2013 Annual Review & Outlook - Government
The U.S. government enters 2013 with a huge opportunity, but also stiff challenges. Although the November elections retained the status quo — President Obama in the White House, Republicans in control of the House and Democrats leading the Senate — a new sense of bipartisanship appears to be emerging. The chief concern, of course, is avoiding the fiscal cliff, and although an 11th hour deal on Jan. 1 averted the most dire of consequences, new cliffs are approaching that could send the U.S. economy flailing. On the policy front, motor carriers and shippers are watching anxiously as new hours-of-service regulations approach this summer, and as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration gets more aggressive in its fight against unsafe operators with its CSA initiative. U.S. Customs, meanwhile, is pressing ahead with its Automated Commercial Environment and signing agreements with overseas partners to facilitate trade while protecting it against terrorist attacks. And, of course, all eyes will be on what Washington does to upgrade infrastructure on U.S. roads, bridges and inland waterways.
Governments around the world are taking action to improve the external environment of their trading community by, for example, improving existing infrastructure, creating a better general business environment and enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of their national economic, institutional, regulatory and competition policies.