Japan International Freight Forwarders Association (JIFFA)'s Forwarding Committee held a webinar last Friday to discuss recent developments in supply chains in North American. Masashi Morimoto, logistics advisor to Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)-Los Angeles, delivered a presentation to give briefings on San Pedro Bay and other major ports in the U.S., labor-management negotiations and railways.

Morimoto, former assistant director of the Port of Los Angeles' Business Development Division, indicated that shipments are being shifted to the East Coast. “As for container imports to the U.S. in January-May, West Coast ports decreases shares,” he said. “Shares increased at East Coast ports, instead, such as New York/New Jersey and South Carolina.” “[Throughput at] Houston, in particular, surged 22.31% year on year,” he added.

“Imports to Los Angeles/Long Beach reached a peak in July but have been on the decline since August,” Morimoto explained. “Los Angeles is projected to suffer a decline of as much as 53% on Oct. 9-15.” “The number of days for which local shipment are delivered by truck from Los Angeles terminals is 3.2 days on average, which has improved to a lower level than the pre-pandemic average of four days,” he continued. “For those carried by rail (IPI), however, it still takes 7.7 days.” “It takes 9.9 days to return chassis, more than twice as long as three to four days before the pandemic,” he added.

Morimoto focused on labor-management negotiations. “At West Coast ports, negotiations are still ongoing on wages, automation and so on, which are far from over,” he said. “Regarding negotiations between railways and workers, meanwhile, union members are still in the process of approving the arbitration that unions accepted in September, which is expected to continue until mid-November.”  




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