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September 2019

News and Views for the clients of Universal Logistics

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Expanding our freight partner network

Premier Cargo Alliance (PCA) Annual Conference group photi

Group photo of attendees at the Premier Cargo Alliance (PCA) Annual Conference.

The Annual General Meeting of thePremier Cargo Alliance (PCA), a worldwide logistics networkforindependent international freight forwarders, was held September 10-12 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. It was the place to be for international logistics providers – and we were once again in the center of the action.

The Universal team, represented by Mark Glionna, Vice President – Client Relations & Business Development, Paul Glionna, Vice President – Systems Development & Operations, John Leis, Director – Client Relations and Vickey Ison, Office Manager – Cleveland, had 38 one-on-one meetings with freight agent partners from 36 different countries.

“It is invaluable for us to meet face-to-face with our partners from around the world,” says Mark Glionna. “We build relationships and gain insights into local markets which are essential to managing our clients’ international freight from door to door.”

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

Cargo Insurance – Proper Packaging

Cost - Insurance - Freight

Cargo insurance is vital for the protection of products shipped both domestically and internationally. Aside from offering protection from financial losses associated with lost or damaged cargo, cargo insurance protects shippers from a variety of other shipping risks, such as the law of General Average.

While cargo insurance can help protect the shipper’s interests, there are common insurance exclusions that should be kept in mind. One of the most important exclusions is loss or damage due to improper packaging.

When a shipper fails to properly secure cargo with proper packaging techniques, products can easily be damaged while in transit. For example, reusing corrugate boxes or crates that are loosely built or shipping in packaging that clearly cannot withstand a given voyage, can result in losses that would not be covered by cargo insurance.

In these instances most shippers are surprised to learn they are not covered by cargo insurance, even though they have requested specific cargo insurance coverage. The causes of this exclusion can be easily avoided with proper planning and practices by the shipper.

For more information, contact David Lychek, Manager – Ocean & Air Services.

Get ready for higher ocean prices

Freighter refueling

Global shippers, ocean carriers and freight forwarders are expecting higher fuel prices in 2020, with BAF (Bunker Adjustment Factor) increases as a result of the new low-sulphur shipping fuel “IMO 2020” rules. However, the level of impact this will have on ocean freight rates is still unknown as the available information on the costs of new low-sulphur fuel is both limited and confusing.

Early indications are this new fuel could cost 30% more than current shipping fuels, with container shipping analyst and data expert Drewry predicting an initial dramatic spike followed by price volatility throughout 2020, before falling in 2021.

Due to this uncertainty and the fact that there is no established price in the market, Drewry has developed a new IMO Cost Impact Calculator to better forecast the cost for this new low-sulphur fuel, which will greatly assist the parties involved in understanding the impact this will have on future ocean freight prices.

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

Cuts in ocean service due to China’s Golden Week celebration

The closure of factories during China’s National Golden Weekholiday from October 1 – 7, coupled with the ongoing U.S.-China Trade War, means ocean carriers are cutting back on vessel sailings to compensate for the drop in shipping volumes.

OOCL, a member of the OCEAN Alliance along with COSCO and CMA CGM, and 2M Alliance members Maersk and MSC have announced service cuts on the Asia to North America trade lane for October and early November. This includes nine weekly ocean services to the West Coast, four to the East Coast and two to the Gulf Coast.

If you are planning on shipping during this time period, please contact Debbie McGuire, Manager – Freight Solutions, for help with arranging the best possible shipping options.

What you need to know about Incoterms

Incoterms 2020

If you ship or receive international freight, you need to be aware of and understand Incoterms.

Incoterms were created in 1936 by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) to provide an interpretation of the most commonly used terms in foreign trade. Since that time, they have been updated regularly to keep pace with the development of international trade.

The new edit, Incoterms 2020, was released mid-September and will come into effect on January 1, 2020. It is meant to simplify the rules and help prepare businesses for the next century of international trade. It is important to be aware of the changes when negotiating sales contracts in the upcoming year.

