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Signals™ Headlines - September 2, 2005

FMC Proposes NSA Amendment: NVOCC to NVOCC Service Arrangements

The Federal Maritime Commission announced a
Proposed Rulemaking
to amend the definition of “NSA shipper” in the NVOCC Service Agreement (NSA) rules to include
NVOCCs. If this Proposed Rulemaking is finalized individual NVOCCs, and shippers’
associations with NVOCC members, will be allowed to act as shippers in NSAs.
Currently the NSA rules as published in

CFR 46 Part 531
define an NSA shipper
as “a cargo owner, the person for whose account the ocean transportation is
provided, the person to whom delivery is to be made, or a shippers’ association.
The term does not include NVOCCs or shippers’ associations whose membership
includes NVOCCs.” Earlier this year in its initial NSA Rulemaking the FMC
specifically denied NVOCCs the right to enter into NSAs with other NVOCCs
due to concerns that a court might grant NVOCCs acting under filed NSAs immunity
from antitrust laws. However, in June 2005 the U.S. Court of Appeal for the Fourth
Circuit found that two NVOCCs colluding to fix prices did not have antitrust
law immunity. After this ruling the Commission decided to go forward with the
now Proposed Rulemaking.

If finalized the new definition will read: “NSA shipper means a cargo owner, the
person for whose account the ocean transportation is provided, the person to whom
delivery is to be made, a shippers’ association, or an ocean transportation intermediary,
as defined in section 3(17)(B) of the Act, that accepts responsibility for payment of
all applicable charges under the NSA.” This Proposed Rulemaking,
Docket 05-05, was
announced August 3, 2005. Comments were due August 23, 2005. The Commission is
expected to announce a Final Rulemaking soon.

The Commission also issued a Notice of
Inquiry (NOI)
, seeking comment from the
public on further changes to NSA rules that could allow multiple unaffiliated
NVOCCs to jointly offer NSAs. The NOI,
Docket No. 05-06, issued August 30,
contains 15 questions concerning the impact and practicality of multiple
NVOCC NSAs. Comments are due by October 6, 2005. Remarking on the proposals
in an FMC press release Chairman Steven R. Blust said, “I am pleased that the
Commission has reviewed NSAs and has decided to move toward possibly expanding
the opportunities associated with the arrangements.”

WTSA Adjusts Bunker Adjustment, Currency Factor, Adds Inland Fuel Charge

The Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (WTSA), whose member carriers serve
the trade from the USA to East Asia, recently announced the following amendments to Bunker
Adjustment Factors (BAF), Currency Adjustment Factors (CAF) and added a new Inland Fuel

Effective October 1 thru Dec. 31, 2005

Bunker(BAF)Currency (CAF)Inland Fuel Charge (IFC)
US$ 364 per 20′ containerJapan 50%US$ 158 per 20ft container
US$ 455 per 40’/45′ containerKorea 0%US$ 46 per container for local/regional truck
US$ 24 per WMTaiwan 5%
Singapore 9%

The 12 members of WTSA are American President Lines, China Shipping Container
Lines, COSCO Container Lines, Evergreen Marine Corp., Hanjin Shipping,
Hapag-Lloyd Container Line, Hyundai Merchant Marine, “K” Line, NYK Line,
OOCL, P&O Nedlloyd,
and Yang Ming Marine. Revisions to surcharges for
transportation services are published in the FMC tariffs of the WTSA
member carriers, and shown on its website:

Federal Maritime Commission Website Updated

The Federal Maritime Commission launched an updated website August 18, 2005
with new design and current information. The updated website,
www.fmc.gov, is
easily navigated with information organized by areas of interest and by regulated
entity. Also, now available on the FMC website is an
Agreements Library with direct
access to effective carrier agreements, including recent amendments. The library
is searchable by country, carrier, type of agreement and name. The Commission’s
NVOCC Service Agreement and service contract filing system, SERVCON, has not been
updated. SERVCON is accessible through the Commission’s website or at

TACA Implements October GRI, Increases BAF

The Trans-Atlantic Conference Agreement (TACA), whose member carriers serve
the trade between the USA and North Europe, United Kingdom and Ireland, Scandinavia
and Baltic Ports, have implemented a previously announced General Rate Increase (GRI)
to all tariff rates effective October 1, 2005. TACA also increased their Bunker
Adjustment Factor (BAF). TACA’s Currency Adjustment Factor (CAF) will remain at 6
percent through October 16, 2005.

GRI, effective October 1, 2005: Eastbound dry and temperature controlled containers,
US$ 160/20′, US$ 200/40’/45′. Westbound dry and temperature controlled containers,
US$ 240/20′, US$ 300/40’/45′.

Bunker (BAF), effective Sept. 16 thru Nov. 15, 2005

Traffic to/from and via:

Atlantic/Gulf Coast PortsPacific Coast
US$ 354 per 20ft containerUS$ 531 per 20ft container
US$ 708 per 40’/45′ containerUS$ 1062 per 40/45ft container
US$ 35 per WMUS$ 53 per WM

TACA also further suspended their Port of Long Beach and Los Angeles Congestion
Surcharge until at least Sept. 30, 2005. The surcharge of US$ 200/20′ and US$
may or may not be reinstated October 1 pending TACA announcement. TACA members are
Atlantic Container Line, A.P. Moller-Maersk Sealand, Hapag-Lloyd Container Line,
Mediterranean Shipping Co., Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) Line, Orient Overseas Container
and P&O Nedlloyd Limited. Revisions to surcharges for transportation
are published in TACA’s relevant FMC tariffs and on its website:

TSA Carriers File Increased Bunker Adjustment Factor and Inland Fuel Charge

The carrier members of the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (TSA), FMC
Agreement No.
011223, serving the East Asia/USA trade lane have filed increased Bunker Adjustment
(BAF), and Inland Fuel Charge, both effective October 1 thru Dec. 31, 2005.

Bunker (BAF): US$ 345/20′, US$ 455/40′, US$ 510/40′ hi-cube, US$ 580/45′
US$ 10/WM. This represents approximately an 11 percent increase over BAF filed
for the months of July through September 2005.

Inland Fuel Charge (IFC): US$ 158 per container for minilandbridge and
inland point
intermodal shipments, US$ 46 per container for local and regional “Group 4”
transport within California, Oregon and Washington, and for East Coast local
truck moves. This increases the IFC that was initially effective August 15,

TSA member carriers are American President Lines, CMA-CGM, COSCO Container
Lines Ltd.,
Evergreen Marine Corp., Hanjin Shipping, Hapag-Lloyd Container Line, Hyundai
Marine, “K” Line, Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, NYK Line, OOCL, P&O Nedlloyd
Yangming Marine.
Additional information on surcharges applied by the TSA Carriers is available at

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Vol. 9, No. 9, September 2, 2005

The information contained herein is
obtained from reliable sources.
It is subject to change at any time, however, depending on changes in
laws and regulations. While we continually attempt to monitor this
information, we do not guarantee its accuracy and are not responsible
for any damages suffered by any party in reliance on it.
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