WTSA lines to raise cargo NOS, FAK rates
Shipping lines in the Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement have scheduled rate increases for miscellaneous cargo not otherwise specified (NOS) for adjustments under commodity-specific rate programs, and for mixed 'freight-all-kinds' (FAK) cargo, effective April 1.
Increases for both cargo categories for West Coast port-to-port and East Coast all-water shipments from the United States to Asia have been set at $40 per 20-foot container (TEU) and $50 per 40-foot equivalent unit (FEU).
For inland points and mini-landbridge intermodal cargo, whether via truck or rail, the increase will be $240 per TEU and $300 per FEU.
For cargo moving on the basis of a West Coast rate plus inland add-on, West Coast rates are to be increased by $50 per FEU and inland add-ons are to be increased by $250 per FEU, the WTSA said.
The WTSA lines also agreed to a voluntary guideline that, effective no later than Jan. 1, 2008, bunker surcharges in new cargo NOS/FAK contracts are to be increased by at least $90 per FEU from current levels — up to but not exceeding the full WTSA official formula level on the effective date of the new contract — with bunker surcharges broken out from base rates and adjusted monthly per the WTSA formula, in accordance with fuel price fluctuations.
'Carriers indicated that the planned rate increases, and changes to the bunker surcharge, are intended to address significantly higher operating costs expected during 2007-2008 for cargo handling at U.S. ports, inland rail and truck charges, and equipment repositioning, along with anticipated fuel price volatility over time,' the WTSA said.
WTSA members are APL, Hyundai Merchant Marine, COSCO Container Lines, 'K' Line, Evergreen Marine Corp., NYK Line, Hanjin Shipping, Orient Overseas Container Line, Hapag Lloyd, and Yang Ming.