How Recent Changes in Maritime Law Affect Importers and Exporters
Universal Cargo
by Universal Cargo
6d ago
This is a guest post by Harrison Clarke. Recent changes in maritime law have ushered in a new era for those of you who import and export goods. The landscape of international trade is continually evolving, presenting challenges and opportunities. Understanding these legal shifts is essential for maintaining compliance and optimizing your operational strategies. For importers and exporters, the stakes are high, as failing to adapt can lead to significant disruptions and financial penalties. This guide goes into the specifics of these changes, providing insights into how you can navigate these ..read more
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Big Data Transforms Logistics: Supply Chain Optimization in a Future of Data Driven Decisions
Universal Cargo
by Universal Cargo
1w ago
This is a guest post by Charlotte Sanders. The power of big data is driving a seismic shift in the logistics sector, which is the foundation of world trade. Logistics is embracing a data-driven future, releasing a wealth of insights to enhance operations and transform the supply chain. It is no longer limited to manual processes and segregated information. This article analyzes how big data is revolutionizing logistics management by examining its uses, advantages, and potential long-term effects on the sector. What is Big Data in Logistics? The term “big data” in logistics describes the enorm ..read more
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Shipper Alert! Critical Chinese Port Congestion Spreading Delays & Upping Freight Rates
Universal Cargo
by Universal Cargo
2w ago
Congestion at the Port of Singapore hit critical levels over these last couple weeks. Container ships are having to anchor and wait to dock, with wait-time estimates of up to seven days. This is as ships are already spread thin by having to reroute away from the Suez Canal because of Iran-backed, anti-Israel Houthi attacks in the Red Sea and Gulf and Aiden making it unsafe for them and their crews. Shipping Watch reports that nearly half a million containers are waiting at the Port of Singapore. Other major ports in China are also seeing significant congestion. Chinese exporters and U.S. impo ..read more
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Early Peak Season, High Freight Rates, & 5 Factors Shaping Ocean Freight Shipping 2024
Universal Cargo
by Jared Vineyard
3w ago
It’s not unprecedented, but we’re looking at an early peak season for international shipping this year. Analyzing wide industry reporting, the demand side of ocean freight has picked up in April and May in a similar way to how it normally increases in June through September. Anecdotally, Universal Cargo’s own internal numbers support the larger reporting on demand, as our shipment numbers increased by about 30% in April and another 8% in May. This surge in demand combined with current constraints on cargo has caused ocean freight spot rates to really increase, with some shipping reporters desc ..read more
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Closing the Gap Between the Digital and Physical Supply Chain
Universal Cargo
by Universal Cargo
3w ago
This is a guest post by Ellie Gabel. The Baltimore bridge collapse and the Taiwan earthquake are among the latest disruptions forcing businesses to adjust their management and tracking strategies. They’re an unwelcome addition to the continued Red Sea attacks plaguing commercial vessels. As exporting and importing goods become more complicated in the face of these unpredictable events, the digital and physical supply chain gap widens. How can brands close the gap? Disruptions to Trade Routes Are Widening the Gap In March, the Francis Scott Key Bridge — a structure that took nine years to plan ..read more
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Shipper Alert! Biden Hikes Tariffs on $18 Billion Worth of Imports from China
Universal Cargo
by Jared Vineyard
1M ago
The Biden Administration took a page out of the Trump Administration handbook this week as it announced big tariff hikes on imports from China. Regular readers of Universal Cargo’s blog won’t be surprised by this. President Biden threatened such tariff hikes a month ago, and I predicted here that he likely would follow through on the threat. Rebecca Picciotto reported the details in a CNBC article: Starting this year, President Joe Biden will quadruple tariffs on imported Chinese electric vehicles, from 25% to 100%. The import tax on Chinese solar cells will double, from 25% to 50%. And tari ..read more
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Whoa! Video of Explosion to Free Cargo Ship from Collapse Francis Key Bridge
Universal Cargo
by Jared Vineyard
1M ago
Yesterday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Baltimore used explosives on the part of the collapsed Francis Key Bridge that’s been holding the giant container ship Dali trapped for over a month and a half. The Dali hit the bridge in March, and a fatal collapse ensued. Engineers have been working to regain ship access to the Port of Baltimore, which was lost because of the collapse. Yesterday’s controlled explosions were a big step in fully opening the waterway to the port. Plus, some cool videos of the explosion were posted. My favorite such video was Tweeted on X by the USACE Baltimor ..read more
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Shipping Alert! Delays on Imports from Asia & Freight Rate Increase Conditions
Universal Cargo
by Jared Vineyard
1M ago
If you’re importing from Asia right now, there’s a high chance you’re experiencing or about to experience delays in getting your cargo. It’s likely an increase in shipping costs is hitting this month too, not only in costly delays but also an increase in freight rates. Bad Weather at Asian Ports Two weeks ago, some major carriers issued warnings of bad weather causing delays of up to a week for vessels at key Asian ports. For many importers, that means cargo that was supposed to arrive at U.S. ports this week has not. The Journal of Commerce (JOC) actually issued an email warning on Tuesday a ..read more
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“Conversations” with AI about International Shipping
Universal Cargo
by Jared Vineyard
1M ago
A couple weeks ago, I posted an article about what AI “thinks” about international shipping. It contained a “conversation” I had with AI, where I asked it questions about international shipping. After sharing each question and answer, I gave my thoughts about what AI said. It was interesting to see the way AI answered questions pertaining to the international shipping industry, and the post seemed to garner a little extra attention from readers, probably because of the current fascination there is with AI. Thus, back by popular demand, is another “conversation” with AI about international ship ..read more
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How to Prepare for Potential ILA Port Disruption
Universal Cargo
by Jared Vineyard
1M ago
The last post was about how nobody knows anything about what will happen with the International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA) contract negotiations, with its potential to highly disrupt shipping through East and Gulf Coast ports. I ended the post with a promise to make today’s blog about how shippers should prepare their imports and exports with the ILA situation in mind. Now, I keep that promise. Some may ask, “If nobody knows anything about what will happen, how can shippers possibly plan?” People asking that were probably never in Boy Scouts. If you were, you know the Boy Scout motto: be ..read more
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