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News September 2015

Philadelphia CBP Discovers 3 First In Port Pests
Officials say that agriculture specialists recently discovered three new pests in the Philadelphia area. More…

Tianjin Explosions Will Hike Insurance Rates
The explosions that rocked the Chinese port of Tianjin in mid-August will likely result in higher property insurance rates thanks to the losses that amount to billions of dollars.The explosions August 12 at a warehouse filled with toxic waste damaged a substantial area of the port and surrounding residential areas and resulted in over 100 deaths. The event highlights the growing risks present in industrialized areas, according to experts. More…

Stability Issues Impact Nearshoring Destination Choices

Eastern Europe is a Big Winner for Europe-Bound Shipments, Research Indicates
Manufacturing executives around the world continue to consider nearshoring—moving production from a far-off overseas location to a closer site—but there is evidence that the trend is slowing, according to research released by Alix Partners.More…

European Exports Increase During First Half of 2015
Euro Area and EU Goods Trade is in Surplus
Between January and June 2015, euro area exports of goods to the rest of the world rose to $1.13 trillion, an increase of six percent compared with the same period in 2014, according to figures released by EUROSTAT, the European Union’s statistics bureau, Imports rose to $1.0 trillion, an increase of three percent compared with the first six months of last year, resulting in a trade surplus during the first half of $130 billion compared with $85.9 billion in January to June 2014.

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News August 2015

New Service for Port of NY & NJ
American President Lines (APL), a subsidiary of Neptune Orient Lines, and SeaLand, a division of Maersk Line, have announced the formation of a Vessel Sharing Agreement (VSA) that introduced a new weekly service branded the ACX by APL and the NAE by SeaLand. The VSA nominated Global Container Terminals (GCT) New York in Staten Island as the terminal operator. The new service will serve ports on both the west and east coasts of Latin America, utilizing Manzanillo International Terminal, Panama as the service’s hub.

Trans-Pacific Partnership delegates fail to reach final deal; pharmaceuticals, cars, dairy key sticking points
Delegates negotiating a Pacific free trade agreement have failed to reach a final deal after several days of intense talks in Hawaii.

FMC gets real about port congestion
The FMC believes that infrastructure investment is at the core of the discussion, however, other factors must be addressed in the near term to ensure an efficient and reliable international ocean transportation system and the relevant supply chain.

More Ships Heading to U.S. East Coast Ports at the Expense of the West
U.S. East Coast bunker suppliers are seeing more demand opportunity this year as shipping traffic has surged following West Coast port congestion from a labor dispute and other problems, the Financial Times reports.

2015 Peak Season prospects are mixed
While nearly one-third of LM survey respondents note Peak Season has a significant impact on operations, industry experts say it will not be much to write home about this year.

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News July 2015

Panama Canal begins filling new Pacific locks
The Panama Canal has just taken another step forward toward the completion of the Canal Expansion Program by beginning to fill the Cocoli’s locks on the Pacific side, following a similar endeavor on the Atlantic side earlier this month.More…

ICTSI Oregon leads effort to end West Coast labor slowdowns
The Preventing Labor Union Slowdowns Act of 2015 (PLUS Act) was introduced last Thursday (June 18, 2015) in the US Senate to help prevent the type of maritime labour slowdowns at the Port of Portland and 28 other West Coast ports that disrupted domestic and international trade and nearly brought the US economy to a standstill earlier this year.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Is About Much More Than Trade
The US congressional debate over granting Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) to the executive branch has been raging over the past few months.

Statement by U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman
on Senate Vote on Trade Promotion Authority/TTP, T-TIP

Today, the U.S. Congress made clear that the United States intends to lead on trade, deliver more, good middle class jobs and unlock opportunity for American workers, farmers, ranchers and small businesses across the country.

What will happen to TTIP in the European Parliament?
MEPs will supposedly vote on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) resolution in July. Despite recent developments, the camp supporting it is still far stronger than the opposition, writes Doru Frantescu.

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News May 2015

rans-Pacific Partnership Becomes a 2016 Election Issue
Japanese Prime Minister Abe’s visit highlights the Democratic divide over the trade deal.

Boston Consulting Group sees trouble ahead for ocean container lines
Drawing on analysis of data from proprietary benchmarking databases and other tools, BCG anticipates continued overcapacity in the container-shipping industry, with no market recovery in sight.

