Retailers voice concerns about seaport labor issues

A work stoppage could potentially further threaten the fragile economic recovery as the peak shipping season approaches
By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
July 16, 2012 - LM Editorial

The National Retail Federation is calling on labor and management officials at the East and Gulf Coast ports to continue contract negotiations in order to avoid any potential supply chain disruption, delay or stoppage, which could stifle global commerce and jeopardize the fragile U.S. economic recovery.

“Any kind of disruption at the ports would not only add costly delays to our members’ supply chains and other industries relying on East and Gulf Coast maritime facilities, but potentially further threaten the fragile economic recovery as we enter the peak (holiday) shipping season,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said in a letter.

David Jacoby, President of Boston Strategies International is among the industry analysts who are anticipating a weak peak season in any case.

“U.S. growth has been coming in slower increments, and the annual increase in trade is going to be smaller than last year as the U.S. economy experiences uncertainty leading up to the presidential election in November,” he said. That means that the second half of the year is likely to be sluggish.”

For the NRF, that means even greater vigilance is needed.

“It is important to note that even the perceived risk of a disruption has already forced retailers and other shippers to reevaluate their use of East and Gulf Coast ports.”

Shay’s remarks came in a letter to the International Longshoremen’s Association, which represents the dock workers, and United States Maritime Alliance, Ltd., which represents the terminal operators. The two sides have held contract negotiations over the past few months with another round scheduled for July 18-21.



About the Author

image
Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor

Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Subscribe to Logistics Management magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your
entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

The Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) reported this week that U.S. trade with its North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico increased 4.4 percent from August 2013 to August 2014 at $100.6 billion.

As expected, global trade dipped from August to September but still saw annual gains, according to data issued this week by Panjiva, an online search engine with detailed information on global suppliers and manufacturers.

Transportation and logistics merger and acquisition (M&A) activity in the third quarter saw annual gains, which were driven by smaller deals in the trucking logistics, shipping, and passenger air sectors, according to data issued in the Intersections report by PwC this week.

With the holidays rapidly approaching, it appears retailers are not quite done getting inventory set up and on the shelves in time for what is expected to be a fairly active shopping season. That much was evident based on recent data for September volumes issued by the Port of Los Angeles (POLA) and the Port of Long Beach (POLB).

Join Industry Expert Adrian Gonzalez for this educational webinar on the tenets and the benefits of Closed-Loop Operational Management. You’ll learn how Closed-Loop Operational Management optimizes orders, inventory, and transportation concurrently, and how it is able to optimize large-scale problems on a daily basis.

Article Topics

News · Ocean Freight · Ocean Cargo · Trade · All topics

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. Patrick covers international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. Contact Patrick Burnson

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.


© Copyright 2013 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA