is scheduled to terminate at 06:00hrs on May 8, but is expected to be continued by a further 24 hours until 06:00hrs on Monday May 9, according to an advisory from Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS).
     
    The strike will affect domestic ferries and commercial vessels, which will not be able to berth, shift or sail from the affected ports during the stoppage period.
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Roadrunner Transportation Systems expands outbound service from Vancouver
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    Roadrunner Transportation Systems
     
    Cudahy, Wi.–Roadrunner Transportation Systems, Inc. has expanded its less-than-truckload service to include outbound service from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The new service offering began May 2, 2016 and will open the western half of Canada to Roadrunner LTL Freight’s outbound service, said the release.
     
    “Vancouver is a vibrant area with dynamic business growth, being fueled by domestic as well as international trade,” said Grant Crawford, Roadrunner Transportation Systems President of Less-than-Truckload. “The access to the world supply chain that this market provides through ports in both Vancouver and Prince Rupert is becoming a regular choice for customers moving freight from Asia into North America. Adding outbound service will allow us to serve the needs of customers that require transportation in both directions.”
     
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Canada-US east coast ports ready to gain from bigger Panama Canal
    source: Shippingazette
     
    LESS congested North American east coast ports may attract 25 per cent of the traffic that typically arrives at US west coast ports after the expanded Panama Canal opens on June 27.That's how Ceres Halifax container terminal president Calvin Whidden sees it. "Halifax will have a real chance at additional volumes from these services, especially any vessel crossing the Atlantic Ocean and passing by Halifax on its voyage to the east coast of the US," said Mr Whidden.
     
    Completion of the US$5.3 billion Canal project will mean containerships of up to 13,000 TEU will be able to travel along the 77-kilometre waterway and bring more cargo to the US east coast, where ports have also been benefiting from the expanded Suez Canal that opened last August to ships of up to 18,000 TEU, reported the Chronicle Herald. 
     
    A bump in cargo to the east coast would boost ports like Halifax and Saint John, and strengthen the case to build a new terminal in Melford, at the Strait of Canso.
     
     
     
    Vancouver Fraser Port Authority - Notice of Field Studies in May 2016
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority is continuing field studies in May 2016 as part of ongoing environmental and technical work for the Container Capacity Improvement Program
     
    For an overview of field studies that will be taking place this month, please read the May 2016 Field Studies Information Sheet
     
    The port authority produces field studies information sheets summarizing any upcoming field work that is planned. Past field studies notices regarding the Roberts Bank Terminal 2 Project can be found here
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES

    Europe To Assess Drone Strike Risk
    source: AirWise
     
    European aviation safety authorities have set up a task force to urgently assess the dangers of collisions between drones and aircraft after a rise in near-misses with passenger planes.
     
    The use of civil drones, whether for commercial purposes such as crop surveillance, monitoring of natural disasters, photography or leisure, is rising and aircraft pilots are increasingly reporting near-misses.
     
    In one widely-reported incident last month, a British Airways passenger plane was suspected of having hit a drone as it approached Heathrow airport, although authorities later said this could not be confirmed.
     
    The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which will lead the inquiry, said it will examine how vulnerable aircraft windows, engines and airframes are to impact with drones.
     
    While extensive research has been carried out into the impact of birds colliding with passenger planes, little is known about what would happen if a drone were to be sucked into an engine.
     

  • 5 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    US To Boost Airport Security Check Staffing
    source: AirWise
     
    With airlines concerned that delays at airport security checks may discourage summer visitors, the US government said it will add TSA staff and bomb-sniffing dogs and ramp up pre-screening signup efforts.
     
    The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will add officers at airports expected to have the highest passenger volumes, said Jeh Johnson, secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security.
     
    He added that he has asked Congress to approve additional funds to pay for officers' overtime and to meet "critical short-term needs."
     
    Security officials are on high alert for potential attacks by groups inspired by Islamic State. On March 22, suicide bombers killed 32 people in Brussels Airport and a rush-hour metro train.
     
     
     
    March Air Freight Demand Falls - IATA
    source: AirWise
     
    Demand for global air freight fell 2 percent in March on subdued growth in world trade, IATA said in its monthly update.
     
    Another reason for the drop was the impact of a US port strike that had bolstered year-earlier figures.
     
    Available capacity rose 6.9 percent in the month, with load factor down by 4.0 percentage points to 43.5 percent.
     
     
     
    A few bright spots in a slow air cargo market
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    It‘s not exactly good news – but it could be worse. WorldACD has reported air cargo results for the first quarter. With a little adjustment, they are not as bad as some might think. If you take out of the comparison the boost from last year‘s west coast port strikes, volumes actually increased 1.4% year-on-year, while while yields fell less horribly, down 13.6%. Without the Asia to North America adjustment, volumes fell 1.3% and yields sank 17%. And China wasn’t as bad as you might think. The first quarter saw year-on-year volumes rise 6% – or 18% in some European markets. But revenues between China and Western Europe dropped by 12% YoY, due to a yield decrease of over 25%.
     
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo Advisory - Fort McMurray
    source: CIFFA
     
    Cargo Advisory for Fort McMurray, Alberta (YMM) - Air Canada's cargo operations at YMM are impacted by the forest fires in the region. If you have any questions or concerns about your shipments, please contact the Customer Service Center at 1-800-387-4865 (in Canada) or contact your regional representative.

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Port of Seattle issues citizens' call to help it limit emissions
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Seattle Port Commission has called for community members to advise on policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase energy efficiency.
     
    The energy and sustainability policy committee will include advisors from diverse sectors of the community, including business, environmental justice, maritime, aviation, construction and government.
     
    The committee will develop and propose to the commission policy directives that will guide future Port operations, with a focus on innovative energy efficiency and alternative energy generation proposals. 
     
     
     
    Lack of facilities - yards, berths - slow Mindanao's shipping development
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE limited capacity of seaports in Mindanao, including adequate berths, transit or cargo shed areas for non-containerised shipments and container yards, is holding back the Philippines' southern island in becoming a major hub, according to Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Emmanuel Esguerra.
     
    "Mindanao is still faced by current issues on sea transport such as limited capacity of its seaports," said Mr Esguerra during the Mindanao Shipping Conference 2016, reported Manila's Business World.
     
    Mr Esguerra also said there is a need to expand existing sea linkages and establish new ones, particularly the routes between Zamboanga and Sandakan, Malaysia; Davao/General Santos and Bitung, Manado, Indonesia; Zamboanga and Muara, Brunei; and Tawi-Tawi and Tarakan, Indonesia.
     
    The limited capacity of Mindanao's ports was also cited by European Union (EU) Ambassador to the Philippines Franz Jessen during his visit to the city early this year as a deterrent to the influx of EU investments in the country's southern area.
     
    Mr Jessen said the EU is looking at Davao City as a possible investment area after the completion of the free trade agreement between the EU and the Philippines.
     
     
     
    Damage At Egypt's Port Said After Containership Crashes Into Crane
    source: CIFFA
     
    Some major damage at Suez Canal Container Terminal in Egypt's Port Said happened Tuesday after a containership apparently crashed into a gantry crane as it was leaving the port. Video and images posted online show several cranes collapsed or damaged, with stacks of containers knocked over and some even on fire. Some reports have said that hazardous chemicals in one of the containers caused a large explosion at the site. It's not clear if the terminal has resumed full operations at time of publication. 
     
     
     
    Santos (Brazil) Slogs Through Backlog After Closure
    source: CIFFA
     
    Unexpected and unseasonably rough seas caused the closure of Santos, South America's biggest port for containers, for more than 30 hours at the end of last week and Monday. Shippers and carriers suffered delays and some cargo had to be rolled over to later sailings, according to Sindamar, the Santos ship agents association. The São Paulo Port Captain's department ordered the closure of the port because the entrance channel was inundated with waves of four meters (13 feet) and winds of 88 kilometers per hour (55 miles per hour). 
     
    Codesp, the port authority for Santos, reported that 13 ships were unable to dock while eight had their departures delayed and another eight were waiting to berth. The high waves and wind also flooded roads in various districts of Santos. Once the wind had slowed to 44 kph and the waves had fallen to 2 meters, the port reopened. On Thursday and Friday, Santos was also dealing with additional delays caused by the paperless port system, which crashed and slowed the issuing of clearance documents. (Excerpted from JOC Online)

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    No Impact to Rail Movements Through Alberta
    source: CIFFA
     
    CIFFA has confirmed with both CN and CP that there is little or no operational impact due to the severe fires going on in Fort McMurray, AB area. We will keep members posted if there is any change.
     
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Canadian waters safer but full understanding of shipping risks needed
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    OTTAWA, Ont.–A new workshop report, Commercial Marine Shipping Accidents: Understanding the Risks in Canada, recently released by the Council of Canadian Academies (CCA), explores risk by focusing on the likelihood of commercial marine shipping accidents across Canada as well as the potential social, economic, and environmental impacts of such accidents.
     
    “Overall, the evidence shows that Canada’s waters have been getting safer over the past decade, with fewer commercial marine shipping accidents,” said Captain Dr. James R. Parsons, Chair of the Workshop Steering Committee and Academic Director at the Marine Institute of Memorial University.
     
    “Commercial marine shipping has benefited from improved traffic control technology, better ship designs, and a strengthened regulatory regime. Accidents do still occur, yet typically do not result in large impacts.”
     
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES

    NAFTA trade values continue to slide in February
    source: AmericanShipper
     
    The total value of cross-border trade between the United States and its partners in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Canada and Mexico continued its slide in February 2016.
     
       NAFTA freight value slipped 2 percent to $84.0 billion for the month compared with the previous year after dropping 7.7 percent year-over-year in January, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics.
     
    Read more here

  • 4 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Air Canada Cargo deploys piece-level RFID tracking
    source: AJOT
     
    Lakeland, FL - CargoAware, a division of Franwell, Inc., the proven leader in radio frequency identification (RFID) track and trace technologies, announced today that Air Canada Cargo is moving forward with implementation of a large-scale RFID implementation that will track cargo and mail shipments across additional stations in its network. Initial implementation and solution validation was agreed to in September of 2015, with Montreal Canada and Frankfurt Germany being the first two stations installed, at that time.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Hong Kong Airport Authority wins statutory approval for 3rd runway
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Hong Kong Airport Authority has gained statutory approval for reclamation work that will allow construction of a third runway to go ahead. 
     
    The authority said it would now proceed with the detailed design for the third runway and also start procurement of construction contracts for the reclamation works at the earliest opportunity.
     
    The expansion includes reclaiming 650 hectares of land, building a 3,800-metre long new runway and supporting taxiway systems, a new passenger building and apron, an expanded Terminal and comprehensive road network and transportation facilities.
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Containers fall from vessel at Waigaoqiao Port
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    A feeder containership tilted during loading at Shanghai’s Waigaoqiao Port, causing 44 containers onboard the vessel to fall into the water.
     
    The vessel, Shang Qing 3, is owned by Chongqing Shangqing Shipping.
     
    Shanghai Maritime Salvage Center deployed three vessels for the salvage work and started traffic control near the site. The containers were all salvaged yesterday.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    OOCL adds westbound call at Ningbo on Loop 7 from May 16
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    HONG KONG's Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) has announced that its Loop 7 will add a westbound call to Ningbo.
     
    Thus, the new port rotation will be Qingdao, Shanghai, Ningbo, Hong Kong, Shenzhen-Yantian, Singapore, Rotterdam, Hamburg, Gdansk, Gothenburg, Antwerp, Southampton, Singapore, Shenzhen-Yantian and back to Qingdao.
     
    The new rotation will become effective with MOL Quintet (QIT) 010 W with Qingdao ETA on May 16.

    Read more here
     
     
    Carriers no longer care what's in the box - so long as its full: Xeneta
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    CONTAINER shipping lines no longer care what's in containers as they once did in establishing price, says Xeneta, an Oslo market intelligence.
     
    "As long as the box isn't overweight - although even that isn't always an issue these days - or filled with hazardous material, the carriers just want a full box, period," said Xeneta CEO Patrik Berglund.
     
    Xeneta says that oversupply, better supply chain management, and low fuel costs have made the market so competitive that 'what's in the box" no longer counts, reports Lloyd's Loading List.  

    Read more here
     
     
    China SOLAS guidelines opt for 'agencies' to spot check container weights
    source: Shippingazette
     
    CHINA said it has opted for random checks on container weights by its "marine management agencies" to meet its enforcement obligation in complying with the mandatory verified gross mass of containers required by the United Nations from July 1. 
     
    "All marine management agencies should perform random checks on the verified gross mass of packed containers loaded onto vessels," said the long-awaited guidelines from the Ministry of Transport.
     
    In a consultation paper sent to all agencies of the Transport Ministry and translated by Hong Kong's CargoSmart, the guidelines stated that vessels and terminals could not load a container for which the verified gross mass, or VGM, had not been received.
     
    This is consistent with all other jurisdictions that have so far issued information on the amendment to the UN's International Maritime Organisation's (IMO) Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) convention that will become law in all 162 signatory states from July 1. 
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Self-driving trucks revolutionising waterfronts as containerisation did
    source: Shippingazette
     
    TRAPAC LLC's Los Angeles marine-cargo facility doubles the speed of loading and unloading ships, saving money and boosting profits, reports Bloomberg News. 
     
    The impact rivals that of containerisation, which revolutionised waterfront cargo handling worldwide 50 years ago, eliminating most manual work.
     
    "Self-driving won't just rebuild the current freight system, it will create a whole new way of thinking about it," said Larry Burns, a former research and development chief at General Motors and now a consultant at Alphabet Inc's Google unit.
     
    "It will happen sooner with goods movements than with personal transportation, because the economics are crystal clear," Mr Burns said.
     
    The Port of Los Angeles and TraPac, a unit of Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) are investing US$693 million in four dozen self-driving cranes and automated carriers, plus related infrastructure. 
     
    As the carriers scamper back and forth across the dock, each device changes direction independently from the rest - without apparent need for human help.
     
    A few dozen people watch and monitor in faraway control rooms. On the wharf itself, TraPac uses people only to run the cranes that unload ships and to drop containers the last few feet onto waiting trucks and trains.
     
    To speed things up, TraPac president Frank Pisano has implemented an appointment system for truckers, who often arrive unannounced and then wait as port employees find their container. 
     
     
     
    CN joins Midwest Inland Port Strategic Development Coalition
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    Midwest Inland Port Strategic Development Coalition
     
    DECATUR, IL.–The Midwest Inland Port Strategic Development Coalition (“MIPSDC”) announced Monday that CN, one of three railroads providing rail service to Decatur businesses, has joined the group to provide strategic and marketing support to the development of the Midwest Inland Port.
     
    “Today marks another exciting and significant step forward for the Midwest Inland Port and for all of Central Illinois.  The organizations that comprise the Strategic Development Coalition represent a combination of global, national, regional and local perspectives and capabilities that are critical to our ability to realize the full potential of the Midwest Inland Port development,” said Ryan McCrady, President of the Economic Development Corporation.
     
    “We are pleased to join this important coalition and to work with the partners to bolster the supply chain in Decatur and Illinois,” said John Orr, CN’s Senior Vice President, Southern Region.
     
    “We have been working closely with CN for the past year to extend our marketing reach through their international offices and to significantly enhance the rail services and connectivity that can provide significant benefit to our existing and prospective customers. CN has introduced rail connectivity to Decatur from the Canadian ports of Prince Rupert and Vancouver in British Columbia, and Montreal, providing direct import lanes that bypass the congested Chicago rail network,” said Larry Altenbaumer, Executive Director of the Midwest Inland Port.
     
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Greater Vancouver port expansion proceeds apace to meet rising demand
    source: Shippingazette
     
    WORK has commenced on a new rail yard at the Deltaport terminal south of Vancouver now that the truck route 17 is linked to the TransCanada Highway, reports the American Journal of Transportaton. 
     
    The project will combine the existing two sets of four rail tracks into one set of eight tracks, reconfigure internal vehicle circulation and parking within the terminal.
     
    It will also replace the seven existing 10 to 20 year-old manually-operated container cranes in the rail intermodal yard with eight modern wide-span quay cranes.
     
    When completed the project will enable greater efficiencies, giving the terminal the capacity to handle a maximum throughput of 2.4 million TEU per year within the existing terminal footprint, said the report. 
     
    Plans for a second terminal, equal in size to Deltaport (Canada's largest), have already been submitted to federal government in Ottawa for approval.
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES

    New multimodal terminal planned at London Thamesport
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Shipping agent and logistics company Armitt Group is to build a new 120,000-square-metre multimodal terminal at London Thamesport, which could starting handling cargo by the end of the year.
     
    Construction of Armitt Multimodal Terminal South, as the facility will be known, is due to commence this month. Once completed, the operator hopes the facility will handle up to 2m tonnes of high-quality steel products every year, and attract up to 50 port calls from deep-sea vessels of up to handysize, and up to 100 calls from short-sea vessels.
     
    Armitt has signed a long-term heads of terms agreement for the development with Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) Group, which owns Thamesport. The two are also discussing the prospect of Armitt developing an additional area that would handle aggregates for consumption within Greater London.
     

  • 3 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    New Security at Brussels Airport Causes Delays
    source: Airwise
     
    Additional security checks at Brussels Airport are causing delays and missed flights, a situation the airport operator described as "bizarre".
     
    Belgium's main airport reopened part of its main departure hall on Monday, bringing capacity up to about 80 percent from 20 percent when operations initially restarted a month ago, after the suicide attack on March 22.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    Kosovo Airport Closed After Jet Skids Off Runway
    source: AirWise
     
    A Turkish Airlines jet carrying 143 passengers and eight crew from Istanbul skidded off the runway on Monday when landing at Kosovo's only airport.
     
    "Turkish Airlines flight TK1018 from Istanbul has had a minor incident and fortunately no one was injured," an airport spokeswoman said.
     
    "The airport will remain closed for few hours until some initial technical investigations are finished."
     
     
     
    Lufthansa Faces Cargo Retructure as Q1 Profits Nosedive 70M Euro into the Red
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Lufthansa could restructure its cargo business this year, following poor first-quarter results, which saw its Logistics division make an EBIT loss of €19m, compared with a positive €52m last year.
     
    “Lufthansa Cargo is under severe pressure,” said CFO Simone Menne. “We only expect earnings to improve again in the fourth quarter, hit hard by strikes last year.”  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    IATA: Despite concerns, air cargo CFOs confident of a better 2016 to come
    source: Shippingazette
     
    A SURVEY by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) of airline chief financial officers (CFO) revealed their outlook was bullish for the remainder of the year despite a weak first quarter. 
     
    IATA's survey takes a measure of five key indicators: profitability, demand, input costs, yield and employment and asks respondents to reflect on the past three months, as well as their outlook for the year ahead.
     
    Beginning with the outlook for industry profitability, results from cargo and passenger respondents were combined, but 74.2 per cent of respondents expect profitability to remain flat or improve over the next 12 months. 
     
    Looking back on the first quarter, 51.6 per cent of respondents believed industry profitability improved year on year.
     
    Moving on to demand growth, US west coast port disruptions, which led to a surge in demand in the first quarter of 2015, were the likely cause of more than one-quarter of respondents reporting lower volumes in Q1 2016. 
     
    For the next 12 months, those surveyed were optimistic about cargo demand, with 43.3 per cent expecting stability and growth. 
     
    Looking at the weighted score of demand growth over the past five quarters, IATA added that, although "the weighted average score for freight over the next 12 months remains in positive territory, it is currently at its lowest level since April 2011."
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    China COSCO Vessel Will Be First To Transit Expanded Panama Canal
    source: CIFFA
     
    A China COSCO Shipping vessel will make the first transit through the expanded Panama Canal on June 26 having won a lottery draw conducted Friday morning at the Panama Canal Administration building. The shipping line's container vessel Andronikos which has a maximum capacity of 9,400 TEUs. If for any reason the Andronikos cannot be deployed, WalleniusWilhemsen Lines's car carrier Thalatta will take its place. In addition, more than 100 neopanamax ships have already made reservations for commercial transit through the new larger locks, which will begin on June 27, following the historic inauguration and first voyage. (American Shipper)
     
    Hanjin Heavy gets another $105m from creditors
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Hanjin Heavy Industries is to receive a further KRW 120bn ($105m) cash injection from its creditors, led by Korea Development Bank (KDB), as part of the shipyard’s restructuring programme, reports say.
     
    The South Korean yard “has had difficulty in making a turnaround due to lack of new orders and delayed sale of non-core assets,” a spokesman for KDB told the Yonhap news agency.  

    Read more here.
     
    Port of South Carolina first to announce container weighing plans
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Recent debate in the US over the forthcoming implementation of the amendment to Solas, that will see shippers obliged to deliver a certificate of an export container’s verified gross mass if it is to be loaded on its designated vessel, has been strange to say the least. Some of it, frankly, has been near-hysterical, and not in the funny sense of the word. So we welcome the recent news that the port of Charleston, which has had a container weighing system for a number of years, is to offer all export shippers a weighbridge service that is likely to cast $25 per box. 
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    CP Vaughan Notice - Traffic Pattern Change for Truck Traffic
    source: CIFFA
     
    With recent changes decommissioning cranes, the traffic flow within the CP Vaughan yard has been modified. Drivers should be aware of new signage throughout the yard as follow:
     
    The crossing at the mid-point of track 5 has been closed to traffic moving west.
    Roadway access to 1PK and 2PK are no longer 1 way roads and are open to traffic in both directions.
    Access to the reefer pool has been closed at the north end.
     
    Please drive accordingly.
     
     
    CBP to Allow Prepayment of Single-Crossing User Fees for Commercial Trucks
    source: CIFFA
     
    U.S. Customs and Border Protection has announced a pilot test program that will offer a new electronic payment option for commercial truck single-crossing user fees. This test will begin at the Buffalo, Detroit and El Paso ports of entry on June 2 and run for about one year. Any owner, agent or person in charge of a commercial truck may participate in this pilot and no application is needed. If CBP determines that the pilot is working successfully at these initial ports it will expand the pilot to all U.S. land border ports of entry that process commercial trucks.
     
    CBP regulations specify the applicable user fee for commercial trucks upon arrival into the U.S. and the methods of payment, which include payment on an annual basis or on a per crossing basis. Although commercial truck carriers can prepay the annual user fee online, the single-crossing user fee is paid by cash or credit card each time a truck arrives at a U.S. port of entry.
     
    This pilot will enable the owner, agent or person in charge of a commercial truck to prepay the single-crossing user fee online prior to the truck's arrival at a port of entry. CBP states that this change should reduce wait times, improve primary processing, save costs to truck carriers associated with idling time (such as gas and lost driving hours), and alleviate CBP officers of the administrative functions pertaining to the collection, accounting and transmittal of user fee collections. (Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg)
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Canada Says It Wants To Help Bombardier
    source: AirWise
     
    The senior Canadian official looking at a request by Bombardier for aid to support its CSeries aircraft has indicated for the first time that Ottawa actively wanted to help the company.
     
    Innovation Minister NavdeepBains until now has said merely that the Liberal government would closely examine Bombardier's request for USD$1 billion in aid and outlined some of the concessions he wants in return.
     
    But on Monday he went further, detailing how much help Ottawa had given the company over the last 40 years and stressing the number of aerospace jobs across Canada that depended on Bombardier continuing to operate.
     
    "We've been there with the company in the past, we've continued to remain engaged with the company and we want to be part of a solution," he told reporters. The CSeries is years late and billions of dollars over budget.
     
     
     
    Commercial Marine Shipping Accidents: Understanding the Risks in Canada
    source: CIFFA
     
    A new workshop report, Commercial Marine Shipping Accidents: Understanding the Risks in Canada, was released last week by the Council of Canadian Academies (CCA). The report explores risk by focusing on the likelihood of commercial marine shipping accidents across Canada as well as the potential social, economic, and environmental impacts of such accidents.
     
    The workshop report found that both the likelihood of an accident and the severity of its impact differ greatly across Canada's regions. For example, data show that the St. Lawrence River region experiences the highest level of commercial marine accidents in Canada, but these accidents have been the least likely to lead to casualties or serious injuries. The Pacific Region has the highest level of shipping activity, but has a relatively low risk profile. More research is needed to gain a fuller understanding of the factors that contribute to these regional variations.
     
    The report notes that gaps exist in the available data on the causes of accidents, the stages at which accidents occur, and the frequency of shipments by cargo type and region. It also points out that better data is needed to more fully understand the breadth of pollution events across Canadian waters. With regard to oil spills, the workshop report confirms that while the likelihood of an accident resulting in an oil spill in Canada is low, the potential impact of such an accident would be significant.
     
    Download the full 84 page report in PDF at the following link: Commercial Marine Shipping Accidents: Understanding the Risks in Canada 
     
    A 10 page Executive Summary  or a 4 page Report in Focus also available. 

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    New future of maritime firefighting to touch down in Colorado Springs
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    This week, the world’s biggest and fastest firefighting 747 will have its official homecoming in the US. Global SuperTanker’s Spirit of John Muir will touch down in Colorado Springs on Thursday.
    From a maritime perspective, the news is significant because the plane is capable of reaching and fighting rig and mid-ocean ship fires far more quickly than any other asset is currently able to, according to its owner. Additionally, the plane is the only very large air tanker certified by authorities in the US for oil spill dispersal giving it plenty of possibilities for the future of salvage operations.
     
    The converted B747-400 freighter is capable of delivering single or multiple drops of nearly 20,000 gallons of water, fire retardant, or suppressant, any of which can be released at variable rates.
     
    “The Spirit of John Muir differs from other firefighting planes not just because it is capable of variable rate drops,” said Jim Wheeler, president and CEO of Global SuperTanker, “as the world’s largest aerial firefighting asset, the John Muir can fly 600 miles per hour for long ranges at efficient altitudes. The plane can respond to fires on isolated drilling rigs or mid-ocean tanker blazes in a matter of hours.”
     
     

  • 2 May 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Brussels Airport Departure Hall Reopens
    source: AirWise
     
    Brussels Airport has partially reopened its departure hall, about six weeks after suicide bombers killed 16 people there.
     
    The two attackers detonated suitcase bombs in the departure hall on March 22, before a third bomber blew himself up on a metro train in the city. In all, they killed 32 people.
     
    From Monday, 111 check-in counters will be open in the airport departure hall and another 36 in a temporary building. This brings departure passenger capacity to at least 80 percent of that before the attacks, the airport management company said.
     
     
     
    AAWW pilot unions demand US mediation in contract negotiations
    source: Shippingazette
     
    UNIONS representing 1,300 pilots who fly for DHL-contracted carriers Atlas Air and Polar Air Cargo have requested to begin mediation with Atlas Air Worldwide (AAWW) through the US National Mediation Board (NMB).
     
    The unions claim that Atlas Air's management has "refused to engage in any further legally-mandated negotiations", reported New York's Air Cargo World.
     
    In response, Atlas Air said it believed the request for mediation was premature as negotiations had only just begun.
     
    "The NMB is currently investigating how to best move forward and will let the parties know what it concludes. While we continue to believe this request is early, we will cooperate fully with the process," Atlas said.
     
    "Pilots are fed up with Atlas and AAWW's game playing and backroom corporate maneuvering to try to deny us basic workplace protections like the much-needed time to rest between international flights," Mike Griffith, an Atlas pilot and communications chairman of APA Teamsters Local 1224. 
     
    "We believe the federal government intervening will make sure they work with us to come to a fair contract agreement that is up to cargo industry standards."
     
     
     
    UK air cargo carriers set to expand despite tough market conditions
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Two UK-based air cargo carriers, IAG Cargo and CargoLogicAir, are set to expand their networks, despite the tough market conditions.
     
    Stansted-based CargoLogicAir looks set to receive its second aircraft, G-CLAB, very shortly; the livery is already completed.
     
    The 747-8F was formerly owned by Boeing, and painted in the Seahawks livery in July last year, just after its first flight in June.  It is currently waiting for final delivery in Paine Field. You can see an image here.
     
    CLA is awaiting approval to operate US flights to add to its successful African operation.
     
    Over at IAG Cargo, which now hands maindeck volumes over to Qatar Airways Cargo, the financial results are as opaque as ever. The group announced first-quarter commercial revenues of €262m – a decrease of 1.5%, year-on-year, claimed the company.
     
