Commissioner Rebecca F. Dye today released her Final Report for Fact Finding 29, “The Effects of COVID-19 on the U.S. International Ocean Transportation Supply Chain,” a two-year investigation involving hundreds of Commission stakeholders participating through Team meetings, phone conversations, emails, and presentations to various groups. Commissioner Dye presented the Final Report with twelve Final Recommendations to her colleagues at the May 18, 2022, meeting of the Federal Maritime Commission.
During Fact Finding 29, importers and exporters highlighted two recurring pandemic-related concerns: the high cost of shipping cargo, and excessive demurrage and detention charges.
Commissioner Dye stated, “The historically high freight rates experienced recently by U.S. exporters and importers have been devastating to many, but I want to emphasize that the Commission has done its job during the COVID-19 pandemic to enforce our competition authority.
Our markets are competitive and the high ocean freight rates have been determined by unprecedented consumer demand, primarily in the United States, that overwhelmed the supply of vessel capacity. Congestion further constrained available capacity.