Understanding the 3 New Ocean Carrier Shipping Alliances

Learn How the New Carrier Alliances Affect Your Ocean Freight Contracts and/or Shipments.

The new ocean carrier shipping alliances are fully operational as of April 2017. These 3 carrier alliances represent nearly 80% of global container trade and roughly 90% of container capacity on major trade routes. The main trade lane that is highly affected by this change and the main reason for the new alliances is the North America-Asia a.k.a. “East-West” trade lane between the Far East and North America which will represent 96% of East-West trade. This post is focused more on the trade routes that related to North America.

If you employ an NVOCC or international freight forwarder to handle your ocean freight, or negotiate your carrier contracts on your behalf, this information will be useful in your decision making.

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Japanese Carriers Merge into ONE, Ocean Network Express

Japan’s three major shipping lines announced plans to merge into a single, consolidated joint venture company; the timing, however, remains in question. “K” Line, MOL, and NYK Lines intended to establish the Ocean Network Express (ONE) by April of 2018, however U.S. ‘gun jumping’ laws may force a much sooner launch. Earlier this month, the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) rejected the carriers’ joint venture proposal, citing that the Shipping Act of 1984 does not provide the FMC with the authority to approve mergers. This ‘tripartite’ agreement included provisions to prematurely transfer U.S. marine terminal shares and ownership interest within the new entity, which would violate the sharing of competitive information; already a major concern since the dawn of shipping alliance and vessel sharing agreements (VSA). The ONE must turn to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission to render a verdict.
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