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(The following is a reformatted version of a press release issued by The Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement and received via electronic mail. The release was confirmed by the sender.)


WTSA carriers say current rates are well below levels that recover specialized equipment and handling costs.

Oakland, CA / November 30, 2012 - Container shipping lines in the Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (WTSA) have individually announced a series of general rate increases (GRIs) on refrigerated cargo moving from the U.S. to Asia. The increases are in response to a sustained erosion of freight rates in the trade affecting a market segment where equipment, operations and handling are all entail specialized expertise and high costs.

WTSA members have filed GRIs in their tariffs, with slightly differing effective dates in early January, for US$1,500 per 40-foot container and proportionate increases for other equipment sizes. The increases will apply to all commodities, origins and destinations.

‘These actions are consistent with adjustments taken not only in the westbound transpacific market but in other trade lanes as well,” said WTSA executive administrator Brian M. Conrad. “Refrigerated service represents a significant commitment and investment by ocean carriers, to provide an alternative to far more expensive airfreight shipment for fresh meats and produce, plasma and medicines, and other sensitive commodities. The underlying cost and value of the service is clear, and current rates seriously undermine roundtrip profitability.”

WTSA is a research and discussion forum of major container shipping lines serving the trade from Asia to ports and inland points in the U.S. More information on WTSA can be found at WTSA members include: COSCO Container Lines, Ltd. Hyundai Merchant Marine Co., Ltd. Evergreen Line Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. (K Line) Hanjin Shipping Co., Ltd. Orient Overseas Container Line, Ltd. Hapag Lloyd AG Yang Ming Marine Transport Corp.

Contact: Niels Erich T: (415) 525-4520 Email:

(bjh) NY


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