US Questions Major Ocean Alliance Plan


The Ocean Alliance has encountered a hurdle after reports that it has been asked by the US Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) to provide more information in order for the plan vessel sharing agreement to be approved.

The FMC had filed a Request for Additional Information (RFID), which means that FMC ‘stops the clock’ until the shipping lines provide the information needed for the plan to go ahead.

PTI previously reported that the Ocean Alliance had announced that it is planning to deploy container ships of 18,000 TEU on the trans-Pacific trade from April, 2017.

Prior to this, the Ocean Alliance also said that it is planning to launch the most expansive all-water trans-Pacific service to the US East and Gulf Coast ports.

The deal to create the mega Ocean Alliance, which would consist of CMA CGM, Cosco Container Lines, Evergreen Line and Orient Overseas Container Line, was signed in April, 2016.

The alliance intends to begin operations in April, 2017 for an initial period of five years.

The proposed plan will also have an effect on terminals, with Olaf Merk, Adaministrator of Ports and Shipping at the ITF of the OECD saying: “The alliances shakeup will also have effects on terminals. Some terminals are joint-ventures between alliance partners, so if alliances change, these joint-ventures might come under pressure.

“So the merger of COSCO/China Shipping might mean they might want to strengthen their terminal portfolio, also by buying up shares from former alliance partners.”

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