FIATA e-Flash No. 207 – 26 August 2019



The FIATA 2019 Registration Team is ready and waiting to facilitate your Congress Participation.

Only 32 days until FIATA 2019 in Cape Town! Have you registered to attend? Here’s a reminder of why you won’t want to miss FIATA 2019.


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ICAO FIATA DG Training Center in China – CIFA

In 2014, the Chinese International Forwarders Associations (CIFA) launched their ICAO FIATA DG by Air Training Program helping to ensure members are compliant with the latest DG Training.

Today, CIFA has five training centers in Beijing, Shanghai, Suzhou, Yantai, Guangzhou and Zhengzhou that provide either 5-day detailed knowledge on dangerous goods or 2-day specific training course on lithium battery. To date, they have trained a total 244 students and continue to experience strong growth year on year.

FIATA and ICAO have a growing network of training centers across the world as the program garners greater attention every day. We encourage interested training centers to come forward and submit their application with FIATA to deliver ICAO FIATA DG Training in their local market.

For more details on the ICAO FIATA DG Training please visit:

FIATA Calls for Dialogue in Response to Shipping Line’s Misdeclaration Fines

FIATA is calling for urgent dialogue with the top carriers, in the wake of recent moves by shipping lines to impose penalties on shippers who misdeclare cargoes. The previous week saw Maersk, Hapag-Lloyd, HMM and OOCL confirm to have adopted a practice of charge fines for misdeclarated cargo reaching up to $15,000.

In a recent interview with Lloyd’s List, Acting Director General Mr Stephen Morris stressed that forwarders are fully supportive of the need for safety at sea, and the lives of seafarers and the protection of shipowners’ property in vessels should rightly be paramount.

For more details, please visit:



Customs brokers will get to know importers better

The National Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association of America (NCBFAA) welcomed a recently proposed rule from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that requires customs brokers to have a more complete identification of their importer clients.

As reported by American Shipper, CBP published a proposed rule in the Federal Register on August 14requiring customs brokers to collect more detailed information about their import clients, including non-residential importers.

For more details, please visit

Trump Should Stop Reregulation of Freight Rail

Recently, two major railroad operators, CSX and Union Pacific, reported a significant drop in earnings, in part due to declining rail shipments. This was partially due to the impact of ongoing trade disputes. While we generally support a better trade relationship with China (hopefully with fewer tariffs and nontariff barriers), we need to see strong freight rail traffic if the economic expansion is going to roll on.

Legendary investor Warren Buffet once said that if he were stuck on a desert island and could only be given one number to know how the economy was doing, he would pick rail car traffic.

FIATA has highlighted without the right policy settings, it is difficult for any country to harness the opportunities for local industries to participate in global value chains. Policies should experience a paradigm shift from control to trust-based regulation, a paradigm where freight forwarders are at shippers’ service with expertise, information and organisation, helping them to uphold compliance and sustainability, involving all the stakeholders in the supply chain. This is outlined in our one of our key position paper.

For more details, please visit:

A Beautiful Friendship: How A Hard Brexit Will Benefit U.S. Freight Forwarders

The decision to leave the E.U. by the U.K. in 2016 was initially a nightmare for U.S. freight forwarders and logistics companies. Those in the supply chain ecosystem suddenly confronted huge business risk based on the uncertainty of trade negotiation outcomes. The panic was palpable and, in New York, shares of XPO Logistics dropped 14.9%, FedEx fell 3.8%, and United Parcel Service declined 2.2 % the day after the Brexit vote.

Logistics companies set aside resources to develop contingency plans against the unknown to manage their risk exposure. Andrew Clarke, chief financial officer at Minneapolis-based C.H. Robinson Worldwide (NASDAQ: CHRW) , stated that the company was reviewing its growth plans in Europe in the wake of Brexit, “I would expect you would see a pause in companies doing acquisitions in Europe and the U.K. during this period,” he said. But things were to get worse with the prospect of a hard Brexit.

For more details, please visit:

California approves program to electrify 3,000 San Diego trucks and buses

The $107 million initiative seeks to build at least 300 charging stations at sites primarily in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color that often live near freeways, ports, rail yards, and other facilities that generate significant levels of engine exhaust.

The service areas of SDG&E, San Diego and southern Orange County, is home to more than 103,000 commercial vehicles, including trucks that operate around the congested ports of entry along the U.S.-Mexico border and the Port of San Diego.

FIATA asks policy makers to not only focus on enacting legislation that will set GHG target emissions for which the industry must remain compliant. But to look at the glass half full and enact policy that would enable infrastructure development, technological research, and tracking procedures leading to enhanced connectivity and efficient transport operations that would in turn stimulate economic growth. More detailed can be found in our position paper.

For more details, please visit:



Uncertainty Looms Over Transpacific Shipping This Peak Season

Reoccurring events such as the year-end holiday season used to provide a level of predictability to ocean-shipping trends in the transpacific eastbound trade lane. Typically, holiday peak-season volumes ramped up in July, with August and September being the busiest months, and volumes tapering off in October.

The potential cost of new tariffs has caused many shippers to opt instead for assuming higher inventory-carrying expense. Accordingly, significant volumes of ocean cargo shifted to earlier sailings than normal, disrupting typical volume trends in the third and fourth quarters of 2018.

