NITL supports passage of freight transportation legislation

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The National Industrial Transportation League (NITL), a trade association representing industrial freight transportation shippers, recently said it supports the introduction of legislation modernizing the Shipping Act in the U.S. Senate.

S.B. 3580, the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022, addresses supply-chain challenges.

“The overwhelming support of the White House and the bipartisan support shown for competitiveness in the supply chain is a crucial step toward addressing systemic issues contributing to the chaos at U.S. seaports and unprecedented disruption to the ocean shipping network” Nancy O’Liddy, NITL’s executive director, said. “While we made it through the holiday rush, the ongoing ocean shipping turmoil has wreaked havoc on U.S. exporters and importers, costing them billions in higher shipping costs, demurrage and detention charges, dwell fees, and lost business and products.”

The bill would require ocean carriers to certify that late fees comply with federal regulations or face penalties. This shifts burden of proof from the invoiced party to the ocean carrier.

Ocean carriers would be prohibited from unreasonably declining shipping opportunities for U.S. exports.

Ocean common carriers would be required to report each quarter to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) on total import/export tonnage and 20-foot equivalent units per vessel.

The bill was introduced on Feb. 3.