Monday, January 14, 2008
5.4% rate hike for UPS Freight
UPS Freight, the nation’s fourth-largest less-than-truckload (LTL) carrier, Jan 11 announced a general rate increase averaging 5.4% covering non-contractual shipments in the United States and Canada.
The increase goes into effect Feb 4, 2008, and applies to minimum charge, LTL, and truckload (TL) rates, according to the announcement.
Also beginning this month, the announcement said, customers can process both package and LTL shipments in the UPS WorldShip system, an enhancement that’s already exciting customers, UPS Freight President Jack Holmes said.
In addition to being able to create a Bill of Lading (BOL) for LTL shipments, UPS WorldShip users can send e-mail notifications, save BOLs for later completion, import commodities, and view their negotiated rates, Holmes added.
“I have worked with many freight and transportation companies, and I’ve filled out hundreds of forms and freight bills,” says Richard Rohde, who handles shipping for Independent Electric Supply in San Francisco. “In my opinion, this version is by far the easiest to use and the fastest.”
Headquartered in Atlanta, GA, UPS is the world’s largest package delivery company.
VPA ups marketing in India
TRADE with India accounts for a consistently growing share of the Port of Virginia’s business, and because of that the Virginia Port Authority Jan 11 announced it has recently contracted with an experienced firm to represent the VPA in that country.
The VPA and PL Shipping & Logistics Ltd. have signed an agreement for that company to represent the VPA in India’s primary manufacturing centers, inland transport hubs, and major container ports.
The company will promote the shipment of Indian cargo via the Port of Virginia, highlighting the port’s “geographic advantages, operational efficiencies, and intermodal reach,” the announcement said.
“The growth we’ve seen in our trade with India is not an anomaly, and we think that we can continue to cultivate that market by having someone there selling the advantages of the Port of Virginia,” said Jerry A. Bridges, the VPA’s executive director.
In 1994, the VPA’s terminals handled 8,490 TEUs coming from or headed to India; in 2006, that figure was 62,860 TEUs, according to port authorities. The average annual growth in trade between Virginia and India, since 1994, has been 17%.
Virginia Port Authority
New business unit, VP for CEVA
CEVA Logistics, the fourth largest global supply chain provider, Jan 14 announced the appointment of Bill Aldridge to the position of Executive VP for its newly created business unit, International Logistics Solutions.
The company said that ILS’s current service offering and future expansion plans will be focused in the Asian and other emerging markets that support low-cost sourcing and manufacturing, with primary operations in Hong Kong and mainland China.
Prior to joining CEVA, Aldridge was international supply chain president at DHL/Exel Supply Chain and served as managing and regional director for companies such as American President Lines and Hapag-Lloyd (America).
ILS provides “end-to-end supply chain solutions from purchase order to point of sale,” the announcement said.
It combines “direct operational execution, supplier and carrier management, and consulting expertise” to complement CEVA’s core services in freight management and contract logistics.
CEVA’s global network, especially its retail and consumer organization, will work closely with ILS in designing and delivering customized solutions to some 15,000 potential clients, the announcement said.
CEVA Logistics was formed out of the merger of TNT Logistics and EGL Eagle Global Logistics in 2007.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
20 rescued, Ice Prince sinks
THE GREEK-registered cargo ship Ice Prince, carrying 5,258 tonnes of sawn timber, sank Jan 15 at 00:45 GMT in the English Channel about 26 miles off Portland Bill, Dorset, according to the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).
Twenty crew were rescued; there were minimal injuries and no casualties, the MCA said.
Salvage experts cannot asses the situation because of the current severe weather conditions. “There are force nine gales, so it’s not safe to fly. As soon as the weather abates, we would like to get a plane up there taking some footage and assessing the situation,” an MCA spokesman said.
The MCA said they were expecting a “wood slick” to end up somewhere on the south coast over the next few days.
Portland Coastguard along with their French Coastguard colleagues in Cross Corsen are warning other approaching ships of the hazards in the area, particularly in the south westbound lane of the Casquets traffic separation scheme.
Meanwhile, yesterday evening the car carrier City Of Sunderland, which had grounded on England’s East Coast, was successfully refloated with the assistance of two tugs.
Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA)
Commission releases transport plan
Calling for a “new beginning,” the bipartisan US National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission Jan 15 unveiled a comprehensive plan to reform and improve the performance of the US transport system
The plan would “increase investment, expand services, repair infrastructure, demand accountability, and refocus federal transportation programs, while maintaining a strong federal role in surface transportation,” the announcement said.
A key recommendation in the report is to significantly increase investment in surface transportation, including investing “at least $225bn annually from all sources (federal, state, local, and private) for the next 50 years.”
Congress created the 12-member, bipartisan commission in 2005 and charged it with examining the condition and operation of the surface transportation system and developing a conceptual plan and specific recommendations for the future.
After an intensive fact-finding program that included hearings in 10 cities across America, the commission released its Report to Congress, called “Transportation for Tomorrow,” at a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.
The Transportation and Infrastructure Committee of the US House of Representatives has scheduled a hearing on the report on Jan 17, 2008.