    However, it noted, adjusting 2015’s figures to reflect a comparable operation shows commercial revenues decreased by 8.6%. IAG said it had amended the way it reported, adding €20m of “other” revenue to “cargo” revenues in 2015.
     
    The cargo arm said volumes fell 1.8%, while yields, adjusted, fell 6.9% at a constant exchange – better than some rivals.
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    HK's Modern Terminals orders 5 quay cranes, upgrades 4 old ones
    source: Shippingazette
     
    HONG KONG's Modern Terminals Limited signed two orders with Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Co (ZPMC) for five new quay cranes and the upgrade of four old ones at its Hong Kong terminal.
     
    "These latest agreements constitute Modern Terminals'continuous investment in the advanced technologies, equipment and facilities required to provide operational excellence to customers and maintain the competitiveness of Hong Kong Port," said the company statement.
     
    "Modern Terminals' facilities in Hong Kong are capable of handling the largest container vessels in the world," said Modern Terminals chief engineer Horace Lo. 
     
    "We don't rest on our laurels. It is our policy to continuously improve by investing heavily in both hardware and software to cater for the existing and future needs of our shipping line customers. 
     
    "We will continue to be able to accommodate the next generation ultra-large container vessels, with a carrying capacity of 21,000 TEU, alongside our berths when they come onstream next year," said Mr Lo.
     
     
     
    Hanjin expected to outline restructuring plans on Wednesday
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Local media in Seoul is reporting Hanjin Shipping will unveil a creditor-led restructuring program on Wednesday.
     
    The plans are likely to include asset sales, wage freezes and like compatriot Korean line Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) Hanjin is likely to enter negotiations with tonnage providers to try and lower the rates of its chartered in fleet.
     
     
     
    Panama Canal hits back at 'false' ITF claims that new locks pose a threat to larger boxships
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    The Panama Canal has rejected claims by the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), reported in The Loadstar, that operation of the new locks could lead to unsafe practices when larger vessels are introduced.
     
    Following the publication of an ITF-commissioned study, Peter Pusztai Panama, Canal Pilot Training Coordinator, said: “The ITF’s claims are unproven and contain many errors.
     
    “Despite their false claims, we look forward to transforming the maritime industry through the opening of the expanded Panama Canal.”
     
     
     
    U.S. CBP Urges Commercial Traffic Requiring Port of Seattle Access to Expect Delays
    source: CIFFA
     
    With the closure of the Alaskan Way viaduct beginning Friday April 29th. 2016, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is urging commercial traffic that requires access to the Port of Seattle to expect delays and to plan ahead to take alternate routes or travel at non-peak times and to plan alternate routes during the closure of the Alaskan Way viaduct. CBP does not anticipate any interruption in operations at the port, but does expect heavy surface street congestion in the area of the port during the approximately two-week closure of the viaduct. Drivers requiring access to the port are encouraged to visit www.99closure.org for more information.

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Derailed Freight Train Near Washington, D.C. Leaks Hazardous Liquid
    source: Fortune
     
    However, no injuries were reported.
     
    A CSX freight train derailed in northeastern Washington, D.C. on Sunday, spilling hazardous liquid near a city subway station, the railroad company said.
     
    Several cars were overturned but no injuries were reported.
     
    The District of Columbia Fire Department said it had not ordered evacuations near the site of the accident, about three miles (5 km) from the White House.
     
    Sodium hydroxide, used to produce household products including paper, soap and detergent, was leaking from one car, CSX  CSX -0.37%  said in a statement.
     
    Canada Eager to Consider Investing In New Montreal Rail Network
     
    Earlier, the fire department said three cars were leaking an unidentified substance or substances but there was no fire. Fire department photographs showed several cars lying on their sides by the tracks on the main train route into the city, including tank cars, bulk material cars and box cars.
     
    The accident forced the closure of the Rhode Island Metro Station and Rhode Island Avenue, it said.
     
    The train, with three locomotives and a total of 175 cars, most carrying mixed freight or riding empty, was traveling from Cumberland, Maryland, to Hamlet, North Carolina.
     
     
     
    US shippers to shift more freight to rails amid pricing and volume softness
    source: JOC
     
    U.S. shippers expect to ramp-up their conversion of freight from truck to intermodal rail the most in a year and a half, according to a new survey.
     
    But railroads are still going to scrap for that cargo with trucking motor carriers able to offer more competitive pricing, according to intermodal rail executives and pricing indices for intermodal and over-the-road transport.  
     
    According to a recent Wolfe Research survey of more than 600 supply-chain managers whose aggregate transportation budget exceeds $10 billion, despite low fuel prices and overcapacity in the over-the-road segment, expectations for intermodal volume growth rebounded in the first quarter to their highest level in one-and-a-half years. Looking ahead, shippers told the New York-based transportation research firm they expect 14 percent of their total over-the-road volumes to go through intermodal in five years.  
     
    That said, “intermodal is going to have to grow the old-fashioned way,” Larry Gross, a senior transportation analyst at FTR Associates, told JOC.com Friday. “It’s going to have to earn it. It is a competitive environment out there, to be sure.”
     
    The competition for valuable intermodal cargo is stiff. Freight volume expectations are now at their lowest level in six years, the soft energy market is wreaking havoc with carload traffic increasing the role of intermodal freight in profit margins and flush capacity on both road and rails is driving down pricing industry-wide.
     
     
     
    Sweden introduces 730m-long freight trains
    source: IRJ
     
    REGULAR operation of 730m-long freight trains began in Sweden on April 28 following the completion of a multi-annual project by infrastructure manager Trafikverket to lengthen loops and double-track sections to accommodate longer trains.
     
    Hector Rail is now operating 730m-long trains on the Hallsberg/Katrineholm - Malmö corridor, one of Sweden's key rail freight arteries, carrying paper products for export.
     
    According to Hector Rail, the project has increased payloads by 15% compared with the previous maximum permitted train length of 630m.
     
     
     
    MoT Announces New Measures Enhance Transparency On Rail Safety and DG
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Minister of Transport, on Friday announced new measures to strengthen rail safety and the transportation of dangerous goods during a meeting with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Effective April 28, 2016, railways will be required to provide municipalities and first responders with even more data on dangerous goods to improve emergency planning, risk assessments, and training. The requirement, contained in Protective Direction 36, also provides that municipalities are given information that can be shared directly with the Canadian public.
     
    As part of Rail Safety Week, the Minister also announced the release of the 2016 Emergency Responders Guidebook and a set of competency guidelines for first responders. These tools provide first responders with important safety information when they arrive at the scene of an incident, as well as training guidelines when they need to quickly respond to transportation incidents involving dangerous goods. 
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    CBSA Memorandum D21-1-1 Customs Privileges for Diplomatic Missions, Consular Posts Updated
    source: CIFFA
     
    This memorandum has been entirely rewritten to clarify the procedures and processes for importing goods, particularly motor vehicles and alcohol, by foreign representatives posted to Canada and assigned to diplomatic missions, consular posts, and certain international organizations accredited by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD). It also reflects changes resulting from the implementation of the Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) branding initiative. Full details here
     
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    UK logistics executives believe their firms will be better off staying in the EU
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Around two-thirds of UK executives in the freight logistics industry believe Britain should stay in the European Union.
     
    Results from a recently conducted membership survey by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) show 65% of respondents believe the supply chain, logistics and transport industry will have a better future if the UK remains in the EU.
     
     
     
    California ports turn to robots to cut emissions, speed freight
    source: ArkansasOnline
     
    On one end of a dock at America's busiest port, tractor-trailers haul containers through dense, stop-and-go traffic. Sometimes they collide. Sometimes the drivers must wait, diesel engines idling, as piles are unstacked to find the specific container they need.
     
    A few hundred yards away, advanced algorithms select the most efficient pathway for autonomous carriers to move containers across the wharf. The four-story-high orange machines cradle their cargo, passing quietly within inches of one another, at speeds of up to 18 mph, but never touching. Self-driving cranes on tracks stack the containers and then deliver them to waiting trucks and trains with minimal human intervention.
     
    TraPac LLC's Los Angeles marine-cargo facility demonstrates how autonomous technology could revolutionize freight transport as much as or more than personal travel. TraPac's equipment doubles the speed of loading and unloading ships, saving money and boosting profits. Their impact is rivaling that of containerization, which eliminated most manual sorting and warehousing on docks after World War II.
     
    "Self-driving won't just rebuild the current freight system, it will create a whole new way of thinking about it," said Larry Burns, a former research and development chief at General Motors and now a consultant at Alphabet's Google unit.
     
     
     
    New EU Rules - Customs Union Come Into Force
    source: CIFFA
     
    New customs rules came into force on Sunday, May 1st that will make life simpler for businesses that trade in Europe and better protect consumers against illegal and counterfeit goods. The new Union Customs Code (UCC) represents a major overhaul of existing EU customs legislation, which dates back to 1992. It is a milestone for the European Customs Union, the framework which allows more than 3 trillion Euros worth of goods to flow in and out of the EU each year.
     
    The new rules aim to:
     
    Allow traders to clear customs procedures more simply and quickly, getting goods to consumers faster and more cheaply;
    Better protect consumers against illegal goods or goods which don't respect European environmental, health and safety requirements;
    Improve cooperation between customs administrations with the help of new IT systems.
     

  • 29 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    IAG To Slow Expansion After Brussels Attacks
    source: AirWise
     
    IAG said it would slow its plans to fly more routes in the short term, in response to weaker demand from high-margin passengers and a general slowdown after the Brussels attacks.
     
    IAG posted operating profit of EUR€155 million for the three months to March 31, due to lower fuel prices and ongoing plans to reduce costs.
     
    That compared to the EUR€25 million operating profit it posted in the year-earlier period.
     
    Total revenue for the quarter was EUR€5.08 billion, up 7.9 percent from the previous year.
     
    IAG, whose airline portfolio includes British Airways, Iberia, Vueling and Aer Lingus, stuck to its forecast for 2016 profit, and said reaching that target would be helped by a plan to cut costs, excluding fuel, by about one percent during the year.
     
     
     
    Shanghai Hongqiao Airport Fire Out, Two Dead
    source: AirWise
     
    A fire in a basement at Shanghai Hongqiao Airport that killed two people has been put out, China Central Television (CCTV) said on its microblog, while an airport official said there had been no disruption to flights.
     
    Four people were also injured, CCTV said.
     
    The fire started underground in a pile of insulation material.
     
     
     
    China's FTZs in Tianjin, Fujian, Guangdong, Shanghai pilot reforms
    source: Shippingazette
     
    CHINA's four pilot free trade zones located in Tianjin, Fujian and Guangdong province on the east coast, as well as Shanghai, are spearheading structural reforms to make it easier to start businesses and grant foreign firms more access to the service sector.
     
    These cities and provinces have taken on the role of piloting new reforms in their free trade zones, where local authorities have greater discretion to manage business activities and cross-border capital flow, reported Xinhua.
     
    Loosened controls on capital and widened access to sectors that remain closed or restricted for foreign firms elsewhere have led to a surge in new business registrations and cross-border transactions in the zones.
     
    A survey published in September by the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai found that 42 per cent of American firms are happy with measures to facilitate trade in the Shanghai free trade zone, and plan to gain a foothold in the free trade zones in Tianjin, Fujian and Guangdong.
     
    Tianjin plans to use its free trade zone to serve a greater region in northern China that includes Beijing and Hebei province. Tianjin has performed well in auto imports and financial leasing compared to the rest of the country. 
     
    The financial leasing arm of China's biggest state lender ICBC performed the country's first offshore leasing in Tianjin when it bought an A320 aircraft from Airbus and leased it to Himalaya Airlines in Nepal.
     
    Guangdong has been leveraging its proximity to Hong Kong and Macao to encourage more cross-border financial transactions. A total of 13 securities firms and asset managers from Hong Kong have been allowed to invest up to US$18.66 billion combined in China's domestic capital markets.
     
     
     
    Bengaluru airport holds skills training session for cargo handling staff
    source: Shippingazette
     
    BANGALORE International Airport Limited (BIAL) has launched a skills development programme for cargo handling staff at the Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru (KIAB). 
     
    In a bid to provide a learning platform to develop sound knowledge of the air cargo industry, the airport has teamed up with Menzies Aviation Bobba Bangalore (MABB). 
     
    Under the directive of the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA), this one-day training programme was attended by representatives from airlines, cargo handling agencies, ground handlers and officials. 
     
    The programmeemphasises the importance of developing a strong cargo community, economic growth of the community, and global recognition of the industry.
     
     
     
    Flights Resume At Manta (Ecuador) As Quiport Builds Emergency Terminal After Earthquake
    source: CIFFA
     
    Quiport, the operator of Quito airport, has built an emergency terminal in the City of Manta, whose airport was damaged by a severe earthquake earlier this month. Together with the Civil Aviation Directorate and Avianca, flights have now resumed to Manta, which lost all connectivity after the earthquake - a time when it was sorely needed. But commercial flights carrying aid and rescue workers have now started. Technicians built the emergency terminal in a single weekend, offering basic airport infrastructure, according to Quiport. It started operating on Monday and will be used until longer-term solutions can be found to recover the infrastructure affected by the earthquake. (Excerpted from The Loadstar)

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    EC clears CMA CGM bid to buy APL, but it must withdraw carrier from G6 alliance
    source: The Loadstar
     
    The European Commission’s competition directorate has cleared CMA CGM’s acquisition of Singapore line APL and its parent company, NOL – with the proviso that it withdraws APL from the G6 alliance.
     
    Competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager said: “Container liner shipping plays a central role in global trade, so competition in this sector is essential for businesses and consumers in the EU.
     
    “Today’s decision ensures that the takeover will not lead to price increases for the many EU companies using these container shipping services.”  
     
     
     
    Long Beach CEO sees near-shoring in Mexico next big economic trend
    source: Shippingazette
     
    IT is Latin America's turn to be the workshop of the world now the title has been lost by China given its rising wages, says Jon Slangerup, chief executive of the Port of Long Beach.
     
    "Today, in a couple of different segments, China's hourly labour cost structure is higher than Mexico by double digits," he told the Long Beach Business Journal. 
     
    "In some cases, Mexico is half the cost in certain types of traditional Asian commodities or products. So shifts will occur."
     
    It's a pattern that has occurred in Japan, then Korea, and now China, he said. 
     
    "They develop their industrial manufacturing capacity, they build their workforces around that, they begin becoming extremely dominant in a particular series of markets or products, and then their wages start to rise . . . and [become] more comparable to other manufacturing environments worldwide," he said.
     
    "And guess what happens? The costs go up and then they're no longer attractive." 
     
    China's exports have decreased by three per cent in the past year, which, considering the country's immense manufacturing sector, translates to a lot of volume, MrSlangerup said. 
     
    "When you look at who's picking up the slack, it's Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia. And even South Korea remains in double-digit growth," he said. 
     
    Entrance to Port of Santos reopens
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    The entrance to the Port of Santos in Brazil reopened on Thursday after being closed for 30 hours because of rough seas, according to Reuters.
     
    Latin America’s busiest container port, Santos is Brazil’s biggest export gateway for soybeans, one of its most important crops, and this is the peak of the soy export season.
    Around 20 ships were prevented from accessing or departing the navigation channel during the closure.
     
    TAGS
    BRAZIL

     
    Korean yard workers threaten action over mass layoff plans
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Unions at two of South Korea’s largest shipyards have warned they will take militant action if job cuts proceed as planned amid huge restructuring in the sector. Workers at Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) and Hyundai Heavy Industries have threatened action if cuts move ahead as planned.
     
    “The government is trying to pass the buck to workers without holding the management accountable for huge losses,” DSME’s union said in a recent letter. “It is natural for unionists, who have worked hard for the company, to protest such a move.”
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    The driverless truck is coming, and it’s going to automate millions of jobs
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Flexport’s Ryan Petersen has penned this rather brilliant post – honestly, are these guys actually trying to do us out of a job? Don’t you have some freight to book instead? – in TechCrunch recently on the future of a trucking industry dominated by autonomous vehicles. It doesn’t look good for drivers; it perhaps appears rosier for anyone concerned about the driver shortage crisis both in Europe and the US – there will be vast cost savings in salaries and diving costs, because driverless trucks can operate around-the-clock; are expected to be more fuel efficient; there will likely be less accidents; and it goes a long way to solving the driver shortage crisis.
     
     
     
    CN Rail Warns Ottawa Not To Impose Or Extend Regulations On Railways
    source: CIFFA
     
    Canadian National Railway is calling on Ottawa to refrain from imposing or extending service regulations on the country's railways that it fears will stifle innovation and discourage investment. Chief executive Claude Mongeau says railway managers, not government agencies, are the best ones to decide on the trade-offs needed to ensure an efficient service. 
     
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Construction work should improve Port of Montreal access: port
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–The Montreal Port Authority has welcomed the announcement by the Quebec Ministry of Transport, Sustainable Mobility and Transport Electrification regarding improved access to the Port of Montreal.
     
    The government effectively kicked off the work on the stretch of Highway 25 between Sherbrooke Street to the North and Notre-Dame Street to the south. The project to optimize this corridor of Highway 25 will enable truck drivers to reach Port of Montreal territory more directly, and in turn reduce trucking on the local road network, the port said.
     
    The planned work will also make it easier for pedestrians and cyclists to get around on the municipal network, notably by reconfiguring the Sherbrooke interchange and adding a multipurpose path.
     
    “This project has been on our radar for a long time, and I welcome the Government of Quebec’s cooperation. This new road corridor will have a major impact on traffic flow. It will speed up the transport of goods, which is mission-critical to the quality of services provided by a port.
     

  • 28 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    E-commerce boom means demand for narrowbody freighters threatens to outstrip supply
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Feedstock for narrowbody freighter conversions could run short by 2018, thanks to demand from China’s e-commerce and express delivery markets.
     
    “Looking at the overall global market for freighters, and narrowing down into the single-aisle sector, we see demand as about 1,000 airplanes over the next 20 years,” Boeing vice-president Kurt Kraft told last week’s Cargo Facts Asia conference in Hong Kong.
     
    “We believe 400 of those are going to China. Another 250 will go into the US market, with the reminder going into Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

    Read more here

     
    Drewry air cargo index upticks 0.3pc, bringing cheer to unhappy sector
    source: Shippingazette
     
    Drewry's East-West Airfreight Price Index rose by 0.3 points in March to a reading of 79.5, bringing much needed cheer to the sector.
     
    The increase came after four consecutive months of falling prices, during which period the index fell by over 20 points from an October peak.
     
    But the March figure still represented the index's second lowest level since it was launched in May 2012.
     
     
     
    Flights resume at Manta as Quiport builds emergency terminal after Ecuador earthquake
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Quiport, the operator of Quito airport, has built an emergency terminal in the City of Manta, whose airport was damaged by a severe earthquake earlier this month.
     
    Together with the Civil Aviation Directorate and Avianca, flights have now resumed to Manta, which lost all connectivity after the earthquake – a time when it was sorely needed. But commercial flights carrying aid and rescue workers have now started.
     
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo sees “dramatic usage increase” on e-air waybill campaign
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–Air Canada Cargo says it is seeing dramatic usage increases on its e-air waybill campaign. On January 21, the airline launched a campaign aimed at obtaining 100% e-AWB usage on domestic shipments by April 28. According to the airline:
     
    e-AWB usage in Canada has increased by 55% over last year
    60% of Air Canada Cargo’s top customers have an e-AWB usage of 90% or more
    Usage of Air Canada Cargo’s e-Booking tool has doubled since December
    Many customers are still in the midst of making the conversion to e-AWB. To support those who are finalizing your e-AWB conversion plans, the $18 fee for shipments tendered without an e-AWB will be waived until June 1, the airline said.
     
     
     
    Virgin Atlantic Cargo Re-Introduces Chicago Service
    source: CIFFA
     
    Virgin Atlantic Cargo is re-introducing seasonal, daily flights to and from Chicago, they announced this week. The flights, which will arrive at London Heathrow at 7:55 a.m., will operate with an A330-300. Virgin Atlantic Cargo already has a daily, year-round service that links Detroit and London Heathrow, which arrives at London Heathrow at 6:25 a.m. Virgin Atlantic Cargo now offers direct services to and from 12 U.S. destinations, which include Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Newark, Orlando, San Francisco and Washington.

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    CKYHE restructures Asia-U.S. East Coast service network
    source: American Shipper
     
    The CKYHE Alliance members - consisting of ocean carriers COSCO, "K" Line, Yang Ming, Hanjin and Evergreen Line -  unveiled a reorganization of their service network on the Asia-U.S. East Coast trade from early June of 2016, in addition to reconfirming their cooperation on major east-west trades until the end of March 2017.
    The CKYHE Alliance's revised Asia-U.S. East Coast service network will include the following services and rotations.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    NYK rep reiterates no VGM, no load
    source: American Shipper
     
    A representative of the ocean carrier NYK Line this week told a conference in New Orleans that if the verified gross mass data is not submitted for a container, the carrier will not load that container when it arrives at a U.S. port.
     
    Bill Ferguson, vice president, security services and environmental affairs for NYK Line (North America) reiterated a stance made by carriers in recent weeks as enforcement of the International Maritime Organization’s Verified Gross Mass (VGM) guidelines become clearer.
     
    Read more here
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    French national rail strike disrupts freight to and from major ports
    source: Shippingazette
     
    FRENCH rail freight has being disrupted across France and at its major seaports as a week-long strike continued with no sign of settlement, reports IHS Media.
     
    State-owned railway SNCF (Societenationale des chemins de fer) has asked customers to postpone shipments scheduled for this week until further notice.
     
    The strike threatens to reverse the recent slight increase in rail's share of the overall domestic transport market after decades of decline. 
     
    A wave of rolling strikes in 2010 reduced traffic, with some shippers switching permanently to road transport.
     
    The strike, by CGT, France's largest labour union, and the smaller Sud-Rail union, to protest government plans to reform the industry, has caused the most serious disruption in years.
     
    The French Socialist government wants to place SNCF and the RFF rail network manager into a single holding company, while keeping their operations separate, in a bid to boost productivity and cut costs.
     
    Unions want them fully merged as they were until 1997, and also demanded that the government to assume some of their combined EUR44 billion (US$60 billion) debt.
     
     

    Canadian Railway Car-Loadings for February 2016
    source: CIFFA
     
    The volume of rail freight carried in Canada totalled 26.8 million tonnes in February, an increase of 4.5% from the same month last year. Freight originating in Canada increased 7.0% to 24.4 million tonnes. These shipments are composed of both non-intermodal and intermodal freight. 
     
    Non-intermodal freight rose 8.9% to 270,000 carloads in February. The amount of freight loaded into these cars totalled 21.8 million tonnes, up 7.1% from the same month last year. The rise reflected an increase in freight loadings of iron ores and concentrates (up 0.5 million tonnes), canola (up 0.4 million tonnes), other oil seeds and nuts and other agricultural products (up 0.3 million tonnes), and lumber (up 0.2 million tonnes). 
     
    For the third consecutive month, the tonnage of coal, potash, and fuel oils and crude petroleum shipped by rail posted a year-over-year decline in February.
     
    Intermodal freight loadings rose 7.8% to 173,000 units in February. In terms of weight, intermodal traffic grew 5.5% to 2.6 million tonnes as a result of an increase in containerized cargo shipments. Freight traffic received from the United States fell 15.1% to 2.5 million tonnes as a result of a decrease in both non-intermodal and intermodal shipments. From February 2011 to February 2016, the total volume of rail freight carried in Canada increased 19.2%.
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    CN announces candidates for Ground Up community tree-planting program
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–CN has announced the successful candidates for its 2016 From the Ground Up community tree-planting program. Thirty one communities in Canada were selected amongst the 92 applications to receive grants of up to $25,000 each in this fifth year of the program.
     
    The objective of the CN EcoConnexions – From the Ground Up program is to promote community sustainability, through the greening of municipal and community properties across Canada. CN partners with Tree Canada and Communities in Bloom to help Canadian municipalities and community groups establish tree planting and green space enhancement initiatives in a sustainable, environmentally responsible manner. The program aims to enhance environmental and social health of communities.
     
     
     
    Soaring Aerospace Industry Will Give Quebec Steady Export Growth This Year And Next
    source: CIFFA
     
    Quebec's healthy mix of export sectors, which is the most diversified in Canada, will continue to benefit the province as export growth is forecast to increase by five per cent both this year and next. This year the champion of that group will be the province's aircraft and parts sector, according to Export Development Canada's (EDC) semi-annual Global Export Forecast. 
     

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Containerisation celebrates 60 birthday as box that changed the world
    source: Shippingazette
     
    CONTAINERISED shipping has turned 60, after the first seaborne container was transported on board Malcolm McLean's Ideal-X on April 26, 1956. 
     
    The man credited with being container shipping's true pioneer was Malcolm McLean, a trucking magnate, who used a converted tanker to move the first containerised cargo by sea 60 years ago from New Jersey to Houston. 
     
    Four years later, Sea-Land introduced the first transatlantic service, and in 1969, in the UK, Overseas Container Lines launched its first service. 
     
    Containerisation enabled the standardisation of port handling equipment, increased the speed of cargo handling and the flexibility of stowage location and unpacking, which together transformed the way manufactured goods were shipped around the world. 
     
     

  • 27 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Delays, Cancellations As German Airport Workers Strike
    source: AirWise
     
    German air travel is set for a day of disruption after public sector workers at airports started strikes in a push for higher wages.
     
    Lufthansa said it was cancelling almost 900 flights at airports including Frankfurt and Munich, equivalent to around 60 percent of its usual daily traffic.
     
    The strike by workers, including ground services, security checks, fire fighting and check-in staff, are likely to severely impede operations at German airports, with airport operator Fraport warning it could take a day or two for services to return to normal.
     
    Staff in Munich are holding an all-day strike on Wednesday, while in Frankfurt, Germany's largest airport, the strike is due to end at 15:00 local time. Munich airport said around 700 of a scheduled 1,100 takeoffs and landings had been cancelled.
     
     
     
    Kenya's Astral Aviation set to introduce commercial delivery by drone
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    An African cargo airline has pledged to introduce commercial drones as soon as laws and clearance are in place. Astral Aviation, a Kenya-based cargo carrier, is investing $500,000 to start operations as early as next year. Sanjeev Gadhia, CEO, is planning to develop a drone airport for goods such as medicines and aid in remote locations. Kenya is the second country in the region to regulate the use of UAVs, after Rwanda.  The government has bought a state-of-the-art military drone  from the US to help it combat problems such as terrorism and poaching.
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    CMA-CGM postpones megaship calls to US west coast ports
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    French container giant CMA-CGM has postponed plans to send some of its so-called megaships on routes to US west coast ports starting in May.
     
    The company blamed its decision on poor trans-Pacific market conditions.
     
    Six of the firm’s ultra large container ships (ULCS) would have plied CMA-CGM’s Pearl River Express route from China to California, calling at the ports of Long Beach and Oakland.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Berth productivity falls at 20 top ports in face of mega ship challenge
    source: Shippingazette
     
    BERTH productivity at 20 of the biggest ports in Asia and Europe is in decline, according to new analysis presented by CTI at the 20th TOC Asia Container Supply Chain conference.
     
    Despite carrier pleas that port productivity levels need to improve to handle mega ships, berth productivity levels at the world's largest ports are falling.
     
    CTI Consultancy partner Andy Lane said that terminal productivity relative to average vessel call size showed productivity levels dropping. 
     
    Mr Lane took 20 major ports ?five Asia gateways, five Asian hubs, five European gateways and five European hubs ?for his analysis.
     
    "As call size is a major determinant of crane intensity, then we might expect berth productivity to fall if the average call size decreases," he said.
     
    "What we observe is that berth productivity has fallen by further than call size. So whichever way you chose to measure it productivity is in decline," he told delegates.
     
    In the five European hubs, average call size had reduced by 19 per cent while productivity had slipped by 22 per cent. In the five European gateway ports, average call size had fallen eight per cent while productivity had dropped 11 per cent. 
     
