April ’22 at-a-glance … supply chain

Ocean Shipping Reform Act advanced to conference

The Senate passed the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022. The House also passed its version of the bill for the third time as part of the Coast Guard Reauthorization Act of 2020. The bills will now move to conference to reconcile the differences. While worded somewhat differently, both Acts:

  • Update the Federal Maritime Commissions (FMC) authority to regulate the maritime shipping industry.
  • Require ocean carriers to certify that late fees, known as detention and demurrage charges, comply with federal regulations or face penalties.
  • Prohibit ocean carriers from unreasonably declining shipping opportunities for U.S. exporters.

Require ocean carriers to report to the FMC each calendar quarter on total import/export tonnage and 20-foot equivalent units per vessel at U.S. ports.

West coast ports to open contract negotiations with Int’l Longshore and Warehouse Union

Contract negotiations begin May 12 between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA), which represents 29 port and terminal operators across the West Coast. To avoid any further disruption to U.S. shipping supply chain operations, the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) encouraged administration officials to urge pre-emptive negotiations before the contract’s June 30 expiration.