STAT Communications Ag Market News

U.S. Bolsters FMC Authority

WASHINGTON - Jun 18/22 - SNS -- The United States made several significant revisions to the investigatory authority of the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC).

The law will force international ocean carriers to report to the FMC the number of empty containers being transported and prohibits them from unreasonably declining to carry U.S. goods, including agricultural products such as pulses.

Shipping lines will also need to demonstrate their detention or demurrage charges are reasonable, instead of forcing shippers to prove they were not.

Under the law, the FMC will formally establish an Office of Consumer Affairs and Dispute Resolution Services to mediate shipper complaints.

Conatiner availability has been a major concern for exporters in many countries, reflecting backlogs of containers in some key Asian ports because of the impact of closure resulting from outbreaks of the COVID virus.

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