    In the five Asian hubs, average call size had decreased by four per cent while productivity had declined 11 per cent; and in the five Asian gateway ports, average call size had gone down 18 per cent while productivity had declined by 27 per cent.
     
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Canadian Pacific falls as buyback fails to soothe investors
    source: Shippingazette
     
    CANADIAN Pacific Railway (CP) shares fell as plans to repurchase stock disappointed investors expecting a bigger payback following the railroad's failed takeover attempt of Norfolk Southern Corp.
     
    CP chief executive Hunter Harrison said repeatedly during the five-month public campaign for the US rival that he probably would start repurchasing stock if the acquisition attempt ended, which it did last week. 
     
    The board authorised repurchasing as many as 6.91 million common shares, the Calgary-based company said in a statement, Bloomberg reported.
     

     
    Driver creates app to get truckers out of line at Port of Oakland
    source: AJOT 
     
    Oakland, Calif. - Another mobile phone app has been developed to get truckers out of line at the Port of Oakland. The difference this time: it’s the brainchild of a harbor driver.
    FilexFok, a licensed motor carrier at the Port, introduced the new app last week. Called Jupigo, his technology helps harbor truckers exchange empty cargo containers without ever entering the Port. The objective: keep truckers on the road, not waiting at busy terminal gates.  

    Read more here

     
    French SNCF's Rail Freight Traffic Hit By Another Strike
    source: CIFFA
     
    Intermodal firms have hit out at the latest industrial action by French state-owned rail operator SNCF, the third in the past two months. SNCF's rail freight traffic is being disrupted by strike action, with French state railway staff staging a 36-hour stoppage (Tuesday) in protest to proposed new working conditions. In a message to customers, freight subsidiary Fret SNCF said its staff "are mobilised to limit the consequences of the strike as much as possible", without elaborating on the degree of disruption that is expected to schedules. (Excerpted from Lloyds Loading List)
     
     
    New Electronic Manifest for In-Transit Truck Cargo to be Tested
    source: CIFFA
     
    U.S. Customs and Border Protection is planning to conduct a pilot test of a new electronic manifest in the Automated Commercial Environment Truck Manifest System for truck shipments of commercial goods transiting from point to point in Canada through the United States. This test will commence no earlier than May 27 and will run for approximately six months at the ports of Port Huron, Mich.; Pembina, N.D.; and Blaine, Wash. Participation is currently limited to nine Canadian truck carriers, each of which is a bonded carrier and a certified member of the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism. 
     
    Currently, a truck carrying such in-transit goods must present a paper U.S.-Canada Transit Manifest (CBP Form 7512-B Canada 8½) to CBP when it crosses the border at the U.S. ports of arrival and exit. CBP also requires the electronic filing of certain information regarding such in-transit goods in advance of the truck's arrival at the border. The ACE Truck Manifest System enables these in-transit shipments to be filed under shipment release type 62 as transportation and entry in-bond entries, which includes a complete ANSI X12 manifest (referred to as a 309 manifest) with trip, shipment (including the value of the goods along with a description of the cargo and a Harmonized Tariff Schedule number to the six-digit level), conveyance, equipment, crew and passenger data.
     
    Under the forthcoming test, participating truck carriers transporting such in-transit goods will be required to submit an e-manifest in the ACE Truck Manifest System under a new shipment release type 70 no later than 30 minutes prior to arrival in the U.S. Carriers will be required to submit the same set of data elements as on a 309 manifest, except that CBP will accept (a) a value amount of $2 per pound when the actual value is not available and (b) a precise description of the cargo rather than the HTS number.
     
    The in-transit manifest will be processed and retained in ACE in the same manner as a type 62 manifest. When the shipment arrives in the U.S., CBP will generate a "transit movement authorized" message (referred to as a 350 message) that will be sent to the carrier. The shipment will then be able to transit the U.S. and proceed to the U.S. port of export as an in-transit entry. When the shipment arrives at the port of export the carrier will report the arrival of the shipment to CBP via an EDI message or through the carrier's ACE portal account. CBP will issue another 350 message notifying the carrier that the shipment has entered Canada and that the in-transit entry is closed. (Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg)

     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNEMENT UPDATES


    Canada's Non-Resource Exports Take Centre Stage In 2016
    source: CIFFA
     
    While natural resources continue to struggle under lower prices and sluggish demand, double-digit growth in consumer goods, automotive, and aerospace sectors will drive Canada's overall exports to grow by two per cent this year, according to a new global export forecast by Export Development Canada (EDC). 
     
     

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Shipping: The business of an industry
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    In the first of a two-part special for Splash, Paul Slater looks at how shipping has changed in the 21st century.
     
    The shipping industry is a collection of thousands of businesses operating around the world carrying a huge variety of cargoes across the oceans and in the seas and rivers that separate the land masses where populations live.
     
    Raw materials and commodities of all types are shipped efficiently from the source countries to consumers that manufacture finished goods, which in turn are shipped to other consumers.
     
    Energy products such as oil and gas and the chemicals they produce are shipped to consumers who cannot exist without them. Food products are also moved across oceans today and many form a fundamental part of the consumers’ daily diets.
     
    Up until the middle of the 20th century these shipping services were provided by large liner companies and certain smaller companies serving specific trades mainly in the dry cargo markets. They were mostly located in the developed countries of Europe, Asia and the USA and certain fleets were directly owned by energy suppliers.
     
     
     
    Ulsan chosen to print ships
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    How soon till a ship comes hot off the press? Ulsan, the Korean industrial city where Hyundai Heavy Industries is based, is set to spend big on developing 3D printing with ships in mind.
     
    The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy has chosen Ulsan as the base to carry out research into 3D printing and manufacturing of ships and offshore equipment. Around $20m will be spent in a five-year period starting in 2017.
     

  • 26 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Bombardier In Spotlight As Delta Deal Nears
    source: AirWise
     
    Bombardier faces a pivotal week that may see a key deal announced with Delta Air Lines, but a federal aid package is unlikely to be approved in time for its annual meeting on Friday.
     
    The deal with Delta for up to 125 CSeries aircraft is critical for Bombardier as Delta would be the first major US airline to purchase the CSeries, which is entering service years late and billions of dollars over budget.
     
    Delta’s board is widely expected to approve the purchase, which includes 75 initial orders, this week.
     
    A Delta commitment, coupled with a firmed up agreement for 45 CSeries with Air Canada, would put the CSeries order book above the 300 mark, allowing the company to hit a psychologically-important internal target by the time the first plane enters service in July 2016.
     
     
     
    Six German Airports To Be Affected By Wednesday's Strikes
    source: CIFFA
     
    Six German airports including Frankfurt/Main, Munich, Düsseldorf, Cologne, Dortmund and Hannover will be affected if the strike by German public services trade union Verdi moved forward on Wednesday, April 27. Frankfurt Airport will be affected from early morning until 3 p.m. local time, including ground-services, check-in, maintenance areas and also fire services (from 8 a.m.). Frankfurt Airport said on its website that the public sector strike across Germany will cause "major disruptions and flight cancellations."
     
    Munich Airport expects to be affected the entire day in all areas of airport operations. The airport confirmed it also expects major interruptions at check-in services and flight operations. Cologne Airport ground workers will strike for 24 hours starting from midnight. Düsseldorf Airport workers are setting strike actions from between 3 a.m. until 2 p.m., including administration, terminal and bus services. Dortmund Airport said ground services will be affected from shift start on Wednesday; Hannover Airport will experience strike action from 4:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. 
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    New shock for liner shipping as now Hanjin applies for debt restructuring
    source: The Loadstar
     
    South Korea’s biggest container line, Hanjin Shipping, today submitted an application to the state-owned Korea Development Bank for a creditor-led debt restructuring programme .
     
    Hanjin thus joins its compatriot, Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), in seeking a deal with creditors.
     
    The rapid demise of Hanjin – thought to be in a relatively stronger financial position than HMM – will send further shock waves through the liner industry, and could have severe repercussions for the owners of its leased containerships who will fear charter defaults.
     
     
     
    G6 Alliance will begin using neopanamax ships
    source: American Shipper
     
    Members of the G6 Alliance - ocean carriers Hapag-Lloyd, OOCL, MOL, NYK, APL and HMM - have announced an alteration of their services through the Panama Canal in anticipation of the opening of the enlarged locks at the end of June.

    Read  more here
     
     
    Hutchison Ajman port: All ships must have IMO numbers and AIS by May 1
    source: Shippingazette
     
    HONG KONG-owned Hutchison Ajman International Terminals Limited has given notice that all vessels calling at Ajman Port must have a valid IMO number clearly mentioned in the certificates, reports GAC Hot Port News. 
     
    All cargo ships, supply vessels and tug boats entering the port should also have an Automatic Identification System (AIS) fitted on board vessel on or before May in Ajman, one of the seven emirates of the UAE. 
     

     
    Type of cargo ‘no longer affects price’
    source: Lloyd’s Loading List
     
    Container lines are no longer pricing cargo according to type, with simply filling their vessels now their number one priority, according to data from Xeneta, an Oslo-based benchmarking and market intelligence platform for containerised ocean freight.
     
    It argues that oversupply, better supply chain management, and downwardly spiralling fuel costs have made the market so competitive over the last 18 months that ‘what’s in the box’ no longer plays a part in negotiations.  

    Read more here
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Union Pacific Q1 profit falls 15pc to US$979 million as sales drop 14pc
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Union Pacific's first quarter net profit fell 15 per cent year on year to US$979 million, drawn on revenues of $4.83 billion, down 14 per cent.
     
    Weak coal demand continues to be a challenge for all the major railways as utilities switch to natural gas because of low costs and environmental regulations, said the company statement.
     
    Omaha-based Union Pacific said coal shipments fell 34 per cent in the quarter, but there were also declines in shipments of industrial products, agricultural crops and intermodal containers. 
     
    The company laid off 5,175 workers from a year earlier and has put 1,400 locomotives in storage to adjust to the reduced shipping.
     
    "The commercial team did an excellent job of securing 2.5 per cent price in an environment where volume is down eight per cent," said CEO Lance Fritz. "There were a lot of headwinds."
     
    The overall economy continues to grow but that's obscured in the railroad results by the weak demand for coal, shipments related to shale mining and exports.
     

     
    Melbourne Container Terminal Faces New Strike Threat
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Patrick container terminal at the port of Melbourne in Australia will face a stoppage as part of a three-week-old industrial action campaign by the Maritime Union of Australia as the two parties negotiate contracts. The strike will last 48 hours beginning at 7 a.m. local time April 28 and comes after similar actions last week at the ports of Melbourne and Brisbane. Future stoppages are planned for Patrick container terminals at Port Botany, Sydney and Fremantle during the first two weeks of May. The Brisbane stoppages last week affected three vessels due at Patrick's Fishermen Island terminal, the company said. At the same time, a Brisport representative said that operations had been largely unaffected over the 48 hours. (Excepted from JOC Online)
     
     
    Fremantle port proposal not in freight link plan
    source: Yahoo
     
    A plan being canvassed by the Barnett Government to increase workloads through Fremantle port does not form part of the business case used to justify the Perth Freight Link.
     
    The West Australian can reveal that pushing two million containers a year through the port — a key part of the Government’s proposal to sell it — raises fresh questions about the $1.9 billion freight link. Treasurer Mike Nahan said this week that Fremantle port could triple its capacity to more than two million containers a year, delaying the need for an outer harbour near Kwinana for up to 25 years.
     
    DrNahan, trying to win support for the port’s privatisation, has argued that building the outer harbour before Fremantle went to full capacity would add costs to port users, customers and the economy.
     
    But the cost-benefit analysis for the freight link — announced just ahead of the 2014 Federal Budget — was based on the Fremantle port taking between 1.2 million and 1.4 million containers a year, with most delivered by road.
     
     
     
    Officials: No Injuries, No Spill When Freight Train Derails
    source: ABC
     
    Authorities say no one was injured and nothing was spilled after some freight train cars derailed in New Jersey.
     
    The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey spokesman, Joseph Pentangelo, says Saturday three or four Conrail freight cars came off the rails in Jersey City. He says Port Authority police report no injuries and no spilled hazardous materials.
     
    Port Authority Trans-Hudson train service also was not disrupted.
     
    Pentangelo says the derailment happened on lines behind Dickinson High School.
     
    A message left with Conrail has not been returned.
     
    Pentangelo says Port Authority police responded to a request for assistance from Jersey City officials.
     
     
     
    Will freight transportation become "Uberized"? I don't see it
    source: JOC
     
    Sometimes it can feel as if freight transportation is about to get “disrupted” by brilliant software engineers flush with millions of dollars in startup funding from Silicon Valley. Not only do we learn about new logistics-focused venture funds backed by people whose prior startups are the epitome of success, but we also see disruption in action every day. As a regular Uber customer, I rarely use my local Brooklyn taxi company that sent beat-up old cars to pick me up and never seemed to be straight with me about when a car would arrive.
     
    How much money have I given Amazon that formerly would have gone to an actual store? From the perspective of freight transportation, it’s as if you can hear the footsteps growing louder, but you don’t know who’s coming, what they’ll look like or when they’ll arrive, if ever.
     
    You could get vertigo with who’s taking an interest in freight transportation and all its inefficient, manual processes, as the mother-of-all-disruption plays.
     
    According to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon.com Founder Jeff Bezos, eBay Founder Pierre Omidyar and Uber Technologies Co-Founder Garrett Camp are backing a startup called Convoy, a Seattle-based freight-booking service. A venture fund backed by PayPal Holdings Creator Peter Thiel led a $20 million early stage investment in Flexport, a technology-driven forwarder based in San Francisco that among other things aims to improve cargo visibility through software. Former Maersk Line social media guru Jonathan Wichmann has created a list of more than 50 logistics startups ranging from freight to last mile to moving.
     
    With all that firepower aimed at freight transportation, it won’t be long before the industry is unrecognizable, with logistics directors monitoring their global supply chains from an app on their iPhones while they sip a latte at Starbucks, right? If you’re skeptical, you’re not alone.
     
    As Wichmann points out with abundant accuracy, “the logistics business is not easy on the startups. There’s a reluctance among the big players to change their business models.”
     

  • 25 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Strike Called At German Airports For April 27
    source: AirWise
     
    Workers at several German airports including Frankfurt will strike on April 27 in support of a wage increase, the Verdi union said.
     
    Strikes will affect Frankfurt, Munich, Dusseldorf, Cologne/Bonn, Dortmund and Hanover airports, Verdi said.
     
    At Frankfurt, ground services, check-in, shops, aviation security inspectors and the fire service will strike until about 15:00 local time.
     
     
     
    Thailand names CAA International to meet ICAO norms starting in May
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT) has appointed CAA International (CAAi), the advisory arm of the UK Civil Aviation Authority (UK CAA), to help strengthen CAAT's aviation safety oversight and compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), starting from May.
     
    The CAAi project will involve a team of 10 experts from the UK CAA to work with CAAT to recertify Thai registered AOCs, to address the Significant Safety Concern (SSC) raised by ICAO in 2015, a statement said. 
     
    CAAi will also conduct on-the-job flight operations training to CAAT Inspectors, to help increase their core inspectorate competencies in accordance with international standards. The final work stream includes full-scale ICVM preparation assistance. 
     
    This activity will cover all of ICAO's eight critical elements of a safety oversight system ahead of Thailand's impending ICVM safety audit by ICAO.
     
     
     
    Brussels Airlines launches new service from Toronto
    source: CanadianShipper 
     
    TORONTO, Ont.– Effective April 21, Star Alliance member Brussels Airlines will connect Toronto Pearson International Airport five times a week with its home base Brussels, and onwards to other destinations in Europe and Africa.
     
    Toronto is Brussels Airlines’ first destination in Canada, the airline announced at the official launch Thursday. Brussels Airlines will offer five weekly flights between Toronto Pearson and Brussels Airport. The flight will leave Toronto every Tuesday, Thursday,Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 18h30 in the evening and arrive the next morning in Brussels at 07:50am local time. The flight to Toronto leaves Brussels Airport at 10:30am and arrives at Pearson Airport at 01:20 pm local time.
     
    The new service is operated with Airbus A330 aircraft equipped with Brussels Airlines state of the art Business and Economic Class cabins.
     
    Thanks to its close cooperation with Star Alliance partners Air Canada and United, Brussels Airlines also offers its guests out of Europe many codeshare connections via Toronto to and from various other destinations in Canada (Ottawa, Edmonton, Halifax, Quebec, Vancouver, Montreal Metropolitan Airport and St John’s) and the United States (Miami, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston, Denver, Detroit, Seattle).
     
    Read more here
     

     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Troubled Hanjin Shipping faces restructuring if bond maturity not extended
    source: Shippingazette
     
    KOREA's biggest shipping line, Hanjin Shipping, is facing a creditor-led re-structuring similar to that of its troubled domestic rival Hyundai Merchant Marine. 
     
    "KDB [Korean Development Bank] is considering a conditional restructuring arrangement if Hanjin Shipping fails to draw an [agreement] of the non-banking institutions that own corporate bonds to extend maturity," a KDB spokesman told Lloyd's List.
     
    "However, nothing has been decided yet regarding the specific timeline or method of the restructuring plan at this moment."
     
    The KDB-led creditors are concerned that the cash-strapped carrier, hit by unfavourable market conditions and high charter costs, might default on debts due over the next three months, local media reported.
     
     
     
    Ocean Alliance meets with US Federal Maritime Commission to seek approval
    source: Shippingazette
     
    US Federal Maritime Commissioner Mario Cordero says the agency has not yet received a formal application by from the freshly minted Ocean Alliance, but that the commissioners had been briefed by its representatives.
     
    CMA CGM, Cosco, Evergreen Line and OOCL said they plan to form a new carrier alliance that is also anticipated to include APL, once CMA CGM completes acquisition of its Singapore parent Neptune Orient Lines, reports American Shipper.
     
    Mr Cordero did not want to comment in detail on his meeting, but said he was pleased that carriers are "being cognizant of this whole question of congestion."
     
    Carriers and alliances have acknowledged that they can play a role in helping mitigate the impact of larger ships and alliance on terminal operations at major ports, Mr Cordero added.
     
     
     
    Financial watchdog investigates former Hanjin chairman’s share selloff
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    South Korea’s Financial Supervisory Service is looking into speculation that Choi Eun-yeong, Hanjin Shipping’s chairman until 2014, profited from the line’s restructuring announcement last Friday.
     
    The financial watchdog is investigating whether Choi received a tip off from Hanjin employees ahead of the announcement. She and her two daughters sold all of their shares in the company between April 8 and April 20 for $2.6m.
     
    Hanjin Shipping’s board of directors on Friday sought a debt settlement agreement with creditors, handing the firm’s management to Korea Development Bank and other creditors.
     
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Rail Safety Week starts April 25
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    CALGARY, Alta.–Canadian Pacific (CP) and the CP Police Service (CPPS) will be educating the public throughout Rail Safety Week (April 25 – May 1) about the importance of safe, smart decisions in and around railway property, 365 days a year.
     
    In conjunction with Operation Lifesaver and other stakeholders, CP is reminding motorists, cyclists and pedestrians that any route that includes illegally crossing railway tracks or using railway tracks as a short cut is the wrong route. During the week, CP and CPPS will conduct rail safety blitzes in communities across our network with participation from other police agencies and schools to educate the public about the role we each play in staying safe, said the release.
     
    “Railway tracks are not an extension of a public pathway, nor are they a safe shortcut,” said Laird Pitz, CP Vice President and Chief Risk Officer. “While Rail Safety Week is a good reminder, rail safety requires ongoing vigilance every minute of every day. Crossing incidents can have tragic consequences for all involved, but it’s important to remember – they are preventable.”
     
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    New industrial parks coming to market: Centreport plan
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    WINNIPEG, Man.–More than 2,100 acres of prime industrial land are moving toward development, providing companies with opportunities to grow their businesses in a variety of new rail, truck and airserved industrial parks, said Manitoba’s Centreport.
     
    “CentrePort already has 44 companies investing more than $220 million in building new capital operations, but this is really just the beginning,” said Diane Gray, president and CEO of CentrePort Canada Inc., following the release of the corporation’s 2016-2017 Business Plan.
     
    “We are expecting significant growth as new industrial parks become available.”
     
    These new industrial parks include:
     
    Rail – the new 700-acre CentrePort Canada Rail Park, which is preparing to break ground with its anchor operation BroadGrain Commodities Inc.
    Truck – several new truck-served industrial parks are in the works on more than 1,200 acres, with companies already filing applications for more than 400 acres of new projects.
     
    Air – The Winnipeg Airports Authority is developing 260-acres on the west side of its campus, providing new direct airside co-location opportunities. These new industrial parks include lands located in CentrePort North (RM of Rosser) and CentrePort South (City of Winnipeg). Development to date has been clustered in CentrePort North, where more than 250 acres have been developed by various companies including new operations by FedEx Freight, Canada Cartage, ISCO Industries and Cassidy Manufacturing.
     
     
     
    St. Lawrence case study looks at rivers at heart of today’s climate and environmental issues
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.– Following the second session of Initiatives for the Future of Great Rivers (IFGR)), held from April 18 to 20 at the headquarters of the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), Erik Orsenna, economist, writer, member of the Académie Française, expert in sustainable development, the environment, agriculture and emerging economies, and President of this multidisciplinary international observatory created by Compagnie Nationale du Rhône (CNR), presented work summaries that showed the plurality of uses of a river and their necessary acceptability in a controlled risk culture, and in a context where new energy models are emerging around rivers. The study on the Port of Montreal within the St. Lawrence / Great Lakes system was the focal point of the exchanges, said a release.
     
    “Through this international gathering of great importance, we are pleased to have been able to help bring a multidisciplinary perspective on the St. Lawrence River, which connects the Port of Montreal to all the continents and more than 140 countries,” said Sylvie Vachon, President and CEO of the MPA. “The themes that the MPA proposed to IFGR members were brilliantly dealt with. The expertise and informed view of members will guide us to take better actions to safeguard the sustainability of the river that we depend on so much.”
     
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Connected ships need smarter software
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Rob Kenworthy from GTMaritime tackles smart shipping.
     
    Email has become so essential to our daily working life that to lose connection for even a couple of hours could have serious implications for business continuity. Technologists call this ‘nomophobia’; the fear of being unconnected when on the move.
     
    In an era of ‘smart shipping’, email is a business continuity tool that could make the difference between profit and loss, a smooth voyage or rough seas. The loss of email is a reminder of how isolated floating assets really are. If the data connection is interrupted it will become obvious very quickly whether the system offers any kind of support.
     
    The normal response – after asking the guy who ‘knows about IT’ – is to call for support. This likely starts with their in house IT department on shore, operating during business hours. After this, the difference between support and service with a paid-for application versus free software, becomes critically apparent.
     
     
     
    India / Russian Federation Ratify WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement 
    source: CIFFA
     
    India has ratified the new Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA). India's WTO ambassador Anjali Prasad handed over her country's instrument of acceptance to Director-General Roberto Azevêdo on 22 April. On 18 March India submitted its Category A notification to the WTO indicating which provisions of the TFA it intends to implement upon entry into force of the Agreement.
     
    Similarly, the Russian Federation has become the 77th WTO member to ratify the new Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA). The Russian Federation's Minister of Economic Development, Alexey Ulyukaev, met with Director-General Roberto Azevêdo on 22 April and presented his country's TFA instrument of acceptance.

  • 22 April 2016

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES

    Hanjin starts China-US service, linking Shanghai to Long Beach
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    SOUTH KOREA's Hanjin Shipping has launched a new express service on its Asia-US trades, branded China America Express Service (CAX) that links Shanghai to Long Beach.
     
    The service deploys five 4,000-TEU ships and will reduce a transit time of 13-14 days to 11 days, reported Korea IT Times.  Read more here.
     
     
    Hutchison expects more mega ships in Shenzhen, busier PRD barges
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    HUTCHISON Port Holdings Trust expects more mega ships to call at its Shenzhen container terminal, to move cargo around this leading Chinese export manufacturing region.
     
    Its Shenzhen facility in Yantian opened a new berth this year and another will begin operating in the second half, to handle mega ships, said CEO Gerry Yim.   Read morehere.
     
     
    Panama starts taking reservations for widened canal from July 27
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    THE Panama Canal has started accepting transit reservations for neo-panamax vessels that will transit the expanded Canal from June 27 onwards - the scheduled date of the inauguration of the expanded locks.
     
    In light of this, the Panama Canal Authority said it will offer four extra slots per day for vessels of this size, in addition to the existing 25 slots.  Read more here.
     
     
    Ecuador Port Operations Update
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    Following the severe earthquake that struck Ecuador on April 16th, 2016, the ports of Guayaquil, Puerto Bolivar and Esmeraldas are 100% operational. The Port of Manta has stopped all operations until the complete revision of its structure, piers and yards. Until further notice, vessels are being diverted to other ports.
     
     
    NY/NJ port’s future view
    source: American Shipper

    Container volumes are up this year at the Port of New York and New Jersey, and while that’s good news for the region’s economy, the cargo growth also creates challenges for the largest port on the U.S. East Coast, which experienced severe congestion in the summer of 2013 and following winter.

    Shippers are watching how the port performs this year as container carriers ramp up the size of their ships and additional cargo is routed to the East Coast following months of problems at West Coast ports during and after contract negotiations with members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union. Read more here.
     
     
    China Reveals Plans To Ship Cargo Across Canada's Northwest Passage
    source: Shippingazette
     
    The Chinese government has published a lengthy Northwest Passage shipping guidebook that lays the foundation for cargo vessels to sail across the top of Canada.
     
    Spanning 365 pages of charts and detailed information on sea ice and weather, the Chinese-language Arctic Navigation Guide (Northwest Passage) was compiled by ocean and shipping experts as a way to help the country's mariners plan voyages through a waterway seen as a valuable shortcut between China and North America. Read more
    here


     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES

    CP Introduces New Appointing Tools for Intermodal
    source: CIFFA
     
    CP is introducing new tools to allow customers to book delivery appointments and release empties after unloading. Customers can access these new tools by selecting either Manage Equipment or Intermodal Track & Trace-NEW from the Intermodal Tools menu at the top of the Customer Station homepage. If you are not registered for Customer Station, click here to complete the registration process. 

    Once the Central Manager from your company has approved your access, these tools will appear in the Intermodal Tools dropdown menu. If you require assistance with getting set up, contact Customer Service at 1-888-333-8111 or the eBusiness Support team at
    eb_support@cpr.ca
    .
     
     
    Update to Canadian Pacific Corporate Fuel Surcharge Software
    source: CIFFA
     
    Effective May 21, Canadian Pacific is upgrading their fuel surcharge software "ALK Technologies PC*Miler Rail" from version 21 to version 22.1. The mileage-based fuel program will continue to be administered using route miles based on PC*Miler Rail Fuel surcharge router (FNII) non-familized. For more information, please see the mileage-based fuel program webpage here, or contact your CP Account Manager.
     
     
    Rail providers must make themselves more attractive to freight customers
    source: BD Live
     
    THERE can be no question of forcing movers of bulky commodities to switch from road to rail, so the service offered by freight rail providers must be improved.
     
    This is according to Hlengiwe Sayd, the Department of Transport’s director for rail policy and strategic management, who was speaking at the South African Rail Industry Summit in Boksburg on Thursday.  Read more here.

  • 21 April 2016

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Hapag-Lloyd to merge with UASC after secret talks with Gulf owners
    source: TheLoadstar
     
    Hapag-Lloyd is to merge with UASC. The news follows the Dubai-headquartered carrier being excluded from the new Ocean Alliance announced yesterday.
     
    The merger was first reported online by German monthly business magazine Manager Magazin yesterday, saying “secret negotiations between the two sides are close to a conclusion”.  

    Read more here

     
    Hanjin Shipping to face conditional restructuring led by KDB
    source: LloydsLoadingList
     
    Hanjin Shipping, South Korea’s largest shipping line, is facing a creditor-led restructuring, following a similar move already undertaken by its debt-ridden compatriot Hyundai Merchant Marine. 
     
    “KDB is considering a conditional restructuring arrangement if Hanjin Shipping fails to draw an [agreement] of the non-banking institutions that own corporate bonds to extend maturity, or an [agreement] of the shipowners to lower their charter fees,” a spokesman from Korea Development Bank told Lloyd’s List in a written statement.
     
