View All Route Newsletters

Take The Right Route Logo

April 2024

News and Views for the clients of Universal Logistics

CARM Delay - CBSA Announces New Timeline for CARM Release 2

On Friday, April 19th, the CBSA announced changes to its plans for the launch of the CBSA Assessment and Revenue Management (CARM) digital initiative. CARM will launch internally at the CBSA on May 13th, as planned.

However, it is now the intention of the CBSA to reschedule the launch for trade chain partners (including importers and customs brokers) to October 2024, until which time trade chain partners will continue to operate as they have.

CARM Delay - CBSA Announces New Timeline for CARM Release 2 - Route Newsletter: April 2024

Over the past several weeks, months and years Universal Logistics has endeavoured to keep our clients well informed of the changes and impacts on business that come with the CARM initiative. We’d like to thank those clients who have already registered in the CARM portal and have “delegated authority” to Universal Logistics. We strongly encourage those clients who have not yet done so, to take advantage of our Client Care Team to help simplify the registration process.

Visit Universal Logistics’ website to learn more about CARM and to watch videos to help walk you through the CARM registration process.

For access to the CBSA CARM Client Portal, please click here.

We are ready to assist you with this registration process and happy to answer any questions you may have. Simply contact your Client Care representative or Mark Glionna, Vice President—Client Relations & Business Development.

Did You Know We Also Specialize in US Customs Brokerage? - Route Newsletter: April 2024

Did You Know ... We Also Specialize in US Customs Brokerage?

Universal Logistics isn’t only about freight forwarding and Canadian customs brokerage; we’re also experts in US Customs Brokerage. We provide specialized customs solutions in the U.S. designed to optimize your import and export activities, ensure compliance, and reduce delays. Visit our website to discover how we can streamline your customs processes and boost your business efficiency.

Rise in Truck Cargo Theft

Cargo theft has been a growing concern in the trucking industry in recent years. CargoNet, the cargo theft prevention and recovery network, reports 692 reported thefts in North America during the third quarter of 2023. This represents a significant 59% increase compared to the same period in 2022. The total value of stolen goods in Canada and the U.S. last year was estimated at $449 million, a 47% increase from the previous year, indicating the need for the industry to reassess its security and risk management strategies.

In the past, insiders often perpetrated cargo theft, making it easier to identify and apprehend the culprits. However, the nature of these crimes has changed, and the industry now faces more sophisticated threats. Cyber fraud and advanced identity theft tactics have led to a surge in fictitious pick-ups, where cargo is stolen using fake documents. This theft increased by 600% in 2023 across Canada and the U.S..

Rise in Truck Cargo Theft - Route Newsletter: April 2024

One of the most audacious cargo theft incidents occurred in April 2023, when a thief stole $23.8 million in gold and cash from an Air Canada warehouse using counterfeit documents. This incident serves as an example of the risks posed by such fraudulent tactics.

To combat this trend, it is vital to take proactive steps to secure your cargo. Working with a trusted service provider to implement robust security measures is crucial. These measures should include thorough vetting of carriers and drivers and ensuring that your freight is covered by comprehensive cargo insurance to protect against potential losses.

If you need further details or assistance protecting your cargo, contact William Sanchez, Manager – Truck Services at Universal Logistics.

Air & Ocean Freight Market Update: Navigating Current Challenges

Ocean Freight:

Recent trends in ocean freight reflect a downturn in volumes from Asia. However, ongoing geopolitical tensions have temporarily spiked the demand for ships, including attacks in the Red Sea and the consequent rerouting of vessels around the Cape of Good Hope. These tensions are not indicative of cargo volume growth but rather a supply-demand imbalance causing an immediate hike in freight rates. We anticipate these rates will remain elevated until the situation stabilizes, allowing for safe passage through the Suez Canal or when the Panama Canal can accommodate more vessels. After a sharp rise in Q1, rates from Europe began stabilizing in Q2 as the market could not sustain further increases. To optimize capacity, carriers now offer spot quotes for specific sailings to fill empty slots.

Air & Ocean Freight Market Update: Navigating Current Challenges - Route Newsletter: April 2024

Air Freight:

The air freight sector has seen a boost, particularly from Asia and the Indian Sub-Continent to North America, thanks to the ripple effects of ocean freight challenges. The Red Sea crisis has prompted a shift from ocean to air shipping, compounded by substantial e-commerce volumes from East Asia. The result has been a marked increase in demand and corresponding air cargo rates. Congestion and space shortages, especially in air exports from India, are significant concerns. However, the upcoming increase in belly capacity on passenger flights during the summer may alleviate some of these backlogs.

Port and Rail Issues in North America:


A surge in imports and a limited supply of rail cars has led to extended container dwell times, averaging over seven days at some terminals. CN and CP address these delays by increasing train lengths and supplying additional railcars.


The Maritime Employers Association and the Port of Montreal Longshore Workers’ Union are continuing their contract negotiations without any current strike actions. Mediation is ongoing, and any potential work stoppage would require 72 hours’ notice following a strike vote.