Using clearly written sales contracts will avoid risks whereby even a simple misunderstanding of Incoterms can end up costing thousands of dollars in surprise charges, including additional transportation and insurance costs.

To learn more about Incoterms, contact Debbie McGuire, Manager – Freight Solutions or visit the ICC’swebsite.

U.S. temporarily lifts tariffs on over 400 Chinese goods

United States Trade Representative

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) has announced that temporary exclusions to the ChinaTariffs have been granted to 437 products from China. The goods range from printed circuit boards and dog leashes to Christmas tree lights and winches. These goods have been subject to the additional tariffs since 2018, and the temporary exclusions come as a result of over 1,000 requests made by U.S. companies.

The exclusions are retroactive to the dates of initial tariff implementation per the following lists:

  • July 6, 2018: implementation of tariffs on $34 billion worth of goods. This exemption will expire September 20, 2020.
  • August 23, 2018: implementation of tariffs on $16 billion worth of goods. This exemption will expire September 20, 2020.
  • September 24, 2018: implementation of tariffs on $200 billion worth of goods. This exemption will expire on August 7, 2020.

Goods identified under list four, implementation of tariffs on $300 billion worth of goods, have not yet been issued an exclusion process by the USTR in order to request exemption.

For more information, contact Brian Rowe, Director – Customs Compliance & Regulatory Affairs.

Higher U.S. Customs User Fees effective October 1, 2019

Effective October 1, 2019, there will be new minimums and maximums for U.S. Customs’ Merchandise Processing Fee (MPF). The minimum will be $26.79 per transaction(previously $26.22) and the maximum will be $519.76 (previously $508.70). The Informal MPF (applies to shipments valued under $2,500USD) will change from $2.05to $2.14. The MPF rate of 0.3464% will not change. Goods of NAFTA Preferential Origin are exemptMPF. In addition to the MPF, various other U.S. Customs User Fees are also increasing – seefulllisthere.

The Merchandise Processing Fee is a fee imposed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to offset the cost of salaries and other expenses incurred in the processing of imports and release of merchandise into the United States.

For more information, contact Brian Rowe, Director – Customs Compliance & Regulatory Affairs.

Global Spotlight Quiz
Global Spotlight

Name the city with a picturesque area dating from the 18th century, featuring pubs,
live music venues, pizza and burger
spots andtrendyboutiques.

Global Spotlight Quiz

How many clues do you need to name a U.S. city with no shortage of famous residents

  • Famous residents include Michael Phelps, Babe Ruth, Cal Ripken, Jr., Edgar Allen Poe, Thurgood Marshall, Billie Holiday and many others.
  • Considered one of America’s greatesthistorical destinations.
  • Snowballs,which paved the way for more modern slushies, and snow cones were invented here during the Industrial Revolution.
  • The airport has a unique offering it claims no other airport in the country has:a dedicated hiking and biking trail onsite.
  • The first telegraph line in the world was established in this city in 1844.
  • A catastrophic fire struck the city in 1904, burning for 30 hours, destroying 1,500 buildings and leveling entire neighbourhoods.
  • The Inner Harbour is home to the National Aquarium, considered to be the country’s first public aquarium. It is home to more than 20,000 fish, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and marine mammals.

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

Quick Tip

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.

Irina Moskvitina, Team Leader – Freight Pricing

Irina Moskvitina,
Team Leader – Freight Pricing

At Your Service: Irina Moskvitina, Team Leader – Freight Pricing

Irina Moskvitina joined Universal’s Freight Pricing team in 2014, handling air and ocean freight rate inquiries from our clients and overseas agents.

As a result of Irina’s dedication to her work and presentation of leadership skills, she was promoted to Team Leader – Freight Pricing in August 2018, adding quoting on specialized equipment and project cargo to her responsibilities.

Irina is a High Honour Graduate of the International Transportation and Customs Program at Seneca College and also holds a CIFFA (Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association) Certificate.

Irina can be reached by phone (905) 882-4880, ext. 205 or byemail.

September 2019

Professional business people team meeting and working in corporate office concept

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