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How to Save Time and Money With Your International Shipping

international shipping

How to Save Time and Money With Your International Shipping

Whether you are just dipping your toes into international shipping, or you are a veteran who wants to update the firm’s processes, there is always more you can do to make your shipping practices more streamlined and efficient. After all, if you are going to compete with local players, then you need to be offering the best deal possible on international shipping. How you can do that is going to be unique to your firm, but some general practices can help.

From managing customer’s expectations of speed to optimizing your packaging, investing in cargo insurance to getting help when you need it, read on to learn how to save time and money with this guide to international shipping.

1. Balance your need for speed.

Generally, the quicker you want your shipments to be delivered, the more expensive the shipping is going to be. Therefore, it is essential that you balance your need for speed with your budget and your customer’s expectations. Customers expect reliable delivery times, not necessarily the fastest possible time, and in many cases, they are happy to wait a couple of days to bring costs down.

Therefore, your best strategy is to provide them with a variety of delivery options to choose from. That way, they can decide how much they are willing to pay and how long they can wait for their goods. Keep in mind that for most companies, the goal is to limit the number of individual shipments and instead maximize the amount of cargo shipped. This generally brings about the most efficient results.

When organizing international shipping for your customers, it is essential that you make their experience as pleasant as possible. One of the best ways to do this is by providing them with accurate shipping information that keeps their expectations in check.

2. Optimize your packaging.

One of the most overlooked ways to reduce international shipping costs is to optimize your packaging. The ideal packaging keeps your products safe and secure while also reducing shipping weight and box size so as not to receive additional charges. In order to find the optimal packaging for your goods, you need to take different factors into consideration, including a product’s height, weight, and volume.

From there, look for boxes that fit your product while leaving minimal wasted space. Additionally, choose lightweight packaging materials that still protect your items. Depending on what you are shipping, you may want to consider utilizing standard sized packaging that is provided by your freight provider, as this will remove your firm’s requirement to source custom box sizes.

When planning your packaging strategy, it is vital to think dimensionally, which means knowing the length, width, and depth, which together comprise the dimensional weight of your goods. If you are shipping in bulk, keep in mind that you want your packages to be shaped so that they can be expertly arranged to fit into the smallest size carton.

3. Invest in cargo insurance.

Just as you have insurance for your home, car, and health, it is also essential that you have coverage for your cargo. Unfortunately, it only takes one international shipping incident for your firm to feel adverse effects, which is why cargo insurance is so important. By getting this insurance, you will be covered for damaged goods, cargo theft or loss in transit, and any other unforeseen events that affect your products.

While many carriers and freight forwarders offer liability insurance, this is generally limited to a specific monetary amount and has many exclusions. Therefore, you don’t want to solely rely on this liability insurance because it usually is not enough to cover the costs of severe loss or damage. On the other hand, cargo insurance will render you a more comprehensive level of protection, ensuring you can recover the full value of lost, damaged, or stolen goods.

Having cargo insurance is highly recommended because it provides you with greater peace of mind which, in the long run, makes for a more efficient and streamlined international shipping process. The last thing you want is to be worried about your firm going under because something happens to a shipment that is out of your control. Do your company a favor and invest in cargo insurance.

4. Get help when you need it.

No matter what size your company is, what products you are shipping, or whether you are moving individual parcels or sizable cargo, there is no need to do it all on your own. After all, there are experts in these fields who have the knowledge and experience to help you reduce your costs and the number of resources you have to spend on shipping logistics.

By opting to work with an online freight forwarder, such as Shipa Freight, you are not only setting yourself up for shipping success now but also in the future. From generating an online quote to scheduling your shipments and then tracking them, an online freight forwarder provides you with all the tools you need to make your international shipping processes as streamlined as possible.

For example, as an individual, it can be challenging to locate the ports and other destinations that you need, but a high-quality freight forwarder can find them for you. Additionally, you will be personally guided by a representative throughout the process so that you can be assured that you are choosing the best options for your firm. When working with Shipa Freight, you will always be treated as a partner, not a commodity.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to international shipping, if you want to come out on top, then your firm must incorporate as many cost-saving and time-effective measures as possible. By including these steps into your international shipping strategy, you will be well on your way to having the most efficient shipping process possible.

What do you think are the most effective steps for reducing costs and time related to international shipping? What strategies does your firm use?

