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Member lines of the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (TSA) are convincing shippers to take on a greater share of carriers' rising fuel costs, the group said. The lines are reporting "widespread success" in efforts to boost fuel surcharges. Ronald D. Widdows, TSA chairman and chief executive of APL Ltd., called the development "gratifying, as it indicates that customers understand the financial pressures affecting our industry and the need for carriers to make an adequate return in order to maintain levels of service the shipping community experts." Shippers should expect to pay even more in the coming year. Up to now, TSA said, carriers have seen only partial recovery of their fuel costs, and the group's objective for the 2008-2009 contracting season is the restoration of full, floating bunker-fuel surcharges, based on TSA's own calculation formula. Along with that rise will come another round of general rate increases. TSA members are looking to add $400 to the base rate for a 40-foot container moving port-to-port and port-to-door from Asia to the U.S. West Coast, and $600 for each box moving intermodally or via all-water service to the East Coast. On top of that, shippers should expect to pay a peak-season surcharge, running from June 1 through Oct. 31, of $400 per 40-foot container.
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