Diving Brief:

  • The Federal Maritime Commission is proposing a plan to collect data on shipping carriers under new regulations in the 2022 Shipping Reform Act, according to an agency statement on Tuesday.
  • The agency is seeking public comment on the “data collection initiative,” which would require carriers to provide import and export data, including tonnage and TEUs, on a monthly basis, according to the communicated.
  • Interested parties will have 60 days to comment on the proposed changes, one of FMC’s latest updates to comply with the new law passed in June.

Overview of the dive:

The data collection initiative is one of several steps the FMC is taking to comply with the new Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 signed by President Joe Biden in June. The agency had announced after the adoption of the law that there would be no transition period for the application of the new regulations.

In early July, the commission provided draft procedures for shippers to submit fee complaints for disputed fees or violations that fall under the Shipping Reform Act. The FMC also announced that ocean carriers must comply with demurrage and detention billing practices, including addressing the content and accuracy of bills.

In an effort to improve its enforcement power, late last month the agency created the Office of Enforcement, Investigations and Compliance. The new office consolidates the FMC’s investigative and prosecutorial functions and will include an increase in the number of investigators on its staff, the agency said in a statement.

“Our job is to implement [the Ocean Shipping Reform Act] and we are on track to do so,” Maffei said in a statement. “Parties who fail to comply invite Commission scrutiny and face the consequences of failing to follow the law or acting in a manner inconsistent with the clear direction of Congress.”

According to the agency, the next compliance deadline the FMC must meet is to issue regulations by December on the unreasonable denial of shipping carriers to accommodate ship space when it is otherwise available. A notice of proposed rulemaking seeking public comment is expected to be published shortly.