Friday, September 13, 2019

Freight and Logistics Stories This Week You May Have Missed

Some Smaller but Interesting Items from the Industry News
Shipping News Feature

WORLDWIDE – One of the big problems facing freight and logistics personnel who inhabit countries with developing economies is trying to better themselves whilst earning considerably less than their equivalent counterparts in better off states. Now the International Air Transport Association (IATA) is offering up to a 30% discount to those wishing to train for a career in the industry.

IATA Training aligns its developing nations list on the Official Development Assistance (ODA) recipients list compiled by OECD’s Development Assistance Committee which contains some countries which may generally be considered substantial players such as Brazil, China, Argentina, India and Pakistan, and a full list is viewable here and course locations can be found here.

FRANCE – UK – Channel Tunnel traffic reflected the recent downturn in trade, with truck traffic in August 2019 down 9% compared to August 2018, mainly due to the lack of recovery in the automotive market, and a slowdown in UK consumption. Since the beginning of the year, 1,059,127 trucks have crossed the Channel on Le Shuttle Freight services (down 6%).

US – The Houston Ship Channel, controlled by the Port of Houston, was closed for a time on Thursday (12 September) due to 22 Greenpeace USA protesters who formed a blockade on the Fred Hartman Bridge ahead of the third 2020 Democratic debate. The protest prevented the shipping of oil and gas along the channel as US Coast Guard staff attempted to clear the area.

The protestors were objecting to the continuing use of fossil fuels and said in a tweet they wanted to ‘confront Trump and the oil industry’. About a dozen of them hung suspended from the bridge until they were arrested by local authorities and taken into custody after fire fighters rapelled down and lowered them into waiting boats.

DENMARK – BAHAMAS – Following our recent piece on the effect of Hurricane Dorian we hear another freight and logistics group, DSV, stepped up to assist relief efforts for the estimated 70,000 people left homeless by the storm. The Danish Red Cross is sending equipment from the international Warehouse for Disaster Equipment in Denmark, sponsored by DSV.

To get help to the Bahamas as fast as possible, DSV transported the first tranche to the nearest airport and arranged for the equipment to ship to the Bahamas where it arrived safely late on Wednesday (September 11). Red Cross Red Crescent is the DSV Human Aid Partner.

AUSTRALIA – The International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) says that, following our last report, the authorities have detained a second vessel at a Queensland port after crew members reported being owed more than A$100,000 in unpaid wages. The Hong Kong-flagged bulk carrier MV Xing Jing Hai, owned by Chinese company Ocean Prosperity and managed by Dalian Shipping is being held.

Furthermore the ITF has also written to AMSA seeking an audit of a third vessel in Port Kembla, the MV Xing Ning Hai, which is owned by the same company as the MV Xing Jing Hai. That crew have also reported that they have not been paid since June and are owed more than A$100,000 in wages. The vessel has previously been detained in another country for non-payment of wages.

UK – The first of the Freight Transport Association’s (FTA) eleven Transport Manager conferences sponsored by Bridgestone Tyres, Schmitz Cargobull and Brigade Electronics, takes place later this month and bookings look set to break previous records once again with over 1,200 delegates already scheduled to attend. These highlight key issues for anyone operating commercial vehicles and include an address by the local Traffic Commissioner, an update on enforcement by the DVSA.

Other sessions covering every facet of running a transport fleet are included and FTA Transport Manager will be touring the UK from September to November 2019 and places are still available at Peterborough, Newcastle, Manchester, London, Southampton, Belfast, Scotland, Doncaster, Coventry and Wales. For further information or to book a place go to https://fta.co.uk/tm2019 or call FTA Customer Services on 03717 11 22 22.

Photo: US Greenpeace protestors hanging below the Fred Hartmann Bridge with (inset) one of their number fully equipped for a long stay.