     
     
    High level of ship demolition continues despite low scrap prices
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE high rate of vessel demolition that started at the end of last year is continuing, with 19 containerships for a total of 58,000 TEU being scrapped in the first two months of this year; and Drewry forecasts a rising number of ships will enter the demolition derby in 2016. 
     
    Of those units scrapped, 12 ships were under 20 years old and nine had a capacity of 4,000 TEU, according to data from Drewry, which pointed out that the level of scrapping escalated in the final months of last year as demand for Panamax ships waned and charter rates plummeted.
     
    "Demolition prices remain unattractively low but many owners, particularly of the non-operating kind, have decided that with charter rates falling they are better off recouping some residual value from their assets from the scrap market," the maritime analyst noted.
     
     
     
    US port of Boston to dredge harbour channels, container terminals for mega ships
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Port of Boston plans to dredge the harbour channels, including the North Entrance Channel from 45 feet deep to 51 feet deep, the main channel from 40 feet deep to 47 feet, and the berths at Conley Container Terminal to 50 feet.
     
    This development comes as the Conley Container Terminal handled 237,166 TEU in 2015, an 11 per cent increase from 2014 on the back of the strong regional economy and higher levels of productivity, data from the Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) showed, reported American Shipper. 
     
    Import volumes surged 8.1 per cent from 2014, while export volumes jumped 5.4 per cent.
     


     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Canada, U.S. Still Losing Billions To Highway Congestion
    source: CIFFA
     
    Traffic congestion on U.S. highways added about $50 billion in operational costs to the trucking industry in 2014, according to research released today by the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI). The congestion resulted in delays totaling more than 728 million hours of lost productivity, which equates to 264,500 commercial truck drivers sitting idle for a working year, the institute found. The analysis also demonstrates the impact of congestion costs on a per-truck basis, with an average increased cost of $26,625 for trucks that travel 150,000 miles annually. 
     
    The problem isn't much better north of the border. In November 2015, Canada's EcoFiscal Commission released an analysis of congestion in some of the country's major cities. For Vancouver, the report found that an estimated $1.4 billion is being lost annually to downtime while stuck in traffic; that number jumps to $7 billion for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area, and is predicted by the commission to more than double over the next 15 years. Congestion pricing options continue to be the most common recommendation from firms studying the problem. (Today's Trucking). The report can be downloaded for free on the ATRI website here but registration is required.
     
     
    Convoy of self-driving trucks completes first European cross-border trip
    source: LloydsLoadingList
     
    Six convoys of semi-automated “smart” trucks arrived in Rotterdam’s harbour last week Wednesday after an experiment its organisers say will revolutionise future road transport on Europe’s busy highways, UK newspaper The Guardian reports.
    More than a dozen self-driving trucks made by six of Europe’s largest manufacturers arrived in the port in so-called “truck platoons” around midday, said Eric Jonnaert, president of the umbrella body representing DAF, Daimler, Iveco, MAN, Scania and Volvo.
     
     
     
    Union Pacific Profit Falls on Weak Freight Demand
    source: TheWallStreetJournal
     
    Union Pacific Corp. said its profit slid 15% in the first quarter as the railroad operator continued to face weak freight demand, especially for coal, offsetting benefits from higher prices and cost-cutting efforts.
     
    Earnings, though, handily beat estimates, sending shares of the Omaha, Neb., company—which have risen 18% over the past three months—up 2.4% to $85.88 in premarket trading.
     
    The rail industry has been under pressure from lower commodities prices that have weighed on demand for coal, a key market. The sector also is facing increased competition from trucks, as lower fuel prices make hauling containers and trailers less expensive. Companies, including Union Pacific, have mothballed locomotives and furloughed workers to curb costs.
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    ICC Calls For Improved Trade And Investment Conditions To Reinvigorate Global Growth
    source: CIFFA
     
    International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Chairman Terry McGraw joined global business leaders at a B20 meeting in Washington and urged the private sector to intensify engagement with the G20 to promote international trade and investment. ICC calls for improved trade and investment conditions to reinvigorate global growth. Presided by B20 China Sherpa Yu Ping, the B20 Joint Task Force meeting was held on the margins of the Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group and in the lead up to the G20 Summit in Hangzhou, China next September.

    Read more here

  • 20 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Push to automate pallet building prompts 3 firms to sign up
    source: Shippingazette
     
    TO automate pallet building three companies have placed orders for a new robotics, says Airis International Holdings, which took the orders from PACTL and two Mideast airlines.
     
    Shanghai ground handler PACTL will be the first to the use of robots to build general cargo pallets from this summer, reported Lloyd's Loading List.
     
    The company has been working with logistics facilities developer Airis since last year to examine the feasibility of robot technology within air cargo pallet-building in a context of shipments of irregular size, shape and mass. 
     
    Using analysis of two years of data from PACTL and from airlines, Airis has concluded that 85-90 per cent of general air cargo shipments handled by PACTL could be processed by robots. 
     
     
     
    Thousands Lose Power, Flights Canceled As Rains Inundate Houston
    source: CIFFA
     
    More than 100,000 customers lost power and Houston's airports canceled hundreds of flights as a line of thunderstorms dropped more than a foot of rain across southeastern Texas on April 18th. 
     
    The National Weather Service declared a flash-flood emergency until 1 p.m. local time. George Bush Intercontinental Airport declared a full ground stop, with 465 cancellations and 108 delays as of 11 a.m. Houston time. Hobby Airport had 144 cancellations and 14 delays. High water was reported on all major roadways. Parts of the county reported more than 14 inches of rain in 24 hours, according to the Harris County Flood Warning System. (Excerpted from Bloomberg)
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo announces start of Casablanca service
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–Air Canada Cargo has announced the start of its service to Casablanca on June 3. With this new service to and from Africa, the airline now provides cargo options on six continents and over 450 destinations worldwide, it said in a release.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    New Challenges for Mega Groups As Ocean Alliance Prepares for Launch
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Ocean carriers CMA CGM, COSCO Container Lines, Evergreen and OOCL have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to form a new mega-alliance designed to challenge Maersk Line and MSC’s 2M grouping on east-west trades.
     
    Dubbed the Ocean Alliance, the proposed grouping would bring the world’s 3rd, 4th, 5th and 9th biggest container lines together in a vessel-sharing agreement but leave the other top 20 carriers scrambling to compete and stay in the Asia – Europe and transpacific markets.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    International Chamber of Shipping favours stringent IMO regulations
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has made a number of submissions to address the need to reduce the sector's CO2 emissions, focus on problems with the implementation of the IMO Ballast Water Management Convention, and the need for an immediate IMO decision on whether ships will have to use 0.5 per cent sulphur fuel in 2020.
     
    ICS submissions come ahead of this year's International Maritime Organisation's Environment Committee (MEPC) meeting, reported London's Tanker Operator. 
     
    The ICS explained that its immediate priority is to help ensure that the new global CO2 data collection system is adopted by IMO as soon as possible. This will then facilitate the possible development of additional CO2 reduction measures.
     
    ICS secretary general, Peter Hinchliffe, explained; "The data global system now before the MEPC is a workable compromise between governments primarily interested in data on fuel consumption and CO2 emissions and those that wish to collect additional information, for example on so called transport work."
     
    In a separate submission to the meeting, ICS responded to the Paris Agreement on climate change with a radical proposal that IMO should develop an Intended IMO Determined Contribution for CO2 reduction on behalf of the sector. 
     

     
    Hong Kong Marine Department announces VGMs will be in force July 1
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE amendment to UN's Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Chapter VI, Regulation 2 will be in force in Hong Kong on July 1, announced the Hong Kong Marine Department. 
     
    The amendment requires mandatory verification of the gross mass (VGM) of containers prior to loading onto vessels to which SOLAS Chapter VI applies.
     
    The Marine Department has updated its website with information relevant to the VGM requirements. 
     
    Additionally, making reference to the concerned guidance of IMO, a "Guideline on the Verification of Gross Mass of a Container with Cargo Packed in Hong Kong" has been published to provide guidance to operators in the industry to comply with the new requirement.
     
    Read more here


     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    First trains arrive at JAXPORT's new US$30 million rail terminal
    source: Shippingazette
     
    JACKSONVILLE JAXPORT's newly completed Intermodal Container Transfer Facility (ICTF) at Dames Point is being used in support of a military training exercise this month in advance of its official opening to commercial container movements later this year.
     
    Before the start of the ICTF's commercial operations, JAXPORT is partnering with numerous US Army units, including the JAXPORT-based 832nd Transportation Battalion, reports the American Journal of Transportation.
     
    They involve exercises aimed at expediting the movement of ocean-going military cargo, rehearsing the capabilities of personnel as well as the new terminal.
     
    During the exercise, uniformed Army personnel are moving nearly 800 pieces of cargo - including vehicles, containers and equipment - from this state-of-the-art facility onto a nearby military ship. 
     

     
    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Port of Prince Rupert announces investment in Gitxaala Nation
    source: CanadianShipping
     
    PRINCE RUPERT, B.C.–The Port of Prince Rupert has announced a $244,000 investment from its Community Investment Fund that it says will help preserve traditional food production, increase nutritional education and develop new skills within the Gitxaala Nation.
     
    A celebration in the coastal village of Kitkatla, BC took place Tuesday, April 12, 2016,  to bless and commission two new community spaces: a garden and greenhouse where local produce will be grown, and a kitchen and eatery for food preparation and training. The event was attended by over one hundred Kitkatla residents that included school children and elders, as well as a delegation of staff from the Port of Prince Rupert who prepared the first community meal served out of the new kitchen.
     
    “We couldn’t be happier after seeing the impact of these projects first-hand,” said Don Krusel, President & CEO of the Port of Prince Rupert. “The community kitchen and garden are physical embodiments of the spirit of our Community Investment Fund, which was established to enable significant quality of life improvements to a broad demographic of community members. Experiencing these facilities, surrounded by members of the Gitxaala Nation, it was evident how useful these community assets already are, and will be for years to come.”
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    California Clothing Manufacturers Flee Minimum Wage Hike
    source: The Loadstar
     
    A little local news from California. The apparel manufacturing industry is already looking to move out of the state as it introduces a $15 minimum wage. Hit by rising commercial rents and supply chain costs, the state’s home grown clothes-makers are looking further afield. American Apparel, the famed – or perhaps infamous – US-made brand, said it would outsource and but 500 jobs in California. “The exodus has begun,” said an economist.  

    Read more here.

  • 19 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Brussels Airport sees official launch of Air Cargo Belgium
    source: AirCargoNews
     
    Air Cargo Belgium (ACB), the new air cargo community organisation at Brussels airport, had its official launch this week.
     
    The new organisation, whose formation was announced in December last year, groups all companies at BRUcargo, the airport’s airfreight cluster, as well as related stakeholders or official organisations.
     
    Said BRUCargo: “Traditionally, there have been several organisations active at Brussels Airport, grouping a certain part of the logistical chain such as airlines or forwarders.
     
    “These continue to exist but also participate in this new organisation, as they are complementary and serving different needs for the cargo community.”
     
    Brussels Airport saw 2015 full year freight volumes grow 7.8% to just over 489,000 tonnes, helped by the arrival of four new cargo carriers in the full freighter segment and the development of express services at the Belgian hub.
     
    Chairman of ACB will be Steven Polmans, head of cargo at Brussels Airport, who will be helped by two vice chairmen: Alain De Heldt — current chairman of BAFI, the forwarders organisation — and Bas van Goch, who is the current chairman of the Air Cargo Managers Association Belgium (ACMAB), the cargo airlines’ organisation. 
     
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo, Cargojet partner to deliver air freight to Latin America
    source: CanadianManufacturing
     
    The new Air Canada Cargo flights will provide 52 tonnes of net cargo capacity and are scheduled to begin June 9
     
    MONTREAL, Que. and MISSISSAUGA, Ont.—Air Canada and Cargojet Airways Ltd., a subsidiary of Cargojet Inc. are finalizing a commercial arrangement dedicated freighter services from Canada to Latin America and Europe.
     
    Using Boeing 767-300ER freighter aircraft operated by Cargojet, Air Canada Cargo will become the only provider of direct scheduled freighter service between Canada and Latin America.
     
    The new Air Canada Cargo flights will provide 52 tonnes of net cargo capacity and are scheduled to begin June 9, 2016, subject to obtaining the necessary regulatory approvals.
     
    Initial service will operate from Toronto to Bogota, Colombia and Lima, Peru via Atlanta, Ga; Toronto to Mexico City via Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas.
     
    Under the arrangement, Air Canada Cargo also plans to introduce dedicated freighter service to Europe from Toronto in the second half of 2016.
     
    “Working with Cargojet, we are able to leverage and build upon Air Canada’s extensive North American and international networks,” said Lise-Marie Turpin, vice-president, Air Canada Cargo. “We look forward to continuing to grow our dedicated freighter network to Europe later this year and for a successful and mutually beneficial relationship with Cargojet into the future.”
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Piraeus a done deal unless Greek assembly votes it down this week
    source: Shippingazette
     
    GREECE stands to benefit from China's growing global influence, while Chinese-owned Port of Piraeus can play a pivotal role in the development of its economy, said China Cosco Shipping president Xu Lirong.
     
    "Greece will have many benefits from China's growing influence and power in the global market," said Mr Xu at the signing ceremony, reported the UK's Seatrade Maritime News.
     
    But many remain opposed to the deal, claiming it is illegal until ratified by the Greek parliament this week.
     
    But Mr Xu spoke of it as if it were a done deal. "Chinese companies see huge investment opportunities in Greece and this is something backed by the Chinese government," said Xu, saying his aim is to make Piraeus the Mediterranean's most competitive port.
     
    After Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras signed the deal, he noted it makes the "Silk Road" faster and shorter at a time when Greece is putting emphasis on economic recovery.
     
    "This investment will be the start for a series of new investments," he said.
     
     
     
    Drayage Delays, Gate Closings Plague India's Top Port Again
    source: CIFFA
     
    Logistics providers out of Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust are again reporting long truck queues and frequent gate closings at terminals in India's busiest public container gateway. Trade is facing massive traffic and port congestion on a regular basis at all three terminals i.e. NSICT (DP World NhavaSheva), GTI (APM Terminals Mumbai) and JNCPT (the port-run facility) said one source. It is reported that it takes an average of 24 to 36 hours to move a trailer carrying export cargo through terminal gates because of the slowdowns and that drivers have been forced to wait up to 14 hours inside the terminals to pick up import units. In a notice to customers on Monday, APM Terminals' Inland Services said roads leading to the terminals are heavily congested with long truck lines. (Excerpted from JOC Online)
     
     
    Cost Reductions Announced at Port NY & NJ
    source: CIFFA
     
    Port officials Monday announced cost reductions for use of the Port of New York and New Jersey. Effective May 1, 2016, the container charge for containers whose destination lies within 260 miles of the port has been reduced by 5.3 percent from $94.00 to $89.00 in all trades except in the Bermuda Trade, which retains its rate of $25.00. Cargo containers whose destination lies within 260 miles of the port comprise approximately 60 percent of all containers handled, making this a significant rate reduction for international carriers.

     
    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Government of Canada Designates Niagara Foreign Trade Zone Point
    source: CIFFA
     
    On Friday, the Government of Canada announced the designation of the Niagara Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) Point, serving the region's 12 municipalities from east of Hamilton to the United States border. To foster a supportive business climate, we need to help spur innovation and investment and open up international markets. This Point will serve as a one-stop shop for businesses to access information on Canada's FTZ policies and programs. This is the first FTZ Point established in Ontario. The FTZ Point will promote Niagara as a hub for international trade and will attract foreign and domestic investment. Designating a FTZ Point in Niagara aligns with the Government of Canada's priorities to help businesses integrate into foreign markets and global value chains.
     
     
    Ontario to widen Highway 401 in Mississauga to 12 lanes from six
    source: CanadianManufacturing
     
    $81 million project will create 800 construction jobs over three years
     
    The project will widen a narrow, six lane stretch of the 401 in Mississauga to 12 lanes. PHOTO: Ryan Stubbs, via Wikimedia Commons
    MISSISSAUGA, Ont.—The Ontario government will widen a four-kilometre stretch of Highway 401 in Mississauga to 12 lanes from six.
     
    Premier Kathleen Wynne made the announcement alongside transportation minister Steven Del Duca April 15.
     
    “Adding six lanes on this stretch of Highway 401 will help improve traffic flow for residents and businesses,” Del Duca said.
     
     
     
    Greenhouse gas emissions continued their slow climb in 2014
    source: CanadianManufacturing
     
    The energy sector made up 81 per cent of Canada's GHG emissions in 2014, with agriculture the next biggest sector at eight per cent
     
    OTTAWA—A new government inventory report says Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions are still growing.
     
    The national inventory released by Environment Canada shows emissions were estimated to be 732 megatonnes of carbon dioxide and other equivalents, a 20 per cent increase over 1990 levels, when Canada first committed to cutting emissions growth.
     
    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be in New York later this week to sign the latest global climate agreement, under which Canada commits to slash emissions 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.
     
    The latest inventory shows that emissions in 2014 were 15 megatonnes below 2005 levels, but slowly rising.
     
    Emissions actually fell steeply in 2009 due to the global economic downturn, but the report says emissions have climbed 5.2 per cent since then.
     
    The energy sector made up 81 per cent of Canada’s GHG emissions in 2014, with agriculture the next biggest sector at eight per cent.
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
     
    China woos East Africa to enter in more cooperative projects
    source: Shippingazette
     
    CHINA has written to the Secretary General of the East Africa Community (EAC) proposing to negotiate a comprehensive free trade agreement between the EAC and China.
     
    China also requested to undertake a joint feasibility study with the EAC on the proposed FTA, outgoing Secretary-General Richard Sezibera informed the Council of Ministers at a meeting in Arusha, reported Nairobi's East African.
     
    The Council directed the Secretariat to undertake a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis on the implications of negotiating FTAs with third parties.
     
     
     
    Study says collaboration technology improves supply chain efficiencies
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    HOUSTON, Tex.–New research released  from the University of Tennessee’s Global Supply Chain Institute, in collaboration with B2B integration provider DiCentral, discovered the supply chain trends, issues and challenges expected in 2016 and beyond. The survey of over 200 organizations from a wide range of industries asked respondents to weigh in on such issues as inventory visibility, supply chain costs, new ERP integration, responsiveness to customer demands, and more.
    The study indicates that more organizations today are investing in B2Bi (business to business electronic integration) to cut costs and increase business flow efficiency. Of those surveyed, 94% saw significant improvement in their electronic connectivity capabilities and 68% reported that their clients said they were easier to do business with after using cloud-based B2Bi Managed Services.
     
    Another major finding suggests that the opportunities for streamlining processes are richer than the resources to achieve it, as increased pressures on internal IT departments to meet core business objectives can lead to potential gaps in knowledge and technology.
     

  • 18 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Hundreds Of Flights Cancelled In Denver Blizzard
    source: AirWise
     
    A powerful blizzard swept through Colorado on Saturday, dumping at least 2 feet (61 cm) of snow in some parts of the state and forcing the cancellation of most of the scheduled flights at Denver Airport.
     
    United Airlines cancelled all of its flights to and from Denver, the airport said in a statement.
     
    All told, more than 800 flights were grounded on Saturday, or more than 65 percent of all scheduled take-offs and landings there, the FlightAware airline tracking website showed. Dozens of other flights were delayed.
     
    Denver International is the fourth-largest hub for United and Southwest, and the primary hub for Frontier.
     
    The heavy snow began falling on Friday night and was expected to continue through Sunday, the National Weather Service said.
     
     
     
    Four major airport hubs to handle US imports by air, expert says
    source: Shippingazette
     
    LOGISTICS Capital & Strategy managing director Brian Clancy says US freight forwarders are consolidating volumes and using major gateways to handle imports from Asia and Latin America.
     
    Speaking at the CNS Partnership Conference in Nashville, Mr Clancy explained that the patterns by which air freight entered the US has changed, the New York's Air Cargo World reported.
     
    Such patterns highlight the tendency of freight forwarders to consolidate volumes - a pattern which he says will likely lead the establishment of four major gateways.
     
    During 2010-2015, Miami International Airport (MIA), Los Angeles Airport (LAX) and O'Hare International Airport (ORD) all gained market share, while New York's JFK declined.
     
    Forwarders he claimed, found ways to utilise road-feeder services to deliver cargo from Chicago that was previously destined for JFK. During the five-year period, other major gateways including San Francisco (SFO), Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) and Atlanta (ATL) have remained stable, but of those, he said, one is likely to join the ranks of ORD, MIA and LAX as larger growth hubs. 
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Carriers raise fuel surcharges
    source: LloydsLoadingList
     
    Carriers have begun increasing their fuel surcharge levels in response to the partial recovery in oil prices seen over the last few weeks, although analysts doubt whether the rise in oil prices will continue following yesterday’s failed attempt at an oil-output deal.
     
    In a note to its French customers late last week, container line Hapag-Lloyd announced that, with effect from 15 May, it would be revising upwards its fuel surcharges for European inland haulage. Those using road freight would see fuel surcharges rise from 7% to 8.5% for inland haulage via ports in France, Belgium, Netherland, Germany from and to France and Monaco or via ports in France from and to Switzerland.
     

     
    More say carriers should be responsible for securing the container weights
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THERE appears to be a gathering consensus to have the carriers responsible for gathering verified container weights as they seem to be the most interested in securing them.
     
    Speaking at the Global Liner Shipping Conference in London earlier last week, US Federal Maritime Commissioner William Doyle said carriers should be responsible for reporting the weight of containers.
     
    A report in Lloyd's List said Mr Doyle also called on shippers and ocean carriers to come together and find a solution, saying it would be unacceptable for US exports to be left at the dock for lack of a verified gross mass (VGM).
     
    FMC Commissioner Richard Lidinsky agreed with Mr Doyle. This was also the position taken by the big farm shipper lobby, the Agriculture Transportation Coalition.
     
    Last month, European port organisation FEPORT also agreed the container weight verification guidelines did not provide enough guidance. 
     
    "A lack of national guidelines will ultimately provoke confusion in the implementation and will have an adverse impact on operations and lead to possible competitive distortion," FEPORT said.
     
     
     
    Carriers accelerate moves to ease supply-demand mismatch
    source: Lloyd’sLoadingList
     
    Container vessel owners are accelerating scrapping levels, a move that will help ease the mismatch between vessel supply and demand, according to Drewry Maritime Research.
     
    Last year saw record deliveries of newbuilds into an already over-supplied market. This was exacerbated by “an unusually low scrapping total” linked to renewed demand for Panamax vessels and low scrapping prices, said the analyst.
     
     
     
    New CSL video explains how self-unloading ships work
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.– Gravity-fed self-unloaders are highly specialized vessels that can quickly and efficiently discharge dry bulk cargo without the assistance of shore-side equipment or personnel.
     
    In a recently released video, CSL demonstrates how these vessels use gravity to release cargo onto conveyor belts through gates located at the bottom of the vessel’s cargo holds. The cargo is then transported to an elevating system, lifted above deck level, transferred onto a discharge boom conveyor and offloaded via a discharge boom.
     

     
    Panama Canal Video on New Locks
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Panama Canal Authority has released a virtual tour of how the new Neopanamax locks will operate within the Expanded Panama Canal once inaugurated on Sunday, June 26. Using a combination of video clips and animation, it visually illustrates a virtual tour of a Neopanamax vessel's transit through the Expanded Canal. The 11-minute video, titled "A New Experience - Transits Through the Expanded Panama Canal," is available to watch through at the following link: http://youtu.be/DrQrKAku3e0.


    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    CN Reminder to Carrier and Drivers
    source: CIFFA
     
    CN would like to remind carriers and drivers that for all CN Terminals, 4 way flashers must be on at all times while on CN property.

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Cooperative agreement renewed between the Ports of Antwerp and Montreal
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.-–Following a joint trade mission in Montreal April 12, the port authorities of Montreal and Antwerp, Belgium have renewed their cooperative agreement.
     
    The first agreement, signed in March 2013, resulted in four trade missions to Montreal and Antwerp during which extensive business contacts were developed. These meetings also enabled productive exchanges of information on issues such as sustainable development, land use, the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada and the European Union, global trends in the markets, and the development of port logistics zones, said a release.
     
    As Sylvie Vachon, President and CEO of the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), pointed out, this agreement’s renewal is a great fit with the Port of Montreal’s commitment to strengthen its ties with its largest European trading partner. “In the last three years, we were able to realize how much our two ports share the same concerns. We got to know each other, to collaborate effectively and we are now at a level of mutual trust that lets our departments discuss many issues of common interest and take concrete action on joint business development. The renewal of this agreement beautifully illustrates our commitment to further our collaboration and in doing so, continually provide better service to our clients.”
     
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    The Trucker’s Nightmare That Could Flatten Europe’s Economy
    source: Bloomberg
     
    Trucking companies are facing rising costs as EU member states impose new border controls because refugees continue to enter. Border controls now mean waiting times of about four hours, slowing supply chains and reducing trucking capacity. Bertelsmann Foundation research points to a loss of €470bn in GDP from the EU economy over the next 10 years if there is a permanent return to border controls. As Bloomberg points out, that’s the equivalent of losing a company almost the size of BMW every year for a decade.  
     
     
     
    Government to track freight containers movement via smart chip
    source: EconomicTimesIndia
     
    NEW DELHI: The government is set to kick off an ambitious scheme to track the movement of freight containers through a smart chip as it looks to speed up cargo movement and decongest ports.
     
    In the first phase, beginning May 1, it will track all containers moving along the Delhi-Mumbai corridor to identify the hurdles on the way to Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) in Mumbai, which handles 50% of the container traffic in the country.  
     

  • 15 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Atlas weighs into US air traffic control debate: 'modern technology could save $30bn'
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Supply chain efficiencies would be significantly enhanced, and environmental costs lowered, if the US accelerated the modernisation of its air traffic control system.
     
    A new system would save $30bn in annual costs, as well as shaving 10-15% off carbon emissions.
     
    In a significant keynote speech at the CNS Partnership event in Nashville, Bill Flynn, CEO and president of Atlas Air, brought the air cargo industry into the debate with a plea for the US government to act fast.
     
    There are 27,000 flights each day in the US, and 50,000 tons of cargo moved, while aviation accounts for 5% of GDP, noted Mr Flynn.
     
    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Mergers to remake shipping alliance structure as carriers make plea to regulators
    source: Shippingazette
     
    MAJOR shipping alliances could become much bigger by month's end as carriers vie for regulatory approvals for new tie-ups, reports the Wall Street Journal.
     
    Cosco is considering joining Ocean Three or leading a new alliance with CSCL, people familiar with the situation said. The Cosco-CSCL merged entity is called China Cosco Shipping Group, based in Shanghai.
     
    CMA CGM has told European regulators that it will withdraw NOL from another alliance, called G6, which controls an 18 per cent market share in Asia-Europe.  Read more here.
     
     
    Maersk Line expands service to more Chinese ports as Myanmar container trade grows
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Maersk Line and its intra-Asia arm, MCC Transport, have expanded their direct service linking China and Myanmar by adding the Pearl River gateway ports of Yantian and Hong Kong.
     
    Launched in February 2015, the Intra-Asia 5 (IA5) service now departs from Shanghai and calls at Ningbo, Hong Kong, and Yantian on its way into Yangon, Myanmar, where it calls at two terminals before a string of south-east and north Asia ports on its return leg.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Forwarders welcome mandatory electronic filing change
    source: Lloyd’sLoadingList
     
    Forwarders have welcomed efforts by the IMO to improve the efficiency of global ocean supply chains by making the use of electronic information exchanges mandatory.
     
    As reported this week in Lloyd’s Loading List, recently agreed amendments of existing maritime treaties will see public bodies compelled to provide systems for the electronic exchange of relevant cargo information for every commercial ship port call over the next few years. The new rules will make the electronic data interchange of standardized IMO forms such as the IMO General Declaration and the Cargo Declaration forms, which incorporate cargo details supplied by shippers, mandatory.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Port of Los Angeles quarterly throughput rises 11.3pc to 2.03 million TEU
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Port of Los Angeles posted an 11.3 per cent year-on-year first quarter containerised cargo increase to 2.03 million TEU, according to the LA port authority.
     