Adverse weather conditions following the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge have complicated recovery efforts at Baltimore port. The incident has blocked the shipping channel, delaying salvage operations necessary to reopen the port fully. A limited access channel is expected to open within four weeks to restore normal port access by the end of May.

CN and CPKC Rail

The Teamsters Canada Rail Conference has announced a strike vote among members, which could lead to a strike as early as May 22nd. This would impact CN and CPKC rail operations significantly, affecting the transportation of goods across the country. Canadian Pacific and Kansas City Southern’s merger last year created a vast network now at risk of disruption.

For more detailed updates on how these situations might affect your shipping strategies, or to discuss alternative solutions, please contact Debbie McGuire, Director – Freight Solutions or Cathy Fong, Director – Freight Pricing.

Canada to Make Steel Supply Chain More Transparent

In a significant move to enhance transparency, the Government of Canada has announced new requirements for steel importers. Starting November 5, 2024, it will be mandatory for importers to report “country of melt and pour” details to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) during their customs declarations. This requirement is part of Canada’s Steel Import Monitoring Program, aimed at providing a clearer picture of the origins of steel imports.

The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Export Promotion, International Trade, and Economic Development, stated that this measure intends to fortify the integrity of the Canadian steel market and ensure compliance with international trade regulations. To facilitate a smooth transition, importers are encouraged to start voluntarily reporting this data ahead of the mandatory implementation.

Canada to Make Steel Supply Chain More Transparent - Route Newsletter: April 2024

Global Affairs Canada will analyze the collected data. It will publish detailed reports on steel import trends, offering valuable insights into the global steel supply chain dynamics affecting Canada.

For additional details or to discuss how this might impact your business operations, please contact Brian Rowe, Director—Customs Compliance & Regulatory Affairs.

Global Spotlight Quiz

Global Spotlight Quiz

Can You Identify This City Known for Its Port and Iconic Gothic Architecture?

  1. Name Origin: The city’s name translates to “the harbour” or “the port,” highlighting its status as a maritime hub.
  2. Port Significance: It boasts the largest container port in the country, making it a central gateway for international trade.
  3. Cruise Destination: This is a favoured destination for cruise ships, offering visitors a glimpse into its vibrant culture and history.
  4. Architectural Marvel: The Saint-Joseph neighbourhood, a UNESCO World Heritage site, showcases Auguste Perret’s ground breaking architectural designs.
  5. Artistic Influence: The city’s scenery has been immortalized in several works by the renowned artist Claude Monet, including the famous “Impression, Sunrise.”
Can You Identify This City Known for Its Port and Iconic Gothic Architecture? - Route Newsletter: April 2024
This cathedral, a significant part of the city’s architectural heritage, draws visitors from around the globe. It is a testament to the city’s rich historical and cultural landscape.

Answer: Le Havre, France

For more information about shipping freight to or from this city, contact Debbie McGuire, Director – Freight Solutions.

Quick Tip

The Perils of Being Underinsured

Before purchasing insurance for freight shipments abroad, always take the time to read the fine print. A frequent oversight assumes that a basic insurance policy offers sufficient protection against all mishaps. These minimal coverage policies often exclude numerous common perils, potentially leaving your business vulnerable to significant financial risks. To safeguard your investments and operations, ensure that your insurance provides comprehensive protection against all potential perils.

The Perils of Being Underinsured - Quick Tip - Route Newsletter: April 2024

At Your Service

Pamela Randolph

Office Manager – Cleveland

Pamela Randolph, a cornerstone of our US Freight Operations team in Cleveland, rejoined the team in October 2021. Her expertise spans a wide range of services, including ocean imports, air imports, ocean exports, and domestic and cross-border truck moves. This versatility makes her an invaluable asset to our team.

In October 2022, Pamela’s exceptional skills and positive attitude earned her a Team Leader – Import Services promotion. Here she excelled, seamlessly managing complex challenges and enhancing team performance.

Pamela Randolph, Office Manager - Cleveland - Route Newsletter: April 2024

Pamela Randolph
Office Manager – Cleveland

As of February 2024, Pamela has taken on the role of Office Manager – Cleveland.  In this capacity, she continues to advance our US freight services while maintaining the highest level of customer service.  Our clients depend on her extensive knowledge and capabilities to effectively meet their diverse logistics needs.

If you need assistance or have inquiries, Pamela can be reached at (440) 360-7850, ext. 2101, or by email.

Route is produced monthly for the clients of Universal Logistics. Reader comment and story ideas are welcome. Comments of general interest to all Route readers will, with the permission of the writer, be published. Copyright © 2024 Universal Logistics Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction for any commercial use is strictly prohibited.

Route is produced by Universal Logistics. Editor: Bettina Scharnberg. Email: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of information contained herein, Universal Logistics accepts no responsibility or liability for errors or omissions. Written correspondence should be forwarded to:

Universal Logistics Inc.
125 Commerce Valley Drive West
Suite 750, Thornhill, Ontario L3T 7W4
Tel: 905-882-4880 Fax: 905-882-2250
Attention: Bettina Scharnberg

Professional business people team meeting and working in corporate office concept

Register now to learn more about our

101 Logistics Quick Tips

Available exclusively from Universal Logistics