August 2nd, 2021 | VOLUME 47
The beauty of sport
We’re approaching the midway point of the Tokyo Olympics. Regardless of the ability of spectators to attend and cheer on the athletes, the commitment and dedication to all of the competitors to their sports through 2020 and 2021 to be there competing must be recognized.
Thanks as well must be offered to the Japanese people and the countless volunteers who are working hard to ensure these games and the Paralympics held immediately afterwards provide a lifetime of memories and stories to everyone associated with the games.
We in logistics are already an international community – accustomed to working with people who over time become our friends and our extended family. Seeing athletes on a global stage treat one another the same to a worldwide audience serves as a visual reminder of how when we all come together, we can do amazing things.
USTR takes no action in Vietnam currency investigation
The Office of the US Trade Representative has determined to not take any action at this time in the case of alleged Vietnamese currency manipulation. This determination comes in the wake of an agreement reached between Treasury and the State Bank of Vietnam. For importers sourcing in Vietnam, this is a huge weight lifted that could have meant Section 301 trade remedy duties from a country many see as an alternative sourcing location to China.
Canadian border officers vote to strike
The union representing the Canadian Border Services Officers has voted overwhelmingly strike. They have been working without a contract since 2018. Will this close ports and borders? Unlikely, as the Canadian government prevented Montreal’s longshoremen from walking out earlier this year.
Pedal to the metal: racing across oceans
Remember when slow steaming was all the rage in ocean shipping? Optimized fuel usage, maximum environmental benefits – all things that seemed to make good business sense. Now, with cargo backing up at ports around the globe, the name of the game is speed, and carriers aren’t holding back.
Congress, agencies investigating ocean carrier and railroad practices. Is change coming?
As supply chains seized up last summer and rates began soaring, the government slowly began paying closer attention to what was happening to shippers – both in terms of price and service. Now, multiple agencies are involved in what could lead to increased transparency and challenges to the profit centers that ocean lines and railroads have made penalties for the inability to recover cargo from ports and railroads.
At a hearing of FMC Commissioners yesterday, Commissioner Rebecca Dye provided Congress with a legislative roadmap of how they could augment the agency’s enforcement powers and provide a path to increased compensation to shippers.
Meanwhile, in Congress, bipartisan legislation to rewrite ocean shipping laws is being drafted as the Surface Transportation Board demands railroads explain their demurrage practices.