Industry News

MPF Increase

U.S. Customs and Border Protection will start accepting the increased merchandise processing fee (MPF) of 0.3464% on November 5, 2011. The rate increased from 0.21% to 0.3464% effective October 1, 2011. Customs will be issuing bills to importers for the additional MPF due from October 1st until November 5th. Differences of less than $20.00 per entry will not be billed. Importers must pay the bills promptly to avoid interest charges and possible sanction.

The minimum MPF remains $25.00 for formal entries. The maximum MPF remains $485.00.


Click here to view today’s online WorldTrade Interactive

BCMEA and ILWU To Continue Negotiations Next Week

March 4, 2011

BCMEA and ILWU Canada (Longshore) Union will continue negotiations next week, after making incremental progress this week.

For more information, see the latest release from BCMEA

ISM (Institute for Supply Management) reports sustained growth in February

March 3, 2011

Recent studies indicate momentum is continuing in the manufacturing sector at a strong pace. Read Jeff Berman’s article here

BCMEA Resumes Negotiations with ILWU Canada

February 15, 2011

In good faith, the BCMEA will return to bargaining provided that on-the-job production levels will fully and completely return to normal levels and further illegal job action by the ILWU Membership will not occur.

For more information, click here.

BCMEA Suspends Negotiations with ILWU Canada as Productivity Falls

February 11, 2011

In response to this “work to rule” activity by the Union, the BCMEA suspended negotiations for Thursday and Friday to give the ILWU Union Executive an opportunity to urge their membership to return terminal productivity to normal levels.

For more information, see BCMEA

CN reaches tentative contract settlements with Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) union –
CAW cancels plans for CN strike on Jan. 25, 2011

MONTREAL, Jan. 24, 2011 – CN (TSX: CNR)(NYSE: CNI) announced today tentative contract agreements with the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) union. With settlements, the CAW has dropped plans to strike the railway at 0001 hours Eastern time Jan. 25, 2011.

The agreements would, upon ratification, provide fair wage and benefit increases to CAW members. In addition, the settlements contain progressive provisions that would help CN retain and attract skilled employees critical to its workforce in the years ahead. Full details of the tentative agreements are being withheld pending ratification, which the CAW expects to complete before the end of February, 2011.

For more information, click here

NY-NJ Terminal Update

September 29, 2010

The following statement was issued by Joseph Curto, President of the New York Shipping Association, regarding the end of the job action in the Port of New York and New Jersey:
“Although the situation that precipitated the work stoppage in the Port of New York and New Jersey has not been resolved, the ILA will return to work in the Port of New York and New Jersey today at 19:00 hours. Workers will work into the weekend to address the cargo currently in the port and the cargo anticipated to arrive henceforth. Management and Labor representatives will meet early next week. Although poised to take further legal action in federal district court today, it was not necessary to do so.”

NY-NJ Terminals Shut for Second Day by ILA Strike

September 29, 2010

“Container traffic in the Port of New York and New Jersey remained at a standstill Wednesday morning as local dockworkers continued to observe picket lines”

For more details, click here

Next up for C-TPAT ? Warheousees and DC’s?

September 13, 2010

C-TPAT isn’t just a concern just for carriers, but for warehouses and distribution centers as well.

Click here for the full story

Diesel Rises 2¢ to $2.919 in First Increase in Six Weeks

July 26, 2010

Click here for full story

Lockout Ends at Port of Montreal

July 23, 2010

CUPE signs back-to-work protocol with MEA.

Click here fore more details

Port of Montreal: Talks Between Union (CUPE) and Employer (MEA) ended Sunday with no resolution.

July 20, 2010

Source: CIFFA (Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association

After talks between the union (CUPE) and employer (MEA) ended Sunday with no resolution, on Monday morning (July 19) the Maritime Employers Association locked out all longshore workers at the Port of Montreal. Basically all operations have come to a stop with the exception of grain

CN and CP have both advised that they are no longer accepting any containers bound for the Port of Montreal until further notice. There is currently no train service available into or out of the Port of Montreal.

The Port of Montreal issued an update on Tuesday (20th) as follows:
– The Montreal Port Authority has obtained an injunction. This injunction basically seeks to allow work to continue on infrastructure projects unrelated to the employees of the Maritime Employers Association.
– The Maritime Employers Association is maintaining its lockout.
– There are no incidents to report.
– The road entrances to the Port are being picketed by members of the Longshoremen’s Union
– Freight car movement to and from the Port has been suspended.
– Rail traffic inside the Port has been suspended.
– There is no vessel requiring the work of longshoremen for its operation in the Port
– The grain terminal can receive and ship bulk cargo.
– Cargo in the terminals is not being handled.