    While posting record throughputs, year-on-year comparisons are skewed by the one-time west coast docker disruption last year, which made volumes atypically low in early 2015.
     
    At the time, box volumes at the port fell 22.6 per cent in March to 612,863 TEU, but the port still recorded the busiest first quarter in its 109-year history.
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    CBSA Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) SCHEDULED Maintenance Outage - April 17
    source: CIFFA
     
    For maintenance purposes, all EDI applications will be unavailable on Sunday, April 17, 2016 from 04:30 and 6:00 ET as well as between 07:00 and 08:30 ET. This includes: all incoming data or outbound messages such as acknowledgements, reject messages and notices, e.g. RNS, Completeness Notices during this time. 
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Europe debates shipping emissions ahead of MEPC
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    The European Parliament today called on EU governments to align the 2030 EU climate target with the Paris Agreement and introduce EU measures to cut emissions from aviation and shipping. In a letter sent to Europe’s ministers of transport and environment, the heads of seven political groups of the parliament’s environment committee also demanded greater climate ambition at both IMO and its sister organisation governing aviation.
     
    The environment heads of all the main political groups in the parliament wrote: “There is no reasonable excuse to continue exempting aviation and shipping from the international and EU climate policies.”
     
    Next week the IMO will convene its Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) to debate new measures.
     
    Yesterday the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) called upon EU member states to support a global CO2 agenda for shipping
     
    “The shipping industry endorses the Paris agreement on climate change and we are committed to ambitious CO2 emission reductions across the world merchant fleet,” said ECSA President Niels Smedegaard.
     
     
     
    Japan plants shut down after new quake, fuelling economic fears
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Tensions understandably remain high in Japan today, after a 6.5 magnitude earthquake hit the south of the country, killing nine people. Early indications are that there is nothing like the damage sustained in 2011, but some of its major corporations were taking no chances: Toyota, Honda and Sony all shut down manufacturing plants to carry out safety checks. 
     

     
    FDA classifies brokers as shippers in final rules on food transport safety
    source: DC Velocity
     
    The mantra of U.S. freight brokers is that they're not shippers. Brokers arrange the transportation of their customers' goods. But the freight belongs to somebody else, and brokers never touch the shipments or the equipment used to haul them.
     
    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has other ideas. In publishing its long-awaited final rules last Tuesday on the sanitary transportation of human and animal food, the agency did what the brokers asked it not to do: Classify them as shippers.

    Read more here

  • 14 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Brussels ATC Strike Enters Second Day
    source: AirWise
     
    About 50 flights from Brussels Airport were cancelled on Wednesday as an air traffic controllers strike entered a second day.
     
    Brussels Airport, one of Europe's busiest, reopened on April 3 with limited capacity, restricted by tight security and temporary structures erected after bombs badly damaged the departure hall on March 22.
     
    Union leaders had asked staff to call in sick on Tuesday due to disagreements over a proposed dispute settlement, including a rise in the minimum retirement age.
     
    A spokesman for air traffic authority Belgocontrol said some workers had again called in sick on Wednesday but capacity was increased to 20 landings or take-offs per hour from 15 earlier in the day.
     
    "We'll go to 25 later in the day," the spokesman said.
     
    A spokeswoman for Brussels Airport said 50 flights had been cancelled until midday on Wednesday, out of about 400 scheduled flights.
     
     
     
    World's First Freight Airship Set To Enter Service In 2018
    source: CIFFA
     
    After 20 years of development work, the world's first commercial cargo airship is set to launch in 2018 after manufacturer Lockheed Martin received an order for 12 of its 20-tonne payload LMH-1 hybrid cargo airships. Lockheed Martin said its Hybrid Airship represented "a revolution in remote cargo delivery, capable of carrying more than 20 metric tonnes of cargo along with 19 passengers and two pilots". 
     
     
    Hong Kong remains competitive for air cargo, but airport congestion rising
    source: Shippingazette
     
    RUNWAY saturation is an issue in Hong Kong, and UPS now says it relies more on flights to and from Shenzhen across the border.
     
    "Many of our South China clients choose to ship their goods from Hong Kong instead of Shenzhen," said UPS Hong Kong/Macau chief Steven Wong.
     
    Mr Wong said Hong Kong's free port position gave it great advantages in more efficient inspections and faster customs clearance as well as a more extensive global route network than in other parts of the Pearl River Delta.
     
    "A parcel picked up at Hong Kong Island at 4pm could be handed to the customer in the US the next morning," he said, reported the South China Morning Post.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    US offshore firms braced for stricter regulations
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    The US government’s Department of the Interior is all set to unveil on Thursday its much-anticipated new safety rules for offshore oil and gas drilling.
     
    Energy companies are braced to respond negatively having had a foretaste of what’s in store with the original proposal which was made this time last year.
     
    The biggest talking point about that sneak peek was the much stricter requirements for well-control equipment, intended to prevent any repeats of the Deepwater Horizon disaster of 2010.
     
     
     
    Cooperative Agreement Renewed Between The Ports Of Antwerp And Montreal
    source: CIFFA
     
    Earlier this week, during a joint trade mission in Montreal, the port authorities of Montreal and Antwerp, Belgium renewed their cooperative agreement. The first agreement, signed in March 2013, resulted in four trade missions to Montreal and Antwerp during which extensive business contacts were developed. These meetings also enabled productive exchanges of information on issues such as sustainable development, land use, the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada and the European Union, global trends in the markets, and the development of port logistics zones. 
     
     
     
    Sydney Container Terminal Closed, Brisbane To Follow
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Patrick Port Botany Sydney terminal is closed as members of the Maritime Union of Australia participate in a 48-hour strike, with more work actions planned at the Brisbane container terminal next week. The stoppage, close behind one at Fremantle last week, has its roots in the breakdown of negotiations on employment terms and conditions between the union and Patrick. The strike has shut down a key gateway for the country's trade, creating backlogs in national supply chains. (Excerpted from JOC Online)
     
     
    IMO Adopts Mandatory Requirements For Electronic Information Exchange
    source: CIFFA
     
    The International Maritime Organization (IMO), said it has adopted mandatory requirements for the electronic exchange of information on cargo, crew and passengers as part of a revised and modernized annex to the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL). FAL aims to harmonize procedures for ship's arrival, stay and departure from port. A new standard requiring public authorities to establish systems for the electronic exchange of information, within a period of three years after the adoption of the amendments, is among important changes in the revised FAL Annex. It is expected to enter into force on Jan. 1, 2018. 
     
    There will be a transitional period of 12 months from the date of the introduction of such systems to make electronic transmission mandatory, during which period paper and electronic documents would be allowed, according to the IMO. The new recommended practice encourages the use of the "single window" concept, to enable all the information required by public authorities in connection with the arrival, stay and departure of ships, persons and cargo, to be submitted via a single portal without duplication. (Excerpted from American Shipper)
     
     
    East-west shippers win freight rate cuts in contract negotiations: Drewry
    source: Shippingazette
     
    OCEAN freight rates moving under contracts on east-west routes have dropped 20 per cent and stand to drop even more, according to Drewry's Benchmarking Club, a group of big retailers and manufacturers.
     
    The Drewry Benchmarking Club Contract Rate Index, based on transpacific and Asia-Europe contract freight rate data provided confidentially by shippers, declined by another five per cent in the three-month period between November and February, reported IHS Media.
     
    This meant a 20 per cent cut when compared with rates in February 2015, showing an acceleration of contract rate erosion, even though lower fuel charges accounted for the minority of the reduction in rates.
     
    Because many transpacific exporters and importers are finalising negotiations of new eastbound Pacific contracts to be effective from May 1, Drewry expects a further fall in contract rates during the second quarter of 2016. 
     
    The specialised procurement consultant is involved in freight tenders via its new eSourcing Ocean Freight SolutionTM platform and has also seen large reductions in contract rates in the confidential bids received in recent months from carriers but not yet implemented into new contracts.
     
     
     
    Blank sailings rattle supply chains, sadly more to come: SeaIntel
    source: Shippingazette 
     
    A SEAINTEL study shows blank sailings have risen on most of the six trades over four year with Asia-northern Europe, Asia-Mediterranean and Mediterranean-US east coast services reporting a significant increase last year.
     
    "As carriers add extra calls along the service route, this leads to delays in the other port calls," said SeaIntel analyst Eligio Fanigliulo.
     
    On the Asia-northern Europe trade, for example, having remained fairly consistent from 2012 through to 2014 at an average of 96 per cent, service integrity dropped to as low as 92 per cent in 2015.
     
    "There were 18-26 services active in this trade over the past 4.5 years, so, on average, carriers blanked roughly one sailing a week in 2012-2014 if we disregard Chinese New Year and Golden Week," said the study.
     
    "In 2015, however, the level rose to 1.5 sailings a week." 
     
    SeaIntel said 2016 does not look good. So far in 2016, the average number of blank sailings per week has varied between 0.45 and 1.40 on the six trades combined. 
     
    SeaIntel also looked into the number of blank sailings on the northern Europe-US east coast, Asia-US west coast and Asia-US east coast trades.
     
     
     
    Idle containership fleet still growing as 2016 shapes up to be a record year for scrapping
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Laid-up containership capacity “remains at an alarmingly high level”, according to the latest review by Alphaliner and, worryingly for shipowners, there are still no signs of demand picking up.
     
    In a survey taken on 4 April, the consultant recorded 325 idle containerships at anchor – equating to 1.48m teu and 7.4% of the global cellular fleet.
     
    According to the Alphaliner data, mothballed tonnage includes 54 vessels of 5,100-7,499 teu, and 55 of 7,500 teu and over, with their operators all desperately seeking employment for them at almost any rate.
     
    Alphaliner said it had seen further “faltering demand” for charter tonnage in the past two weeks – a time of year when demand is normally strong – “dashing hopes of seeing overcapacity decrease in the foreseeable future”.
     
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    CBSA Introduces Progressive Examinations Model Pilot at Port of Vancouver Terminals
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) is introducing a new pilot project for container examinations. The progressive examination model or PEM is being introduced to minimize the use of the most intrusive examination method (full de-stuff), to identify successes and/or challenges and address ahead of the opening of the new MCEFs and to provide information for the development of the PEM model, including the identification of further potential efficiencies and possible mitigation ranges.
     
    The pilot is being introduced at the port of Vancouver as it is a high risk port that receives 57 percent of more than 2.5 million marine containers entering Canada each year. The current MCEF is the smallest in Canada, the facility is deteriorating and it no longer meets current and forecasted volumes. There is also no possibility of it being expanded or accommodate innovative detection technology.
     
    The PEM will use a multi-layered approach to mitigating risk by only referring cargo for the most-intrusive method (full de-stuff) when risks cannot be mitigated by less intrusive methods (e.g., new state of the art technology in dedicated on-dock space such as Large Scale Imaging (LSI)
     
    The Government of Canada is committed to invest in new cargo examination facilities to increase examination capacity. In the future, the Port of Vancouver will replace the current outdated MCEF with two new MCEFs (Roberts Bank and Burrard Inlet locations).
     
    The PEM pilot will begin April 18, 2016 at the following Terminals:
     
    Centerm
    Vanterm
    Deltaport
     
    The initial testing will be for a period of eight weeks.
     
    CIFFA will keep members informed of further developments.
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    UN to mandate shipboard electronic data exchange in less than two years
    source: Shippingazette
     
    NEW United Nations rules to make mandatory electronic data exchange related to cargo worldwide could enter force in less than two years, reports Lloyd's Loading List.
     
    A new standard is among the changes agreed in revisions to an annex to the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL), which is expected to enter into force in January 2018.
     
    The UN's FAL convention, introduced in 1965, reduced to nine the number of declarations, which can be required by public authorities. These standardised forms include, among others, the UN's International Maritime Organisation (IMO) General Declaration, the Cargo Declaration, and the Crew and Passenger Lists, and Dangerous Goods Declaration. 
     

  • 13 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Brussels Airport Shut Down By Unannounced Controllers' Strike
    source: CIFFA
     
    Work action by Belgian air traffic controllers brought flights to a halt at Brussels Airport on Tuesday. The air traffic controllers staged an unannounced action on April 12th to protest Belgocontrol making changes to employees' retirement benefits. Brussels Airport, which reopened on April 3 after being closed by the terrorist bombing at the airport, initially said "no air traffic control [was] possible" on Tuesday afternoon as "Belgocontrol looks for operational solutions" to the controllers' work action. Later, the airport said "a limited number of flights" would be possible during a two-hour window late in the afternoon. 
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo to introduce dedicated freighter service to Latin America
    source: Canadian Shipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que. and MISSISSAUGA, Ont.– Air Canada and Cargojet Airways Ltd., a subsidiary of Cargojet Inc.announced they are finalizing a commercial arrangement that will result in Air Canada Cargo introducing dedicated freighter services from Canada to Latin America and Europe with Boeing 767-300ER freighter aircraft operated by Cargojet. Air Canada Cargo will become the only provider of direct scheduled freighter service between Canada and Latin America, said the release.  

    Read more here

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Overcapacity warning as MSC moves big ships to 'more robust' Europe-Middle East/India trade
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Having already been obliged to idle two of its flagship 19,000 teu vessels because of weak Asia-North Europe bookings, MSC is cascading some of the 13,000 teu ships from the overcapacity-plagued trade onto its Europe-Mid East-South Asia service where demand is said to remain “comparatively robust”.
     
    In an updated analysis of the trade, Drewry said the Geneva-headquartered carrier was leading the way in increasing ship size on the route, noting that it had deployed the 13,102 teu MSC Cristina and MSCMariaSaveria on its Himalaya Express service, operated with Shipping Corporation of India.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Dawn of a new era for shipping with Waterfront’s dual-fuel methanol fleet set to deliver
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    This month Waterfront Shipping Company, a subsidiary of Methanex Corporation, will start operating a new fleet of 50,000 dwt ships which can run on methanol, something the line’s president is adamant is a cheaper way to go green.
     
    “The cost to build new and convert existing vessels to run on methanol is significantly less than alternate fuel conversions,” said JoneHognestad the president of Waterfront in a release from engine maker MAN B&W, which is supplying the engines to the new ships.
     
    “Methanol is a biodegradable, clean-burning marine fuel that reduces smog-causing emissions such as particulates, sulphur oxides and nitrogen oxides,” MAN B&W said in the release.
     
    Waterfront Shipping will charter the seven vessels to replace older vessels and expand its fleet. Two of the vessels are owned by Westfal-Larsen, two vessels are jointly owned by Marinvest and Waterfront Shipping, and the remaining three vessels are owned by Mitsui OSK Lines. The ships were built by Hyundai Mipo Dockyard and Minaminippon Shipbuilding. The first three vessels are being delivered in April, with the remaining four to be delivered by October 2016.
     
     
     
    PortsToronto Celebrates Arrival of First Ship of the Season with 155th Annual Beaver Hat Ceremony
    source: CIFFA
     
    PortsTorontoHarbour Master Angus Armstrong "crowns" Federal Rideau Captain Sharma Vinod Kumar with a 200-year-old silk and beaver top hat at the 155th annual Beaver Hat Ceremony at Redpath Refinery. The annual ceremony dates back to the mid-1800s and celebrates the arrival of the Port of Toronto's first ocean-going vessel of the season. This year, the Federal Rideau won the race to be the first ship to Port, making the 17-day journey from Guatemala's Puerto Quetzal to deliver 23,000 metric tonnes of sugar to Redpath Sugar's refinery. 
     
     
     
    Portable container weighing system for shippers with no access to weighbridges
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    UK firm Strainstall has produced a new portable container weighing system for shippers to calculate the verified gross mass of their export containers.
     
    The firm, part of shipping services company James Fisher Group, said the system was aimed at shippers with no access to weighbridges and whose gateway ports and terminals do not intend to provide weighing services.
     
    Managing director Simon Everett said: “In many countries around the world, ports and terminals are preparing to offer a container weighing service to help shippers comply with the SOLAS requirements. Whilst this is the most cost-effective place to obtain a VGM, some ports are choosing not to offer a service.
     
    “We therefore identified a need to develop a simple, quick and cost-effective solution for shippers to be able to comply with this legal requirement where the option to weigh at the port isn’t available.”
     
    There are less than three months until the new IMO amendment to Safety of Life at Sea (Solas) regulations come into force, when shippers have to provide shipping lines with a container’s verified gross mass before it can be loaded on a vessel.
     
    Strainstall’s Portable CWS [Container Weighing System], which comprises a jack and four load cells, has received Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) accreditation as it allows shippers to weigh containers themselves – each load cell is positioned in each corner of the container.
     
    These measure and calculate the weight of the container, as well as its centre of gravity, and transmit the data to an app the company has developed. That information can then be entered in to the VGM field in the booking instructions with the carrier.
     
    The system is, effectively, a version of Strainstall’s existing container weighing system, which can be fitted to container handling spreaders, Mr Everett added.
     

    ITNERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Canada & New Zealand Sign Cooperation Arrangement to Support Cross-Border Competition Enforcement
    source: CIFFA
     
    A new cooperation arrangement between the Competition Bureau and the New Zealand Commerce Commission will further enhance collaboration in terms of information sharing and the provision of investigative assistance. The cooperation arrangement that was signed Tuesday in Vancouver will further enhance Canada's and New Zealand's abilities to cooperate on cross-border competition matters. Collaboration with international counterparts to ensure that markets remain competitive and innovative is crucial in the global economy. International partnerships also enhance the impact of the Bureau's work in ensuring that Canadian consumers benefit from competitive prices and increased product choices, and that Canadian businesses prosper in both domestic and foreign markets.
     
     
    2M starts China-Korea-US Gulf loop, adds New York-NJ-to-Everglades run
    source: Shippingazette
     
    MAERSK Line and MSC, which combined control the world's largest containership fleet under their 2M shipping alliance, are to preparing to launch from May 2 a new weekly service connecting China and Korea to the US Gulf via Panama.
     
    The new loop branded 'TP-18' by Maersk and 'Lone Star Express' by MSC will be first 2M service to directly link China with US Gulf ports. 
     
    With a turn around in 10 days. the service will call at Qingdao, Ningbo, Shanghai, Xiamen, Shenzhen-Yantian, Busan, Cristobal, Houston, Mobile, Miami, Balboa, Busan and back to Qingdao. 
     
    As a result of including a Cristobal call in the westbound direction, this port is to be removed from the existing Far East-US east coast 'TP-10/Everglades' service, which will then be extended to New York, and rebranded 'Amberjack' by MSC, with Maersk retaining the 'TP-10' appellation.
     
     

  • 12 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

    AC Notice - Turkish Customs Authority Suspends Requirement For Tax Number And HCC Code
    source: CIFFA
     
    Air Canada has advised that the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Commerce and Trade has decided to cancel the requirement to provide the consignee tax identity number and Harmonized Commodity Codes for shipments destined to or transiting via Turkey, which came into effect April 1, 2016. The new date for the implementation of these requirements will be communicated at a later time. 
     
     
    2016 air cargo round-table: new layer of complexity clouds the picture
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    There’s an interesting and concise ’round-table’ interview with TIACA’s Doug Brittin, US Airforwarders’ Brandon Fried and Stifel Nicolaus freight analyst David Ross on the future of air cargo. Logistics Management asks questions on issues such as the potential competitive threat from cargo airships, Uber and its ilk and other game-changers.
     
     
     
    Air France Makes New Cost-Cut Proposals To Pilots
    source: AirWise
     
    Air France has made fresh cost-cutting proposals to pilots' unions that would see an increase in the number of flying hours and more flexibility in return for a share of the resulting productivity gains.
     
    The proposals, which were sent to unions on Sunday, with a May 2 deadline to respond, would also see it employ more than the 600 new pilots previously envisaged by 2020, taking the total number to 3,900.
     
    Air France is cutting costs to better compete with Gulf airlines and fast-growing European low-cost carriers. It dropped a restructuring project with forced job cuts in January and tilted its plans towards growth in the wake of a slide in oil prices.
     
    "The cost per hour of flying falls, this is necessary for the company to be competitive, but this is done in the context of more flying hours, so no one loses out," chief executive Frederic Gagey said. "Overall, pilot pay won't drop."
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Half top ocean carriers post profits while others teeter close to bankruptcy
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    HALF of the 16 top carriers that posted operating profits last year, but others closed the year near bankruptcy, reported the Paris-based research house Alphaliner.Many profits in the first half of 2015 disappeared in the fourth quarter as freight rates scrapped the bottom and weak demand failed to bring the usual traditional pre-Christmas peak season resurgence.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Calls for shipping industry to embrace technology to improve operations
    source: Shippingazette
     
    MARITIME leaders are urging the shipping industry to adopt new technologies to capitalise on opportunities and navigate today's increasingly complex operating environment, a new survey by Sea Asia has found. 
     
    Nine out of 10 leaders polled believe that it is time for the shipping industry to make the move towards smart shipping while another 81 per cent recognise the importance of Big Data to survive in today's digital and transform the way their businesses operate sustainably. 
     
     
     
    Automation arrives in Long Beach with first ship call at new terminal
    source: Lloyds Loading List
     
    The arrival of the 7,700 teu OOCL Long Beachat Pier E in Long Beach on Thursday marked the start of vessel operations at the Californian port’s highly-automated Middle Harbor facility.
     
    Long Beach Container Terminal, owned by Orient Overseas Container Line’s parent company, will utilise some of the world’s most advanced cargo-handling processes.
    Robotics are rare in US container ports, although the TraPac terminal  in nearby Los Angeles has introduced automation.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Hapag-Lloyd Mediterranean Canada Service (MCA) - Port Coverage
    source: CIFFA
     
    Hapag-Lloyd announced that it will add the port of Tangier to the westbound leg to the Mediterranean Canada Service effective May 2016. The first vessel to call Tangier will be the Genoa Express on May 15, 2016.
     
    Please find here below the enhanced port rotation: Montreal * Algeciras * Valencia * Cagliari * Salerno * Livorno * Genoa * Fos * Algeciras * Tangier * Lisbon * Montreal
     
     
    Port of NY/NJ Advisory - Bayonne Bridge Weekday Overnight Closures Starting Monday, April 18
    source: CIFFA 
     
    Beginning Monday, April 18, the Bayonne Bridge's schedule of Monday-through-Thursday overnight closures will begin an hour and a half earlier - at 7 p.m., rather than 8:30 p.m. The bridge's weekday schedule of daytime and overnight closures will otherwise remain the same, as follows: Except when announced otherwise, the Bayonne Bridge currently closes on Mondays through Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and overnight on Mondays through Thursdays from 8:30 p.m. to 5 a.m. The only pending change is that, starting April 18, these overnight closures will begin at 7 p.m. The bridge will also continue to close at varying times on weekends. Partial or full weekend closures will also continue, with advance announcement by the Port Authority.

    ITNERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    US senator demands icebreakers as low oil prices cut Arctic shipping
    source: Shippingazette
     
    TEN years is too long to wait for a new icebreakers in the Arctic, says US Alaska Republican Senator Dan Sullivan.
     
    While global warmists cheer him on, low oil prices have dissuaded investors from aggressive exploration, reducing a major role of Arctic shipping.
     
    While new routes have opened in the Arctic, many countries have sought to develop new strategies and increase investments for commerce and national defence, reported Alaska's Kodiak Mirror. 
     
    This includes the acquisition of icebreakers, ships used to break ice and create pathways for other vessels, he said.
     
    The US has two icebreakers, but only one capable of year-round service. It's 40 years old and to remain in service for seven years. 
     
     
     
    US retailers expect 'steady climb' after last year's 'roller coaster'
    source: Shippingazette
     
    IMPORT volume at US major ports has begun its annual climb toward the peak season, but is expected to be flat against last year's highs, says the monthly Global Port Tracker from the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Hackett Associates.
     
    "Last year was a roller coaster but this year we're expecting a nice, steady climb right through the summer," said NRF vice president Jonathan Gold. 
     
    "We're finally getting back to normal patterns as cargo builds up toward the back-to-school season and eventually the holiday season. Despite the year-over-year comparisons, these are still strong numbers," he said.
     

  • 11 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

    Italian ATCs to strike April 9
    source: ATWOnline
     
    Italy’s air navigation services provider ENAV plans to strike on April 9, affecting air travel to and from Italy, Eurocontrol confirmed via Twitter as it established a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM).
     
    Overflights/arriving intercontinental flights are not affected, according to Eurocontrol.
     
    Alitalia said on its website it has “put into place a series of preventive actions in order to reduce any resulting inconvenience to its guests.
     
     
     
    IATA ramps up electronic-airway bill adoption in Europe, North America
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE International Air Transport Association (IATA) has commenced an airport-centric publicity campaign, called eAWB360, initially in Europe and later the initiative will be expanded to North America in May, to speed up the global adoption of electronic air waybills (e-AWB), in a bid to achieve a usage rate of 56 per cent by year-end.
     
    At present the average e-AWB penetration stands at 37.5 per cent, worldwide, reported New York's Air Cargo World.
     
    As part of the new campaign, IATA is working with selected airports to implement the e-AWB as the standard operating procedure for handling air cargo flown into or out of the airport. The eAWB360's three pillars are "single process, standard operating procedures at each airport, and a joint communication effort" that involves all parties engaged in the air cargo transportation chain. 
     
     
     
    Dubai Airport Is Now Ranked Second Busiest For International Cargo
    source: CIFFA
     
    Dubai International has become the world's second busiest airport for international air freight and the sixth biggest hub for air cargo, according to the latest data compiled by the Montreal-based Airports Council International. Also, in the Middle East, Doha entered the top 20 list of world's busiest airports in terms of air cargo, with volumes posting 46 per cent increase in 2015 compared to the previous year, reported Dubai's Gulf News. The ACI data showed that 2.5 million tonnes of air freight and another 2.5 million tonnes of air cargo were loaded and unloaded at the Dubai airport, the world's second and sixth, respectively.

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Evergreen joins O3's Phoenician Express between Asia and Mediterranean
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    EVERGREEN Line is now participating in the Ocean 3 shipping alliance's Phoenician Express Service weekly loop between the Far East and the Mediterranean, after its ships started calling at Busan New Container Port (BNCT) in South Korea.
     
    The maiden call was made by the Ever Utile, one of two 5,600-TEU ships that the carrier deploys on the Phoenician Express Service, which the Taiwanese shipping line brands, "BEX2". The service is jointly operated by CMA CGM, CSCL (now COSCOCS) and UASC.
     
    The BEX2 uses ten 5,762-TEU ships: five from CSCL, two each from Evergreen and CMA CGM, and one from UASC, reported American Shipper. 
     
    The loop calls at Shanghai, Ningbo, Busan, Shenzhen-Chiwan, TanjungPelepas, Port Klang, Suez Canal, Koper, Trieste, Rijeka, Venice, Koper, Marsaxlokk, Suez Canal, Jeddah, Port Klang, TanjungPelepas, Guangzhou-Nansha and back to Shanghai.
     
     
    Fears shipping industry will suffer if UK votes to quit European Union
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THERE are fears that if Britain votes to break away from the European Union in a June 23 referendum the country may be "punished" and the shipping sector will experience years of disruption while new trade agreements are reworked, and currency volatility may trigger higher expenses.
     
    Renegotiating trade agreements with individual EU countries as well as the EU itself could take years following Brexit, which would also add to the burden on companies, reported Reuters.
     
    "No one has left the European Union before, and the EU may seek to punish the UK for leaving, in order to discourage others from leaving too. The Brexit negotiations are unlikely to be quick or easy," said chief executive of the UK Chamber of Shipping Guy Platten.
     
    Chairman of the Lloyd's of London insurance market, John Nelson, said it was "fantasy" to expect bilateral negotiations to be simple, and would take "many, many years" to renegotiate.
     
