On Wednesday, June 29 U.S. Congressmen John Garamendi and Jim Costa introduced the American Port Access Privileges Act

According to an article published in American Shipper, “Foreign exporters’ access to the American market and our consumers is a privilege, not a right,” Garamendi said. “Cargo ships looking to offload foreign-made products and profit off West Coast ports must provide opportunities for American exports in return. Congress must restore fairness at our ports for American exporters to help reduce the United States’ longstanding trade imbalance with countries like China.”

According to the article, carriers loading and unloading both imports and exports would receive preferential treatment at ports, according to the lawmakers, by establishing a “secondary berthing preference” for ocean carriers that serve multiple U.S. ports or have cargo bookings of at least 51% American. exports as determined by weight or container volume.

The legislation also would:

  • Require export-carrying vessels seeking preferential berthing report cargo bookings at least seven days in advance to port operators.
  • Ensure the new preferential berthing for export-carrying vessels would not interfere with U.S. Coast Guard orders for commercial vessels, port safety or collective bargaining agreements for port workers.
  • Codify the current preferences for military, Jones Act and other U.S.-flagged vessels in place at many major American ports.

BDG International is monitoring both the import and export volumes and pricing for ocean containers.  Contact us for quote inquiries at insidesales@bdginternational.com