The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) has tendered notice of legal rolling industrial actions at DP World terminals, including actions such as: bans on overtime, shift extensions and delayed start and finish times. These actions are expected to begin from 22nd March 2019, and continue for an indefinite period at Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Fremantle.
This past Monday, the 4th of March 2019, Australia signed a new trade agreement with Indonesia, known as the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA). This deal creates many new oportunies for economic relations between Australia and Indonesia
The media release made by Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison and the Australian Minister for Trade, Tourism, and Investment, Senator Simon Birmingham can be read here: https://trademinister.gov.au/releases/Pages/2019/sb_mr_190304.aspx
More information and the full text of IA-CEPA can be found here: https://dfat.gov.au/trade/agreements/not-yet-in-force/iacepa/Pages/indonesia-australia-comprehensive-economic-partnership-agreement.aspx
A recent article in the shipping publication the DCN quoted senior figures from Maersk and ANL as saying that industry must be ready for significantly higher costs as the shipping sector prepares for a low-sulphur fuel world.
Maersk Line Australian sales and country manager Ms Therese Blank and ANL chief commercial officer Shane Walden spoke as part of a panel organised by the Australian Peak Shippers Association and held at Port of Melbourne Education Centre.
Fuel sulphur content is currently capped at 3.5% but from 1 January 2020 the cap is reduced to 0.5%, the limits being an effort to reduce health and environmental impacts.
Ms Blank told the gathering Maersk expected around 90% of the global fleet to adopt low sulphur fuel, as opposed to deploying scrubbers or switching to liquefied natural gas.
“This is a significant change to the industry and we expect significant cost as a result,” she said.
She noted Maersk had already arranged a joint venture allowing for 20% of the low-sulphur fuel that they needed. Meanwhile LNG is seen mainly as an option for new vessels coming onto the market “not retrofitting or upgrading current vessels”.
Ms Blank said Maersk predicted costs of around $15bn per annum in additional costs for the industry and for Maersk that to be around $2bn
“It is a huge increase in costs for shipping companies,” she told the gathering.
The Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, The Hon. David Littleproud MP, has recently released a statement on the new biosecurity levy, due to come into effect on July 1, 2019. He talks about how Australia’s agriculture industry is worth $60 billion, and at least 300,000 jobs, and how if a foreign pest or disease made it past our borders, that it would result in at least $50 billion dollars in losses, increasing food prices for consumers. He goes on to further say that it makes sense that those creating risk should contribute proportionately to the cost of biosecurity screening, and that most stakeholders accept this. As a result of hearing concerns of importers around various levy designs, Mr Littleproud is establishing an industry steering committee so the industry itself can help design the levy.
The full statement can be read on the Ministerial website here: http://minister.agriculture.gov.au/littleproud/Pages/Media-Releases/LITTLEPROUD-MEDIA-STATEMENT-Statement-on-biosecurity-levy.aspx
March 1st sees a major Industry development in terms of our changing National Air Cargo Screening regulations. All export air cargo, regardless of destination, will need to be screened prior to departure, unless the cargo originates from an approved Known Consignor. For general cargo, X-ray will be the primary screening method, with Explosive Trace Detection (ETD) being the secondary screening option for cargo that cannot be X-rayed due to size, or other reasons, such as sensitivity to X-ray.
All of the airlines, forwarders with screening equipment, and screening depots have now issued their charges for screening services. Please contact us for our a copy of our National Export Air Cargo Screening Tariff which will cover all of the depots and airlines we tender cargo to for export on a National basis.
The new legislation dictates that cargo must be “homogenous” for consolidated screening. As an example, a pallet full of computer monitors and keyboards would not be considered homogenous (and would therefore need to be screened at a piece-count level) a pallet of monitors alone would be classified as homogenous, and could therefore be screened as one piece, and need not be broken down. Where cargo is tendered to us palletised and cannot be deemed homogenous, the cargo must be broken down and screened at a piece count level, and the costs to X-ray and re-pack the pallet are also listed on the above mentioned tariff.
If we can assist you further on this please do not hesitate to contact us or email us at email@example.com
Patrick Terminals have announced an increase to their Infrastructure Surcharge, which will rise to $75.00 per container as of March 1st. In addition, DP World have increased their VBS Fee (Vehicle Booking System) to $35.00 per booking.
All the major airline handling companies (QANTAS, Menzies, Dnata) have increased their Import Terminal fees as of March 1st, all having a minimum of $53.00 per shipment, with either a per kilogram rate of $0.52c/kg or $0.53c/kg once the minimum has been exceeded.
Following compliance assessments undertaken by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR) of previously suspended BMSB heat treatment providers in Italy, the department has reinstated Nuova Cianidrica Srl (AEI: IT4002SB), La Spezia Container Terminal (AEI: IT4013SB) and Radit Srl (AEI: IT4006SB) to conduct BMSB Heat Treatments only. Radit Srl will not be reinstated to conduct BMSB Sulfuryl Fluoride Treatments. A pathway forward for this will be determined at a later date by the department.
The Department of Home Affairs has released a guide that explains how to determine whether goods which have been imported to Australia are eligible for preferential rates of customs duty under the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (commonly known as TPP-11) as in force for Australia on 30 December 2018 in accordance with the Customs Act 1901 and the CPTPP rules of origin. You can read the guide at the link below:
We have been advised that shipping lines will be imposing a GRI of U$250.00/20’ and U$500.00/40’ effective February 15th, 2019 on the USA to Australia/NZ trade lanes.
Our FCL rates will be increased by the same amount effective from that date, and indications are that our USA LCL rates will also increase by +/- U$10.00 per w/m at that time.
The Department of Home Affairs has recently disseminated a notice to Australian exporters titled Export Air Cargo is changing on 1 March 2019 highlighting that it is less than 2 months until March 1st when export air cargo, regardless of destination, will need to be examined at a piece count level, or originate from a Known Consignor. If you have not received a copy of this please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to provide you with a copy.
At the time of posting there are only 11 companies with Accredited Examination Facilities in Australia, and less than 200 companies countrywide listed as Known Consignors. The cost of X-ray screening equipment is very expensive and requires a reasonably large warehouse footprint. It also comes with a 6 month delivery lead time, by the time the order is placed and training is complete. Hence, very few freight companies have invested in screening equipment.
It is extremely important to understand that anyone not listed as a Known Consignor will be subject to screening at origin (at either a third party screening facility, or an airline facility) at a piece count level, whether the cargo is homogenous or palletised at time of tendering to us. Delays and additional costs should be anticipated, and exporters should be mindful that shipments will probably sit longer on the ground, prior to uplift, than would normally be expected under the current regulations, and plan accordingly.