Ahhâ€¦itâ€™s finally May: the month for asparagus, strawberries, and other delectable goodies. As we have every year for the past 13 years, EMO Trans has organized the transportation of fresh white asparagus directly from German farmers to several U.S. locations on behalf of the German American Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber celebrates this exquisite 'queen of vegetables' with their annual dinner â€“ always a very festive event appreciated by many members and guests.
Our results for the first four months are also palatable; they continue to be positive and in comparison, stronger than those of 2013. While we have a good start to 2014 and are satisfied with our progress thus far, we do have more than a half year in front of us with a lot of work ahead to tackle while controlling our costs. We must never forget that the reason for our existence is our customers; their loyalty to us depends on our competitive performance.
The LATAM meeting in Miami a few weeks ago showed us new opportunities we will use to our advantage for those markets in Central and Latin America. Our Miami office is planning to expand their operation into a new larger 270,000-square-foot facility to accommodate this developing traffic. The sales training held in Atlanta also was well received, with our colleagues favoring the new selling enhancements and IT tools provided to them.
The CNS conference attended by Marco Rohrer, Tilo Weger, and Uwe Kaeding was successful with our team negotiating more stable conditions with a number of airlines. On the ocean freight side, the agreements with our carriers are secure but there is still a level of uncertainty regarding the ILWU situation. Also a number of steamship lines have announced their GRIs; we shall see what the outcome will be.
Our new offices in the Carolinas, Raleigh and Charleston, are showing first results that both have been well received by the global network. The PLI office has also been busy moving their first projects. The European branches in Belgium, France, and the Netherlands are taking hold and are very grateful for all the support they can get with the ongoing sales campaign from our worldwide offices.
Our companies in Australia, Canada, Chile, Germany, Korea, New Zealand and Peru are all doing well. EMO Trans Australia moved their Sydney branch to a larger office and warehouse facility.
As we approach the end of the month, the U.S. will honor our military who have served our country with the celebration of Memorial Day. I wish everyone a restful and enjoyable weekend. May you and your families have continued good health and fortune.
Negotiations on a new labor contract between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) began May 12. The PMA represents ports on the U.S. West Coast, including the major gateways of Los Angeles and Long Beach. The current contract expires at midnight on June 30. Many customers have been concerned over possible work stoppages if a new contract is not signed by the deadline. Hereâ€™s what we know about how the talks are proceeding:
The two sides are reportedly meeting daily at their offices in San Francisco with the earnest hope that an agreement will be reached.
The ILWU is seeking to protect and enhance the wages and benefits of the 20,000 workers covered under the contract.
The PMA wishes to maintain the West Coastâ€™s competitive standing as the portal of choice for goods coming to and from Asia.
Talks could be extended through the deadline, if necessary. At this time, no work stoppages or slowdowns are expected.
All U.S. ports have already experienced significant backlogs this year due to the harsh weather conditions of this past winter. Therefore, it may be prudent to expect some delays. Please work with your EMO Trans sales and operations contacts to plan ahead.
Stay on top of the latest in the labor contract negotiations between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association.
CNS Partnership Conference Continues as Premier Cargo Event Each year, the CNS Partnership Conference brings together more than 500 air cargo professionals from around the world, including executives from airlines, freight forwarders, and shippers. This year, the event took place in San Antonio, Texas, and EMO Trans (represented by Tilo Weger, Marco Rohrer, and Uwe Kaeding, pictured) met with many airlines and learned about their expansion plans. Some of them reported major fleet renewal programs and exchanges for bigger aircrafts, and some showed massive expansion plans with new destinations per week and hundreds of new aircraft on order.
â€œOur main topic for all discussions was to improve the relationship between airlines and EMO Trans and to improve cooperation and communication,â€ says Tilo Weger, EMO Transâ€™ Corporate Air Freight Manager. â€œWe all agreed to implement these positive changes; not only will we benefit from it, but our customers will too. â€œ
Dubai Airport Undergoing Expansion Two runways are closed for an 80-day period that began May 1. Read more about how this may affect flights in and out of the area.
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Staff at Seoul office, pictured left to right: Miss Hellen Lee, Mrs. Chunhak Wang, Mr. K.T. Kwon, Mrs. Jacky Lee, and Miss Rachel Choi. Not pictured: Mrs. Sabrina Kim, Mr. J.H. Moon, and Mr. Y.H. Kim
This year marks EMO Trans Koreaâ€™s 10th anniversary, and Managing Director K.T. Kwon credits the officeâ€™s success to its skillful knowledge of the inner workings of the logistics business. â€œOur strong points are expertise on factors like insurance, foreign exchange, letters of credit, terms and conditions, and claims. Customers and partners like our due diligence and problem-solving abilities,â€ he says.
EMO Trans Koreaâ€™s core services include airfreight and ocean freight, import and export, domestic transportation, warehousing/packing/distribution, customs brokerage, cargo insurance, break bulk, air and ocean charters, and integrated project cargo handling.
