FMC commissioner says itÆs time to talk tariff reform
The Ocean Shipping Reform Act requirement to file public tariffs with the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission is widely viewed by liner carriers and non-vessel-operating common carriers as a costly administrative exercise which offers little value to today's shippers.
FMC Commissioner Rebecca Dye is aware of this industry view, and says it's time for the commission to begin to move toward tariff reform.
'I believe that the practical usefulness of tariffs is ending,' Dye told attendees at the National Industrial Transportation League's Spring Policy Forum in Washington April 8. 'Almost 90 percent of freight carried to and from the United States is currently under contract.'
She cited section 16 of the Shipping Act and OSRA, which grants the commission authority to exempt vessel operators and NVOCCs from the tariff publication provisions.
'I think it is time that we begin a discussion on tariff reform. I think we should consider tariff publishing relief for NVOCCs as well as vessel operators,' Dye said. 'I am not prepared to endorse any particular approach today, but believe that the time has come to consider tariff reform.'