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October 2016

News and Views for the clients of Universal Logistics

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Most shippers meeting new requirement to
verify gross container weight prior to shipping

Container ship

The World Shipping Council (WSC), has advised that three months after the July 1st implementation of the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) Verified Gross Mass (VGM) requirement, they have found current compliance by shippers to be as high as95%.

The goal of the SOLAS requirement was to enforce that all packed containers have a Verified Gross Mass before loading aboard a vessel to reduce losses from incorrect declarations of a container’s weight. Industry experts believe that about 20% of all containers are not declared correctly. They also believe that up to two-thirds of all cargo claims are the result of false weight declarations and poor container packing.

For more information, contact Debbie McGuire, Manager – Freight Solutions

How to handle "Big Data"

Data World

Mark Glionna, Vice President – Client Relations has been honoured by the Canadian Society of Customs Brokers (CSCB) for serving the organization for over 20 years.

He received the honour at the CSCB’s National Conference, held September 25-27 in Niagara Falls, Ontario, where he also hosted an address on "Big Data" by Dr. Nick Bontis. "Mining Big Data and extracting its value is the next frontier for innovation, competition and productivity," said Dr.Bontis.

For more information, contact Mark Glionna, Vice President – Client Relations.

Finding new ways to meet client needs

Premier Cargo Alliance (PCA)

The recent meeting of the Premier Cargo Alliance (PCA) in Barcelona, Spain could be the starting point for some new client services, says the Universal Logistics representative at the meeting, Chris Barnard, Vice President – Projects & Market Development.

"This was an invaluable opportunity to learn from other industry insiders working around the world," said Mr. Barnard. "I picked up some great ideas on how to enhance our services for a variety of clients, ranging from smaller businesses in niche industries to major companies with a globalpresence."

PCA is a worldwide network of 83 logistics partners. Universal Logistics is a member for both Canada and the USA.

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

U.S. seeks high tariff on Canadian lumber

Lumber truck at U.S. border

The U.S. is moving closer to the imposition of tariffs that would significantly reduce Canada’s share of the American softwood lumber market.

Canada currently has about one third of the U.S. lumber market.U.S. lumber producers want that number to drop to about 22 percent, a production level that would lead to plant closures, says Richard Garneau, CEO of Quebec-based Resolute Forest Products. Both Canadian and American lumber producers are lobbying hard to advance their positions.

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

Time to renew NAFTA Blanket Certificates


Don’t forget to get your Blanket NAFTA Certificates of Origin renewed for 2017. Or simplify your life by taking advantage of our NAFTA Management Service, the fast, easy way to ensure your NAFTA Certificates of Origin are fully compliant.

This is important because significant AMPS (Administrative Monetary Penalty System) transactional penalties could apply if you make a claim for preferential treatment without a valid NAFTACertificate.

Get started now by forwarding your 2017 Blanket NAFTA Certificates to or contact Brian Rowe, General Manager – Customs Consulting Services for more information.

Global Spotlight Quiz
Global Spotlight
Being located on the shore of a major
body of water is one of many reasons
why this mystery city is ideally suited to
handle the transportation of goods.

Global Spotlight Quiz

This mystery U.S. city is uniquely situated to handle good transportation

In one day of travel, more than 55 percent of the U.S. population can be reached from this city. It is also very close to 65 percent of Canadians and 70 percent of Canadian manufacturing firms. See if you can name this city after looking at these additional clues.

  • Strategically located next to its largest export partner and well positioned to provide transportation of goods by all means, including air, water and road.
  • This city has one of the largest rail operations in the U.S., with direct routes to major U.S. and Canadian cities.
  • This city was one of the wealthiest in the U.S. in the 1900’s, with more millionaires per capita than any other city.
  • A classic American city undergoing a 21st century Renaissance, including over $1 billion investment in revitalizing the downtown core and waterfront.
  • This city made Forbes’s 2016 Top Ten list of “Happiest Cities to Work”.

Click here to see the answer

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

Quick Tip

Act Quickly to resolve non-compliance issues
and avoid increasing fines

Most monetary penalties issued by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) under the Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS) escalate with repetition. If a problem is not corrected, you can be repeatedly fined an escalating amount for the same infraction.

Mandy Gushue, Customs Operations – Fort Erie

Mandy Gushue joined our Fort Erie Customs Operations Team in November 2014.

At Your Service: Mandy Gushue, Customs Operations Fort Erie

Mandy now has 10 years of customs brokerage experience. Her primary responsibility is handling Canadian import clearances at the port of Fort Erie, however, Mandy also gets involved with clearances at all other ports across Canada.

Mandy can be reached by phone (905) 871-0220 or byemail.

October 2016

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

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