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August 2015

News and Views for the clients of Universal Logistics

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Completion of Suez Canal expansion

Suez Canal
One-way traffic is no longer the norm on the recently expanded Suez Canal. Now ships can travel in both directions.

The newly expanded Suez Canal, which officially opened on August 6, 2015, is now able to handle traffic in both directions, a key improvement made possible by:

  • the addition of a 35 kilometre parallel waterway flanking the existing 145 year oldcanal
  • the deepening of the existing canal

The improvements have cut transit time from 18 hours to 11 hours and boosted the canal’s daily capacity to 97 ships, an increase of just over 50 percent.

Opened in 1869, the Suez Canal accommodates about 7.5 percent of the world’s sea trade. The Canal’s 193 kilometre waterway provides the shortest sea link between Asia and Europe, and is also an increasingly popular option on the Asia – North America trade lane.

For more information, contact Chris Barnard, Vice President – Projects & Market Development.

Shortage of drivers presents major challenge for trucking industry

Truckers with manifest

We may soon see more female trucks drivers. That’s one of many possible solutions for a growing driver shortage that could lead to increased truck freight rates. Canada will face a shortage of about 33,000 drivers by 2020, while the U.S. is currently facing a shortage of 30,000.

Other possible solutions include a wide range of industry and government initiatives:

  • Increased compensation for drivers
  • Recognizing truck driving as skilled trade with formal training and apprentice programs
  • Changing immigration laws to allow recruitment of foreign drivers
  • Redesigning the truck cab to make it more female friendly

Daimler, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of trucks, is testing trucks that don’t require drivers,
a solution that appears radical, but could be closer to reality than many people think.

For more information, contact William Sanchez, Manager – Truck Services.

U.S. duty reductions renewed

U.S. - Canada Trade

The U.S. Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), which expired on July 31, 2013, has been renewed by the U.S. government for a period ending December 31, 2017. The GSP renewal also extends duty reductions retroactively on any duties paid on GSP-eligible merchandise imported from August 2, 2013 to July28,2015.

Most importers eligible for refunds will automatically receive refunds from U.S. Customs.

For more information, contact Brian Rowe, General Manager – Customs Consulting Services.

Major cut in tariffs on information technology products

World Trade Organization (WTO)

World Trade Organization (WTO) members (54), including Canada and the USA, representing major exporters of information technology products, have agreed to phase out tariffs on 201 information technology products. The phase out will take three years and represents the largest single cut in tariffs by the WTO in 18 years.

For more information, contact Brian Rowe, General Manager – Customs Consulting Services.

Sharply increased duty applied to solar modules exported from China

Solar panels

Following an investigation of certain Photovoltaic Modules (solar modules) and Laminates exported to Canada from China, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) has imposed a 286% increase in duty on the products.

The CITT said the increase, which is payable following the date of the Tribunal’s finding (July 3, 2015), was necessary to protect domestic production that is “at risk of injury”.

For more information, contact Brian Rowe, General Manager – Customs Consulting Services.

Global Spotlight Quiz
Global Spotlight
The original destination of the Statue of Liberty was this mystery country

Global Spotlight Quiz

A mystery country with notable, historic and surprising features

What country has the following attributes:

  • A critically important (and recently expanded) man-made waterway
  • Facilitates much of the sea trade between Asia and Europe
  • The longest river in the world
  • The world’s second largest pyramids
  • Invented sailing boats
  • One of the most dangerous places in the world to drive

Click here to see the answer

For more information about freight to/from this country, contact Debbie McGuire,
Manager – FreightSolutions.

Quick Tip

Country of Origin may not be the Country of Export

Did you know that Country of Origin and Country of Export are not the same thing? Country of Origin indicates where your product is made.

Country of Export indicates where your product is shipped from. Failing to make this distinction could result in an AMPS penalty for incorrect Tariff Treatment.

At Your Service: William Sanchez, Manager – Truck Services

William Sanchez, Manager – Truck Services

William Sanchez,
Manager – Truck Services

There is more than one way to ship freight by truck. Picking the right option for a client is the responsibility of William Sanchez, who has spent close to two decades handling LTL, FTL, domestic and transborder shipments.

That experience matters during the rare occasions when something does not go as planned. “We are at our best when a shipment is not routine and the client is counting on us to make things right as quickly as possible,” says Mr. Sanchez, who can be reached by email or phone (905) 882-4880, ext.224.

August 2015

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 ©
Universal Logistics Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction for any commercial use is strictly prohibited.

Route is produced by Universal Logistics. Editor: Bettina Scharnberg. 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
Universal Logistics

News and Views for the
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