TRANSPACIFIC CARRIERS RAISE WESTBOUND REEFER RATES
The shipping lines of the Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement have advised shippers of their intention to increase westbound rates from the U.S. to Asia for chilled fruit, vegetables and other commodities.
“The scheduled increases are intended to address sharp declines in rates over a two-year period, relative to the high fixed costs of providing specialized temperature-controlled equipment and support services for those shipments,” the carrier group said.
The shipping lines will increase 2003 rates for apples and pears in two stages, by $200 per 40-foot container on Jan. 1, 2003, and by a further $400 per FEU effective April 1. Rates for chilled vegetables will increase by $300 per FEU on Jan. 1 and again by $300 on April 1.
Carriers also intend to raise rates on chilled citrus fruit shipments moving via the U.S. West Coast by $300 per FEU on Jan. 1 and by another $300 on April 1. East Coast rates will be increased monthly, on Jan. 1, Feb. 1, March 1 and April 1, by 15 cents per carton, subject to a minimum charge based on 1134 cartons per container. The cumulative increase for East Coast shipments by April 2003 will be $680 per FEU.
In November, container shipping lines of the Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement also announced plans to raise westbound rates on dry cargo.
WTSA members are APL, COSCO Container Lines, Evergreen Marine Corp., Hanjin Shipping, Hapag-Lloyd, Hyundai Merchant Marine, “K” Line, MOL, NYK, Orient Overseas Container Line, P&O Nedlloyd and Yang Ming. Maersk Sealand recently left the Westbound transpacific Stabilization Agreement.