New law aims to curb anti-competitive behavior between alliances of ocean freight companies Ship’s crew

New bipartisan legislation has been introduced in the US House of Representatives that could help curb anti-competitive behavior between ocean carrier alliances.

The Ocean Shipping Competition Enforcement Act (HR2710) was introduced by Rep. John Garamendi (D-CA-08) and would allow the Federal Maritime Commission to block agreements between shipping companies or sea terminal operators that are unreasonably anti-competitive without the need to do so would first have to obtain a federal court order.

The bill was proposed after Federal Maritime Commissioners Max Vekich and Carl W. Bentzel requested in December that the US House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure amend the federal law. Garamendi, who is a member of the committee, said that after reforming the country’s maritime shipping laws, for the first time in nearly a quarter century with the passage of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 (OSRA), Congress must ensure that the Federal Maritime Commission ” can do its job and fully enforce the law”.

“The shipping industry was the last transportation sector to be deregulated by Congress in 1984. Because of this, the industry is now dominated by nine foreign-flagged ocean liners operating openly under three airline alliances, which handle about 80 percent of the cargo,” Garamendi said.

The introduction of this new legislation follows the introduction of the bipartisan Ocean Shipping Reform Implementation Act (HR1836), which aims to crack down on the Chinese Communist Party’s attempts to influence the American supply chain, and the reinstatement of the Ocean Shipping Antitrust Enforcement “. Act (HR1696) aimed at addressing unfair practices harming American consumers and businesses that took place last month.

Several organizations have supported the new law, including the National Industrial Transportation League, the California Association of Port Authorities, the National Milk Producers Federation and the US Dairy Export Council.

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