USA WEST COAST PORTS CONGESTION CONTINUES
Severe congestion at US West Coast ports continues with no resolution in sight. Despite involvement by federal mediators, the stevedores' union ILWU and the port employers PMA continue their dispute, and shippers/importers try to find ways to bypass the ports most under pressure.
Some commentators believe the situation is close to complete gridlock.
The two parties have yet to agree to a new three-year contract. The previous agreement expired on 30th June.
Adding to the labour problems - numbers of arrivals escalate, and as ships get larger, they require longer times at berth to unload and reload. As a consequence, severe pressure is being applied to all parts of the local infrastructure, especially trucking and chassis supply.
Shipping lines are signalling imminent congestion surcharges on all cargo through US (and Canadian) West Coast ports.
Arrivals and departures in New Zealand are continuing to be seriously delayed, as lines struggle with schedule integrity in the US – NZ – AU – Asia loops which are all connected.
We suggest our clients, both importers and exporters – discuss with suppliers and customers, ways and means to add at least 10 days to current lead time expectations.
We hope the parties will soon reach agreement.