Leader Emphasizes CBP’s Trade, Travel, Transparency Achievements
After a challenging first year, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske outlined several significant advances introduced under his leadership during an April 8 address at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. More…

Container shipping to see another year of excess growth: Drewry
Container shipping is expected to see another year of excess growth in relation to demand, as there has been no let-up in big ship deliveries and new building ordering frenzy, according to Container Forecaster published by Drewry Maritime Research. More…

Alleging Millions in Wage Theft, West Coast Port Truckers Strike
Hundreds of truck drivers operating at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach went on strike Monday morning in protest of wage theft by four of the ports’ largest trucking companies, who they say misclassify them as independent contractors rather than full-time employees.More…

Supply Chain Managers May Be Considering New Seaport Options, Says Report
Disruptions by dockworkers on the U.S. West Coast at the end of last year added to the congestion woes of Los Angeles and Long Beach, thereby raising the profile of competing ocean cargo gateways like Miami and New York/New Jersey. More…

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News March 2015

DHS funding crisis could have ripple effect on local ports
Just as the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach recover from months of slow operations after a labor dispute, a budget battle in Washington threatens new snags.

US west coast battles cargo backlog
Oakland’s cargo volumes were hit hard in February, but things are looking up US west coast ports are working hard to clear months of backlogged cargo as a result of the extensive labour dispute, but it could be three months before there’s a clearing, and even longer before operations are back to ‘normal’. –

Port of Los Angeles launches ‘Peel Off’ program to tackle mounting backlog of cargo
Officials have introduced the “Peel Off” program, which would allow containers from major customers to be moved to a designated area where truckers could quickly peel off those containers destined for distribution centers inland.



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Newsletter February 2015

Westar Ocean LCL Consolidation and our use of smaller ports for European westbound freight.

The major east coast ports continue to become more and more congested due to overflow from west coast traffic slowdowns, truck and rail issues and east coast winter storms. You may want to consider how Westar routes westbound European ocean freight. We utilize smaller, non-congested ports of entry into the US via the port of Chester, PA(Philadelphia) and port of Wilmington, NC. We can reduce your days in transit by our routings where it geographically makes sense for your company.Our ocean LCL consolidation service from Europe to the US routes direct into our Pittsburgh warehouse via the port of Chester, PA. And we can distribute your product anywhere nationwide within a matter of days without the use of rail.

The Harbor Trucking Association (HTA), which represents drayage companies near the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, said more than 70 trucking companies have declared “force majeure” in letters sent to the Intermodal Association of North America (IANA) and various steamship lines in response to huge “per diem” and demurrage charges for containers and chassis. More…

US Trade Deficit Soars In December As Strong Dollar Hurts Exports, Downward Q4 GDP Revisions Imminent

NY-New Jersey 2014 volume up 5.4pc to record 5,772,303 TEU
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has posted a 5.4 per cent year-on-year increase in container volume for 2014 to 5,772,303 TEU, reports American Shipper. Philadelphia up 16.7pc to 449,122 TEU, dredging 70pc done in 2014. The Philadelphia Regional Port Authority (PRPA) has posted a 16.7 per cent year-on-year container volume increase in 2014 to 449,122 TEU as well as a 16.6 per cent rise in overall cargo throughput to 5,950,319 tons, marking a fifth straight year of double digit growth.

In October, the State of Pennsylvania created the Intermodal Cargo Growth Incentive Programme that commits up to US$ 1 million a year for five years to encourage ocean carriers to move more cargo through Philadelphia by awarding US$ 25 per container lift above previously reported lift totals.The scheme is to ensure that Mediterranean Shipping Co (MSC) continues to call. While the strings of ships operated by MSC and Maersk’s 2M alliance do not call Philadelphia, MSC has said it will continue to call from North Europe to Philadelphia and Boston.The Port of Philadelphia posted a 14.4 per cent increase in break bulk cargo to 1,382,861 tonnes. Steel was up 49.5 per cent to 394,717 tonnes, and forest products were up 28.2 per cent to 614,843 tonnes.The port said while the amount of fruit and cocoa beans it handled as breakbulk cargo fell, because more of it was containerised, reported American Shipper.”These cargoes aren’t genuinely down at all, only that a portion of them are shifting to containers,” the port said. The port handled 150,637 automobiles (Hyundai and Kia vehicles), 16.6 per cent more than the 129,239 in 2013, and 1,437,664 tons of liquid bulk products last year, up 13.4 per cent year on year.

