SOLAS/VGM filing is mandatory and effective for all vessels that sail on/after July 1, 2016. If you have questions or concerns on how to file your VGM, please feel free to ask your Westar representative.
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Ocean carriers CMA CGM, COSCO, Evergreen Line and OOCL revealed they will form a new alliance next April.
Ocean carriers CMA CGM, COSCO Container Lines, Evergreen Line and Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) have signed a memorandum of understanding to form a new carrier agreement they are calling the “OCEAN Alliance.”
The carriers said the alliance will enable each of them “to offer competitive products and comprehensive service networks covering the Asia-Europe, Asia-Mediterranean, Asia-Red Sea, Asia-Middle East, Trans-Pacific, Asia-North America East Coast and Trans-Atlantic trades.”
“This new partnership will allow each of its members to bring significantly improved services to its respective customers,” member carriers said in similar statement. “Shippers will have an attractive selection of frequent departures and direct calls to meet their supply chain needs, including access to a vast network with the largest number of sailings and port rotations connecting markets in Asia, Europe and the United States.”
“The Alliance will also bring service reliability and the most efficient integration of the latest vessels in a fleet of over 350 containerships. Initially the deployment will cover more than 40 services globally mostly connected with Asia, including about 20 services each in the U.S. and Europe related trades.”
Subject to regulatory approvals of competent authorities, the new Alliance said it plans to begin operations in April 2017 and that the initial period of the agreement would be five years.
U.S. Federal Maritime Commissioner William P. Doyle made the following announcement: “I appreciate CMA CGM, COSCO, Evergreen and OOCL officials visiting the Federal Maritime Commission yesterday to discuss their future plans of an alignment. I look forward to reviewing and studying their formal filing of a vessel sharing alliance once it is is filed with the Commission.”
COSCO, which recently merged operations with rival China Shipping said, “Today is a great day for COSCO Container Lines. OCEAN Alliance is a better match for our globalization strategy. We will provide customers with more selections and improved service world-wide.”
CMA CGM is also in the process of acquiring APL.
The combined carriers would be a strong rival to the 2M alliance between Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co., the two largest container carriers.
According to figures on Alphaliner’s Top 100 carrier website, the OCEAN Alliance carriers (including APL) currently own and charter 1,113 ships (444 owned, 669 chartered), which combined, have 5,381,333 TEUs of capacity. In addition, the carriers have 102 ships on order with a combined capacity of 1,305,682 TEUs. Of course, only a portion of those fleets will be involved in the new Alliance, with some ships deployed in trades not covered by the deal, and carriers may change their fleets as a result of the restructuring.
In contrast, 2M Alliance members, Maersk and MSC, have 1,085 ships (457 owned, 628 chartered), which combined, have 5,707,535 TEUs of capacity. In addition, Maersk and MSC have 67 ships on order with a combined capacity of 908,000 TEUs. American Shipper 4/20/16
“Why do I need cargo insurance?”
The short answer is:
“Because you’re a shipper.”
If that isn’t enough for you, keep reading…
Cargo insuranse reduces shippers’ exposure to financial loss. Yet, so many shippers choose to risk importing and exporting goods without getting cargo insurance. Unfortunately, many shippers have suffered great loss for taking this risk. Below are six reasons shippers should get cargo insurance. Some of the reasons are dangers that can cause loss or damage to cargo, but the list actually goes well beyond that.
#1 – CARGO THEFT RISING
Cargo theft, especially through identity theft and fictitious pickups, is on the rise. We’re not even counting piracy, which is a major risk of cargo theft and loss in modern international shipping.
#2 – MORE CONTAINERS LOST AT SEA EVERY YEAR
Every year, containers are lost to sea. With the trend to megaships, carrying huge stacks of shipping containers across the oceans, cargo containers overboard have actually increased.