“Transportation for Tomorrow”
POLB says “Let’s Talk Port”
LONG BEACH residents are invited to learn more about the Port of Long Beach, ask questions, and share ideas in a casual setting during “Let’s Talk Port,” a series of community forums debuting Wed., Jan 16, at 7 p.m. at Dooley Elementary School, 5075 Long Beach Blvd.
The second in the series will be held Wed., Jan 30, at 7 p.m. at Franklin Middle School, 540 Cerritos Ave.
The forums will offer a convenient way for Long Beach residents to find out more about their port, according to the announcement.
The subjects will include the port’s environmental programs, development projects, and security. Port staff will be on hand to answer questions, provide information, and listen to comments from residents.
“This is another way we are reaching out into the community to discuss what is happening with our environmental programs, security, trade, and more,” said Harbor Commission President Mario Cordero.
The port will host “Let’s Talk Port” workshops throughout the year, each at a different location in Long Beach, the announcement said.
Port of Long Beach
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Ports America Group formed
AIG Highstar Capital, the owner of and investor in Ports America Inc., MTC Holdings, and Amports Inc., Jan 14 announced that it has formed a single management structure to operate the total enterprise.
Branded Ports America Group, the enterprise combines the management of Ports America Inc. and MTC Holdings into a single management team comprised of Chief Executive Officer Doug Tilden, Group President Stephen Edwards, and Chief Financial Officer Aaron Gold.
Amports Inc. will operate as a division of Ports America Group and will retain its existing management structure.
The Ports America Group will be headquartered in Iselin, NJ.
Ports America Group is the largest American port and terminal operating company and is one of the largest in the world, according to the announcement.
Ports America Group encompasses operations in 49 ports with 95 terminals in the United States, Mexico, and Chile. The enterprise handles more than 12mn TEUs, 2mn vehicles, 3mn tonnes of general cargo, and 1mn cruiseship passengers, with a total annual revenue of $1.6bn.
Highstar is a group of investment professionals specializing in value-added equity investments in infrastructure assets and businesses.
Ports America Group
Northrop Grumman in realignment
NORTHROP Grumman Corp. Jan 14 announced a strategic realignment of several of its operating sectors.
The company’s two shipbuilding sections, Newport News and Ship Systems, will merge into a single sector called Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, effective Jan 28, 2008.
In addition, the company is realigning the reporting of its missiles business from its Mission Systems sector to its Space Technology sector, effective Jul 1, 2008.
With this new reporting structure, Mission Systems will “focus on the rapidly growing C4ISR business,” and the missiles business will be an integrated element of the company’s aerospace business growth strategy, the announcement said.
C. Michael Petters, currently corporate vice president and president of Newport News, has been elected corporate vice president and president of Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding.
Philip A. Teel, currently corporate vice president and president of Ship Systems, has been elected corporate vice president and president of the company’s Mission Systems sector effective Apr 1, 2008. Teel will succeed Jerry B. Agee, who is retiring in August 2008 in keeping with the company’s mandatory retirement policy for officers.
Northrop Grumman Corp.
AMB expands with 902,000 sq ft
AMB Property Corp., a global developer and owner of industrial real estate, Jan 15 announced it has acquired a 902,000 sq ft industrial facility in the Inland Empire submarket of Los Angeles.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. currently occupies the entire property, the announcement said.
“This Class-A industrial property, AMB Loma Grande Distribution Center, is an important addition to our growing portfolio of distribution facilities in Southern California, now totaling more than 22mn sq ft,” said Gene Reilly, AMB’s president, the Americas.
“The Inland Empire is arguably one of the strongest distribution markets in the United States with its proximity to the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, and other major distribution hubs throughout the West,” commented Kim Snyder, AMB’s senior vice president, managing director, Southwest Region.
“The market is recognized for record low availability and vacancy rates, and continued demand for space. Given the quality of the facility and the scarcity of developable land in the Inland Empire, this acquisition is a real win,” added Snyder.
The property is located on Interstate 15, near Ontario International Airport.
AMB Property Corp.
Thursday, January 17, 2008
2007 Prince Rupert port traffic up 37%
THE PORT of Prince Rupert “continues its impressive annual growth in shipment volumes,” surpassing 10mn tonnes in 2007 for the first time in a decade, port authorities reported Jan 16.
The 2007 total volume cargo of 10.6mn tonnes is a 36.8% increase over 2006 and a 237% jump over 2005.
Noted Prince Rupert Port Authority President & CEO Don Krusel, “While 2007 represents a significant milestone and turning point for the Port of Prince Rupert on a number of fronts, Ridley Terminals and Prince Rupert Grain continue to lead the way.”
Ridley Terminals’ throughput of 5.09mn tonnes was an increase of 80.7% over 2006 and 500% over 2005, the report said.
Prince Rupert Grain achieved more than 5mn tonnes throughput in 2007 for the first time since 1994 and only the fourth time since the facility was built in 1984. Shipments were up 7.6% over 2006 and 87% higher over 2005.
The recently completed Prince Rupert Container Terminal, the first dedicated intermodal container facility in North America, moved 16,703 TEUs through the facility for the two months of operation in 2007.