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As Chief Product Officer for Shipa Freight, Paul Rehmet is responsible for translating the vision of Shipa Freight into an easy-to-use online freight platform for our customers. Formerly Vice President of Digital Marketing for Agility, Paul managed Agility’s website, mobile apps, content marketing and online advertising campaigns. In his 25-year career, Paul has held various technology leadership positions with early-stage startups and Fortune 500 companies including Unisys, Destiny Web Solutions, and US Airways. Paul has a Masters in Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Computer Science from Brown University. Paul is based in Philadelphia.  

coronavirus

Coronavirus Disrupts Maritime Industry, Supply Chains

With reports that the U.S. military is preparing for a global coronavirus pandemic, companies dependent on China-based production are highly vulnerable to the adverse impacts on the modes of the supply chain, namely in commercial aviation, maritime shipping and overland transport, according to an industry analysis.

“The outbreak has already disrupted some commercial maritime operations and is set to have a much greater impact as international concerns over the virus intensifies,” states Hong Kong-based A2 Global Risk, which supplies its client businesses with a complete picture of global politics, security and trade.

“As large sections of China’s economy grinds to a halt and regional supply-chain mobility becomes tightly restricted, the macro-economic outlook becomes increasingly dire,” A2 Global Risk adds. “More factory closures are a near certainty as the Chinese government tries to control the spread of the disease. Foreign companies heavily reliant on China’s manufacturing sector will be forced to either weather the storm or shift their supply chains to less risky markets.”

TT Club, a UK-based insurance provider, is warning freight forwarders, logistics service providers and other intermediaries of potential unforeseen exposures that may also accrue. “Restrictions due to labor shortages at ports and cancellations of inland transport links within China, constraints in the supply of goods due to factory closures and reduced schedules of air, ocean and rail carriers may expose forwarders to claims arising from delivery delays and cargo deterioration,” states a TT Club briefing that was compiled with the assistance of specialist international lawyers.

“Up-to-date status reports on their cargo’s progress, or lack of it, are vital to shippers,” emphasizes TT Club’s Risk Management Director Peregrine Storrs-Fox. “Forwarders and logistics operators will certainly prove their mettle if they can consistently make customers aware of the ongoing attempts to problem-solve. Careful recording of communication trails detailing such actions will also help in any disputes in the future.”

Global e-retailer Alibaba Group has responded to the coronavirus threat by continuously sending medical supplies, including masks and protective suits, to medical personnel in Wuhan, Wenzhou and Hangzhou, which are at the center of the outbreak and in the most need.

“We are grateful. And we need more help,” states Alibaba, which launched a global sourcing platform for suppliers and distributors of medical goods across the world to join in the campaign.

breakbulk europe

Breakbulk Europe to Return to Bremen in 2021

Breakbulk Europe, the world’s largest event for the project cargo and breakbulk industry, will return to Bremen, Germany, for the fourth consecutive year in 2021 at Messe Bremen from 18-20 May.

“It’s a great pleasure to be returning to Bremen in 2021, a city that has gone above and beyond to welcome breakbulk and project cargo professionals from more than 3800 companies,” Nick Davison, Portfolio Director for Breakbulk and CWEIME events, Hyve Group (formerly ITE Group) said. “The city of Bremen has proved to be a good fit for the Breakbulk attendees with its unique blend of historical charm, modern amenities, maritime environment and visitor affordability.”

Breakbulk Europe has grown significantly since the move to Bremen in 2018, and with over 120 countries represented, its reach embraces the world. Exhibitors at the 2019 event overwhelmingly demonstrated their satisfaction with Breakbulk Europe, Messe Bremen and the city itself, by rebooking 89 percent of exhibition space for 2020 by the end of the show. Along with many repeat exhibitors, the 2020 edition will feature 70 new companies, such as Sarens, CEVA Logistics, DP World, and Airbus, who has chosen Breakbulk Europe to promote their Beluga XL aircraft.

“We are committed to bringing a world-class event to this industry that is critical to the world’s economy,” Davison said. “As we move further into this decade, we will consider alternate locations for 2022 and beyond to deliver new markets and fresh thinking, but for now, Bremen is the right choice and we would not hesitate to return in the future.”

The 2021 announcement comes three months before the opening of Breakbulk Europe 2020, and already the indicators point to another success. Online registration is tracking 13 percent ahead compared to this time last year. A strong lineup of partnerships has been secured, including companies for each of the three content areas: Masters Arena by Aurelis Real Estate Service, Main Stage by Port of Gdańsk and Tech & Innovation Hub by Erhardt. New to the 2020 experience will be a pair of professional workshops focused on risk management and chartering essentials, Education Day for local students and those new or looking to enter the industry, and the first Europe-based Women in Breakbulk breakfast, part of Breakbulk’s global networking platform for female professionals.