The World Shipping Council conducts surveys to find out approximately how many shipping containers are lost to sea in a year. Their 2014 update reveals a very significant rise in cargo containers lost to sea from their 2011 survey. The survey of the years 2011, 2012 and 2013 estimates that there were approximately 733 containers lost at sea on average for each of these three years, not counting catastrophic events. That number of approximately 733 shipping containers lost at sea during the 2011-2013 period is more than double the number of containers lost at sea for the previous period of 2008-2010.
#3 – CATASTROPHIC EVENTS HAPPEN
Storms, shipwrecks, explosions, pirate attacks… which have caused the loss of many shipping containers. In one event, an entire shipload or more of cargo containers can be lost.
The World Shipping Council defines a catastrophic loss “as a loss overboard of 50 or more containers in a single incident.”
When one includes catastrophic losses (as defined above) during these years, the average annual loss for [the years 2011, 2012 and 2013] was approximately 2,683 containers.
Catastrophic events like the Tianjin explosions in China’s port city or container ships taken by pirates wouldn’t even likely be included in the totals above because, while very large numbers of shipping containers of goods are lost, the cargo containers are not necessarily lost overboard to sea.
#4 – CARGO DAMAGE A COMMON OCCURENCE
As common as cargo theft or loss has become, even more common is cargo damage. Bad stowage and shore error are the largest contributors to damaged cargo.
#5 – GENERAL AVERAGE – EXPEDITE CARGO RELEASE
You may be required to post a bond and/or cash deposit in order to obtain release of your cargo following a general average – even though there was no loss or damage to your goods.
By purchasing insurance, your insurance company assumes the responsibility and expedites the release of your cargo in these instances. General Average is an internationally accepted principle where if certain types of accidents occur to the vessel, all parties share in the loss equally. You definitely do not want to find yourself in a General Average situation without insurance.
#6 – COVERAGE FOR LIMITED CARRIER LIABILITY
Carriers, by law, are not responsible for many common causes of loss that occur in transit (for example, acts of God, General Average, etc.).
Even when carriers are liable, carriers’ liability in the event of a loss is limited – either by contract in the bill of lading or by law. In most cases, shippers will only recover cents on the dollar from the carrier. Shippers should never count on the carrier that is shipping their goods to cover losses or damage that may occur over the course of a container ship voyage.
House lawmakers brushed aside calls at a hearing to slow implementation of the Verified Gross Mass rule, while other shippers said compliance should be straightforward.
Groups representing U.S. agricultural exporters and large freight consolidators at a congressional hearing Thursday insisted on federal intervention if ocean carriers refuse to compromise in implementing a pending international requirement for shippers to declare the weight of tendered containers before they are loaded on the ship, and attest to their accuracy, to prevent maritime accidents.But lawmakers indicated that they were not inclined to take any action.
“I don’t think this is a congressional issue. There’s not going to be legislation,” Duncan Hunter, chairman of the House Transportation & Infrastructure subcommittee on Coast Guard and maritime transportation, said. “ I think this is a deal that needs to be worked out between the shippers and the cargo owners.”American Shipper 4/15
NYK rep reiterates no VGM, no load
NYK’s Bill Ferguson told the Critical Commodities Conference this week that carriers must refuse loading to a container without Verified Gross Mass data submitted or risk insurance issues.
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.
Speaking at the Critical Commodities Conference in New Orleans, Ferguson said it was likely that carriers would establish a so-called VGM cutoff one hour before existing cargo cutoff times. The VGM cutoff time would be related to shippers (who are responsible for calculating the verified weight) at the time of booking confirmation.
Ferguson did, however, say that the VGM cutoffs wouldn’t be absolute. Just as carrier work with shippers when containers don’t meet cutoffs to ensure a box is loaded, the same spirit is likely to occur with the VGM data sub
SOLAS container weight rule to be discussed at Congressional hearing
The House subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation will hear testimony on April 14 about the International Maritime Organization’s controversial verified gross mass requirement, which goes into effect July 1.