Agents for the lines and carriers themselves have not been commenting on the situation but Port officials said redirections to New York and Norfolk are expected. (One of the problems with diverting vessels to the U.S. is of course lack of AMS clearance. Additional costs will also be incurred for any diversions to other ports.)

Vessels are at anchor in the St. Lawrence River, awaiting developments.

Halifax Port Authority spokeswoman Michele Peveril said in an interview Monday that “There is a potential that cargo may need to move through Halifax and the port can handle the extra ships”. (But with the current difficulties in securing bookings outbound from Halifax and the shortage of railcars to Halifax, that begs the question as to how CN, the only rail line servicing Halifax, could accommodate this surge in container traffic.)

CIFFA has written to the Honourable Ms. Lisa Raitt, Federal Labour Minister, urging the government of Canada to take action to get the Port of Montreal working. In the meantime, Ms. Raitt has urged the MEA and the union to resume talks and, in a statement, said the federal government is monitoring the situation closely. There is currently no indication of when the two sides might resume talks although it is understood that meetings are scheduled for Thursday and Friday of this week.

If the lockout lasts only a few days it is assumed that vessels will not be diverted to other ports due to all the technical, legal and financial costs involved. In short, the steamship lines have not communicated their decisions yet regarding diversions and one might expect not to hear until after the meetings on Thursday and Friday.

If the lockout last longer, it is assumed that vessels currently waiting at anchor or enroute to Montreal will be diverted to other ports. Each carrier will have its own diversion plan and hopefully will communicate with the community sooner than later. Shippers should be made aware that any of the above diversions would create additional costs for shipments (rail, drayage etc.) and that additional costs, storage or demurrage already caused by the lockout will be for the cargo.

Rainfall Impacts Canadian Pacific Rail Line

June 21, 2010

Customer Bulletin: Perishable Marine Container Traffic Moving Within Canada

Due to the once in 100 year rainfall, high waters and adverse weather conditions that continue to impact multiple segments of Canadian Pacific’s rail line between Medicine Hat and Swift Current, CP train operations in this area remain suspended. While crews work to restore service in the affected areas and detour and reroute options are being implemented, CP will not move import and export marine containers conveying perishable traffic arriving in our inland terminals after cut-off on Monday, June 21, 2010. Any container arriving after cut-off on that date will be held at the origin terminal. Effective Wednesday, June 23, 2010, CP will not accept perishable containers at the gate. This includes shipments powered by clip-on generators.
These restrictions will apply until fluidity on our western lines returns to normal.

For specific shipment and problem resolution inquiries, please contact our Customer Service Team at 1-888-333-8111.
Ian MacKay
Assistant Vice-President

Canadian Pacific Customer Services

CSA 2010′s Effect On Shippers

May 28, 2010

In an effort to decrease the number of truck-involved crashes, injuries and fatalities, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is in the process of implementing CSA2010. Under the new regulations, Carrier’s Safety Ratings will now change monthly based on the Carrier’s CSA score.

The CSA score is calculated using seven safety performance categories, referred to as “BASICs”, and the lower the score, the better. The seven BASIC categories include: unsafe driving, fatigued driving, driver fitness, alcohol/drugs, vehicle maintenance, cargo securement, and crash history.

What is the Shipper’s Role in CSA? Read Shipper’s Unregulated Role by Mindy Long. For more information on CSA 2010, click here.

Inland Waterways Face Infrastructure Crisis of Their Own

May 14, 2010

Clifford Lynch reminds us that domestic transportation via waterway is vital to our nation.

For more information, click here

NAFTA Trade Surged in February

May 12, 2010

North American Trade flourishes.

For more information, click here

Office Depot transport VP has no fear of parcel “duopoly”

April 28, 2010

Mark Solomon explains how the emergence of smaller parcel devilery keep FedEx and UPS from running wild in the U.S. market.

For more information, click here

Phase IV of the Lacey Act began on April 1, 2010

April 23, 2010

Importers need to take note of the new requirements for plants and plant products under the Lacey Act.

For full schedule, click here.
For more information on the Lacey Act, visit the Aphis on the USDA website.
Download the Plant and Plant product Declaration Form: PPQ Form 505.

Collapsible Ocean Shipping Container May Help Reduce Emissions

April 19, 2010

Collapsible shipping container is better for the environment.

For full story, click here

Top 10 logistics challenges for 2010 (and beyond)

April 16, 2010

Check out the ten biggest challenges that the logistics industry faces for the upcoming year.

