Shippers’ association file new review petitions with appellate court
Two shippers’ associations confirmed that they have filed new petitions with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit seeking judicial review of the decision by the Federal Maritime Commission restricting the right of shippers’ associations to enter into non-vessel-operating common carrier service arrangements.
The American Institute for Shippers’ Associations and International Shippers’ Association submitted their petitions after the FMC denied their petitions on Feb. 8. The FMC is concerned about antitrust violations if shippers’ associations are allowed to enter NSAs with NVOs.
“It is unfortunate that the ocean shipping industry will now have to undergo an extensive period of uncertainty as to the legality of NSAs and the FMC’s regulations,” said AISA president Bill Clark in a Feb. 10 statement.
In mid-January, the two shippers’ associations filed their first petitions with the appellate court. Both associations realized after making their filings that the court would not accept appeals on a matter that’s still pending before a federal regulatory entity, and withdrew the petitions from the court on Feb. 2.
Lawyers for both shippers’ associations said in separate interviews with Shippers’ NewsWire that they were “not surprised” by the FMC’s denial order, and are prepared to defend their petitions in court.