WTSA CARRIERS TO PASS SED FINES ON TO SHIPPERS
Ocean carriers of the Westbound TransPacific Stabilization Agreement say they will pass on to shippers any fines resulting from failure to comply with new U.S. Census Bureau rules for faxed export declarations.
“The carriers will not, let me repeat, will not accept fines or penalties” for faxed copies of SEDs, said Albert A. Pierce, executive director of the TransPacific Stabilization Agreement to shippers at the Agriculture Ocean Transportation Coalition meeting in San Francisco last week. “I encourage shippers to get their SEDs in on time.”
The rules, which take effect Aug. 3, say exporters or their forwarders will no longer be able to file paper shippers’ export declarations. Census has cited illegibility of information as its reason for discontinuing the practice of faxing SEDs.
In their contracts, carriers have the ability to pass government fines and penalties for shipper-generated errors back to the shippers.
Census and carrier officials plan to meet this week to discuss the new rules. Carriers and shippers hope that Census will push back its Aug. 3 deadline.
“As it stands right now, the answer is no with regards to pushing back the deadline,” said C. Harvey Monk, Jr., chief of the Foreign Trade Division at Census.