Commission Meeting Addresses Fact Finding 29 and Alliance Monitoring
The Federal Maritime Commission met virtually and in closed session today to discuss developments in the ongoing Fact Finding 29 investigation of challenges to the freight delivery system and possible Shipping Act violations, and to receive a briefing on the agency’s monitoring activities of ocean carrier alliances.
This was the first meeting presided over by Chairman Daniel B. Maffei since being designated head of agency by President Joseph Biden last week.
Commissioner Rebecca Dye, who serves as the Fact Finding Officer for Fact Finding 29, reported on developments related to her investigation into the behavior and practices of certain ocean carriers and marine terminal operators.
“While most participants in the supply chain are doing their best to cope with the unprecedented import boom, there are reports of container ship lines and terminal operators unfairly taking advantage of the situation or denying service to exporters in a way that may violate the Shipping Act. We must get to the bottom of this situation ASAP and that’s why Commissioner Dye’s investigation is crucial,” said Chairman Maffei. “Just yesterday, Commissioner Dye and I met with the leaders of two important House subcommittees. These issues clearly have their attention and companies providing ocean transportation services would be well served to voluntarily take steps that address these challenges.”
Staff from the Commission’s Bureau of Trade Analysis presented an update to the Commission on overall trends of the U.S. economy and its relation to the ongoing monitoring of three ocean carrier alliance agreements (2M, OCEAN, and THE) on file at the FMC.
Today’s meeting was held in closed session because the agenda items dealt with an ongoing investigative matter and confidential commercial information.