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Labor Negotiations Underway with Dockworkers Union

Labor and Management Meet in San Francisco The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) entered contract talks this week with the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA). These labor negotiations come ahead of the July 1 expiration of the current contract and amid backlogs and delays in west coast ports like Los Angeles and Long Beach. Jim McKenna, PMA President and CEO, remains hopeful about the negotiations. “At this point in time,” says McKenna, “you have to be cautiously optimistic that we’re not gonna get into a strike scenario, but it’s early in the game.” Both sides…
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Biden Administration Rolls Back Trade War Tariffs

Some Imports from China to be Excluded from Tariffs President Biden and his administration will allow some products imported from China to bypass the tariffs imposed by the previous administration. In 2018, President Donald Trump began a trade war with multiple countries, including China. The tariffs and quotas on certain imports obstructed trade and investment, with economists citing its negative impact on the global economy. This follows a U.S.-Japanese agreement to roll back Trump-era steel tariffs. The Biden administration has faced pressure to eliminate the tariffs, with many lawmakers and businesspeople arguing the tariffs were hurting…
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Shanghai Lockdown Squeezes Supply Chain

China’s Stringent Zero Covid Policy Strikes a Barely Recovered Supply Chain The supply chain continues to limp along on its Sisyphean struggle back to normal. An outbreak of Covid-19 cases tied to the Omicron variant have caused China to take drastic measures and issue a near total shutdown of Shanghai, one of the world’s most populous cities. The Shanghai lockdown is notable for several reasons, not the least of which it is the largest lockdown in China since Wuhan, widely believed to be the origin of the Covid-19 pandemic. As of Sunday, March 27th, there…
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NCBFAA Celebrates Landmark 125th Anniversary

Sheltered International Congratulates the NCBFAA on 125 Years On March 22nd, the National Customs Brokers & Forwarders Association of America, celebrated its 125th anniversary. NCBFAA President Jan Fields says, “NCBFAA continues to represent a diverse membership, makes sense of incredibly complex issues, enhances our professionalism to attract top-notch talent, and strives to make our industry better.” Even after 125 years, the NCBFAA is a stable and growing organization that continues to serve its members. NCBFAA Executive Vice President Megan Montgomery says, “While our mission has evolved, our determination to make our industry the very best…
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Inflation Rising from All Corners of the Globe

Covid Outbreaks in China, War in Russia As the two year mark since the first coronavirus lockdowns approaches, life in the United States is close to resembling a pre-pandemic world—at least on the surface. While mask mandates are being lifted and the rate of new cases is the lowest since March 2020, the supply chain is still struggling under the pressure of inflation and gas prices at all-time highs. The Federal Reserve has indicated they intend to raise interest rates to curb inflation, but factors from international partners have massive complications. The global economy is…
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Shipping Delays Reverberate from Russia Sanctions

Russia Cut Out of Global Shipping Russia sanctions rock the global economy following the unprecedented invasion of Ukraine in February. Now, as the dust begins to settle from Russia’s first salvo and ensuing sanctions from the rest of the world, the picture of how the global supply chain and shipping industry will be affected is becoming clearer. In line with sanctions, Maersk, MSC and CMA CGM have suspended most deliveries to Russia, the world’s 11th largest economy. The refusal to deliver “non-essential” goods is in line with numerous other companies that have suspended sales in…
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Post Chinese New Year Shipping Outlook

The Sun Rises in the East As 2021 drew to a close, America faced a tough road ahead due to a historic rise in inflation and European growth slowed due to rising energy costs. The, as for now temporary, delay of the Nord 2 Pipeline has contributed to the high price of energy, as well. Russia’s incursions into Ukraine have made the outlook in Europe even foggier. As we examine the Chinese shipping outlook, it is clear economies from every continent are more intertwined than ever. Following the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) entering into…
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Border Protests at the US-Canada Border Torpedo Supply Chain

Auto Industry Losing Millions of Dollars Weekly With new cases of the Omicron variant beginning to lessen, there were hopes by many life might slowly return back to a pre-pandemic state. February is a month that traditionally feels the brunt of a tightened supply chain due to Lunar New Year celebrations, but this year the strain on the supply chain is coming from border protests on the North American continent. Three border crossings have been closed or affected by a group of Canadian truckers who are protesting Covid mitigation measures. Thousands of truckers have joined…
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Inflation Caused by Transportation and Warehousing Costs

Inflation Grows With Rising Freight Rates Inflation continues to rise as the costs of transportation and warehousing goods for final demand has increased by more than 18% this November. Comparing this data to earlier years shows this is the largest annual increase since 2009.  Covid-19 Contributes to Inflation Tensions   Photo Courtesy of Daniel Schludi Materials like iron ore, steel, and even finished products ready for market have to move as raw materials that are processed in global manufacturing. All companies have to factor in the cost of transporting goods, and this is typically a fraction…
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In Conversation with Licensed Customs Broker Michelle Rockwell

The Past, Present and Future of the Customs Industry Today on the blog, we had the chance to sit down with Michelle Rockwell, a Licensed Customs Broker and Operations Manager here at SiShips. Rockwell is a veritable fount of knowledge for all aspects of importing and exporting. Her career has spanned thirty years in the shipping industry. Rockwell has been a valued member of the SiShips team for the last seven years. Over the course of our conversation we touched on a variety of topics, including Rockwell’s unique experience as a Licensed Customs Broker, what…
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