About Breakbulk Europe

Breakbulk Europe has become the global hub for the industrial project supply chain, including the world’s foremost manufacturers, oil & gas companies, EPCs, carriers, ports, logistics firms, specialized transporters and related service providers. This year’s event is expected to bring together around 10,000 professionals from more than 120 countries. To request exhibiting and sponsorship information and to register for the event, visit europe.breakbulk.com.

Breakbulk Europe is one of four Breakbulk global events, along with Breakbulk Middle East in Dubai, 25-26 Feb. 2020, Breakbulk Asia in Shanghai, 18-19 March 2020 and Breakbulk Americas in Houston, 29 Sept.-1 Oct. 2020.

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Hyve Group plc is a next generation FTSE 250 global events business whose purpose is to create unmissable events, where customers from all corners of the globe share extraordinary moments and shape industry innovation.  Hyve Group plc was announced as the new brand name of ITE Group plc in September 2019, following its significant transformation under the Transformation and Growth (TAG) programme. Our vision is to create the world’s leading portfolio of content-driven, must-attend events delivering an outstanding experience and ROI for our customers.

Press contact: Leslie Meredith -Marketing  & Media Director, Breakbulk Events & Media

E: Leslie.Meredith@breakbulk.com

T: +1 801 201 5971

chinese

From A to QI: The Global Rise of Traditional Chinese Medicine

Find Your Qi

Maintaining balanced Qi (many of us know it as “chi”) – the body’s vital energy level — is a bedrock of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). To help your Qi flow, TCM offers herbal supplements and treatments like acupuncture and cupping.

Strongly promoted by the Chinese government, TCM has become a global industry and an economic driver for China. The sector grossed $130 billion in 2016. According to World Finance, China exported $526 million worth of TCM to the United States alone, making up 15 percent of China’s TCM exports in 2016, while China’s overall TCM exports grew 54 percent between 2016 and 2017.

Recalling the ancient spice routes, TCM is sprouting up as a traded item all along China’s modern Belt and Road routes. The Belt and Road initiative set a goal to register 100 TCM products and establish 30 TCM centers in Belt and Road countries by 2020.

Taking Root but Germinating Concerns

Meeting a goal of Chinese President Xi, TCM got a big boost in legitimacy in 2019 when the World Health Organization (WHO) included TCM for the first time in its global compendium of health conditions and treatments.

But many in the medical field have expressed concern over the move. TCM treatments may lack rigorous scientific study. Testing has revealed the presence of heavy metals, pesticides and toxins in plants grown and harvested in China, and standardization of natural ingredients is not well regulated.

Stats on Traditional Chinese Medicine

Chinese Ginseng in Wisconsin?

In part to remedy quality concerns, China’s TCM producers are partnering to establishing growing sites overseas. They include operations in Wisconsin, which produces over 90 percent of total U.S. cultivated ginseng. Global ginseng production is between 4.5 million and 5.9 million kilos per year. The United States produces roughly half a million kilos. Last year, U.S. ginseng exports were valued at about $30 million, with China the biggest buyer, though ginseng shipments were significantly dampened by 25 percent tariffs applied by China as part of the ongoing trade war.

As ginseng’s health benefits have become popularized in the United States, import demand for Asian ginseng has increased in recent years. The Asian variety is considered “hot,” versus American ginseng which has a “cooling” effect on the body, so trade may flow in accordance with the flow of consumers’ Qi.

Beyond ginseng, more small farms around the United States are producing a variety of Chinese herbs both for export and domestic use in response to concerns with the age and potency of imports, possible contamination, and over-harvesting of wild herbs in China.

The Side Effects of TCM

Africa has become the largest regional TCM export market for China. In 2015, Chinese researcher Tu Youyou won the Nobel Prize for Medicine for discovering the antimalarial properties of the Asian plant Artemisia annua. That validation increased confidence in the use of TCM, particularly in countries that suffer shortages of biomedical healthcare practitioners and in remote, rural areas that lack access to healthcare facilities. But many in the healthcare sector worry that the limitations or risks of TCM are not well understood and that patients turning to TCM may be less likely to seek proven treatments, causing a worsening of their conditions. Quality control and counterfeit medicines prevalent in Africa are also serious concerns.