For full story, click here

“Incoterms” one of the most valuable tools of the (foreign) trade

April 09, 2010

Clifford Lynch reviews the standardized terms of sale.

For full story, click here

Inventory Planning & Optimization: Can Inventory Reductions Achieved in 2009 Be Sustained?

March 15, 2010

Henri van der Eerden takes a look at sustaining improvements in efficiency.

For full story, click here

Capacity Crunch from Asia

February 8, 2010
With only a few weeks to go before the Chinese New Year and its two week factory closures, ocean containers are backing up on the docks of Asia. Space is tight and carriers, coming off the worst market in decades, are capitalizing on the moment of high demand and low supply. Since January 15th, the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (TSA) carriers have adopted an Emergency Revenue Charge (ERC) – a surcharge of between $400 – $505 on west coast cargo, which still does nothing to guarantee that cargo will move as booked, but does help carriers facing historically low rates. The surcharge is in effect, but capacity is still limited so hundreds of containers are being ‘rolled’, as cargo is pushed from its booked voyage to a later sailing.

The capacity crunch should come as no surprise. Last year, when carriers were caught with a significant overcapacity as Asian exports suddenly dried up, freight rates dropped precipitously. In response, carriers parked vessels, combined services with other carriers in vessel-sharing arrangements and reduced sailing speeds. Despite an indication last fall that the market was returning, last year’s drastic reductions in capacity have carried over to this year. The surge is expected to continue until at least mid-February, when the holidays will give some breathing room, allowing carriers to clear backlogs. Until then, expect delays, rolling cargo and price volatility.
Source: CIFFA eBulletin – January 28, 2010

TSA Implements Emergency Revenue Charge

January 15, 2010

The TSA (Transpacific Stabalization Agreement) has adopted a new guideline for the first half of 2010 in an effort to obtain critically needed revenue – Emergency Revenue Charge effective January 15, 2010 as follows:

– US$320 per 20-foot container (TEU)

– US$400 per standard 40-foot container (TEU)

– US$450 per high-cue FEU

– US$505 per 45-foot container

Members include, but not limited to: APL, China Shipping, CMA CGM, Cosco, Evergreen and Hanjin Shipping

For more information, click here

Truckers Protest Outside LA City Hall

December 15, 2009

Truckers protest outside LA City Hall over Environmental Policy.

For full story, click here

Logistics Labor Strategies

December 14, 2009

Partnerships key in workforce development.

For full story, click here

Green Legislation

December 10, 2009

Legislation sets its sights on carbon emissions.

For full story, click here

CN Strike Settled

December 2, 2009

Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC) union settles.

For full story, click here

Possible CN Strike

November 26th, 2009

Teamsters Canada Rail Conference union plans to go on strike Nov. 28th.

For full story, click here

Going Green: Lowers Costs and Increases Efficiency

Mon, Nov 30th 2009 4:00 pm
According to Jack Ampuja, president of the consulting firm, Supply Chain Optimizers – companies that have gone green, have lower costs and are more efficient.

Click here for full article

Outsourced Logistics: Gaining Management Buy-in

Thurs, Nov 19th 2009 12:00 pm
Deborah Catalano Ruriani of offers 10 very helpful tips for selling Management on 3PL services.

Click here for full article

Panama project threatens West Coast
ports’ lock on Asia trade

Thurs, Nov 12th 2009 04:00 pm
Competition from an expanding Panama Canal causes concern for ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

For the full story, click here

SWITCHED ON: Bringing The 3pl Machine To Life

Mon, Oct 26th 2009 03:00 pm
Case studies confirm 3PL’s remain an integral component of efficient supply chain management. Read more about the value of 3PL’s in a featured article by Joesph O’Reilly, Senior Associate Editor at Inbound Logistics.

For the full story, click here

Transportation Spending Bill Unlikely to Pass This Year

Sat, Oct 10th 2009 01:00 pm
Extensions expected as the government’s fiscal year draws to a close. Experts suggest that the expected 18-month extension, will result in an actual 24-30 month time frame before any bill gets passed.

For the full story, click here

Transportation Execs See Shift in Sourcing

Sat, Oct 10th 2009 12:00 amChanges in infrastructure and regulations have begun to make places like mainland China, India and Mexico more appealing to companies looking to source products and manufacturing.

For full story, click here

TSA Looks to Reverse 2009 Losses

Tue, Oct 6th 2009 02:05 pm

In order to reverse 2009 losses and keep the Global Trade Industry viable, members of the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement have opted to restore shipping rates to the levels used in 2008.

For the full story, click here