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New index to improve liner reliability

 mentions that the Shanghai Shipping Exchange (SSE) and Cargosmart are defining a new index of carrier reliability.   Current reliability is around 80%. That means 1 in 5 ships are not arriving on time.

A good reliability index should prove useful to shippers trying to choose a carrier for their cargo.  If you need it on time, you need to pick a high reliability carrier.  Forwarders and NVOOCs, who buy blocks of slots on carriers’ ships for resale, will be moved to choose carriers who won’t cancel and who won’t delay the ships.  The index should also be useful to them.

I’ve been complaining for a while that carriers are not addressing the problem of erratic timing of shipments, and it’s a serious customer service issue for them. It’s time they started addressing it.  True, the larger ships made it more of a problem, but that is of their own doing. Customer service improvement costs money, but you make it up by holding onto good customers longer term.

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via Shippers welcome plan for new index to improve liner reliability – The Loadstar

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Commentary: Cato’s Jones Act numbers wrong

John McCown, a former shipping company CEO and transport hedge fund executive, debunks the faulty calculations in the Cato Institute’s analysis of the Jones Act as it applies to Puerto Rico.

Most container traffic from the US flows from Jacksonville FL to Puerto Rico. Containers headed to Puerto Rico must be carried in US-flagged hulls, due to the cabotage restrictions of the Jones Act.

It appears Cato Institute researchers’ figures are patently wrong, their methodology is flawed, and they have excluded several factors that would affect the Puerto Rico – US container trade link.  Cato researchers came up with an 88% decline in the cost of shipping a container by their flawed technique. But Mr McCown’s spreadsheet says it is more like 10-12%, an amount that is hardly worth junking the Jones Act.

The purpose of the Jones Act is to maintain a capable US maritime segment. It embraces, for instance, container shipping between US ports, US shipbuilding, and US seamen and training, along with the stricter requirements for seamen’s well-being that a US flag puts into effect.

The Cato Institute seems to have aligned itself with some radical allies of the sitting US President. We don’t see why they would be so eager to cook the books on this issue.  And we don’t understand why they insist on repeating their false conclusions even when they have been called into question by a serious critic, on fairly easily ascertainable facts.

It seems as though Cato is falling prey to the fake news fad, and won’t shut their collective mug when they are found out.  It’s a good way to lose everyone’s respect.

 

   via Commentary: Cato’s Jones Act numbers wrong

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Flexport – moving beyond freight forwarding?

This article looking at Flexport now appeared recently under Cathy Morrow Roberson’s byline in The Loadstar.  We enjoy hearing about what Flexport is doing now.  But the idea that they are changing direction to become more like a 4PL is not the point. That’s where they were always going!!  The press and financial folks may have perceived them as a technology play.  But all along Ryan Petersen has intended to create a firm that actually helps customers manage their supply chains, by giving them visibility, a certain amount of in-depth analysis, and good service assistance in dealing among supply chain partners, temporary or permanent.  I don’t think the vision has changed; just the world’s view of it.

  via The Morrow-Roberson road test: Flexport – moving beyond freight forwarding  – The Loadstar