WHO listing of TCM text

Another side effect is increased demand for African wildlife, already a serious problem. The plight of endangered species such as pangolins are well known, but common farm animals such as donkeys are now in high demand as well. Sought after for gelatin, TCM has driven demand to over four million donkeys per year and growing. Donkeys are being poached from small farmers and landowners and smuggled to such an extent that illegal donkey trade is being compared in severity to rhino poaching.

TCM is also spawning an increase in crocodile farming in Kenya, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa. Eighty-five percent of African crocodile exports go to China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, which gives rise to yet another major concern. TCM can include the practice of eating of exotic wild animals. Wild animals can carry diseases transmitted to humans, as was the case with the SARS outbreak in 2002, traced to consumption of wild civet cat. Exotic species available in a wet market in China may also be the origin of the current strain of Coronavirus affecting thousands. Out of caution, China recently announced a temporary ban on wild animal trade.

Deep Trade Roots

It could be that the U.S.-China trade relationship is founded on traditional Chinese medicine. In February 1784, a cargo ship named Empress of China set sail for China loaded with nearly 30 tons of American ginseng. The profits from that trade prompted a congressional resolution encouraging further trade with China. President George Washington is said to have had Daniel Boone search forests for ginseng in an effort to help fund the fledgling U.S. government through trade with China.

Such is the storied history of TCM. But as TCM is traded globally in the modern age, the industry will need to find its own Qi for a balanced approach to quality, safety, and the sustainability of precious resources.

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Sarah Smiley

Sarah Smiley is a strategic communications and policy expert with over 20 years in international trade and government affairs, working in the U.S. Government, private sector and international organizations.

This article originally appeared on TradeVistas.org. Republished with permission.
airfeight

Airfreight vs. Sea Freight – Which Works Better?

Airfreight vs. sea freight has become a burning dilemma for all those in need of this type of services. While both solutions come with a set of advantages and disadvantages, the final choice one makes will depend on a variety of factors. We are willing to share our knowledge and findings with you so that you can make the best possible decision regarding your shipment in the given circumstances. 

Airfreight vs sea freight – the costs can be a decisive factor

Undeniably, the amount of financial means necessary to afford airfreight services is considerably higher than that of sea freight. Moreover, the appearance of the largest cargo aircraft in the world announces great changes and improvements in this field. The Antonov An-225 could cause a further rise of the airfreight costs, but it will also guarantee higher quality. On the other hand, sea freight is much more affordable and, consequently, the number one choice of a vast majority of clients. Opting for sea freight provides clients with acceptable service but at a significantly lower price.

Time matters greatly!

Most often, clients want their shipment delivered as soon as possible, which can cause problems for those offering sea freight services. Not seldom do customs issues or hold-ups at ports cause serious delays. However, we must admit that a giant step forward is evident in this field. Firstly, high-quality, modern ships are much faster now than it was the case in the past. Secondly, there are some canal upgrades that can eliminate tedious and tiring delays on some routes. Finally, sea freight forwarders can guarantee delivery times, which is vital for business owners when it comes to organization.

The type of cargo affects the final choice on airfreight vs. sea freight dilemma

The type of cargo is one of the most important factors influencing the choice in the airfreight vs. sea fright dilemma. In this case, we must admit that sea fright seems like a much better solution since it has no limitations you have to be aware of. One of the crucial pros of the maritime shipping is that you can ship even the bulkiest and extremely heavy goods. Conversely, airfreight is limited in this discipline. Before you opt for this type of goods transportation, it is advisable to make sure that the type of your cargo is acceptable. In addition, there is a very long list of the items which are prohibited and those listed as hazardous materials. Depending on your final destination, the rules and laws may differ. Yet, getting sufficient information on the subject must still be the first step in the process.

Safety of your cargo is the top priority

Understandably, the safety of cargo is always the top priority. It is important to emphasize that air cargo has to be dealt with the utmost attention and in accordance with the regulations which are very strict and clear. All the crucial elements, including handling and securing your cargo as well as the proper storage, are defined by airport regulations. This is a great benefit and a guarantee that the safety of your goods will be at the maximal level. On the other hand, we cannot say that sea freight is a bad alternative either. In this case, the goods are transported in containers, but the human factor is crucial. Proper packing strategies are essential in order to decrease any chances of potential damage during transport. If this is not conducted appropriately, the chances are some of your goods might get seriously damaged or even cause further problems on the ship.

