President Joe Biden signs the Ocean Shipping Reform Act (OSRA) 2022 into law making a significant
change for international container shipping in the United States and first revision to maritime legislation
since the Shipping Act of 1984.
The act leads to an efficient, competitive, and economical ocean transportation system promoting
growth of US exports.
The act will,
- Gives more authority to US shipping regulator, the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC). FMC will
- launch container lines business practices, apply measures for shipping containers.
- Prohibits marine terminal operators, common ocean carriers, or ocean transportation
- intermediaries from unreasonably declining cargo opportunities for US exports or resorting to any
- unfair or unjustly discriminatory methods.
- Require ships to report detailed quarterly inventory of their loaded exports, loaded imports, and
- empty export containers to FCM in each calendar quarter.
- Authorize FMC under certain circumstances, to issue emergency orders to common carriers to share
- information directly with shippers and rail and motor carriers.
- Require FMC to make rules for certain fee assessments, establishment of shipping registry and
- prohibited practices.
- Help lower shipping costs and will help exporters to get more profits from their exports.
During the signing ceremony held at White house president said “The law will stop shipping companies
taking advantage of American families, farmers, ranchers and businesses,” “They raked in the profits and
the costs got passed on, as you might guess, directly to consumers,” he added. “Sticking it to American
families and businesses because they could.”
The law includes the recommendations from the two-year fact-finding investigation made by FMC
Commissioner Rebecca Dye during Covid pandemic. “We will monitor the industry and adjust it if we
need to. You don’t know until you do it. This legislation is not the end all be all, but it will restore
confidence in the supply chain,” said Dan Maffei, chairman of the FMC.