Port of Prince Rupert
2007 POLB box trade stays level
A STRONG boom in exports, a slight dip in imports, and a pronounced drop in empty container movement combined to keep container trade volumes at the Port of Long Beach even from 2006 to 2007, port authorities announced Jan 16.
Port terminals moved a total of 7.31mn TEUs in 2007, compared to 7.29mn in 2006, for a slight increase of 0.3%.
In 2007, imported containers decreased by 0.4%, to 3.7mn TEUs, while export containers increased by 22% to 1.5mn TEUs the port’s strongest year ever for exports.
The movement of empty containers, most of which are sent overseas to be refilled with products, decreased by 10.8% to 2mn TEUs, the port said.
With strong demand in Asia for US-produced raw materials, the latter half of the year saw a dramatic increase in exports. Between June and November 2007, the port saw six consecutive months of export increases of more than 30%, fueling the overall yearly jump of 22%.
Because more containers heading overseas were filled with exports, the number of empty containers moving across port terminals declined, by 22%, the port said.
Port of Long Beach
CMA CGM buys 12% stake in Busan terminal
CMA CGM announced Jan 17 that it has acquired a 12% stake in a future container terminal at the port of Busan, South Korea.
Known as Busan 2-3, the new terminal is expected to become operational in 2011, according to the press release.
The terminal will be operated in partnership with Macquarie, Bouygues, Hyundai, KMTC, Busan Port Authority, and local operators KUKJE and KCTC, the company said.
The new facility “will benefit from highly automated equipment able to handle up to 2.7mn TEUs each year,” the company said. Technical characteristics will include a 1,400m-long quay, 12 container cranes, and a 17m draft offering accessibility to 12,000 TEUcapacity container vessels.
Busan 2-3 is CMA CGM’s first port investment in South Korea and the second one in Asia (a cooperation agreement was signed in Xiamen in November 2007).
The project “demonstrates the strong relationship between the group and South Korea, where CMA CGM giant container vessels are currently being built,” the company said.
CMA CGM is currently the world’s third largest container shipping group and is ranked number one in France, according to the announcement.
Friday, January 18, 2008
Chinese workers in melee at Maersk factory
RADIO FREE Asia Jan 17 reported that hundreds of workers at a factory in southern China owned by Danish shipping giant Maersk rioted earlier this week, clashing with security guards and smashing property. Two people were reportedly hospitalized.
n a statement released Jan 17, Maersk Container Industri, part of the AP Moller-Maersk Group, confirmed that a “confrontation had taken place between employees and subcontracted security personnel at its factory in Dongguan, China, in the early morning of 14 January.”
“The relationship with the firm rendering security services to Maersk Container Industri Dongguan has been discontinued,” the statement said.
The company said it is “committed to providing a safe and secure working environment as well as rewarding its employees fairly and in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.”
The facility has “partly reopened” as of Jan 17, the company said.
Local media reports said the workers were angry after Maersk adjusted the number of days off that they would have over the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, reportedly requiring them to work overtime during weekends prior to the holiday.
AP Moller-Maersk Group
Port of Los Angeles reports 2007 traffic
THE PORT of Los Angeles Jan 18 announced its 2007 container volumes. Total volume was 8.4mn TEUs, down 1.36% from 2006.
However, “for the eighth straight year the port led the nation in loaded TEUs volume, representing a 3.2% increase over the previous year,” the port said.
Containerized export cargo continued to grow at a record pace in 2007, with a 13% increase of loaded outbound containers (184,023 TEUs) and an 11.4% decrease in empty containers, or 300,821 fewer containers, the port said.
Since 2000, the port’s containerized exports have risen 63%. The port’s export trade includes cotton, waste paper, scrap metal, animal feed, resins, and aircraft and automotive parts.
“[We] are not anticipating overall gains in 2008 due to the weak economy and the shipping industry’s focus on increasing Asia-Europe capacity,” said Geraldine Knatz, Ph.D., port executive director.
“With soft consumer spending and the weak US dollar, our 2007 results were on par for the most part with West Coast and national volumes, a reminder that ports are a reflection of the economic climate,” added Knatz.
Port of Los Angeles
Maersk launches youship.com
MAERSK Line Jan 15 introduced an alternative shipping service for small businesses, making container shipping “just as easy as ordering airline tickets, books, car rentals, or takeaway food online,” according to the announcement.
The totally online shipping service, youship.com, offers “clear, up-front, all-in pricing information,” with the current rate “always available in real time.” The service aims to enable customers to make the best deal for themselves and their clients.
When booking online, customers get instant booking confirmations, including a space guarantee even when booking eight weeks in advance, the company said.
Maersk described the policy of their new service as “never to overbook; but if the unthinkable does happen and a customer is ‘rolled,’ we provide a full refund, along with free space on the next vessel.”
Early bookers will get lower rates first come, first served, Maersk said.
Currently youship.com serves customers in a number of trade lanes from the ports of Hong Kong, Rotterdam, and Antwerp to destinations in the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Morocco, Turkey, China, Japan, and Australia.
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