The latest on Russia sanctions from the International Trade and Supply Chain Team
Read Now
Photo of Carlos Rodriguez

A member of the Technology, Manufacturing & Transportation team, Carlos concentrates his practice in international and domestic transportation law. He skillfully navigates his maritime clients through the complexities of regulation and compliance in matters administered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and other governing bodies. He also coordinates global and U.S. acquisitions and mergers of multinational companies.

  • Many of the rate hikes represent almost a 100% increase in shipping rates
  • The special permission is not only to increase the rates and charges, but these increases are effective immediately as they also waive the FMC’s required 30-day notice period for increasing rates
  • Absent significant military or diplomatic action, our expectation is that these circumstances will not disappear quickly

The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) has granted special permission to ocean carriers to immediately increase the rates on containers that are being rerouted around the Cape of Good Hope in Africa or are retaining feeder vessels for pickup of cargo at high-risk ports in the Red Sea due to increased hostilities. Since mid-November 2023, Houthi rebels based in Yemen have attacked Red Sea shipping bound for Israel or linked to Israeli ports. Reported security incidents have ranged from outright attacks, approaches, and business interruptions to mere sightings.Continue Reading FMC Allows Rate Hikes for Carriers in Response to Red Sea Hostilities

Don’t Forget the Chassis in the Chase for the Cure.

A new level of frustration has arisen from the ocean shipper ranks during this “post-COVID” period. Shipments from Asia to the U.S. are experiencing extreme difficulties in getting their cargo delivered, mainly due to the acute shortage of chassis to effect delivery of their containers on the U.S. side. The painful example of this is the BNSF current experience with Lot W. Aside from the impact to the importer in not being able to access its cargo and experiencing serious damage to its business, it is also likely to face serious demurrage charges from the ocean carrier. This is on top of having just experienced a quadrupling (or more) of the base FAK per container rates, and the ocean carrier choices to leave agricultural commodities sitting at West Coast U.S. ports, favoring the shipment of empty containers opting to position equipment for the lucrative Asia to U.S. trade.Continue Reading The Dynamic of the Chassis Quandary Today in Ocean Shipping in the United States

The below e-mail recently received by the author paints the picture we are seeing a thousand fold in the current ocean shipping marketplace in the inbound/outbound Asia trade lanes which
Continue Reading The Disappearance of the Service Contract in Ocean Shipping and Resurgence of Ocean Tramp Practices

According to media reports, a massive 400-meter container ship operated by Evergreen Marine Corp. in Taiwan, the Ever Given, became stuck in the Suez Canal after apparently running aground due to high winds from a sandstorm. As a result, potentially hundreds of ships cannot pass on either side of the Suez Canal
Continue Reading Suez Canal Blockage Could Worsen Port Congestion and Impact Usage of Panama Canal

The major thrust of this post is to underscore certain micro trends which have emerged in the ocean transport industry in the recent past, which are not expected to transcend into macro territory, but will be present for a good while, and need attention since they can result in substantial damages/losses to importers and exporters. Focusing on these can result in big dollar savings in the short and long run. These micro trends have surfaced as a result of a combination of events and developments such as unpredictable turns in the import trades from China/Asia to the United States; the export levels and trends of agricultural commodities from the U.S. to China; the prevalence of equipment unavailability to the shipping industry (both containers and chassis, and now, sometimes vessels).
Continue Reading Micro Trends for 2021: Ocean Shipping Contracting Responses

On April 28, 2020, the Federal Maritime Commission (“Commission “or “FMC”) released the long-awaited interpretive rules in Docket No. 19-05 relating to how ocean common carriers may lawfully apply demurrage
Continue Reading New FMC Interpretative Demurrage and Detention Rules: Will They Assist Ocean Transportation Intermediaries?

What might not be so obvious in this COVID-19 environment, which we have grown to associate with shortages, is that counterintuitively there are issues beginning to appear dealing with the opposite situation. The Journal of Commerce has reported that “[t]he container shipping industry is marshaling a response to signs of a building import backlog as some retailers and manufacturers fail to pick up containers because warehouses are full or closed due to not being deemed essential service providers responding to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).” This is a development with implications to all stakeholders in the supply chain and will have some impact on retailers/manufacturers, ocean carriers, ocean transportation intermediaries, and warehouses.Continue Reading COVID-19 Impacts on Demurrage and Detention

The authors previously reported that on or about February 27, 2019, the Ministry of Transport (“MOT”), PRC dropped formal application approval procedures and insurance (in the U.S., the China
Continue Reading NVOCCs in the China Trades: Dangerous Confusion Persists by U.S. NVOCCs on the MOT Registration Regulation