Belt and Road, chassis, China, China State Owned Enterprise, COSCO, Federal Maritime Commission, Hapag-Llyod, HMM Co, intermodal transport, Marks, Mediterranean Shipping Company, ocean, Ocean Carrier Equipment Management Association, ports, rail, shipping, shortages, State Owned Enterprise, supply chain, transportation, trucking, US ports, Wan Hai Lines, Yang Ming Marine Transport, Zim Integrated Shipping Services
This case is apparently still ongoing and shows some of the risks of letting foreign owned companies take over the shipping of a country. It may be related to shortages and higher costs. COSCO is actually owned by the Chinese government (State Owned Enterprise (SOE), as even noted on their web site. As stated in the lawsuit, “COSCO by itself and through its common carrier subsidiaries and affiliated companies, offers container transportation in 356 ports in 105 countries.” https://www2.fmc.gov/readingroom/docs/20-14/20-14_Complaint.pdf/
“The Chinese government does not have an official platform summarizing the overall data for China’s overseas port projects, but publicly available information shows that Beijing now has a foothold in at least 100 ports in 63 countries. According to data published on the COSCO official website, as of June this year, the group has operated and managed 357 terminals in 36 ports around the world. Its port portfolio has stretched from Southeast Asia to the Middle East, Europe and the Mediterranean. In addition, China Merchants Group, another major port developer and operator in China, says on its website that the company completed “equity acquisition of eight high-quality ports in Europe, the Middle East and the Caribbean last year alone, expanding the group’s global port layout to 27 countries, 68 ports.”
China’s global port expansion means Beijing now has investments in more than 100 ports in 63 countries”. https://www.voanews.com/a/6224958.html
Press Release, August 20, 2020:
“IMCC Sues OCEMA to Stop Abuse of American Truckers” Intermodal Truckers Demand End to Exploitation by Foreign-Owned Ship Lines
Media Contact: Sean McNally
Arlington, Virginia — The American Trucking Associations’ Intermodal Motor Carrier Conference filed suit with the Federal Maritime Commission this week, alleging foreign-owned ocean shipping lines engaged in unjust and unreasonable conduct in violation of the Shipping Act. Their unlawful actions have overcharged truckers and their customers for intermodal container chassis at ports and inland terminals throughoutthe United States.
“For more than a decade, these foreign-owned companies have worked together to take advantage of hard-working American trucking companies,” said Bill Sullivan, ATA’s executive vice president for advocacy. “By denying truckers choice of equipment providers at port and inland locations, these unscrupulous companies have been forcing American truckers and American consumers to subsidize their costs to the tune of nearly $1.8 billion—over the last three years alone.
“This must end, and after several attempts to come to a mutually beneficial resolution, we are now asking the FMC to resolve it,” Sullivan said.
IMCC filed its complaint with the FMC on August 17, alleging that the Ocean Carrier Equipment Management Association and 11 ocean carriers have denied trucking companies choice when leasing this essential equipment, forcing unjust and unreasonable prices upon trucking companies. Hoping to avoid legal action, IMCC sent a Cease and Desist letter to OCEMA and to the ocean carriers in May, but OCEMA failed to address the violations that were raised. https://www.trucking.org/sites/default/files/2020-08/OCEMA%20C%26D%20Letter.pdf
“By denying motor carriers their choice of chassis provider to haul goods in and out of ports, OCEMA’s overseas members have held US motor carriers hostage and forced them to subsidize the shipping lines,” said ATA Chairman Randy Guillot, and president of Triple G Express and Southeastern Motor Freight. “So far OCEMA and its members have rejected all of our attempts to reach a fair and equitable arrangement, but we believe they’ll have less success ignoring the FMC.”
In its complaint, which can be read here, the IMCC outlined a number of ongoing violations of the Shipping Act and is seeking injunctive relief against OCEMA and the shipping lines. https://www.trucking.org/sites/default/files/2020-08/IMCC%20Complaint.pdf “ Emphasis added. Original Press Release here: https://www.trucking.org/news-insights/imcc-sues-ocema-stop-abuse-american-truckers
How did we get here?
“With Acquisition of California Port, China Broadens Influence on US Commerce” Posted Tuesday, June 5, 2018, By Cole P. Zail https://amac.us/with-acquisition-of-california-port-china-broadens-influence-on-us-commerce/
See the stamped filed copy here:
“BEFORE THE FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION
INTERMODAL MOTOR CARRIERS CONFERENCE, AMERICAN TRUCKING ASSOCIATIONS, INC.
OCEAN CARRIER EQUIPMENT MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION, INC.; CONSOLIDATED CHASSIS MANAGEMENT, LLC; CMA CGM S.A.; COSCO SHIPPING LINES CO. LTD.; EVERGREEN LINE JOINT SERVICE AGREEMENT, FMC NO. 011982; HAPAG-LLOYD AG; HMM CO. LTD.; MAERSK A/S; MSC MEDITERRANEAN SHIPPING COMPANY S.A.; OCEAN NETWORK EXPRESS PTE. LTD.; WAN HAI LINES LTD.; YANG MING MARINE TRANSPORT CORP.; AND ZIM INTEGRATED SHIPPING SERVICES,
COMPLAINT FOR VIOLATION OF THE SHIPPING ACT OF 1984, 46 U.S.C. § 41102(C) “. https://www2.fmc.gov/readingroom/docs/20-14/20-14_Complaint.pdf/
The case appears to still be ongoing: https://www2.fmc.gov/readingroom/docs/20-14/20-14_Memo_Law_Supp_Dis.PDF/