     
     
    Shipowners Play Hardball: HMM Plea for Cheaper Charters Falls on Deaf Ears
    source: TheLoadstar
     
    The owners of 33 container vessels chartered out to debt-plagued Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) are continuing to reject the company’s plea to cut daily hire rates, according to one shipbroker source.
    Along with debt restructuring with its bondholders and creditor banks, charter renegotiation is the third of the “three main pillars” of the South Korean company’s self-rescue plan, it said last week.
    HMM said it was “fully focusing” on renegotiating the terms of its charter parties “by the end of April, or early May”, and it is understood to be seeking reductions of up to 25% on daily hire rates.  

    Read more here.  
     
     
    Port Workers Plan To Expand Strike From Fremantle To Sydney
    source: CIFFA
     
    Longshoremen working for terminal operator Patrick at the Australian port of Fremantle have been on strike since Wednesday with another action planned for Sydney's Autostrad Terminal April 13 to increase pressure on Patrick to reach an agreement on longshore employment terms and conditions. Patrick has a 40 percent market share of Australia's overall container trade, but industrial action has not spread to the firm's larger container terminals in Sydney and Brisbane. The Fremantle strike will run 72 hours until Saturday and a 48-hour stoppage is slated for April 13. (Excerpted from JOC Online)
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Canadian Pacific Terminates Efforts To Merge With Norfolk Southern
    source: CIFFA
     
    Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. Today (April 11th) announced that it has terminated efforts to merge with Norfolk Southern Corp. (NS), including the withdrawal of a resolution asking NS shareholders to vote in favour of good-faith negotiations between the two companies. No further financial offers or overtures to meet with the NS board of directors are planned at this time. CP proposed the creation of a true end-to-end railroad that would enhance competition, ease freight congestion now and into the future, improve service to shippers, better support the economy and generate significant shareholder value for both companies. 
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Port Metro Vancouver Brand And Name Update
    source: CIFFA
     
    Vancouver's port is getting a new name, dropping Port Metro Vancouver to become the "Port of Vancouver." In addition, the port authority will implement the consistent use of its legal name, the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, when referencing activities or decisions of the port authority. The change is intended to strengthen the port's recognition with stakeholders and customers as well as provide clarity and distinction between the activities of the port authority and those of the greater port community. 
     

  • 8 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

    Legacy Systems Are Finally on the Way Out
    source: Lloyds Listing
     
    No sooner has IATA scaled back its forecasts for the adoption of the e-AWB than we are embarking on a break out year for ‘e’ take-up.
     
    Several factors could accelerate adoption.
     
    Market sluggishness typically drives forwarders to seek out new efficiencies. Many airlines are approaching critical mass of electronic Air Waybill (e-AWB) on the strength of participation not only by multinational players, but now, increasingly independents, therefore we may see costs or penalties increase for handling paper.  

    Read more here.  

     
    European airlines protest ground-handling cutbacks at Rome Fiumicino
    source: ATWOnline
     
    Airlines for Europe (A4E), the lobbying organization that comprises seven major European carriers, has protested to Italian aviation regulator ENAC over plans to cut the number of ground handling agents at Rome Fiumicino Airport.
     
    ENAC is reducing the number of ground-handling licenses from seven to three by mid-May, A4E said, which meant many airlines using the Italian capital’s main airport would have to scramble to make new arrangements for their aircraft.
     
    The move will restrict competition, warned A4E, resulting in a likely increase in costs. “We can see no material justification for an artificial restriction of competition in this way. Its effect will simply be to increase the cost of travel to and within Italy, with damaging effects on economic growth and jobs,” A4E managing director Thomas Reynaert said.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Hapag-Lloyd First Ocean Carrier to Ditch GRIs and Go FAK in a Bid to Stop Falling Box Rates
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Hapag-Lloyd is to abandon general rate increases (GRIs) and next month will set minimum FAK [freight all kinds] rates for containers on its vessels from Asia to North Europe and the Mediterranean.
     
    However, a spokesman for the line said that the move was an internal decision to change the way that it quotes rates to customers, rather than an official reaction to an EC probe into the way carriers publically quote rate levels.  

    Read more here.
     
     
    EU forwarders look with dread on uncertainties of UN box weigh-in rule
    source: Shippingazette
     
    EUROPEAN forwarders in CLECAT (Comite de Liaison Europeen des Commissionnaires et Auxiliaires de Transport) say they need transparent, coordinated action by carriers and national authorities ahead of the implementation of the UN's compulsory verified weigh-in rule on July 1. 
     
    "Authorities must outline their policies to implement the amendment, and must coordinate to the greatest extent possible," said Aidan Flanagan, senior policy advisor for CLECAT. 
     
    The UN's Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) convention amendment says all shippers and or their agents, forwarders in most cases, must provide a "verified gross mass" (VGM) or weight on the container and all it contains before it can board ship.
     
    It appears that few really want the rule unless it creates no problems. Trouble is, it does. Even the carriers, who say they want it, really don't if it means turning away cargo.
     
    So when they say no box will board without a verified gross mass number, what they mean is that no box will board without a declared verified gross mass number. Nobody need verify anything so far.
     
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    China develops Asia-Europe rail corridor, tripling freight service in 4 years
    source: AFR
     
    China is pioneering a transcontinental rail service carrying cargo between the Far East and Western Europe with the aim of capturing some of the freight which currently moves by sea and air.
     
    China has the financial resources and the economic incentive to build a major transcontinental railroad service within the next five to 10 years, and the project has strong political backing from top leaders for economic and strategic reasons.
     
    From very small beginnings with just a few experimental journeys five years ago, the number of trains running and the volume of freight carried is growing rapidly. Freight trains originating in China have arrived in cities as far afield as Madrid and Tehran as China seeks to demonstrate the viability of a transcontinental service.
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Alibaba overtakes Wal-Mart as world's biggest retailer
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    It has happened. Alibaba, Jack Ma’s Chinese e-commerce site, has become the world’s biggest retailer, leaving Wal-Mart in its wake. Not just significant because a Chinese retailer has overtaken a US one, but also because online has overtaken offline. It was a fairly close run thing though, Alibaba still had 10 days of trading left to announce. Its year ends March 31, but by March 21, gross merchandise volumes were more than $475.89bn, compared with Wal-Mart’s $482.1bn in revenue in its year ending January 31. 
     
     

  • 7 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

    Air Freight Demand Dropped In February - IATA
    source: AirWise
     
    Demand for global air freight dropped in February after a US port strike had boosted the previous year's figures and the timing of the Chinese New Year hurt volumes, IATA reported.
     
    Freight volumes traditionally increase in the weeks leading up to the New Year holiday, which last year occurred later in February.
     
     
     
    Strict Air Cargo Screening in Bangladesh Causes Congestion
    source: CIFFA
     
    Bangladeshi exporters are complaining about the delays resulting from the new heightened screening of cargo from HazratShahjalal International Airport, reports the Dhaka Daily Star. More than 300 tonnes of goods are backlogged every day due to screening delays. Exporters send 800 tonnes to 1,000 tonnes of goods by air a day; they have to wait for a long time for screening due to the airport's low scanning capacity. The Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh introduced a new screening system at the airport after the UK banned direct air cargo from Dhaka to London. Cargo screening has slowed with the implementation of the new scanning system, said an exporter. 
     
     
    LATAM Cargo Introduces a Single and United Brand
    source: CIFFA
     
    LATAM Airlines Group has announced the creation of a unified, single brand for its various airfreight affiliates. The LATAM Cargo brand will unite LAN Cargo, TAM Cargo, LAN Cargo Colombia and Mas Air - in so doing becoming the largest cargo airline group in Latin America. The move forms part of LATAM Airlines Group's wider consolidation process. According to a statement from the airline, the new entity brings together the best of the former brands and unites their identities under the one banner. To complete the transfer to the new brand it's expected to take as long as three years, although initial changes are expected to be evident pretty much immediately. 
     
     
    Air Canada Partners in Biojet Supply Chain Initiative to Introduce Sustainable Aviation Biofuel
    source: CIFFA
     
    Air Canada on Tuesday announced it will participate in Canada's Biojet Supply Chain Initiative (CBSCI), a three-year collaborative project with 14 stakeholder organizations to introduce 400,000 litres of sustainable aviation biofuel (biojet) into a shared fuel system at a yet to be determined Canadian airport. 
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    CLARIFICATION: Pallets as Package Type Not Allowed for USA, Canada
    source: CIFFA 
     
    Yesterday's bulletin item regarding the package type when filing advance information has caused some confusion. Several carriers issued reminders to customers in the past week or so. This is NOT a new requirement but has always been in place. Pallets have never been an acceptable package type for CBP and to our knowledge CBSA as well. 
     
    The 1984 US Customs Regulation that states the following:
     
    "The regulatory requirements for reporting manifest quantities through the Vessel Automated Manifest System (Sea AMS) in order to comply with the advance cargo declaration transmitting requirements are found in section 4.7a(c)(4)(v) of the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) regulations (19 CFR 4.7a(c)(4)(v)). That section provides in pertinent part, that the electronic transmission must state the following:
     
    The numbers and quantities from the carrier's ocean bills of lading, either master or house, as applicable (this means that the carrier must transmit the quantity of the lowest external packaging unit; containers and pallets are not acceptable manifested quantities; for example, a container containing 10 pallets with 200 cartons should be manifested as 200 cartons); 19 CFR 4.7a(c)(4)(v)"
     
    Some carrier have stated that: Shipping Instructions received with package type as PALLETS or PALLET will not be processed. These shipping instructions will be rejected.

     
    20% of countries still haven't identified the authority to oversee new container weight verification
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    A new survey of ship agents and brokers has discovered that nearly 20% of countries signed up to IMO international maritime conventions have report to say which national authority will oversee implementation of the new container weight regulations.
     
    A survey conducted by the Federation of National Agents and Ship Brokers Association (FONASBA) of its members across more than 50 countries, found that in 10, the identity of designated authority had yet to be revealed, despite there being just three months before the new rules come into force.
     
    In addition, in almost half the countries, “no guidance has been issued on the practical application of the measures in the country concerned”.
     
    Just 25% of respondents said implementation plans were in place, while 31% said there were no plans and 44% said they remained under development.
     
     
     
    Suez Cuts Transit Fees for US-Asia Ships to Combat Cost-Saving Allure of Cape of Good Hope
    source: The Loadstar
     
    The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) has reacted to the increasing number of backhaul voyages being routed to Asia via the Cape of Good Hope by offering cheaper tariffs.
    The reduction in transit fees follows reports that over 100 cargo vessels have chosen the longer route via the southern tip of Africa in the final quarter of last year, resulting in a substantial loss of revenue for the Egyptian government.  

    Read more here.  
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES

    Cars of freight train derail in Saginaw County; no injuries
    source: WashigtonTimes
     
    CARROLLTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) - Authorities say some cars of a freight train went off the tracks in Saginaw County, smashing into a power pole.
     
    No injuries were reported following the late Wednesday derailment in Carrollton Township.
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

    FDA Releases Final Rule To Ensure Food Safety During Transport
    source: CIFFA
     
    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration this finalized a new food safety rule under the landmark FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that will help to prevent food contamination during transportation. The rule will require those involved in transporting human and animal food by motor or rail vehicle to follow recognized best practices for sanitary transportation, such as properly refrigerating food, adequately cleaning vehicles between loads and properly protecting food during transportation.

    Read more here.

  • 6 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Air Freight Demand Dropped In February - IATA
    source: AirWise
     
    Demand for global air freight dropped in February after a US port strike had boosted the previous year's figures and the timing of the Chinese New Year hurt volumes, IATA reported.
     
    Freight volumes traditionally increase in the weeks leading up to the New Year holiday, which last year occurred later in February.
     
    "The air freight business remains a difficult one. February's performance continues a weak trend. And there are few factors on the horizon that would see this change substantially," IATA Director General Tony Tyler said in a statement.
     
     
     
    Strict air cargo screening at Dhaka demanded by UK causes congestion
    source: Shippingazette
     
    BANGLADESHI exporters are complaining about the delays resulting from the new heightened screening of cargo from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, reports the Dhaka Daily Star.
     
    More than 300 tonnes of goods are backlogged every day due to screening delays, said Siddiqur Rahman, president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).
     
    Exporters send 800 tonnes to 1,000 tonnes of goods by air a day; they have to wait for a long time for screening due to the airport's low scanning capacity.
     
    The Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh introduced a new screening system at the airport after the UK banned direct air cargo from Dhaka to London.
     
    Cargo screening has slowed with the implementation of the new scanning system, said an exporter.
     
     
     
    Air Canada Resumes Full Brussels Flight Schedule on Thursday April 7th
    source: CIFFA
     
    With the re-opening of Brussels Airport, Air Canada will resume its regular daily flights between Montreal and Brussels effective Thursday April 7th and between Belgium and Canada on Friday April 8th, 2016.
     
     
    United, machinists reach tentative labor agreements
    source: ATWOnline
     
    The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) has reached seven tentative agreements with United Airlines for its 30,000 workers.
     
    According to IAM, the five-year accords run through 2021 and call for approximately 30% in pay increases over the term of the deal and $100 million in lump sum payments. The contract also includes a 25% hike in defined-benefit pension benefits, stops outsourcing of work currently performed by IAM members and provides for insourcing of additional work.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    US west coast ports import box share falls below 50 per cent in 2015
    source: Shippingazette
     
    US EAST and Gulf Coast ports have been winning the market share battle in overall US containerised ocean trade since 2008, and in 2015 they overcame west coast ports in containerised imports, too.
     
    In 2000, US west coast ports handled 56.8 per cent of all US containerised imports. By 2014 that share had dropped to 52.4 per cent, and then to 49.5 per cent last year. 
     
    That's a market share loss of 7.3 per centage points over the 16 years, according to a study by Marsha Salisbury, research editor of IHS Media.
     
    Her data shows the rate of growth among west coast ports has hit a slump that goes well beyond a year-end 2014 anomaly tied to congestion related to protracted longshore labour talks and that erosion in growth has continued into 2015. 
     
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Truck-Tax Protests Block Belgian Border Crossings
    source: CIFFA
     
    Protests against the introduction of an HGV tax scheme in Belgium continued today with hauliers and farmers blocking the country's border crossings in an expression of fury against road tolls that will add an estimated 8% to their operating costs. 
     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Vancouver Island Transshipment Hub Proponents Court Investors
    source: CIFFA
     
    A massive terminal capable of handling 3.5 million containers a year is being proposed for the West Coast of Vancouver Island. The project, earmarked for Sarita Bay near the mouth of Barkley Sound about 75 kilometres southwest of Port Alberni, would become a transshipment hub for Vancouver and Seattle. The proposal calls for the terminal to load and unload the world's largest container ships - vessels with capacities of up to 22,000 TEUs - and barge the inbound and outbound cargo between terminals on the mainland. Estimated cost of the project is $1.7 billion to $2.2 billion. 
     

     
    Calls for Canada government to revise Arctic shipping plans and heed the concerns of Inuit people
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    An environmental group has called on Canada’s federal government to reconsider plans for Arctic shipping corridors to include the views of Inuit people, according to CBC.
     
    Oceans North Canada, which focuses on preserving the country’s Arctic waters, issued its report on Tuesday calling for the establishment of an Arctic corridor commission to include northern native peoples.
     
    Under Oceans North Canada’s proposal such a commission would be co-chaired by the Canadian Coast Guard and by Inuit people.

    Read more here

  • 5 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Air shippers struggle to find suppliers of lithium batteries under new rules
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE banning of lithium-ion batteries on passenger aircraft has left cargo owners unable to source from existing suppliers, while others are expected to breach the maximum 30 per cent state-of-charge rule that came into effect on April 1. 
     
    The shippers' concerns were raised by the assistant director for cargo safety and standards at the International Air Transport Association, Dave Brennan, who told Lloyd's Loading List that a supplier of hearing aids based in Australia that had been using a battery supplier in Switzerland had complained there were no direct freighter connections between the two countries.
     
    Mr Brennan said it was also unclear how many shippers of lithium-ion batteries would be able to comply initially with the 30 per cent state-of-charge rule, particularly because significant volumes of the batteries would already be in warehouses at a higher state of charge. 
     
    With no obvious way to test the state of charge of batteries once they had already been packed, either by shippers, the air cargo sector, or national authorities, he believed it was almost inevitable that in the initial weeks and months following the April 1 deadline, some batteries would continue to be shipped by air on freighters at a state of charge higher than 30 per cent.
     

     
    Air Canada to partner in biofuel initiative
    source: ATWOnline
     
    Air Canada will participate in Canada’s Biojet Supply Chain Initiative (CBSCI), a three-year collaborative project with 14 stakeholder organizations to introduce 400,000 liters (105,669 gallons) of sustainable aviation biofuel into a shared fuel system at a yet-to-be determined Canadian airport.
     
    According to the Canadian flag carrier, its previous biofuel flights used biojet that was segregated and loaded separately into an aircraft via tanker truck. By contrast, it said CBSCI’s objective is to start developing a more efficient operational framework that will introduce biojet into a multi-user, co-mingled airport fuel supply system.
     
     
     
    Alaska Air To Buy Virgin America
    source: AirWise
     
    Alaska Air has agreed to buy Virgin America for USD$2.6 billion in cash to its boost its operation on the US West Coast and compete more effectively with larger airlines.
     
    At USD$57 a share, the deal represents a premium of about 86 percent from Virgin America's stock price before reports in March that the company was considering a sale.

    Analysts described the price as steep but said the merger would strengthen Alaska Air.

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Drewry questions viability of ultra-large container vessels, as carriers focus on cost-cutting
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    If losses continue and ocean carriers persist in focusing only on reducing costs rather than improving revenue per teu, the container liner industry “could get very ugly” in the second half of the year, said Drewry today.
     
    Most carriers operated in the red in the final quarter of 2015, despite achieving satisfactory vessel load factors, as average freight rates per container declined dramatically.
     
    And since then, spot container rates have fallen further and contract rates suffered the same fate, putting container line earnings under severe pressure.
     
     
     
    HMM steps up charter renegotiations after gaining 'breathing space' from Hyundai Securities sale
    source: TheLoadStar

     
    Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) has begun a second round of negotiations with shipowners on amending the terms of charter parties to reflect reductions in daily hire rates.
     
    The move is crucial to the company’s restructure under its voluntary agreement (VA) status with creditor banks.
     
    It has also received a significant fillip from an agreement to sell Hyundai Securities to a Korean financial house for what is understood to be better-than-expected terms.
     
    Read more here. 
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Truckers to court: Federal spy in the cab violates US Constitution
    source: Shippingazette
     
    AMERICA's Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) is going to court to end electronic monitoring of trucks because it violates "rights against unreasonable search and seizure", reports the American Journal of Transportation.
     
    The OOIDA filed its case in the US Court of Appeals in Chicago to void a new Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration rule that requires interstate truckers to install electronic logging devices (ELDs) in their vehicles. 
     
    "The agency provided no proof of their claims that this mandate would improve highway safety. They didn't even attempt to compare the safety records of trucking companies that use ELDs and those that do not," said OOIDA president and CEO Jim Johnston. 
     
    "There is simply no proof that the costs, burdens and privacy infringements associated with this mandate are justified," he said.
     
    "For most truckers, a truck is not just a vehicle, but is also an office and a home away from home," said Mr Johnston. 
     
    "This mandate means monitoring the movement and activities of real people for law enforcement purposes and is an outrageous intrusion of the privacy of professional truckers," he said. 
     
     
     
    Central Railway handles 58 million tons of freight, creates new record
    source: DNA
     
    Central Railway, which in recent years has seen its freight loading from major ports like Jawaharlal Port Trust and Mumbai Port Trust falling, made a remarkable turnaround for the current financial year — April 2015 to March 2016 — to create a new record in freight loading. The originating freight loading of 58.00 million tons achieved during the year 2015-16 is the highest ever loading recorded in the history of Central Railway. The earlier best ever loading of 56.84 million tons was recorded in the financial year 2007-08, almost a decade back. As compared to last year freight loading it shows as increase of 4.3%.
     
     

    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Italians deny acquisitions
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    The Monaco-based Sea World Management is frequently linked these days as potential buyers of mid-age secondhand tonnage in the liquid bulk market. Broker sources are reporting this week that the product tanker  Simoa is being sold to Sea World for a price in the region of $13.9m. However, Roberto Corvetta, ceo of Sea World told Splash today: “This news is incorrect, we are not involved in the buy of the MR tanker Simoa.”
     
    The same buyers were recently linked to the sale of the Amalienborg for a firm price in the region of $15.2m but including a TC back to sellers in the region of $16,000 a day for three years but this sale failed and some brokers are saying that the vessel is now committed to Chinese interests for $16m but with five years time charter back to sellers at $14,000 a day.
     

     
    New U.S. Customs Electronic-Filing System Causes Delays at Borders
    source: WSJ
     
    A new electronic customs system is off to a rocky start, with some shippers reporting their goods held up at the U.S. border for hours.
     
    The technology, which the U.S. Customs and Borders Protection began phasing in on Thursday, is supposed to automate the filing of customs forms and transmit data gathered from shippers to nearly 50 government agencies.
     
    But problems arose almost immediately, with some users receiving “system failure messages” and others waiting hours at border points of entry, said Celeste Catano, a logistics software specialist with Kewill Inc. who has been advising Customs on the new system. The delays affected a small number of shipments, mainly along the Mexican and Canadian borders, a group representing freight forwarders said.  
     
     

  • 4 April 2016

  • 1 April 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    KF Aerospace Shutters Toronto Cargo Operation
    Source: The Loadstar
     
    Sadly, KF Aerospace, a freighter operator hoping to capitalise on flows between Canada and Europe with two DC10Fs, has abandoned its Toronto hub and discontinued its operation to Brussels. It was impacted by low yields and volumes, it said. Talking to Skies magazine, director Bryan Akerstream said there was too much belly capacity in the market. “It’s depressing the rates…You need either the volume or the yield, and we were finding we were hit in both areas.”  

    Read more here. 
     
     
    Hong Kong airport midfield concourse begins full operations
    source: ATW
     
    Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) has opened its new Midfield Concourse (MFC).
     
    As the first and one of the main carriers using MFC, Hong Kong Airlines has more than 80% of its flights—including both departure and arrival—using MFC.
     
    MFC was completed on schedule Dec. 28, 2015 and opened for trial run. Hong Kong Airlines said its flight HX684 to Okinawa was the very first departure flight at MFC.  

    Read more here.
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo receives air cargo excellence award
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.– Air Canada Cargo received the Air Cargo Excellence Diamond Award at the 10th annual World Cargo Symposium recently held in Berlin. The Diamond award is the industry’s top award and Air Canada Cargo won it in the “up to 399,999 tonnes” air carrier category.
     
    The awards are based on the Air Cargo Excellence Survey presented annually by Air Cargo World Magazine to the airlines and airports achieving the highest scores in the survey based on several performance factors including customer service, value and performance.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    New Update: SOLAS Verified Gross Mass Requirements - Canada
    source: CIFFA 
     
    In our March 9, 2016 SOLAS Verified Gross Mass (VGM) eBulletin item, we expected that by now Transport Canada would have published its Bulletin and we would be on our way. Well not so much. Canada is still on track for the July 1st implementation, but we have not yet received official guidelines or the Bulletin.
     
    CIFFA is keeping to its commitment to host SOLAS VGM information sessions starting by the first week of May - to which members and their shippers will be invited.  
     
    Slightly Revised Timelines and Expectations:
     
    March 23: Several steamship line members of the Shipping Federation of Canada, CIFFA, the FMA, terminal operators and other stakeholders did meet on March 23, 2016 in Montreal to review the Proposed Guidance Document / SOLAS VGM Requirements of the Shipping Federation of Canada. Those stakeholders are sending revisions and comments this week to the Shipping Federation for this general guideline document, which is expected to be finalized within the next few weeks.
     
    April: We are expecting the final Transport Canada SOLAS Guidance Document (Canadian Regulatory Guidelines). [Editor's comment: The document is not expected to have any surprises nor to substantively differ from the draft we reviewed and commented on two months ago. It should simply confirm that shippers will be responsible for providing the VGM data and authorized person's name. Scales will need to be calibrated/inspected to Measurements Canada requirements. Penalties will be assessed for non-compliance. Etc., etc., etc.]
     
    April: Carriers have already started to communicate their requirements for shippers to file the VGM. We fully expect that timing requirements will differ from carrier to carrier or from terminal to terminal and the method of transmitting data may differ from carrier to carrier. 
     
    May/June: CIFFA will host information sessions to inform members and their shippers of the requirements and will encourage members to engage with shippers. Communications to members and to their shippers will be frequent and will focus on the regulations: requirements for measuring devices (scales) to be calibrated/certified by Measurements Canada; roles and responsibilities of various parties; examples of how VGM will be transmitted and received; consequences and liability for failure to provide the VGM, etc. Dates and times will be announced shortly, so stay tuned.
     
    July 1, 2016:  Implementation of SOLAS VGM requirements in Canada. Caution: Earlier VGM reporting may be required in cases where containers are delivered to inland rail terminals before July 1st and where the booking with the carrier indicates transfer to another vessel en route after July 1st. 
     
    At this time, carrier and terminal operational details have not been finalized for Canada and we can't speculate. Some of the questions that are being hammered out over the next couple of weeks will answer the WHEN (by when will the VGM be required by the carrier?), the WHAT (what data element or wording will be the content of the VGM message?), and the HOW (how will the VGM data be transmitted to the carrier?).
     
    We encourage you to share this eBulletin with shippers. Expect more detailed information on exactly how VGM reporting will work in Canada this spring.
     
     
    Maersk Line Introduces New Direct Service from Asia to U.S Gulf (TP18) and Changes Its TP10 Service
    source: CIFFA
     
    The new TP18, with direct routing through the Panama Canal, provides direct coverage from North China and Yantian to Miami, with stops in Houston and Mobile. The first sailing of the TP18 leaves from Qingdao on May 2nd, 2016.
     
    In conjunction with the introduction of this service, Maersk Line will shift Miami from its TP10 to the TP18 service and add Newark to the TP10 rotation. This change will come into effect with the Grasmere Maersk 618E departing from Xingang on May 6th, 2016.
     
     
    Long-Term Decline in Shipping Losses Continues
    source: CIFFA
     
    Shipping losses continued their long-term downward trend, with 85 total losses reported worldwide in 2015, according to Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE's (AGCS) fourth annual Safety and Shipping Review 2016, which analyzes reported shipping losses of over 100 gross tons.
     
    Although the number of losses remained stable year-on-year, declining by just 3% compared with the previous year (88), 2015 was the safest year in shipping for a decade. Losses have declined by 45% since 2006, driven by an increasingly robust safety environment and self-regulation. However, disparities by region and vessel-type remain.
     
    Cargo and fishing vessels accounted for over 60% of ships lost globally, with cargo losses up for the first time in three years. The most common cause of total losses is foundering (sinking), accounting for almost 75% of losses, up 25%, and often driven by bad weather.
     
    While the long-term downward trend in shipping losses is encouraging, the continuing weak economic and market conditions, depressed commodity prices and an excess of ships are pressurizing costs, raising safety concerns.
     
    As well as impacting investment in vessel maintenance, cost pressures can impair crewing conditions, and salvage and rescue. AGCS has seen an increase in fatigue-related insurance claims over the past decade. With crew numbers already often at their lowest possible level, and a future staffing shortage anticipated, longer shift patterns could exacerbate this issue. 
     
    Read the full article from Lloyd's Loading List. 
     
     
    Port Metro Vancouver recognized for being a sustainability leader
    source: TruckNews
     
    VANCOUVER, B.C. – Port Metro Vancouver has again been ranked in Corporate Knights’ Future 40 Responsible Corporate Leaders in Canada for 2016.
     
    “It’s fantastic to see our approach to sustainability being recognized once again,” said Robin Silvester, president and CEO at Port Metro Vancouver. “As a port authority, we always strive to facilitate Canada’s trade in a manner that is sustainable, protects the environment and allows our neighbouring communities to thrive.”
     
    Launching in 2014, Corporate Knights takes into account 12 performance indicators, covering management of resources, employees and finances to determine those that are recognized.
     
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Long delayed Pyrenees-Calais piggyback truck-train finally gets underway
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE much-vaunted, but long delayed Rail Motorway that carries truck trailers on flat cars between the Pyrenees and northern France with P&O Ferries providing the cross-Channel service, is finally underway.
     