FONASBA: Numerous Countries Unprepared for Container Weighing
There has been no guidance issued on the practical application of the measures regarding the implementation of the amendments to SOLAS VI.2 on container weighing in eighteen countries, a survey from FONASBA, an organization representing the global ship agency and ship broking professions shows.https://worldmaritimenews.com/archives/187643/fonasba-numerous-countries-unprepared-for-container-weighing/
Global Logistics—March 2016
What Keeps Supply Chain and Risk Managers Up at Night?
Every type of business risk has an impact on the supply chain. And when risk becomes reality, risk managers and supply chain managers work in tandem to keep goods and materials flowing.
West Coast ports soon will prove their mega-ship readiness
By all accounts, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach met the challenge of efficiently handling the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin when the 18,000-TEU ship, the largest ever to serve a U.S. port, came calling. In its initial visit in Los Angeles over the Christmas holiday, the port flipped the mega-ship in 56 hours, handling 11,200 container moves and averaging nearly 30 lifts per crane, per hour. The Benjamin Franklin returned in February, calling at the PCT terminal in Long Beach, with equally positive results.
Report: European airfreight carriers eye U.S. routes
European all-cargo operators Cargologicair and SW Italia have filed applications to launch routes to the United States, according to a report from industry news outlet The Loadstar.
Shipping industry faces risks from cybercrime and mega-ship salvage
Safety and shipping review identifies developments that will be causing sector headaches for years to come.
Congress Enacts First Major Customs Bill in over 20 Years
International Trade Update
President Obama signed the bipartisan Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (TFTE) on February 24. This is the first major customs legislation enacted since the Customs Modernization Act, Title VI of the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, Pub. L. 103-182 (1993). The TFTE focuses on facilitating legitimate trade and enforcing existing trade laws, such as those relating to intellectual property and trade remedies. More…
NEWS FLASH: USCG tells shippers not to expect delays to SOLAS container weight regulations
United States Coast Guard officials made it clear at a Federal Maritime Commission hearing Thursday in Washington, D.C. the shipping industry will have to comply with International Maritime Organization verified gross mass requirements on July 1.
Fitch warns weight regulations can raise US ports’ congestion
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings warned that the new container weighing regulations set to take effect on July 1, 2016 are generating uncertainty at US ports and can raise congestion. More…
Carriers respond to European Commission’s pricing concerns
Fifteen of the biggest shipping lines have offered to reform the way they announce price changes more…
More on ACE…
ACE Mandatory Use Dates (What are the ACE Mandatory Use dates?)
CBP is working to complete and deploy core trade processing capabilities in ACE by December 2016, a timeline supported by the White House Executive Order issued on February 19, 2014. As part of this transition, several mandatory dates have been established requiring trade users to file electronic data to ACE in lieu of legacy systems. More…
ZIM delays IPO and its CEO resigns
Zim Integrated Shipping Services Ltd. has announced that Rafi Danieli is resigning from his role as CEO. The announcement comes three days after an Israeli newspaper claimed that the carrier delayed an initial public offering (IPO) on Wall Street reportedly planned for the first half of 2016. More…
Manufacturers Group Backs Trans-Pacific Partnership
The endorsement is a major one for the 12-nation trade pact that must be approved by Congress. More…
CBP Chicago Finds Destructive Medfly in Air Cargo Shipment
CHICAGO—U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Agriculture Specialists conducting cargo inspections at the O’Hare International Airport recently discovered an infestation of Mediterranean fruit fly larvae (Ceratitis capitata) in three shipments of bell peppers from Spain. More…
Mixed fortunes for top US west coast container ports in 2015
The Port of Los Angeles recorded a 2.1% drop in container throughput last year to just under 8.2m teu, in contrast to neighbouring Long Beach, which handled almost 7.2m teu, a jump of 5.4%. More…
ACE and Automated Systems
CBP automated systems electronically support the facilitation of importing and exporting goods. By the end of 2016, the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) will become the Single Window – the primary system through which the trade community will report imports and exports and the government will determine admissibility. More…