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FMC Seeks Comments on Impact of OSRA

January 23, 2003

FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION

FMC SEEKS COMMENTS ON IMPACT OF OSRA

Washington, D.C. 20573

NR 01-03

CONTACT: Florence A. Carr, Deputy Executive Director, at (202) 523-5800

FOR RELEASE: January 23, 2001

The Federal Maritime Commission announced the issuance of a Notice of Inquiry ("NOI") seeking information and comments from interested parties regarding the impact of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 1998 ("OSRA") on all sectors of the international liner transportation system. Chairman Harold Creel explained that the NOI seeks comments from both providers and users of international liner transportation, as well as other interested parties. "We hope that interested parties will provide us with comprehensive information on OSRA's impact, whether the benefits envisioned have come about, and whether any segment is being harmed under OSRA," Chairman Creel stated. The analysis and evaluation of comments received will be incorporated into the Commission's ongoing OSRA Impact Study, which is scheduled to be released this summer. The two year study will examine several key areas including (1) service contracting under OSRA, (2) the activities of carrier agreements, (3) the impact of OSRA on ocean transportation intermediaries, shippers' associations, and other affected parties, and (4) tariff accessibility and accuracy.

On June 22, 2000, the Commission released an interim status report covering the first year under OSRA. That report, which was made available on the Commission's Internet web-site at http://www.fmc.gov, provided details of the industry's initial experiences with service contracts, carrier use of antitrust immunity, and tariff accessibility.

The NOI is available on the Commission's web-site at http://www.fmc.gov, in a text file which can be downloaded. Chairman Creel emphasized: "We want to make responding to the Inquiry as easy as possible so that we will get maximum participation from the industry and all other interested parties." Further information regarding filing comments may be found within the NOI. Responses are due on March 12, 2001.