NITL Applauds Senate Introduction of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022

Washington, DC, February 3, 2022. The National Industrial Transportation League (NITL), the nation’s oldest trade association representing industrial freight transportation shippers, applauds the introduction of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 – OSRA22, by Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and John Thune (R-SD).  NITL members continue to face substantial delays, costs, and business interruption with respect to cargo transported in the ocean delivery network. We strongly support the Senate’s leadership to modernize the Shipping Act to help address present day challenges.

The League was in the forefront of the efforts leading up to the 1998 amendments to the Shipping Act and looks forward to working with the Congress, the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC), and all industry stakeholders to address the critical challenges currently faced by importers and exporters and others by updating this important federal law.

“The overwhelming support of the White House and the bi-partisan support shown for competitiveness in the supply chain is a crucial step toward addressing systemic issues contributing to the chaos at U.S. seaports and unprecedented disruption to the ocean shipping network” said Nancy O’Liddy, NITL’s Executive Director. “While we made it through the Holiday rush, the ongoing ocean shipping turmoil has wreaked havoc on US exporters and importers, costing them billions in higher shipping costs, demurrage and detention charges, dwell fees and lost business and products.”

“The inability of US companies to timely access marine containers and chassis and secure sufficient vessel bookings to meet their business requirements has upended the ocean cargo shipping and delivery network. These unprecedented challenges exposed gaps in the current law governing ocean carrier services that are addressed by OSRA22. We are incredibly grateful to Senators Klobuchar and Thune and their staff for working closely with NITL to advance this significant legislation.” – NITL General Counsel – Karyn Booth.

“OSRA22 addresses many of the problems faced by the shipping community by modernizing the Shipping Act, not updated since 1998 despite tremendous changes to ocean shipping since that time. The League strongly commends the work being done by the FMC to ensure a healthy ocean transportation system.  We believe the agency and the shipping industry will benefit from these reforms that are targeted to address the challenges that confront importers and exporters in 2022,” said Lori Fellmer, Chair of the League’s Ocean Transportation Committee.

In addition to Senators Klobuchar and Thune, NITL thanks Senators Tammy Baldwin, D-WI, John Hoeven, R-ND, Debbie Stabenow, D-MI, Roger Marshall, R-KS, Richard Blumenthal, D-CT, Todd Young, R-IN, Mark Kelly, D-AZ, Cory Booker, D-N, Gary Peters, D-MI, Jerry Moran, R-KS, Marsha Blackburn, R-TN, Joni Ernst, R-IA  and Catherine Cortez Masto, D- NV, by being original cosponsors further demonstrating the bi-partisan support for this vital effort.

NITL looks forward to swift passage in the U.S. Senate followed by prompt conference negotiations to iron-out certain differences between this bill and the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2021, H.R. 4996, passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on December 8, 202 and sent over as an Amendment to the America Competes Act on February 1, 2022 by Garamendi, Johnson, Costa, Valadao, Schrier, and Rodney Davis.  NITL will collaborate with the House and Senate members chosen to be involved in these discussions to help them reach common ground and find a vehicle to move the final bill to passage as soon as possible. Relief is essential for US importers, exporters, and consumers affected by the broken ocean shipping supply chain.


About NITL:

The National Industrial Transportation League (NITL) is a trade association whose mission is to advance the views of shippers on industrial freight transportation issues and advance their professional development. NITL membership is comprised of companies engaged in the rail, maritime, and highway industrial freight transportation sectors who are committed to the competitive, efficient, and safe movement of goods across the United States and beyond.