The port’s $350 million dredging of the Delaware River channel from 40 to 45 feet is close to 70 per cent complete, with the latest rounds of bids to deepen the remaining areas now being evaluated.

US-EU trade deal – the Guardian briefing
What is TTIP, other than an ugly acronym? And will it boost global prosperity by billions of pounds every year – or just make big business ever more influential and unaccountable? More…

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Newsletter January 2015

West Coast Port Congestion & Labor Update
The congestion situation that has existed for many months on the US West Coast continues and has worsened since the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.

Delays are occurring in every aspect of the supply chain, covering both export and import transactions up and down the West Coast, including Seattle/Tacoma, Oakland/San Francisco, and Los Angeles/Long Beach. Ships are often at anchor for days awaiting berthing, unloading and loading the vessel is taking longer than ever, pick up of loaded boxes can often take weeks due to congestion, containers are being buried in closed areas, there is a lack of chassis in good order and a lack of qualified drivers, the rails are congested, etc.

On top of the structural problems that are already existing, the ongoing labor dispute between employers (PMA) and longshoremen (ILWU) has gotten worse, despite the mutual agreement to allow a mediator, appointed by the federal government, to intervene in an attempt to resolve the issues that have caused them to be working without a contract for the past seven months. The battle has intensified this week, with both sides accusing the other of causing the current situation: the PMA accuses the ILWU of deliberately slowing their work speed to a crawl, the ILWU accuses the PMA of reducing longshoremen’s hours in an attempt to break the union.

We will continue to keep you current with regular updates related to this ongoing situation which is causing unprecedented delays and financial burdens to all parties involved in ocean transportation via the US West Coast.

TTIP’s teflon coat wears thin
BRUSSELS – The prospect of an EU-US trade agreement was one of relatively few sources of comfort for EU lawmakers during the bloc’s struggling economy in 2013.

Port of Long Beach: busiest November since 2007
The Port of Long Beach’s cargo volume saw 2.1% growth in November when compared to the same month last year, but the modest rise was enough to mark the busiest November since 2007.

World’s biggest carriers grew again last year as ever-bigger box ships arrived
Maersk Line increase its total cellular capacity by 318,000 teu in 2014….

MOL looks to 20,000 teu ships
As the 19,000 teu ‘CSCL Globe’, currently the world’s largest containership, arrives in Europe on its maiden voyage from China, Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) president, Koichi Muto, has raised the stakes again by…

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Holiday Greetings 2014

We wish you
joy and
prosperity throughout the coming year.

Thank you for your continued support and partnership.

We look forward to working with you in the years to come.

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Newsletter December 2014

It’s this time of the year…

The Port of New York and New Jersey Prepared for the Winter 2014-2015

Trucker strike at ports of L.A. and Long Beach ends…
Striking truck drivers from two companies agreed Friday to return to work, organizers said, ending a nine-day trucker protest at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.
The two struck companies — Pacer International Inc. and Harbor Rail Transport — said in statements that they would not retaliate against drivers who walked off the job and vowed to continue discussions with the Teamsters Union, which is backing the drivers.

Middle East Airfreight Ascent: Mecca or Mirage?
It wasn’t long ago that media and markets alike were ready to anoint the Middle East as the world’s next airfreight hub. More…

Panalpina, Pride, Noble Settle SEC Bribery Cases
Panalpina Inc., Pride International Inc., and Noble Corp. settled U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission lawsuits alleging they bribed officials of foreign governments. More…

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Newsflash November 2014

US Customs System Outage

All carriers, exporters and U.S. importers, should note that U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP) is experiencing a nation-wide system outage affecting all import activity through its Automated Broker Interface (ABI) and Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) systems. CBP is unable to receive or process data and messages from customs brokers, carriers and other related parties.

This outage has affected all import activity resulting in significant shipment delays at many ports of entry throughout the U.S. as Customs relies on its ‘down-time’ procedures.

Westar is continuing to monitor developments regarding this outage. No ETA has been provided by CBP regarding the system’s availability.

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