Commentary

Commentary

Indian Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari said the government is working on plans to augment overall tonnage capacity at major ports from the current 800 million tons to 1.6 billion tons over the next five years.
As of today, July 30, there is no U.S. West Coast longshore agreement in place, a month after the previous six-year pact expired. In any contract year, the time between expiration and agreement is especially volatile, because the risk of cargo-disrupting labor actions is at its highest. And the risk of disruption isn't diminishing.
In five years as Federal Motor Carrier Safety administrator, Anne S. Ferro has changed trucking.
Two economists at Northwestern University debate whether all of the great ideas have already been invented, this after a June dedication of a statue of inventor Charles F. Kettering in Loudonville, Ohio. Well, people are still intelligent and imaginative, and there are valuable things left to create.
Shippers are breathing a sigh of relief because there haven’t been any major disruptions at U.S. West Coast ports, nearly a month after a brief extension of the contract between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and employers represented by the Pacific Maritime Association expired. Both sides seem to understand that a shutdown of any kind wouldn’t be in their best interest.
An ocean forwarder will soon handle overseas shipments and questions liability impact of the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act and the Carmack Amendment regarding imports and exports.
Pressures on supply chain and warehouse operations have grown more critical as e-commerce market dynamics have evolved, led by Amazon and Wal-Mart.
I’ve been arguing since early this year that international transportation is headed for trouble because of a variety of transportation-specific problems exacerbated by an improving economy that’s driving faster volume growth and pushing capacity to the limit. With half the year over and the peak shipping season about to begin, those concerns are only deepening.
Managed services can be an effective alternative to internal staffing under the right conditions, with two of the most critical being the ability of the managed services provider to meet the customer’s service needs at a price point that would preferably be lower than it would cost to hire a person.
For months, we’ve been asking how North American infrastructure at ports, rail heads and on the roads would hold up when imports grew at sustained levels beyond the low-single-digit levels seen through the first quarter of this year. Well, the returns are starting to come in, and the news is anything but good for beneficial cargo owners.
Last winter’s supply chain disruptions were simply glimpses into what could become the new normal.
Maybe you’ve heard about China’s rejection of the P3 Network. In all seriousness, I’m hesitant to cover an issue such as this because of the overwhelming analysis and observation that has come before me. But I have strong feelings about why China refused to allow it and a lot of questions about the real outcome.
In the end, does the “why” really matter? After 12 months of planning and countless millions of dollars, isn’t it enough that China said no to the largest vessel-sharing alliance ever proposed?
With the stroke of a pen on June 17, China transformed itself from a non-player among regulators of container shipping to the most important one. In the process, it belatedly took on a role commensurate with its stature as the world’s largest container market, accounting for some 25 percent of global liftings.