Over the past 10 years, EMO Trans Koreaâ€™s annual sales have more than quadrupled. â€œOur service philosophy is that we treat every customer as if they are our most important customer,â€ K.T. says.
Charter flight to Port Moresby Airport (POM) in Papua New Guinea carrying 155,478 kg.
Power plant construction project in Mexico. 38,000 tons of material were shipped to the job site in La Rosita (near Mexicali) via the Port of Ensenada from 13 origin countries. â€œAt that time, I oversaw all shipments in Korea,â€ K.T. recalls. â€œThis was the biggest project of my logistics career!â€
Back row- left: Cesar Fernandez, Mary Clasen, Lauren Fernandez
Front row-left: Kathy Pogorzelski, Caitlin Dunckel, Colleen Axtman and Uwe Kaeding
Situated in Americaâ€™s heartland is EMO Trans Milwaukee â€“ a full service office that handles a mixture of all freight services, including air, ocean, exports, imports, and brokerage for the Wisconsin and upper Michigan area. Most freight comes into or leaves the region through Chicago.
Branch manager Colleen Axtman has been with the office since the year it first opened its doors in 1998. â€œOur office here has been built on good business relationships that were mostly started from the beginning. Theyâ€™ve developed and opened many other doors and opportunities,â€ she says. â€œWe connect with our customers on a level that forms a foundation for years of growth.â€
EMO Trans Milwaukee thrives because of its dedicated team whoâ€™s willing to go the extra mile and work efficiently and proactively. â€œOur customers look to us for guidance, and we work hard to address the challenges they face in the logistics area,â€ Colleen says. â€œWe take full advantage of partnerships we have established with carriers and look outside the box for exceptional cost savings. Logistics drives our customersâ€™ world, and we are delivering the future in many aspects.â€
Like other EMO Trans offices, Colleen also credits the officeâ€™s success to its positive working relationships with gateway EMO Trans branches like Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Chicago. â€œAfter we handle the main customer coordination, we depend on these other offices,â€ she says. â€œTheir responsiveness is so valuable when we need immediate answers.â€
EMO Trans Milwaukee ships quite a variety of goods, including oversized equipment, dangerous goods, agricultural equipment, beverages and beverage samples, cookware, and ginseng (pictured).
A famous hometown motorcycle manufacturer (hint: itâ€™s beloved by enthusiasts and collectors around the world!) has relied on EMO Trans Milwaukee to ship its equipment.
Wisconsin is known as the Ginseng Capital of the World, and EMO Trans Milwaukee specializes in shipping ginseng from the U.S. to Asian markets for use in foods and traditional medicines. The pricing for wild ginseng has risen in the last decade and can go over $1,000 per pound. â€œCultivated ginseng grows well in the Upper Wisconsin region due to its excellent climate and soil conditions,â€ Colleen explains. â€œWe work directly with the USDA during inspections, as this commodity is regulated under CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora).â€
Peak Season Surcharges Effective June 1 Our ocean carriers have announced the following Peak Season Surcharges (PSS):
For Far East (except India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh), S. Africa and Middle East to USA and Puerto Rico:
USD 320/20' container
USD 400/40' container
USD 450/40' high-cube container and reefer container
USD 506/45' high-cube container
For India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh to USA and Puerto Rico:
USD 240/20' container
USD 300/40' container
USD 300/40' high-cube container and reefer container
USD 380/45' high-cube container
Given that the PSS are slated for the future, it's not yet clear how the market will respond and if they will actually be implemented. It's not uncommon to see carriers soften up only hours before implementation. With this in mind, we might not see reductions until close to the effective date.
Port Congestion Charges Possible
Effective May 25, our ocean carriers expect to implement port congestion charges due to the possibility of labor unrest and work disruption at U.S. ports.
The congestion charges are as follows:
USD 800/20' container
USD 1000/40' container
USD 1125/40' high-cube container and reefer container
USD 1266/45' high-cube container
If a work stoppage or labor unrest occurs, these charges will be implemented for imports and exports shipping through U.S. West Coast, Gulf Coast and East Coast ports, as well as cargo via Canada and Mexico.
Customers should be aware that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is taking an aggressive enforcement stance on border inspections at all U.S. ports of entry, including ocean terminals and border crossings. CBP is more closely inspecting the interiors and exteriors of containers for signs of foreign origin noxious weeds and invasive insect species coming into the U.S.
Best trade practices include:
Train personnel on how to detect contaminants.
Ensure that all Wood Packaging Material is ISPM 15 compliant.
Perform frequent visual inspections of conveyances before arrival in the U.S.
Clean and disinfect conveyances between visits to animal production facilities and before U.S. arrival.
Obtain predeparture certification for ships (Asian Gypsy Moth).
If you have questions, please contact your EMO Trans sales or operations associates.