Office of Economics and Competition Analysis
Roy J. Pearson
To keep the Commission apprised of current trade conditions, emerging commercial and economic trends, and the impact of regulations affecting waterborne liner transportation, the Bureau prepares studies and profiles of major trades, using monitoring reports, economic analyses, and agreement/carrier profiles, and undertakes special projects to identify and track relevant competitive and economic activity in major U.S. trade lanes. The Bureau's monitoring activities include surveillance programs to identify:
- concerted activity without an effective agreement on file with the Commission, or concerted activity exceeding the scope or authority of an effective agreement;
- activity contravening the mandatory conference agreement provisions required by sections 5(b) and 5(c) of the Shipping Act;
- the potential for, or emergence of, unreasonable transportation service/cost impacts that contravene the section 6(g) general standard;
- controlled carrier activity in areas relevant to the Commission's administration of section 9 of the Shipping Act;
- the occurrence of prohibited acts proscribed under section 10;
- economic harm associated with unfair trade practices of foreign governments; and
- whether the continued operation of an effective agreement in its present form is consistent with the statutes and current Commission decisions, rules, and policies.
The Bureau develops profiles of major trade areas to assess carrier behavior under agreements, to determine compliance with regulatory requirements, and to ascertain the competitive posture of carriers, shippers, and shippers' associations within each trade.