FMC to study Prince Rupert diversion
The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission plans to study diversion of U.S. cargo through the Port of Prince Rupert in British Columbia.
FMC Chairman Richard A. Lidinsky Jr. said his agency has been told it will receive a request from members of Congress from the West Coast “to study the impact of Prince Rupert, Canada taking cargo bound for America from Los Angeles, Long Beach, Oakland, Seattle and other ports.
“It is a complicated issue involving the Harbor Maintenance Tax, weaker container inspections, and possible subsidy of cargo rail moves through Canada to the U.S. border near Chicago,” Lidinsky said at the quadrennial convention of the International Longshoremen’s Association in Hollywood, Fla. this week. “This issue will someday have a dramatic impact on the East and Gulf coasts as well.”
Lidinsky said the FMC was informed they would receive a letter in several days from legislators spelling out their concerns, and then the commission would decide how to proceed.
Lidinsky said he has been told shippers can realize an average $137 savings per container by moving cargo through Canada and avoiding the Harbor Maintenance Tax. ' Chris Dupin