    The new VIIA Britanica piggy-back service, which provides a link to the UK for exporters in the Mediterranean, carried its first unaccompanied truck trailers this week, reports Lloyd's Loading List.
     
    It said the potential of the rail service between Le Boulou, on the Franco-Spanish border, and Calais is estimated to be 40,000 units per year.
     
    The service will initially run one round-trip six days per week between Le Boulou and Calais, using trains that will traverse the length of France to connect the two intermodal terminals in 22 hours. 
     
     


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    China Imposes New Tax on E-Commerce Imports
    source: Lloyds Listing
     
    China plans to impose new tariffs on cross-border e-commerce imports that would significantly increase the cost of many items such as food, health care products, and low-price cosmetics, according to a report in Asia Times.
     
    From 8 April, buyers of all imported goods purchased online will have to pay a 17% value-added tax and a consumption tax, if applicable, according to the Ministry of Finance, the General Administration of Customs and the State Administration of Taxation.  

    Read more here.  


     
    CBP Announces Erroneous ACE Portal Deactivations
    source: Lloyds Listing
     
    US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) yesterday announced that due to an error in its Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) Portal, a number of accounts had been deactivated.
    CBP said it had investigated the issue behind the deactivations and had corrected the error, according to US freight forwarder Expeditors. It said CBP was working to identify those accounts and repair them, but had advised that the most efficient process may be to reach out to a Trade Account Owner (TAO) to reactivate the account and reset passwords from their portal accounts.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Factories to shutdown for Hangzhou G20 summit to cut air pollution
    source: Shippingazette
     
    FACTORIES in Shanghai and Hangzhou are being instructed by unnamed government officials to prepare for slowdowns and partial and total shutdowns ahead of the G20 summit in Hangzhou this September.
     
    Apparently related to a clean-air campaign, factories may be coerced to cut or halt production starting as early as June, leading to fears of supply chain disruptions this summer, reported Lloyd's Loading List.
     
    Operations director for MIQ Logistics UK, Phil Sawdon, said: "We would not normally go public with unverified reports, but official comment on issues like this is unlikely and our Shanghai office's source has been proven reliable in the past. 
     
    "The potential disruption for importers is so significant, that I felt it would be irresponsible not to share. Importers should have the opportunity to ask their vendors, off the record, if they are being instructed to interrupt production in the summer." 
     
    The press release from MIQ Logistics has since been dismissed as being blown out of proportion, said China Briefing, which provides legal, tax and operational advisories to international corporate investors.
     

  • 31 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    BRU: Air Canada Cargo Operations Update 
    source: CIFFA
     
    Air Canada Cargo flights to Brussels (BRU) are scheduled to resume today. The carrier has been accepting general cargo and using trucking from CDG, FRA, AMS or LHR to route shipments to and from BRU since the attack last week at the airport.
     
     
    Air Canada Issues Notification of Customs Requirements for Shipments to Turkey Effective April 1 
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Republic of Turkey Ministry of Customs and Trade requires that all shipments tendered to Air Canada Cargo destined to or transiting via Turkey (IST) must be reported down to the House Air Waybill (HAWB) level. This applies to simple master air waybills, consolidation master air waybills and each HAWB, and each consignee.
     
    Air Canada Cargo will not be able to move shipments until the required information has been prepared. 
     
    Further, all air waybills destined to or transiting via Turkey must contain the consignee's Turkish Republic Tax Identity Number (TR Identity Number), as well as the HCC (Harmonized Commodity Code).
     
    Turkish Republic Tax Identity Number (TR Identity Number): 
    • The consignee's Turkish Republic Tax Identity Number (TR Identity Number) is mandatory for all simple master air waybills, consolidation master air waybills and each HAWB and each consignee destined to or via Turkey.
    • Each consignee has a single Turkish Republic Tax Identity Number (TR Identity Number); it does not change for each shipment.
    • The shipper, forwarder and/or agent are responsible to assign the appropriate Turkish Republic Tax Identity Number (TR Identity Number) to the AWB.
    • The Turkish Republic Tax Identity Number (TR Identity Number) MUST be indicated on the source document to avoid fines and delays for both the consignee and the carrier: 
    • e-AWB - MUST be indicated on the OCI line.
    • Paper air waybill (AWB) - MUST be indicated on the "Handling Information" section of the AWB.
     
    To avoid fines and delays for both the consignee and the carrier, special precautions must be taken to ensure that all cargo be manifested: 
     
    • HCC (Harmonized Commodity Code) - this code is mandatory for each goods description at the MAWB and HAWB level.
    • The HCC number consists of a minimum of 6 numerical characters and MUST be indicated on the source document to avoid fines and delays for both the consignee and the carrier 
    • e-AWB - MUST be indicated on the OSI line
    • Paper air waybill (AWB) - MUST be indicated on the "NATURE OF GOODS" section of the AWB.
     
    Air Canada Cargo will not be able to move shipments until the required information has been provided.
     
     
    Shippers struggle with 1 April lithium-ion battery deadline
    source: LloydsLoadingList
     
    Shippers are struggling with new rules governing the shipment of lithium-ion batteries by air that come into force on 1 April limiting their carriage as cargo to freighter aircraft only and with a maximum state of charge of 30%.
     
    The International Air Transport Association (IATA) told Lloyd’s Loading List it had received twice as many enquiries as usual from customers on dangerous goods matters in the weeks leading up to the 1 April implementation, with the majority relating to lithium-ion battery transport, following decisions by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) late last year and again in February governing their carriage by air.
     
    IATA’s head of dangerous goods, assistant director for cargo safety and standards Dave Brennan, told Lloyd’s Loading List that a number of shippers had expressed concerns about being unable to source specific batteries after their carriage as cargo becomes prohibited on passenger aircraft. For example, a supplier of hearing aids based in Australia that had been using a battery supplier in Switzerland complained that there were no direct freighter connections between the two countries and therefore no obvious means to deliver its cargo.  
     
     
     
    Airships deal could bring competition to ice road truckers
    source: TruckNews
     
    PALMDALE, Calif. — Straightline Aviation has announced a purchase agreement for 12 Lockheed Martin hybrid airships, which will reportedly be used to deliver cargo and supplies to remote mining and oilfield operations in Northern Canada.
     
    The deal is worth US$480 million and represents the first order for the airships, built by Lockheed Martin.
     
    Straightline is based in the United Kingdom and was set up as an owner/operator of hybrid airships.
     
    “We are delighted to be first in line with this magnificent aircraft that is going to dramatically change the way cargo is moved around the world,” said Mike Kendrick, SLA co-founder and chief executive officer. “The clear-cut economic and environmental advantages of these hybrids are attracting vast amounts of attention from a wide-range of potential end users.”
     
     
     
    Australian Customs & Immigration Workers Begin Strikes 
    source: CIFFA 
     
    Australia's customs and immigration workers have launched strikes at Australian airports. A series of short strikes at major international gateways began on March 30.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Slow-Steaming Still Cheaper for Container Shipping Carriers, Despite Record Low Bunker Prices
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Following Korean carrier Hanjin offering express container shipping services on two major tradelanes, industry analyst Alphaliner has questioned the viability of abandoning slow-steaming.
     
    It says that, in theory, with bunker prices below $200 per tonne since last November, the cost of operating fewer ships at higher speeds should be lower than the alternative of deploying additional vessels under slow-steaming conditions.  

    Read more here
     
     
    G6 Extends Asia-Europe Cancellations to Shore Up Rates
    source: Lloyd’s Listing
    Members of the G6 Alliance today announced additional void sailings within their Asia-Europe product “to adjust to market demand”, in response to continuing soft demand, overcapacity, and the resulting downwards pressure on prices.
    After continuing to review its product profile, the alliance’s Loop 6 service will remain suspended from Week 19 for an additional period of 8 weeks. This follows an 11-week suspension of the Loop 6 service announced in February.  

    Read more here.  
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    Province of Ontario to Proceed with Morriston Bypass
    source: CanadianShipper

     
    TORONTO, Ont.– The province of Ontario will proceed with the construction of the Highway 6 Morriston Bypass between Freelton and Guelph – a project that aims to boost traffic and pedestrian safety while advancing the flow of goods in a vital economic corridor. The announcement to fund the long-awaited bypass project was made March 29 by Ontario Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca. Construction could start as early as 2020.  
     
     
     
    Lions Gate fix means lane closures for Vancouver bridge
    source: Today'sTrucking
     
    This installation will require a single-lane closure from 9 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 2 and single lane alternating traffic from 10:30 p.m. April 2 to 9 a.m. April 3. Motorists should expect delays during this period and may want to consider an alternate route.
    VANCOUVER, BC — British Columbia officials say they have a “smooth solution” to the Lions Gate “Bump”, as they enter the final repair work for the Vancouver bridge that opened in 1938 and handles up to 70,000 vehicles per day.

    Read more here
     


    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Government of Canada Tables Transportation Act Review
    source: CIFFA
     
    In June 2014 the Government of Canada commissioned a review of the Canada Transportation Act and related legislation, with the goal of looking forward 20-30 years and identifying priorities for action in the transportation sector that will support Canada's economic well-being. The Report was tabled in Parliament on 25 February 2106 by Minister of Transport the Honourable David Emerson. Links to the backgrounder and thefull version of the report are found here.
     
     
    CP, NS fire opening salvos in 'good faith' takeover talks in proxy statements
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) has filed its definitive proxy statement for its Norfolk Southern Corp (NS) shareholder resolution asking their board of directors to engage in good faith discussions with CP regarding a takeover. 
     
    CP also filed a letter that will be sent to all NS shareholders about the opportunity to create significant value for NS shareholders through the proposed merger. 
     
     


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Future Swiss Logistics Project to Put Cargo on the Cargo on the Tube
    source: Lloyds Listing
     
    A consortium of firms in Switzerland has unveiled an ambitious, multi-billion Swiss franc project, ‘Cargo Underground’ - Cargo Sous Terrain (CST), which focuses on developing a subterranean system for goods transport which would enter from 2030.
     
    This will reduce the number of trucks on the country’s increasingly clogged-up roads by 20%, and guarantee on-time deliveries to retail outlets in city centres and other built-up areas, it claims.  

    Read more here

  • 30 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Airport Shutdown Costs Brussels Air 5 Mln Euros A Day
    source: AirWise
     
    The closure of its Brussels hub is costing Brussels Airlines EUR€5 million (USD$5.6 million) in daily costs after last week's attacks.
     
    Expenses from re-routing passenger traffic and from lost revenues are weighing on the bottom line, a Brussels Airlines spokesman said.
     
    Belgium's regional airports in Antwerp and Liege offer only limited short-haul capacity as an alternative, he said.
     
    Brussels airport is trying out a make-shift check-in area that could allow a limited restart of passenger flights in coming days to end the airport's shutdown after suicide bombers struck a week ago.
     
     
     
    French Air Traffic Controllers Plan Another 36-Hour Strike 
    source: CIFFA
     
    French air traffic controllers (ATC) plan to strike for at least 36 hours, starting on the evening of Wednesday, Mar. 30, Airlines for Europe (A4E) lobby group said in a statement.
     
    A4E said this will be the 43rd strike day in France since 2009, resulting in the cancellation of hundreds of flights and creating disruption and extensive delays across the continent.
     
    The last French ATC strike, from March 20 to 22 this year, caused more than 1,000 cancellations among A4E members and caused 500,000 delay minutes (8,333 hours or 347 days) across all airlines operating in European airspace during the strike period, according to A4E.
     
    Find more information in the A4E press release
     
     
    Airfreight Rates Slide for the Fourth Month in a Row 
    source: CIFFA
     
    Airfreight prices declined for the fourth month in a row in February and the tough market conditions are expected to remain this year. 
     
    The latest figures from Drewry's Sea & Air Shipper Insight show that in February airfreight prices slipped to their $2.57 per kg − the lowest level since the index was launched in 2012. 
     
    It is also the fourth month in a row that prices have declined, since climbing to $3.24 in October last year. 
     
    Yields are also down on this time last year, when the Drewry report recorded prices of $2.57. 
     
    The weak airfreight prices are reflected in global load factors. For January, IATA said global average cargo load factors had slipped to 41.3%, which is the lowest level since July 2015 and 4.2 percentage points behind the level recorded a year earlier. (Excerpted from Air Cargo News)

     
    Volcano Eruption Prompts Alaska Airlines to Issue Travel Advisory 
    source: CIFFA
     
    Alaska Airlines has canceled 41 flights to and from six cities in northern Alaska - including all flights operating to and from Fairbanks - because of a massive ash cloud that is moving north at up to 65 knots (75 mph).
     
    Mount Pavlof, an active volcano located 600 miles southwest from Anchorage, Alaska, has been actively erupting since Sunday evening.
     
    Flights are suspended until the company is able to assess weather reports after daylight on March 29. If weather conditions improve, it will resume its regularly scheduled 54 flights to the affected six cities on March 30.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Port of Oakland Terminal Reopens After Monday Closure
    source: American Shipper
     
    The Port of Oakland's largest container terminal reopened Monday evening after a dispute between its operator and longshoremen over starting time shut it down during the day shift, the Northern California port said.
     
    Craig Merrilees, a spokesman for the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, told American Shipper 22 longshoremen at the Oakland International Container Terminal (OICT) were dismissed by SSA Marine after they arrived for work at the regular starting time stipulated in their contract instead of earlier as the company wanted. An additional 44 dockworkers at OICT also refused to work in solidarity with the 22 employees that were sent home.  

    Read more here.
     
     
    European Shippers seek ban on publishing rate hikes ahead of time
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE European Shippers' Council (ESC) has appealed to European competition commissioner Margaret Vestige to forbid container carriers from posting rates publicly to stop them seeing each others increases in order to amend their own.
     
    The European Commission, the governing body of the European Union, recently reached an agreement with 15 lines to improve the transparency of pricing information, reports London's Logistics Manager.
     
    But the ESC said that even with the new proposed framework "this practice is unfair to customers in an industry, which is already subject to a significant concentration move and benefiting from exemption to competition legislation," it said in a letter to the commissioner.
     
    "Liners could continue testing the consequences of the published tariffs as they did in the past," said the ESC letter.
     
    "The effect could be an unfounded increase in maritime freight costs as they might be unable to counter the market force of the shipping companies. Larger companies might be impacted as well when the present overcapacity of the market will have been reduced."
     
    The ESC pointed out that such a system applies only to containers in maritime shipping.
     
    Read more here
     

    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES


    No Commercial Truck Capacity for New Nova Scotia Ferry 
    source: TodaysTrucking 

     
    Nova Scotia's new high-speed ferry from Yarmouth to Maine, called The CAT, will not have commercial truck capacity, according to specifications released by Bay Ferries Ltd. last week.
     
    East Coast trucking outfits had been eagerly awaiting news about commercial truck capacity, as Nova Star Cruises has at times proved a popular option for some truck drivers willing to pay commercial transport rates.
     
    The vessel is being leased from the U.S. Navy and ferry service is expected to begin in mid-June.
     
     
     
    Regular freight train service links both China and Czech Republic
    source: CNTV
     
    Full coverage: Xi Visits Czech Republic, Attends Nuclear Security Summit
     
    China's relations with the Czech Republic have been on the 'fast-TRACK', thanks to a rail freight corridor between the two sides. The line provides fast, smooth and convenient communication and freight exchanges.
     
    Starting in the city of Wuhan in central China's Hubei province, its terminal is 11,000 kilometers away in the northeast Czech city of Pardubice. Crossing Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus and Poland on its way, its unique geological path is invaluable for Chinese companies looking to enter Europe. Driven by the construction of "Belt and Road" initiative, the line is currently extending west deep into Europe.
     
     


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Perfect storm or islands of opportunity?
    source: Splash24/7 
     
    Sadly, the industry has succumbed to the classic supply/demand driver. However and disturbingly it has suffered a ‘double whammy’ effect in the form of even more newbuilding vessels still in hand coupled with client demand falling off the proverbial cliff for the reasonably foreseeable future.
     
    Present industry commentary is trending in the direction of ‘gloom and doom’ but is there really only that direction to choose?
     
    Let’s take a look at what is happening.
     
    The number of vessels actively in service is dropping due to declining demand. Vessels fortunate enough to be gainfully employed are usually generating lower income returns for owners due to reduced charter and associated service rates.
     
    As earnings fall, cash flow tightens and debt service capability shrinks resulting in a less than ideal situation for owners and indeed the supporting supply chain, however this is preferable to the layup option.
     
    Many hundreds of offshore vessels (of all types) are in layup and of this many are in cold layup. Compounding this, additional vessels join the laid up global fleet weekly and it is not unusual to see newbuild vessels delivered to owners and then steam off in the same direction. Gone are the days of old, decrepit, less capable tonnage dipping out of markets in this way, it affects all vessels, old and new.
     
     
     
    CBP Opens 6 More Import Compliance
    source: American Shipper
     
    Six more Centers of Excellence & Expertise have moved beyond the test phase and assumed trade processing for all transactions associated with their designated industry niche, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Thursday. All 10 industry centers are now fully staffed and operational to handle entry summary work for major industry sectors.  

    Read more here

  • 29 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Brussels Clears Cargo Backlogs as Freighter Schedule Normalises
    source: Lloyds Listing

     
    Passenger flights remain suspended at Brussels Airport following last Tuesday’s deadly terrorist attack, but freighter services have returned to close to a full schedule, allowing cargo backlogs to be cleared.
     
    Cargo sources at the airport told Lloyd’s Loading List this morning that cargo operations went back to normal faster than expected after the explosions within the airport’s passenger terminal on Tuesday morning halted all flight and cargo operations.  

    Read more here
     
     
    EgyptAir Hijack Ends, Passengers Freed Unharmed
    source: Airwise
     
    An EgyptAir plane flying from Alexandria to Cairo was hijacked and forced to land in Cyprus on Tuesday but the passengers and crew were freed unharmed and the hijacker, whose motives remained a mystery, was arrested after giving himself up.
    Eighty-one people, including 21 foreigners and 15 crew, had been onboard the flight when it took off, Egypt's Civil Aviation Ministry said in a statement.

    Read more here. 

     
     
    Alaska Volacano Erupts, Causing Flight Diversions
    source: Airwise
     
    A volcano on the Alaska Peninsula erupted with little advanced warning over the weekend, spewing an ash cloud up to 20,000 feet (6,100 m) high that prompted aviation warnings across the region.
     
    Mount Pavlof, one of the most active volcanoes on the peninsula, began erupting shortly after 4:00 pm local time on Sunday, said Jessica Larsen, coordinating scientist with the University of Alaska Geophysical Institute.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Brussels Airport Aiming for Limited Reopening
    source: Airwise
     
    Brussels airport is trying out a make-shift check-in area that could allow a limited restart of passenger flights in the coming days after the attacks last week.
     
    A temporary structure has been put up to bypass the departure area that was heavily damaged when two bombs exploded there last Tuesday.
     
    "What we have today is a test to see whether all our procedures are in order," a spokeswoman for Brussels Airport said.
     
    If all requirements were met, the airport could reopen on Wednesday at the earliest, but only at a maximum capacity of 20 percent.
     
    The tests include checking security and fire procedures as well as operational items such as baggage handling and the signs in the terminal.  

    Read more here

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Carriers seek to seal contracts now with intermodal included, says UPS
    source: ShippingGazette
     
    UPS says that some shipping lines have been attempting to conclude contract negotiations earlier this year with a view to offering intermodal rates, according to vice president of global freight forwarding, Keith Andrey, with many Transpacific contracts due to expire on April 30.
     
    "Before, we always had to delay because the BCO deals were done first, but many of those deals have already been done and as a result of that that’s going to allow us to kind of negotiate earlier I think and complete a lot of our discussions in advance of some of the time frames we worked under last year," Mr Andrey told American Shipper.  

    Read more here
     
     
    HMM Creditors Approve Self-Rescue Deal
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    Hyundai Merchant Marine’s (HMM) creditors, led by state-run Korea Development Bank, have approved the South Korean shipping company’s self-rescue plan, which aims to help HMM manage its spiralling debts.
     
    The plan will allow HMM to roll over maturing debt and interest by three months, Yonhapreports. The company’s debt ratio is currently around 1700%.
     
    Hyundai Glovis, the logistics unit of car manufacturer Hyundai Motor, had been tapped to take over HMM, which is more than $5bn in debt, but Hyundai Motor this month said it would not invest in the company.

    Read more here
     
     
    Labour Dispute Shuts Down Operations at Port of Oakland
    source: Splash 24/7
     
    A labour dispute has led to a shutdown at a terminal at the Port of Oakland on Monday.
    Daytime operations were suspended at SSA Marine’s Oakland International Container Terminal, causing congestion of port trucks.
     
    According to local reports, 22 workers were fired when they did not agree to begin work at 6:45 a.m. instead of the usual 7 a.m. start time at the Oakland International Container Terminal, one of the five terminals at the port. Around 44 workers slowed or stopped working in support of their colleagues.

    Read more here.  
     
     
    Nicaragua’s Secrecy Over Canal Stoking Unrest, Says Top Scientist
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Quite aside from the financial viability of the proposed Nicaragua canal – the fact that its cost is estimated to be anything between $40bn to possibly $100bn surely doesn’t augur well for whoever has job of balancing the books – there appears to be growing opposition to the project among ordinary Nicaraguans. This long article, from Global Construction Review, charts how scientists, concerned that the enormous dredging work would release millions of tonnes of damaging sedimentation; that salt infiltration from coastal locks would damage the freshwater ecosystem; that the introduction of invasive foreign species from vessel ballast systems; and calculating that around 400,000ha of rainforest and wetland will be destroyed in its construction, had failed to get any insight into the project from the government.  

    Read more here

     

    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    Reminder - CBSA Voluntary Disclosure of Unreported Goods Transiting Through the US. to a Subsequent Country 
    source: CIFFA
     
    CIFFA would like to remind members of the CBSA Customs Notice 15-035 issued on November 16, 2015. (CIFFA eBulletin Nov. 17, 2015).
     
    If you have clients that ship goods that transit through the U.S. with an ultimate destination of Mexico or another country, please ensure you share this Customs Notice with them and advise them to disclose any unreported goods prior to the grace period expiry date. 
     
    If you file export reports on behalf of your customers, please ensure your staff is well informed and reports goods accordingly. 
     
    The CBSA notice is to advise exporters of a grace period for voluntarily disclosing undeclared exports that should have been reported to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). It has come to the CBSA's attention that a large number of businesses have been exporting goods to Mexico and other countries, transiting through the U.S. in the highway mode, without declaring them to the Agency.
     
    Goods transiting through the U.S. to a subsequent destination for consumption must be reported on an export declaration. Because the ultimate destination of the goods is a country other than the U.S., they must be reported if their value is CAN$2,000 or more. In addition, if the goods are controlled, other than by a General Export Permit, the appropriate permit/licence/certificate and an export declaration must be presented to the CBSA before the exportation, regardless of the value of the goods.
     
    The CBSA is offering a six-month grace period, from December 1, 2015 to June 1, 2016, to companies who wish to voluntarily disclose exported shipments that transited through the U.S. prior to the issuance of this customs notice that should have been reported, but were not. Companies that report eligible unreported goods using this process will not be penalized. Once the grace period expires, compliance verification activities will be conducted by the CBSA and penalties may be issued for failure to report exported goods.
     
    Note that this grace period does not exempt companies from their obligation to report. Goods must continue to be reported per the relevant legislation and regulations. Goods exported after the issuance of this customs notice are not covered by this grace period, and penalties may be issued for failure to report.
     
    During the grace period noted above, companies may submit a Voluntary Disclosure application using the process outlined in Memorandum D11-6-4, Relief of Interest and/or Penalties Including Voluntary Disclosure.


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES


    China Changes Online Import Tax Rules 
    source: CIFFA
     
    China is changing tax rules for imported goods that are sold online in a move that will see beauty products such as eye creams and moisturizing gels from L'Oreal SA's Lancome and Korea's Amorepacific Corp. becoming cheaper for Chinese consumers.
     
    The government will remove a special tax, or so-called parcel tax, that was previously levied on imports sold online. Instead, it will charge value-added and consumption duties that are currently imposed on most products sold in China but with a 30 percent discount, according to a Thursday statement posted on the website of the Ministry of Finance.

  • 28 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES

    Brussels Airport Closure Continued Over the Week-End
    source: CIFFA
    Brussels Airport remained closed through Sunday. The airport said March 25 that it was still uncertain when forensic investigators would finish their work in the terminal and the airport authorities would regain access to the building. Even after they do so, a survey will have to be conducted on any structural damage as a result of the two bomb blasts. The authorities will also have to repair or replace destroyed fittings and clean the landside area where the attack occurred. No date for re-opening the terminal has yet been announced.
     

    The Value of Safety at IATA’s World Cargo Symposium
    source: Air Cargo News
    While the value of air cargo was the leitmotif of 
    IATA’s World Cargo Symposium (WCS) in Berlin, safety was also to the fore, focused on the lithium-ion battery debate and on how to prevent damage to ULD containers.

    At the end of the four day event, Glyn Hughes, IATA’s global head of cargo, said that the symposium had created the framework for supply chain participants to “share experience and challenge each other, not just to do things differently but to do them better”.
    Read more here.



    Air Canada Cargo Switching to E-Air Waybills April 28 for Domestic Shipments
    source: Canadian Shipper
    MONTREAL, Que.–Air Canada Cargo has been working with customers across Canada to help them switch to using electronic air waybills (e-AWB) by April 28.

    Starting April 28, domestic shipments within Canada must be tendered with an electronic air waybill (e-AWB). A fee of $18 wil be applied to non-e-AWB domestic shipments tendered in Canada, the carrier said.  Read more here.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    The Lowdown on Carrier Reliability
    source: The Cargo Channel
    Your imported cargo was supposed to arrive today. But it doesn't. Instead, it will arrive tomorrow. Or the next day. Maybe even later.'

    If you're an international shipper, there's a good chance you've experienced this. What's worse, you may have noticed it happening more often lately. Read more here.  

     
     
    Bunker Spill from Split TS Taipei Washes Up on Taiwanese Beach
    source: Splash 24/7
    Bad weather has hampered efforts by Taiwanese authorities to contain a bunker spill following the splitting in two of the containership TS Taipei 
    last Friday.

    The ship had run aground off northern Taiwan at the start of March. More than 100 people have been deployed to clean up a 2 km stretch of beach where oil has washed up while a salvage team is working desperately to contain the spill.

    The ship’s two halves could capsize at any moment, officials warn, making salvage operations tricky.
    Some of the containers onboard are believed to be carrying harmful chemicals too.
    The ship is owned by local firm TS Lines.
     
     
    10 Things You Need to Know About the New SOLAS Regulations
    source: Lloyd’s Listing
    The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has amended the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) to require, as a condition for loading a packed container onto a ship for export, that the container has a verified weight declared to the Vessel Operator and Marine Terminal Operator.

    As of 1 July 2016, the enforcement of the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) requirements regarding the verification of the gross mass of packed containers will become applicable. This requirement will apply globally. After that date, it would be a violation of SOLAS regulations to load a packed container onto a vessel if the Vessel Operator and Marine Terminal Operator do not have a verified container weight declaration. Read more here.


    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

    Supply Chain Disruption Cost $56bn Last Year – and There’s More Risk to Come
    source: The Loadstar
    New research from the British Standards Institute (BSI) has found that global supply chains gained a combined $56bn in extra costs last year, incurred by crime, extreme weather, terrorist threats and the migrant crisis that swept across Europe.

    The true figures of cargo crime have been hard to come by. Supply security intelligence firm FreightWatch International (FWI) has said it is difficult to accurately assess, but recently concluded that truck theft in Europe amounted to €11.3bn in 2013. But the new 2015 SCREEN Global Intelligence Report from BSI concluded that $22.6bn was lost globally due to cargo crime.  Read more here. 

  • 24 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Storm Closes Denver Airport, Flights Cancelled
    source: AirWise
     
    A blizzard caused the closure of Denver Airport on Wednesday, with 1,200 flights cancelled, after the storm briefly knocked out power and made takeoffs and landings unsafe.
     
    The storm, which hit Denver early on Wednesday, caused ripple effects across the country as planes awaited clearance to depart for snowbound Denver.
     
