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U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood Announces Creation of Freight Policy Council

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood on Thursday announced the launch of the Freight Policy Council which will focus on improving the condition and performance of the national freight network to better ensure the ability of the United States to compete in today's global economy. The council will develop a national, intermodal plan for improving the efficiency of freight movement and will work with states to encourage development of a forward looking state freight strategy. More here.

Updated ACEopedia Available on CBP Website

The August 2012 update to the ACEopedia has been posted on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website. The ACEopedia is updated monthly and contains the latest information on ACE capabilities and development efforts. To download the document click here.

CBP - Updated Simplified Entry Frequently Asked Questions

CBP has posted updated versions of the Simplified Entry Pilot Frequently Asked. To download the documents click here.

Drewry Maritime Research Releases Container Census Report

Canadian Sailings - Container equipment fleet growth uneven across 2011, as oversupply catches buyers out. The container equipment fleet grew by 8.5 per cent during 2011, taking the global fleet to 31.25 million TEUs, compared to a 7 per cent growth in 2010. This was better than expected as demand for new builds suffered a knock from the second quarter of 2011 onwards, with production significantly curtailed from that point. Indeed, analysis within Drewry Maritime Research's Container Census 2012 - Survey and Forecast of Global Container Units - implies that up to 70 per cent of 2011 net additions were made in the first 6 months of the year, highlighting distinct uneven progress. More here.

MSC Changes North Atlantic Loop

American Shipper - Mediterranean Shipping Co. has altered the U.S. rotation of its five-ship, 35-day roundtrip North Atlantic service by introducing several different vessels and increasing the average TEU per ship from 4,524 to 4,986 TEUs. The new port rotation introduces double calls in Norfolk and Baltimore as well as New York, becoming Bremerhaven, Felixstowe, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Le Havre, Norfolk, New York, Baltimore, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Norfolk, New York and back to Bremerhaven. Previously, the loop went from Europe to Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, New York, Norfolk and back to Europe. The Le Havre-Norfolk transit has been reduced to four days, compared with New York to Bremerhaven in nine days.

American Airlines Increasing Miami - Santiago de Chile from Mid-November 2012

American Airlines starting November 15, 2012 is increasing Northern Winter operation on Miami - Santiago de Chile service, where it'll increase from 10 weekly to 14 weekly. Boeing 767-300ER operates this route. Schedule as follows:

AA225 MIA2035 - 0700+1SCL 763 D
AA957 MIA2345 - 1015+1SCL 763 D
AA912 SCL2210 - 0445+1MIA 763 D
AA226 SCL2325 - 0605+1MIA 763 D

Lufthansa to Launch Boeing 747-8I Service to Bangalore from Mid-September 2012

Lufthansa starting September 13, 2012 is launching a third Boeing 747-8I route, where it'll operate Frankfurt - Bangalore route on daily basis. Schedule as follows:

LH754 FRA1215 - 0030+1BLR 74H D
LH755 BLR0230 - 0825FRA 74H D

BLR departure operates with 747-8I begins from September 14, 2012.

CTSA Notice to Customers - CAF Effective October 1, 2012

Major transpacific shipping lines of the Canada Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (CTSA), wish to advise their customers that effective October 1st, 2012 the Currency Adjustment Factor will be at the following levels:

Origin CAF - 7%- Applicable from all origins including Japan and the PRC

The next review will occur at the end of November 2012 for effect January 1st, 2013. CTSA is a group of 10 ocean and intermodal transportation companies serving the trade from Asia to Canada.

CWTSA Notice to Customers - CAF Effective October 1, 2012

Major transpacific shipping lines of the Canada Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (CWTSA), wish to advise their customers that effective October 1st, 2012 the Currency Adjustment Factor will be at the following levels:

Origin CAF - 6% - Applicable to all destinations including Japan and the PRC

The next review will occur at the end of November 2012 for effect January 1st, 2013. CWTSA is a group of 8 ocean and intermodal transportation companies serving the trade from Canada to Asia.

EDC Weekly Commentary - What Club Membership Means for Russia

By Peter G. Hall - After a long wait, Russia is finally in. Yesterday, the world's 9th largest economy was welcomed into the World Trade Organization (WTO) following 18 years of negotiations. Getting to this point has been a tough slog on a number of fronts. Does accession signal a turning point for Russia, and for Canadian exporters doing business there, or will its ongoing transition remain turbulent? More here.

CBSA Maintenance Outage Sunday August 26th, 2012

Full EDI Outage: For maintenance purposes, all EDI applications will be unavailable from 05:00 to 12:00 (Eastern Time): Electronic Releases, RNS, CUSDEC, CADEX, CSA, ACI Marine, ACI Air, ACI eManifest Highway as well as Rail and Highway Cargo.

ILA Strike Likely After Talks Collapse

American Shipper - Negotiations for a new International Longshoremen's Association contract covering dockworkers at East and Gulf Coast ports broke down suddenly Wednesday. The two sides were scheduled to participate in committee meetings in Florida this week to make progress on a new contract to replace the existing one that expires Sept. 30, when the talks scheduled for Wednesday through Friday were canceled. The impasse comes at a precarious time, with just more than a month to go for the two sides to avoid the first work stoppage at ILA ports since the 1970s.

CBSA Advance Commercial Information (ACI) Air and Marine - ECCRD Effective August 25, 2012

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has posted the Electronic Commerce Client Requirements Documents (ECCRD) for ACI Air and Marine effective August 25, 2012. They can be downloaded here.

Government Reviewing Tax Breaks for Imports from China

Despite its growing economic, political and military might - and the fact it has become Canada's second-largest trading partner - China is among a list of 175 countries that continue to enjoy special tax exemptions for goods sold to this country. That may be about to change as the federal government is reviewing whether the benefit, called the general preferential tariff, should be removed from China and other emerging economies like Russia, Brazil and India, as well. But while analysts say it may make sense to remove the exemption from some countries, the question is whether the potential political and diplomatic costs make such a move worth it. More at the Montreal Gazette.

IMO Welcomes Landmark Maritime Labour Convention Ratifications

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has welcomed the landmark ratifications of the International Labour Organization (ILO)'s Maritime Labour Convention, which will bring the treaty into force in 12 months' time, establishing minimum requirements for almost all aspects of working conditions for seafarers. More here.

APL Quits Westbound Transpacific Stabilisation Agreement

APL, the container shipping arm of shipping group Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), is quitting the Westbound Transpacific Stabilisation Agreement (WTSA), the discussion forum covering the westbound trade from the US to Asia, with effect from September 1. APL is the third carrier to leave the WTSA over the past decade, following MOL's departure in June 2005 and previously Maersk Line, which was known at the time as Maersk Sealand and left the group in July 2002. This reduces WTSA members to nine shipping lines: Hapag-Lloyd, Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), "K" Line, NYK Line, OOCL Cosco, Evergreen, Hanjin and Yang Ming.

CBP Updates Information on C-TPAT Mutual Recognition

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) updated their website last week with a new document covering the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) program and Mutual Recognition (MR). Mutual Recognition (MR) refers to those activities associated with the signing of a document between U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and a foreign Customs administration that provides for the exchange of information. The document, referred to as an "arrangement", indicates that the security requirements or standards of the foreign industry partnership program, as well as its validation or audit procedures, are the same or similar with those of the C-TPAT program.

The document can be found here.

Mutual Recognition information and an FAQ can be found here.