COVID-19 Latest Updates

Vessels Anchored in Port of Savannah Drop to Less Than Five, Toyota Surpasses GM As Best-Selling Automaker, Airlines Cancel over 1,000 Flights 11 Days in a Row

By January 6, 2022 No Comments

Ocean  

U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) investigating Wan Hai for empty container detention charges. FMC launched an investigation against the container line Wan Hai over detention costs applied to shippers when it allegedly did not provide a means for shippers to return containers. The probe notably refers to 21 instances last spring in which shippers were charged for detention, with rates ranging from $125 to $1,550 per container.

Mediterranean Shipping Co. (MSC) ranks first in ocean carrier capacity. Due to its massive orderbook, MSC has surpassed its 2M partner Maersk as the top worldwide ocean carrier by capacity at the start of 2022, according to the most recent statistics from maritime data source Alphaliner. According to Alphaliner’s current top 100 carrier rankings, the Geneva-based carrier has slightly over 4.284 million TEU of ships on the water and booked for future delivery. Maersk, on the other hand, has little over 4.282 million TEU in existing and pending capacity, according to Alphaliner statistics.

Custom

Ethiopia, Guinea, and Mali have been removed from African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) program. According to a Presidential Proclamation of December 23, 2021, the following Sub-Saharan African nations are no longer eligible for AGOA preferential treatment for goods entered or removed from a warehouse on or after January 1, 2022. Ethiopia, Guinea, and Mali are the nations that have been terminated. Click here for the Presidential Proclamation.

Ports

Amount of vessels anchored in Port of Savannah drops to less than five. The Georgia Ports Authority (GPA) attributes the improvement to greater collaboration with shippers and trucking companies after raising concerns in September when the terminal was clogged with containers and 30 vessels were anchored outside the harbor. GPA stated that if shippers continue to remove their containers swiftly, it could take care of all the anchored boats within a couple of weeks due to four pop-up storage sites around Georgia and increased capacity in the Garden City Terminal, which can now handle up to 570,000 TEU per year.

LA-LB ports postpone container dwell fee until January 10th. The ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have again delayed their “Container Dwell Fee,” this time until Jan. 10. The charge was initially scheduled to go into effect on Monday, Jan. 3. Since the fee was announced on Oct. 25, the two ports have reported a combined reduction of 35% in old cargo on the docks. Following another week of monitoring data, the executive directors of both ports are scheduled to continue their reassessment charge implementation.

Air

Cathay Pacific postponed cargo flights as Hong Kong tightens COVID regulations. Cathay Pacific has suspended all long-haul freight and cargo-only passenger flights for a week after Hong Kong authorities increased the quarantine time for inbound air cargo crews from three to seven days. The additional quarantine time limits the number of available pilots, making Cathay’s typical flying schedule difficult to maintain.

U.S. cargo carriers object Saudi Arabian Airlines’ request for trans-Atlantic freighter flights. Three major U.S. all-cargo airlines are opposing Saudi Arabian Airlines’ request for authorization to run cargo flights from Liege, Belgium, to New York and Chicago because the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not allow U.S. carriers to travel there from other nations. FedEx Express, UPS, and Atlas Air all stated in separate comments to the Department of Transportation on Tuesday that they favor expanded air traffic rights but that the Saudi government prevents them from flying the most financially efficient routes. They contended that the country’s flag carrier should not be given a benefit that is not reciprocated since it would place them at a great disadvantage.

Airlines cancel over 1,000 flights 11 days in a row. By Wednesday evening, almost 1,700 flights in the U.S. had been canceled, marking the 11th consecutive day of more than 1,000 cancellations and the airline industry’s worst stretch since the pandemic began. According to the aviation data tracker FlightAware, airlines also delayed more than 3,900 flights by Wednesday evening. Since Christmas Eve, airlines have canceled almost 22,000 flights.

California filed a lawsuit against Amazon’s San Bernardino air freight facility. The state of California asked a federal appeals court to rehear its case challenging a new air cargo facility at San Bernardino International Airport, which is a significant package hub in Amazon’s air network. According to Attorney General Rob Bonta, the initial judgment violates current environmental legislation and exposes the neighboring community to dangerous diesel truck and jet pollutants.

Trucking

​​Chicago spot truck prices increasing from East, Gulf coast ports. Spot truckload prices in the U.S., which climbed in December, are reaching new highs as 2022 begins, particularly in lanes related to U.S. seaports and border crossings. Freight volumes traveling inland from ports remain high, and truck capacity that was constricted over the holidays has not been released. This is causing concern among shippers who are prepared to embark on yearly contract negotiations with their trucking partners.

Stoughton expanding chassis manufacturing in Texas. Stoughton Trailers is establishing a chassis manufacturing line in Waco, Texas, as part of the company’s ambitious goal to boost production this year in order to solve a severe equipment shortage that is contributing to worldwide and domestic supply chain bottlenecks. The chassis and trailer maker currently has operations in Evansville and Stoughton, Wisconsin, but establishing a third facility is vital to growing yearly output from 10,000 to 25,000 chassis, according to the company’s November statement.

Rail

$231 million rail project will connect Port of Mobile to central Alabama. Alabama authorities revealed plans for a 280-mile rail project to improve transportation to and from the Port of Mobile, the state’s sole seaport. Norfolk Southern is contributing more than half of the project’s cost. The $231.6 million A-USA Corridor, according to state authorities, may help improve the nation’s supply chain while also drawing new manufacturing, warehousing, and distribution facilities to Alabama.

Other

New Jersey takes action to fight waterfront crime alone. New Jersey formally notified the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor of its intention to resign from its decades-long collaboration with New York state to combat organized crime in maritime operations. New York now has 90 days to dispute the withdrawal, but previous court decisions indicate that it will be a difficult struggle. The commission was established about 70 years ago by an agreement between the two states to combat corruption and violence associated with port labor activities. It has recently attempted to enforce diversity in the dockside workforce. The break has no effect on the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which oversees the regional transportation network.

Toyota surpasses General Motors (GM) as best-selling automaker in U.S. In a shift driven partly by a global computer-chip shortage that has battered the automobile industry, Toyota overtook GM as the top-selling vehicle maker in the U.S. Toyota’s overall U.S. sales of 2.3 million increased by nearly 10% over 2020, while GM’s sales fell by 13% as a result of the semiconductor shortage, which impacted manufacturing and left dealer lots with low inventory. Toyota benefitted from its earlier decision to hoard computer chips, a departure from its reputation as a just-in-time manufacturer.

Graphic Packaging Holdings’ latest initiative to provide more sustainable packaging for consumer goods. A $600 million facility in Michigan will begin operations to convert recycled cardboard into paperboard, making it the first of its kind built in the U.S. in ages. The massive machine marks a significant new step by Graphic Packaging Holding to incorporate eco-friendly packaging into their supply chains. Graphic currently provides packaging to the nation’s largest food, beverage, and consumer-products firms, and the company claims that green investing has created a large market for replacing plastic with paper.