For more details, please visit:

Ocean Transportation Intermediaries’ U.S. Regulatory Scheme

In the last year or so, it has become clearly evident to us that ocean carriers are treating European and other forwarders differently than how they deal with U.S. forwarders, creating a distinctly competitive disadvantage for U.S. ocean forwarders, NVOCCs and Customs brokers.

The bottom line activity is that ocean carriers are creating beneficial sell rates to “forwarders”, usually in ocean carriers’ tariffs, for use exclusively by European forwarders located in certain locations in Europe and elsewhere (not the U.S.). We are using the term “forwarders” here in the U.S. sense.

For more details, please visit:



Shifting from the ocean to the sky: air carriers seek to lure away sea-freight

Aviation freight is experiencing a supply-demand imbalance. Soaring ocean costs because of IMO 2020 could make air freight look less expensive. And these factors are creating supply chain and risk management opportunities for agile shippers and freight forwarders, says air freight specialist C.H. Robinson.

“Some people say they only or mainly do ocean. But the reality is you need to be agile and look at different opportunities. The air market is soft now,” air freight expert Andrew Coldrey, vice president Oceania at C.H. Robinson, told FreightWaves.


New Sydney airport attracts freight firms

Ten of Australia’s major freight companies have entered a memoranda of understanding (MOU) with Western Sydney Airport, due to open in 2026. The MOU will see Western Sydney Airport work with the airfreight industry to design concepts for an on-airport freight precinct and begin discussions about potential operations from Sydney’s new airport.

The first stage of the Airport has the potential to process around 220,000 tonnes of airfreight each year through its proposed on-airport freight facility, with multiple dedicated freighter aircraft stands. This is set to scale up with demand, potentially handling 1.8m tonnes of airfreight each year in the future.

FIATA strongly supports investments in logistics infrastructure that has the potential to improve connectivity and move goods in a streamlined manner. FIATA has two local associations in Australia who is has consistently provided support to public sector and lend their services to continuous development of our industry.

For more details, please visit:



Nigerian logistics startup Kobo360 raises $30M backed by Goldman Sachs

Nigerian freight logistics startup Kobo360 has raised a $20 million Series A round led by Goldman Sachs and $10 million in working capital financing from Nigerian commercial banks.

The company – with an Uber -like app that connects truckers and companies to delivery services – will use the funds to upgrade its platform and expand to 10 new countries beyond current operating markets of Nigeria, Togo, Ghana and Kenya.

FIATA has invited Kobo360 to our upcoming 2019 World Congress to be held in Cape Town. We believe there are many synergetic opportunities to working with marketplace platform such as Kobo360 in order to expand our member’s customer based and improve the efficiency of their operations. We believe that technology is not the disease in our industry but the cure to allow us to continue to provide the value-added services for which our members have done so for decades.

For more details, please visit:

Carrier executives grapple with driver shortage expected to worsen

The decades-old driver shortage in the trucking industry is like a toothache that you ignore-it tends just to get worse and worse without treatment. The American Trucking Associations’ (ATA) latest forecast that the industry is expected to need 60,800 more for-hire over-the-road truckload drivers at the end of the year did not startle any trucking executive grappling with the shortage.

But industry leaders say solutions vary from carrier to carrier and the best answers to the problem may be a hybrid approach that includes everything from better scheduling that limits time away (no easy trick for a long-haul truck driver) to better respect within the organization (driver complaints about being ill-treated by dispatchers are legendary) to the very basic answer of dollars that make sense.

For more details, please visit:



US tech start-up RPA set to disrupt logistics with AI bots

A US start-up is bringing ‘robotic process automation’ (RPA) to the logistics arena, to speed up repetitive processes and customer interaction to free employees for other tasks. Fledgling technology company RPA Labs wants to harness the nascent technology to facilitate processes in logistics and officially entered the arena today, after a year developing its software bots.

“It’s a perfect time for RPA to disrupt the logistics industry, given the amount of paperwork, documentation and around-the-clock customer interaction that global transport requires.”

For more details, please visit:

WiseTech market cap jumps $1 billion in a day

WiseTech Global chief executive Richard White says the secret to the ASX-listed tech darling’s success had been to “stick to its knitting”,  after the company added almost $1 billion to its market capitalisation in a day.

The company, which makes logistic software for global freight forwarders and third party logistics providers, exceeded its own financial forecasts and market expectations alike, reporting a 57 per cent jump in revenue to $348.3 million for the year to June 30.

For more details, please visit:

Road safety startup Zendrive raises $37 million

Zendrive, a company that uses mobile sensors to glean insights about driver behavior, has raised $37 million in Series B funding. XL Innovate led the round, announced on August 20, with participation by Hearst Ventures and existing investors, including ACME Capital, BMW iVentures, NYCA, SignalFire, and others.

Founded in 2013, Zendrive uses machine algorithms to analyze data obtained from the smartphones of drivers to provide insights for fleets seeking to improve driver performance and insurance companies eager to improve their ability to price risk.

Road safety will be a key topic highlighted in FIATA’s 2019 World Congresses whereby our Advisory Body Safety and Security will tackle the topic head on inviting prominent speakers from G4S, Panalpina and Secure Logistics to understand key issues and mitigation efforts our members can take.

For more details, please visit: