Reversal: Hapag-Lloyd to continue forwarder payments
Hapag-Lloyd said Monday it is reversing an announcement last week and will continue to make commission payments to freight forwarders after April 1.
Hapag-Lloyd said the decision to continue to pay forwarding commissions “is to apply not only for Germany but also on a similar basis for other countries.”
The company issued a statement Monday saying it had reached an agreement to continue to pay commissions, “without change until further notice.”
It made the decision after meeting with the Hamburg and Bremen freight forwarders associations, which were representing the Committee of German Seaport Freight Forwarders.
It added, “The parties also intend to agree on a future-oriented solution by the end of the year meeting their requirements. The objective is to reach a new ‘simple and fair’ solution.”
A number of U.S. forwarders had complained last week about Hapag-Lloyd’s announcement that it would end the practice of paying a 1.25 percent commission to forwarders if they booked shipments with the line.
“With this step, we are again demonstrating that we want to cooperate with the forwarding sector and will continue to regard it as our natural partner when acquiring cargo,” said Uwe Lindemann, head of Area North of Hapag-Lloyd AG.
A note sent by the German carrier to forwarders last week said it was planning to end forwarder compensation “due to the current overall economic developments.”
That provoked a strong reaction from U.S. forwarders, some of which said they might steer business to other carriers that continued to pay commissions.
However, some larger forwarders saw the announcement as a non-event, saying that most of their compensation came from acting as non-vessel common carriers. ' Chris Dupin