ELD Effecting More Than Trucking


The electronic logging device (ELD) mandate is changing the shape of transportation logistics in more ways than one. Trucking has been the method most affected by the regulation, but the effects have also worked into ocean shipping, intermodal and air freight, causing delays, bottlenecks and rate increases as shippers look for ways to meet customer needs.

The mandate, which took effect just over a year ago, is among the factors leading shippers to seek alternative modes of moving their goods.

Part of that intermodal bump is a growth in air freight volumes. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) 35% of all world trade by value travel via air. IATA also reported that North American airlines' freight volumes expanded 3.2% in April 2018, the month enforcement of the ELD mandate began, compared to the same period a year earlier.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is the 12th busiest airport in terms of cargo volume with 648,595 metric tons of freight and mail passing through its facilities in 2016, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. The airport has suffered congestion issues, often caused by trucks lining up and waiting to pick up or drop off loads

A 2,000-pound box from Shenzhen, China, to New York City costs about $1,200 by ocean but $4,000 by air, according to Freightos, an online marketplace for international freight. For heavier deliveries, such as shipping containers, ocean is much more economical, since air freight is priced on size and weight, which can raise prices drastically. This, combined with the driver shortage, has caused rates to rise.

Trucking Shortages Reported


It has been reported recently that there is a shortage of trucks and equipment to handle shipping on mainland Japan.

One of the factors that is appearing to contribute to the shortages are the construction of the venues and housing for the 2020 Olympic Games to be held in Tokyo. Delays in the construction of a few of the venues, notably the aquatics center and rowing venue, has taken trucks away in order to catch up to the schedule.

One of the factors that is appearing to contribute to the shortages are the construction of the venues and housing for the 2020 Olympic Games to be held in Tokyo. Delays in the construction of a few of the venues, notably the aquatics center and rowing venue, has taken trucks away in order to catch up to the schedule.

Shippers Asked To Urge Congress For Relief


Existing tariffs of 10 percent on approximately 1,300 product classifications on imports from China will remain at that level for the time being. The expected rise to 25 percent on January 1 were avoided with the meeting at the G-20 summit last month between Donald Trump and Xi Jinping.

Additional negotiations on intellectual property, cybersecurity and other trade related issues will continue. In the event that no agreement is reached within 90 days of the G-20, the tariffs will rise to the 25 percent level.

US companies have been asked to tell Congress how damaging the Trump administration's proposed 25 percent tariffs on imports from China will be to their businesses.

"Your stories can make a difference," Erin Ennis, vice-president of the US-China Business Council, told the Western Cargo Conference of freight forwarders and customs brokers in October, so businesses should go directly to Congress with their concerns, she said.

In a global economy, if China finds US tariffs to be too much of a burdens, they have an outlet to add to their trade ties with countries they find to be more reliable. "You can't do it unilaterally. Europe and Japan look much better today because they are reliable and we're not," she said.

Furthermore, the growing middle class in China and elsewhere in Asia will provide increased opportunities for US exports, but China's retaliatory actions due to US tariffs on its goods could result in exports from other countries being more competitive in China, Bingham said.

Possibilities for the Year Ahead


With a new year just begun, there are always a fair amount of uncertainties as to the future. For US shippers and transportation providers, 2019 has its own concerns as to what the picture will look like.

Shippers and transportation providers deal with the "knowns," and supply chains don't run smoothly by waiting for answers to appear.

Following are a few certainties shippers and their transportation providers can look to for 2019:

Tough trans-Pacific service contract negotiations. Low-sulfur mandate, shipper frustration with having to pay out premiums to get slots during peak season, and signs of increasing capacity management by carriers. It's points to some tough, multiple rounds of back-and-forth negotiations.

Tight US truck capacity but not 2018-tight. Prices will remain high compared with 2017 or 2016. The balance is shifting in the less-thantruckload market, with regional carriers expanding their networks. On the drayage side, some carriers may start expanding as they look to inject value beyond point A-to-point B ocean shipping.

Growing allure of in-house and dedicated/contract capacity. Online retailers such will beef up their inhouse air cargo capacity, a reflection less of their drive to disrupt transportation and more about an effort to guarantee delivery for impatient customers.

Bolder moves of container lines to inject value. Expect bigger strides this year, as the divide becomes more apparent between supply chain management-focused and port-to-port carriers.

Awakening of maritime regulators. Stirred by complaints of Asian subsidies in container shipping and shipbuilding, European regulators are set to come out swinging. US regulators aren't wading in with fervor, but the first reworking of the US Shipping Act since 1988 put the US Federal Maritime Commission on the hook to report annually to Congress on the power of shipping alliances.

Lessened priority of blockchain. With less of a glaring spotlight on the blockchain buzz, some viable value creation for shippers around blockchain might emerge.

IFT New Jersey Celebrates Christmas


The New Jersey office of IFT met on December 14th for their annual Christmas party. The gathering was held at Ferraro's, a landmark in the area since 1969, serving a blend of traditional and contemporary Italian delicacies.

It was a wonderful way to unwind and close out the year with good friends and good food.


Did You Know...


Our IFT staff has the capabilities of assisting our customers in various languages such as English, Korean, Chinese (Mandarin), German, Finnish, Spanish, Polish and Russian. We pride ourselves in being able to help our customers in their own language along with knowing the cultural background of different countries.

New at IFT...

Shear There and Everywhere


IFT recently handled the import of a large, metal cutting shear originating in Italy.

The oversized unit required some special planning and he experience that IFT always brings to bear was well up to the task. The cutting machine, weighing in at approximately 80 tons, requires the use of a 40 foot open top container for transport. Due to these specifications, IFT needed to hire a trailer that would be able to handle the equipment, and a 350 ton crane to get the equipment seated on the trailer and aboard the vessel for the ocean going leg of the journey.

Once aboard ship in Italy, the unit made its way to the port in Corpus Christi for unloading. From Texas, the machine traveled overland to the delivery destination in Oregon.

Manila Bound

Manila Bound

IFT currently is in the process of transporting equipment from the port of Savannah with a final destination of Manila in the Philippines.

The cargo was loaded onto two 40 foot Flat Racks for delivery to the Savannah port. They arrived at the warehouse successfully, awaiting the vessel so they could be loaded on board.

The cargo was brought onto the vessel in mid-December and sailed toward their destination of Manila. The expected arrival will be later in January.

Utah Office Hosts Meetings and Christmas Party

Utah Office Hosts Meetings and Christmas Party

The Utah office of IFT was busy in early December. On the 7th of the month they played host for the Sales meeting and the Management meeting. During the sessions, the teams discussed the past year's accomplishments and set goals for the new year to come in order to better service their clients and partners.

Afterwards, everyone went to Salt Lake City to the renowned Christopher Steakhouse for the annual Christmas Party. With a number of prestigious awards and ratings of Excellent from Zagat, the meal was a wonderful way to celebrate the year gone by, the Christmas season and the new year to come.

Joke of the Month

joke of the month

Hello Up There

Hello Up There A man walks into a bar and orders a drink. Then he notices there are pieces of meat nailed to the ceiling of the bar so he asks the barman what they are for. The barman replies, "If you can jump up and pull one of them down you get free beer all night. If you fail, you have to pay the bar $100. Do you want to have a go?" The man thinks about it for a minute before saying, "Nah, the steaks are too high!"

Our Prized Customers


We here at IFT appreciate our customers for all they do during the year. As our way of showing you, we are holding a prize drawing. It's nice and easy. All you need to do is click on the link below and then fill out the form on our website. It will just take a minute, and hey you never know!

Good Luck to all who participate!

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