Processors join calls with regulatory changes to ease the shipping downtime


The Australian Meat Industry Council supports calls for extensive regulatory changes in the shipping industry.

A number of measures were recommended by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s annual Container Stevedoring Monitoring Report 2020-21, which was published earlier this year

The report highlighted recent increases in demand for container freight and congestion across the Australian supply chain, which resulted in significant delays and bottlenecks in export equipment.

Freight rates were also on the radar, with the report highlighting that rates on major global trade routes were around seven times higher than last year.

The ACCC recommended several measures to address the issues, including:

  • Addressing industrial relations issues and restrictive labor practices across the supply chain.
  • Ensure that privatized ports do not impose excessive rents and fees.
  • Repeal of Part X of the Competition and Consumers Act 2010.
  • Investing in infrastructure to address supply chain inefficiencies caused by larger ships, lack of rail access to Australian container ports and lack of space in empty container parks.

The report also highlights the existing inefficiencies within the supply chain and the importance of investing in infrastructure to improve these fronts. In particular, she recommended public and private investment in the Australian supply chain to address inefficiencies caused by larger ships, lack of rail access to Australian container ports and lack of space in empty container parks.

Patrick Hutchinson

ACCC chairman Rod Sims said international shipping line movements are usually lean and just-in-time, but spike in demand and COVID-19 outbreaks have forced port operations to temporarily close. COVID-related closures in major global ports have consequently led to congestion and delays with a cascading effect around the world.

AMIC CEO Patrick Hutchinson said he hoped the recent push would result in change.

“The report and associated media coverage provide a solid foundation for the advocacy that AMIC has undertaken directly with the federal government and through its membership in the Australian Peak Shippers Association (APSA),” said.

“The results of the report are closely aligned with and validate the proposed service specifications, which were presented as part of a coalition of 30 industry bodies that AMIC sits on.

“We hope this report will fuel government action in this area and ultimately spark a federal government-led review of Australian shipping suspensions.”

Source: AMIC

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