    "We've got blowing snow out there, wet snow on the ground, icy conditions, low visibility, so we're fighting all those things," Denver airport spokesman Heath Montgomery said.
     
     
     
    Brussels Attacks Stir Debate Over Airport Security
    source: AirWise
     
    Explosions in the departures hall of Brussels Airport prompted several countries worldwide to review or tighten airport security and raised questions about how soon passengers should be screened when entering terminals.
     
    Islamic State claimed responsibility for bomb attacks on Brussels airport and a rush-hour metro train which killed at least 30 people.
     
    Prosecutors said the blasts at Zaventem airport, which serves more than 23 million passengers a year, were believed to be caused by suicide bombers.
     
    Authorities responded by stepping up the number of police on patrol at airports in London, Paris and Frankfurt and at other transport hubs as Brussels train services were also halted. Airlines diverted flights as Brussels airport announced it would remain closed on Wednesday.
     
     
     
    Strike by French air traffic controllers causes delays disruptions system wide
    source: Shippingazette
     
    FRENCH air traffic controllers have held a two-day strike that sparked flight delays at Paris and regional airports, and led to the cancellation of one fifth of services. reports Bloomberg.
     
    There were delays of up to 30 minutes at airports around the French capital, an official at the country's civil aviation authority told Bloomberg. In the southern city of Marseille, take-offs and landings were running 40 minutes late on average.
     
    Air traffic controllers called the strike to protest against plans to lower the rate at which retiring colleagues are replaced, the UNSA-ICNA union said in a statement. 
     
    Ryanair slammed the union as "selfish" and called for their right to strike to be taken away. 
     
     
     
    British firm to boost security at Dhaka airport following UK cargo ban
    source: Shippingazette
     
    BRITAIN's Redline Aviation Security has been appointed to tighten air cargo security at Dhaka airport after the British banned direct cargo flights between Bangladesh and the UK.
     
    The company will also help develop policy and supervise the existing work space of the airport, according to Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, reported News Next Bangladesh.
     
    The firm's 39-strong team will handle the project initially until March 31, he said, including upgrades to the airport's security system.
     
    The ban has cost millions of dollars in lost revenue as Bangladeshi exporters had to send cargo to the UK via third countries.
     

     
    Xiamen Airlines To Land In Canada For The First Time At YVR 
    source: CIFFA
     
    Earlier this week, Xiamen Airlines announced they will fly a three times weekly, non-stop flight between Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport (XMN) in China to Vancouver International Airport (YVR) starting July 25, 2016, subject to final government approvals. This will mark the first time the airline has service to North America. Xiamen Airlines will operate the route using a Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner. Xiamen Airlines will depart from YVR at 01:45 and arrive in XMN at 05:30(+1) local time. It will depart XMN at 21:30 and arrive at YVR at 18:40. 
     
     
    Air cargo ships could soon alter global supply chains as we know them
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    It’s still closer to the drawing board than reality, but airships for cargo are on their way. In an interview with the founder of Aeroscraft, we discover what the benefits are: vertical take-off and landing increases network scope; there is less fuel consumption than a freighter; plus the ability to move containers means that they would be useful for point-to-point delivery in rural or under-developed regions, with insufficient infrastructure – and good for the project cargo industry. An interesting look at what the future may hold.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Hanjin Loos to Faster Transits and Niche Services to Boost Its Bottom Line
    source: TheLoadstar
     
    While South Korean shipping group Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) fights for its very existence this week, compatriot Hanjin Shipping is looking at ways of improving its profitability – including speeding up its ships and offering niche services.
     
    Several analysts have concluded that a merger between Korea’s largest shipping group, Hanjin and the second-biggest, HMM, is the most logical option for the survival of the ailing latter.  

    Read more here

     
    British freight forwarders seek swift end to Scottish dockers' strike
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE British International Freight Association (BIFA) has called on the leaders of the Unite union and the owner of Grangemouth port in Scotland, Forth Ports, to resume talks to resolve the dispute.
     
    The dockers strike at the port's container terminal has brought to a standstill all shipside activities since Tuesday, following a move by the union to withdraw its workers.
     
    The strike is also having a major impact on the general Scottish economy by raising costs, a BIFA statement said, with its members urging the Scottish government intervene to facilitate meetings between the parties involved.
     
     
     
    Shanghai Shippers Face Summer Shutdowns
    source: CIFFA
     
    Exporters and importers from Shanghai and China's Pearl River Delta region are facing the potential of significant supply chain disruption this summer, according to forwarding sources, as Shanghai's factories prepare for partial and complete closure in advance of the September G20 Summit in Hangzhou, close to China's largest city. 
     
     
     
    Expanded Panama Canal To Officially Open June 26
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced Wednesday it will officially open its new locks for transit of larger ships June 26. The canal will hold an inaugural ceremony with a ship traveling from the Agua Clara locks on the Atlantic side of the canal to the Cocoli locks on the Pacific side, after which the expansion will be open for commercial transits, a spokesperson for the ACP said. The new locks will be tested in early June with another vessel, but the spokesperson made it clear there are not two different opening dates. Previous media reports indicated there might be an initial inauguration prior to the official opening for commercial traffic. ACP has postponed the opening of the expansion several times since construction began in 2007, most recently after leaks in lock walls were discovered during testing at elevated water pressure last year. The lock walls have since been reinforced and tested. The opening will be televised, following the ceremonial ship as it passes through the canal, ACP said. (Excerpted from American Shipper)
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES

     
    Scotland government unveils new rail freight strategy
    source: RailWayTechnology
     
    Scotland's transport minister Derek Mackay has launched the government's new rail freight strategy called Delivering the Goods.
     
    The strategy includes a vision to make the country's rail freight sector competitive and sustainable for meeting the demands of modern markets, as well as improve the industry and support economic and environmental targets.
     
    In order to support the rail freight sector to tap new and rising markets, the government has identified four major forces, which include innovation, facilitation, promotion and investment.
     


     
    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    Retailers applaud federal budget for level playing field on imports
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    TORONTO, Ont.–The Retail Council of Canada (RCC) has expressed its appreciation for the federal government’s decision to continue to treat imported shipments in the same way as goods sold in Canada.
     
    “Despite a relentless pre-budget lobby from foreign sellers and the US air freight industry, the government understands the fundamental importance of tax fairness,” said Diane J. Brisebois, RCC’s President and CEO.
     
    “Why any Canadian policymaker would want to confer a big tax advantage on foreign sellers at the expense of businesses that invest here and employ more than 2.2 million Canadians is a bit of a mystery to me,” Brisebois added.  

    Read more here

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    'Unprecedented' market conditions bite into Asia-EU air freight rates
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    Data from China showed a 25.4% year-on-year slump in the value of the country’s exports February, the sharpest fall  since May 2009. “I know it was Chinese new year, but this is unprecedented,” said one forwarder.
     
    With some forwarders reporting that rates for sea freight on the westbound trade is now ‘free’, deferred air freight rates last week out of Shanghai to Europe were hovering at around the $1.90/kg all-in mark. Cargolux was reportedly offering rates of $1.48/kg via Chongqing. Guangzhou to Europe was seeing rates of about $2.40/kg, while Hong Kong was hovering at the HK$11/kg ++ mark, although some carriers were offering promotions.
     

  • 23 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Freighter Flights Resume at Brussels Airport
    source: LloydsListing
     
    Freighter flights have resumed today at Brussels Zaventem Airport, although it remains closed to all passenger traffic following yesterday’s deadly terrorist attacks.
     
    As Lloyd's Loading List was going to press, a cargo source at Brussels Airport said landside cargo operations had resumed this morning, “and the airport will open again for full cargo flights operating at apron 9, the BRUcargo area”.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Strikes Threaten Australia Easter Air Travel
    source: AirWise
     
    Australia's Department of Immigration and Border Protection on Tuesday joined other public sector workers in a growing strike that will hit air travel at the nation's biggest airports ahead of the holiday weekend.
     
    The strike could severely inconvenience international and domestic travellers as the nation heads into a four-day weekend for the Easter holiday, one of the busiest times of year for air travel.
     
    "Our goal is to put pressure on the agency and on the government to actually talk with us. That's entirely the reason why this is being held, and the timing is because that's the timing that will apply the most pressure," a CPSU spokesman said.
     
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo BRU Cargo Operations Update (March 22)
    source: CIFFA
     
    March 22 Evening - A cargo alert continues for Air Canada Cargo operations in Brussels (BRU), due to today's events (March 22) and continues until further notice. General freight to BRU will be accepted and subject to delay. Shipments requiring special handling will not be accepted during the alert. 
     
    March 22 - Flight AC832 YUL BRU on Monday March 21 was diverted to Paris CDG. AC832 YUL BRU and AC833 BRU YUL are cancelled today (March 22). AC's ground handler, WFS services in BRU is closed until 06:00 AM tomorrow (Wednesday) or until further notice. Trucking services are not available. Customers whose shipments have been affected will be contacted directly. AC is developing a contingency plan and will communicate it to our customers.

     
    Transport Canada Air Cargo Security Webinar Invitation Regarding the March 31 Deadline
    source: CIFFA 
     
    As the March 31st deadline approaches, Transport Canada would like to provide an update on the various activities that will occur over the next two weeks that could affect Air Cargo Security program participants and/or their clients.
     
    Deadline information:
     
    For Approved Participants applying to the Certified Agent and Regulated Agent categories:
     
    Reminder: new Cargo Security Plans must be received through SSCIMS-Secure by March 31, 2016 in order for files to be processed ahead of the new applicants.
     
    For new applicants to the new regulated categories (Known Consignor, Certified Agent, and Regulated Agent):
     
    Applications must be received by March 31, 2016 in order for them to be processed by October 17, 2016.
     
    Information products and activities:
     
    Factsheets available through the Transport Canada website and on Secure Channel. Two bulletins also went out to Registered Shippers and Third Party Service Providers regarding the March 31 deadline. 
     
    In November 2015, most of the Registered Shippers with incomplete information were removed from the Registered Shipper list. On Wednesday, March 23rd, the remainder of the incomplete files will be removed from the list. This will allow the Air Cargo Security Program to reach those shippers that could be affected by the regulatory amendments. 
     
    All Registered Shippers who applied directly to the Program since 2009, or who have updated their file, will remain on the Registered Shipper list. They will automatically become Account Consignors when the regulatory amendments come into force on October 17, 2016. 
     
    If one of your clients is removed from the list, please ask them to contact the Support Centre to get their status reinstated. This can be done quickly if they can provide a valid Business Number.
    E-mail: aircargo-fretaerien@tc.gc.caToll-free number: 1-866-375-7342
     
    Two webinars are scheduled for March 29th and 30th from 2-3PM EDT and will provide a general overview of the new Program. 
     
    Current participants are invited to register using the links below. There is a capacity of 200 participants per webinar, and therefore, registrations will be accepted on a first come first serve basis. 
     
     
     
    *To switch the language in the registration screen, click Change time zone and select French from the Language dropdown menu. Then hit Save.
     
    Please contact the Air Cargo Security Program Support Centre if you would like additional information.
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Verified Gross Mass rule to increase costs of LA-Shanghai box 14pc
    source: Shippingazette
     
    A NEW report says the time and money needed verify the weight of all containers stands to increase costs for shipping a container from Los Angeles to Shanghai by 14pc, reports the Wall Street Journal.
     
    New York research consultancy Cowen and Co said costs would increase because of the extra time and expense that shipping lines and their customers face. 
     
    Those costs may include fees for weighing shipping containers and charges for holding goods while information on the goods is collected and verified.  

    Read more here

     
    Belgian Ports Operating Normally After Attacks, Port of Dover Steps Up Security
    source: Splash24/7
     
    Security measures will be increased at the Port of Dover and other UK ports in the wake of bombings in Belgium today in which at least 26 people have been killed.
     
    Ports in Belgium are operating normally, although flights and Eurostar services to country have been halted.
     
    Specialist search dogs will be deployed to look for explosive devices at Dover and at London’s St Pancras train station, where the Eurostar service terminates, a spokesperson from the Home Office told press.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Maersk plays with drones for making deliveries to vessels, inspections
    source: Shippingazette
     
    DENMARK's Maersk Group is experimenting with the use of drones for delivering goods, after Maersk Tankers collaborated with drone maker Xamen Technologies to successfully deliver a tin of biscuits to a bulk tanker, and is looking at other potential uses for drones.
     
    For the test, the shipping heavyweight used an "octocopter" drone with eight individual propellers and maximum speed of 16 metres per second and a maximum payload of two kilogrammes.
     
    "Drones can make savings in both costs and time," said Maersk Tankers supply chain manager Markus Kuhn. 
     
    "There are high costs for on-board delivery of small parcels, filled with urgent spare parts or mail, because of the need for a barge."
     
    The company said "drone use could with the current payload bring potential savings of US$3,000-$9,000 per vessel per year, Maersk Tankers estimates".
     

     
    Gothenburg to expand port with new 220,000-square metre terminal
    source: Shippingazette
     
    SWEDEN's major Port of Gothenburg is to expand with the construction of a new SEK1 billion (US$121.4 million) terminal covering 220,000 square metres in the outer harbour area.
     
    It is the largest expansion project at the port since the 1970s. The terminal will be built using dredging spoils and is expected to be completed after 2020, reports GAC Hot Port News.
     
    The Land and Environment Court has granted the Port of Gothenburg consent to build a new freight terminal beside the existing terminals with 11 metres alongside. 
     
     
     
    Drought In Panama Impacts Canal Operations
    source: CIFFA
     
    The Panama Canal Authority has set temporary draft limits for large vessels because of water shortages for the locks caused by an unusual weather pattern. The restriction essentially will require vessels to lighten load at ports of origin so they ride higher and less water is required to raise them in the locks. El Niño, a climate phenomenon resulting in periodic warming of the tropical Pacific Ocean, has changed the rainfall pattern in Panama, triggering a drought in the canal watershed and causing water levels in Gatun and Alhajuela lakes to fall substantially below their average for this time of year. The Panama Canal Authority's (ACP) shipping advisory sets the maximum draft at 39 feet in fresh water, effective April 18. Vessels loaded to drafts over 39 feet prior to or on March 21 will have their draft restriction waived for transit, subject to safety considerations. Vessels loaded after March 21 will not be allowed through the Canal if they draft below 39 feet. Further restrictions could follow, the ACP said. (Excerpted from American Shipper)
     

     
    GROUND AND RAIL UPDATES

     
    CN launches third year of its Safety Innovation Program
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–CN has launched the third year of its Safety Innovation Program. The Program is part of CN’s broader safety agenda and focused on enhancing the safety of operations, the company said.
     
    “For the third year in a row, we’re stepping up our efforts to leverage new technology to bolster our Safety Management System that is designed to minimize risk and continually reduce accidents and injuries. Our general approach is to develop more lines of defence against accidents. Our 2016 Program, which supplements our ongoing investments in track infrastructure maintenance and safety culture, brings the total applied to the Safety Innovation Program to C$67 million since 2014,” Jim Vena, CN executive vice-president and chief operating officer, said.
     
     
     
    Operational issues delay running of TanjungPriok rail freight line
    source: SeaTrade-Maritime
     
    Operational issues have delayed the start of operations of the TanjungPriok Harbor rail freight project despite its recent completion, local reports said.
     
    These issues include Indonesia's Public Works Ministry requesting a minor change to the railway foundation, as well as the fact that the train station is currently actually located outside the boundary of the terminal complex, and there is concern about the potential for additional fees, Maritime Coordinating Ministry spokesman AgungKuswandono said.
     
    "The foundation is currently under repair by KAI. As for the station, we need to change the terminal area documents," he was quoted as saying.
     
    Read more here


     
    CANADIAN BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    Federal Budget Offers Supports for Infrastructure, Electric Vehicles, LNG
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    TORONTO, Ont.–Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s first budget tabled Tuesday is aimed tax cuts and programs for the “middle class”, battling climate change though green technology and carbon pricing, and boosting infrastructure for cities.
    Below are some of the main highlights of the 2016 Budget as they could relate to transportation.  

    Read more here

  • 22 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    Brussels Airport Closed After Terrorist Attack
    source: Lloyds Listing
     
    Two explosions tore through Brussels airport on Tuesday and a further blast struck a metro station in the capital shortly afterwards.
     
    The Belgian Crisis Centre, clearly wary of a further incident, appealed to the population: "Stay where you are".
     
    All flights to Brussels have been cancelled or diverted.
     
    A source within Brussels Airport’s cargo department told Lloyd's Loading List that not much information was available at the moment in terms of the potential resumption of cargo activities or flights, with the focus currently still on making sure people are evacuated and taken care off. He hoped that more information would follow in the coming hours.
     
     
     
    Lufthansa Cargo Launches Products to Boost General Freight as Earning Suffer 40% Slump
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Lufthansa Cargo is set to add new products to its portfolio to boost its standard freight segment. The strike-hit carrier, which last week announced that earnings had fallen 40% in 2015, said it also needed to restore its reputation as a premium, and therefore reliable, brand.
     
    The carrier saw total revenues fall 3.3% to €2.3bn, while earnings were €73.5m. The strikes lost the carrier €13m in direct costs, but the actual cost was expected to be much higher, as forwarders were thought to have taken volumes to rivals, fearful of lack of reliability.  

    Read more here
     
     
    Airlines Urge Action Over French Strike
    source: CIFFA
     
    Airlines are urging governments and the European Commission to take action over a strike by French air traffic controllers. Hundreds of passengers flying with Ryanair, Easyjet and British Airways will continue to face flight cancellations until Tuesday. Ryanair said it had cancelled about 200 flights while Easyjet said it had cancelled 145 flights on Monday. The strike is in protest at planned staff cuts. Passengers travelling from Gatwick, Heathrow and Luton Airport are being forced to wait for or reschedule flights due to the action which started on Sunday. The DGAC, France's Civil Aviation Authority, said a third of flights were cancelled to and from Paris-Orly and other regional airports on Monday. Air France warned of last minute cancellations and delays but said it planned to operate its long-haul services and all flights to and from Paris Charles de Gaulle, which is unaffected. (Excerpted from the BBC)

     
    Computer Problem Forces ANA Domestic Flight Cancellations
    source: Airwise
     
    Japanese carrier ANA said it had been forced to cancel more than 100 domestic flights after a computer problem disrupted check-in and reservations systems.
     
    "So far we have cancelled 116 domestic flights, which has affected 15,200 customers," said a spokeswoman for the carrier. International flights were operating as usual, she said.
     
     
     
    IATA expects lithium battery bellyhold ban to be lifted in two years
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE International Air Transport Association (IATA) says the earliest a ban on the transport of lithium-ion battery shipments on passenger aircraft could be lifted is 2018.
     
    That's the opinion of IATA dangerous goods assistant director Dave Brennan, who believes that is the time it will take to develop appropriate packing standards.
     
    Speaking on the sidelines of the World Cargo Symposium in Berlin, IATA's director general Tony Tyler said the safety concerns over their carriage had arisen because of irregular manufacture, mislabelling and improper packing, reported Lloyd's Loading List.
     
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    Shanghai Shippers Face Summer Shutdowns
    source: Lloyds Listing
    Exporters and importers from Shanghai and China’s Pearl River Delta region are facing the potential of significant supply chain disruption this summer, according to forwarding sources, as Shanghai’s factories prepare for partial and complete closure in advance of the September G20 Summit in Hangzhou, close to China’s largest city.
     
    Global forwarder MIQ Logistics is reporting that its Shanghai office has been receiving increasing anecdotal evidence that factories in Shanghai and Hangzhou are being instructed by unspecified officials to prepare for slowdowns and partial and total shutdowns ahead of the G20 summit.  

    Read more here.  

     
    Creditors grant Hyundai Merchant Marine three-month debt extension
    source: Shipping Gazette
     
    KOREA's troubled Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) says that a new deal with creditors includes a three-month maturity extension to give the company time to implement its "self help" plan, reports American Shipper.
     
    HMM said while its plan to reschedule debt was rejected on March 17, the Korean Development Bank (KDB) has said it will advance the plan at a second meeting March 22 with major creditors.

    Read more here
     
     
    Strike brings Santos port to a halt
    source: Splash24/7
     
    Stevedores at Santos port in Brazil’s Sao Paulo state, on Monday morning started one-day strike action calling for inflation adjustments to their wages.
     
    All 2,500 unionized workers at the port are involved and no cargo would be handled for the day.
     
    With numerous cargo terminals, Santos is Brazil’s and Latin America’s busiest container-handling port.
     
     
     
    OCEMA Adopts Verified Gross Mass (VGM) Best Practice and VGM Process Map
    source: CIFFA
     
    In an effort to facilitate compliance with the IMO's Verified Gross Mass rule, OCEMA's 18 ocean carrier members have unanimously adopted a Recommended Best Practice for the Acceptance and Transmission of Verified Gross Mass. This is the first comprehensive "roadmap" adopted by any industry group. It represents five months of work by an OCEMA VGM working group, during which time OCEMA also conferred with industry stakeholders on various technical aspects of the Best Practice.
     
    The VGM Best Practice and Process Map were developed by OCEMA's Container Weight Committee and unanimously approved by senior executives of all 18 ocean carrier members of OCEMA. The Best Practice was designed to minimize burdens on shippers, carriers, terminals and others by providing a standardized U.S. framework for VGM compliance while making as few changes from present practices as possible. It also addresses concerns raised by export shippers regarding container tare weight, gate acceptance, and options for transmitting VGM to carriers.
     
    Read more of the press release at: OCEMA Press Release Regarding VGM Best Practice. 
     
    Download the best practices document OCEMA VGM Best Practice
     
    Download the process Map OCEMA VGM Process Map.  
     
     
    Seaway Opens 58th Navigation Season Ice Free
    source: CIFFA
     
    The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC) marked the opening of the Seaway's 58th navigation season Monday, with the transit of Canada Steamship Lines' Thunder Bay through Lock 3 on the Welland Canal. The ship, carrying a load of road salt, will be replenishing stocks depleted by ice storms which repeatedly struck Eastern Canada over the winter.
     
    We certainly welcome the warmer weather. A return to an opening in the third week of March provides our clients with the opportunity to move cargo in a timely manner, and make the most of the navigation season" said Terence Bowles, President and CEO of the SLSMC.
     
    In terms of the outlook for 2016, the SLSMC's Terence Bowles noted that a lower Canadian dollar may spur more Canadian exports this year. "The combination of a rebound in Canadian manufacturing activity, a solid U.S. economy, and the prospect of more trade with Europe brings about several catalysts which may boost Seaway tonnage", said Bowles.
     

     
    INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS - GOVERNMENT UPDATES

     
    Sri Lanka relents, China gets okay to resume Colombo Port City work
    source: Shippingazette
     
    THE Chinese consortium, CHEC Port City Colombo (Pvt) Ltd, has welcomed the decision of recently elected Sri Lankan government to allow work to resume on the US$1.4 billion project.
     
    President Maithripala Sirisena had suspended the project a year ago, shortly after he took office following a campaign in which he questioned China's role in Sri Lanka, reported Bloomberg News.
     
    Hong Kong's China Merchants has a 35-year, $500 million build, operate and transfer contract with the port authority and holds a 85 per cent in the venture with the port authority holding the remaining 15 per cent.
     
    Now Sri Lanka has unblocked the surrounding port city project, a sign of thawing ties weeks before Prime Minister RanilWickremesinghe travels to Beijing.
     
     
     
    Possible but implausible - India's relaxation of cabotage restrictions is unlikely to win it transhipmenttraffic
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    India’s ministry of shipping announcement that it is to partially relax its cabotage regulations have so far precluded foreign shipping lines for carrying cargo between Indian ports – yet the actual shape of the new regulations would suggest that it really doesn’t want any foreign-flagged vessels carrying cargo between Indian ports.
     
    The government said that foreign-flagged and owned vessels will be allowed to transport export and import cargo and empty containers between “any port in India to a transhipment port and vice versa, in addition to Indian vessels”.
     

  • 21 March 2016

    AIR FREIGHT UPDATES


    A plan to revolutionise air freight as 'visibly better' Cargo iQ succeeds Cargo2000
    source: TheLoadStar
     
    The air freight industry is set to benefit significantly and reap competitive advantage from a restructured Cargo 2000, re-branded yesterday as Cargo iQ.
     
    In a packed  – and remarkably positive and excited – room at the World Cargo Symposium in Berlin, the Geneva-based Cargo iQ team announced not only the new name, but significant developments in the way it can measure quality through its Smart Data project.
     
     
     
    Air Canada Cargo expands network of AC Absolute certified locations
    source: CanadianShipper
     
    MONTREAL, Que.–Air Canada Cargo has expanded its network of AC Absolute certified locations for active temperature-controlled shipments. The following Air Canada Cargo locations are now certified to handle AC Absolute:
     
    Incheon – Seoul, South Korea (ICN)*
    Hong Kong (HKG)*
    Dubai (DXB)*
    Los Angeles (LAX)
    AC Absolute is now offered at over 40 certified locations throughout Air Canada Cargo’s network. The product is Air Canada Cargo’s active temperature-controlled solution designed for temperature-sensitive commodities requiring precise temperature conditions. 
     

     
    Looming Pilot Shortage Stalks Air Cargo Operators as More Narrowbodies Are Converted Into Freighters
    source: The Loadstar
     
    Aircraft conversion outfits are going full tilt turning narrowbody aircraft into freighters to meet rampant demand for capacity to carry the rapid growth of e-commerce shipments, but a shortage of flight crews threatens to hamper the expansion of narrowbody fleets and regional freighters.
     
    A dearth of pilots is hitting regional operators particularly hard.
     
    In the US this shortage was highlighted in late February when Republic Airways filed for bankruptcy protection, blaming a lack of flight crews that had forced it to ground aircraft.
     
     
     
    Air China Cargo Service Now Available Through Edmonton International Airport
    source: CIFFA
     
    Air China Cargo now offers service between Western Canada, Dallas-Fort Worth, China and Japan through Edmonton International Airport (YEG), with Air China Cargo's first scheduled Canadian freighter service. Air China Cargo's new Boeing 777-200F operates three times per week to/from Edmonton International Airport (YEG), Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG), Tianjin Binhai International Airport (TSN) and Dallas/ Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) as part of a Shanghai-Edmonton-Dallas-Fort Worth-Edmonton-Tianjin-Shanghai route. 
     
    Schedule: The cargo service operates Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.
     
    Flight CA 1075 (Local Time)
     
    Departs PVG (Shanghai Pudong International Airport)    12:00
    Arrives YEG (Edmonton International Airport)                  09:45
    Departs YEG                                                                     11:45
    Arrives DFW (Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport)      16:35
     
    Flight CA 1076 (Local Time)
     
    Departs DFW                                                               19:45
    Arrives YEG                                                                 22:55
    Departs YEG                                                                00:55
    Arrives TSN (Tianjin Binhai International Airport)        02:15 (+1)
    Departs TSN                                                                04:15 (+1)
    Arrives PVG                                                                 06:20 (+1)
     
    To access Air China Cargo, shippers must contact their freight forwarder to obtain quotes and information from Expair Cargo at www.expaircargo.com 
     

    OCEAN FREIGHT UPDATES


    European Shippers Council Calls on EC to Ban General Rate Increases by Shipping Lines
    source: The Loadstar
     
    The European Shippers’ Council (ESC) has asked EC competition commissioner Margaret Vestager to abolish general rate increases (GRIs) by shipping lines.
     
    ESC maritime policy manager Fabien Bacquelin told The Loadstar: “In our opinion, there should not be any price announcement. The other characteristics, spot or contract, all-in or with surcharges, are commercial matters to be defined between shipper and its provider,” he said.
     
    The EC spent four years investigating possible price-fixing among liner carriers, which centred around whether the GRI mechanism had allowed lines to coordinate on freight rates through “signalling” – when one competitor signals to the other market players when and by how much it alters prices, hoping or even expecting that the others will follow suit.  

    Read more here

     
    The tides of March
    source: Splash24/7
     
    Concluding his trilogy of articles looking at the markets, Paul Slater, chairman of First International, is none too optimistic.
     
    The economics of most of the shipping industry continue to ebb away from any profitability, temporary or sustained.