Do not forget about the accessibility of your goods

If we analyze the accessibility of your goods as one of the criteria, airfreight is a more favorable option by all means. The procedures are clear, cargo is in smaller volumes and there are no unnecessary waitings to receive your goods. Using sea freight for your cargo often results in additional costs due to heavy congestions in seaports. If your goods are not delivered at the arranged time, you are required to pay for detention and demurrage costs, which may be a heavy burden on your budget. However, we must not forget to mention an advantage sea freight offers comparing to airfreight. The accessibility to markets is much higher in case of sea freight. The reason is very simple. When unloaded from ships, containers can move further inland by using the services of intermodal shippers

Eco-friendly practices 

Finally, let us not forget about the environment when choosing between airfreight vs sea freight. Applying eco-friendly practices is becoming increasingly important, so it does not surprise this is one of the factors shippers base their decision on. According to this particular criterion, sea freight is a more reasonable option since it has a significantly better carbon footprint. Quite the opposite, airplanes are serious polluters and require special attention and measures to reduce their carbon footprint to minimal values.

Final words on airfreight vs sea freight dilemma

The decisions and choices you make concerning airfreight vs sea freight dilemma will depend on miscellaneous factors. It is of key importance to weigh the pros and cons of each of these options and then make your decision final.  A serious effort is required to negotiate the best shipping terms and only then can you expect to ship your goods completely fuss-free.

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Susan Daniels is a passionate copywriter who loves exploring home improvement ideas and real estate market. Lately, she has gained considerable knowledge in the types of moving services and the qualities of respectable moving companies such as DA Moving NYC, for example. She enjoys giving advice on the best places to live and exciting places to visit. Traveling makes her happy as well as reading good books.

Customs

Common U.S. Customs Clearance Issues & Overcoming Them

For people who are not intimately familiar with the international freight industry, it can appear to be dauntingly complex. After all, dabbling in international trade means dealing with a host of different entities, each of which has its own regulations and rules that you have to follow. And US customs are just one large piece in an ever-increasing puzzle.

However, understanding common US customs clearance issues and anticipating them is crucial for a successful global trading endeavor. That’s why we’re going to delve into some of them, and propose ways to of solving them.

Customs Exams

If you want to deal with common US customs clearance issues, be prepared for customs exams. Naturally, you probably know that random checks at customs aren’t that rare of an event in the world of maritime shipping. And sure, only up to 10% of global shipments are inspected in reality. While that may be a small fraction of the overall volume of shipping; you need to be prepared. And that goes for any customs in the world, including the US.

Issues with US Customs Clearance

The first thing you need to understand regarding US customs clearance issues is – they are different in each country and port. So, some things you read about the priorities of Dutch customs won’t necessarily be true when the US is concerned. Generally, U.S. customs tend to have frequent random inspections.

Know that there are separate, country-specific inspections that they conduct, depending on what country your shipment is coming from. That’s the sort of information that importers regularly provide to freight forwarders. So, that sort of logistical information is important, as any misleading information can lead to long-term distrust; not a good thing for trading efforts. If complete information flows both ways, your freight transport will be a smooth process. And in the case of the contrary, you’ll be dealing with another issue: delays.

Delay Expenses

One of the most common US customs clearance issues is delays. And these happen precisely because of different exams and holds. These, in turn, lead to fees and charges that are a consequence of delays. Which can happen for an entire slate of different reasons. However, not all delay charges are the same. Generally, they are divided into per diem, detention, and demurrage. So, make sure you familiarize yourself with the terms, before negotiating with a shipping company.

Missing Documentation

When it comes to your shipping process, know that the original copy of your Bill of Lading is the most crucial document. And its misplacement is a surprisingly common problem that happens to shippers. If the Bill of Lading is missing, be sure that you will face issues regarding your shipment’s release. And that will result in additional delays. That’s why you need to be sure that the Bill of Lading will be carried through a channel you can rely on. That’s where the aforementioned trustworthiness comes into play.

If you’ve got a supplier with whom you have a fairly trusting relationship, you can opt for an Express Release or a Telex Release. Though, you may require more particular paperwork, depending on the type of cargo and the port of destination. Uncertainty and trade volatility is something that all shippers face; being familiar with all the details will go a long way towards reducing them to the minimum.

Missing Taxes and Duties

As we’ve mentioned just now, you may need some specific sort of paperwork, depending on where the shipment is going and the sort of cargo you’re shipping. And not abiding by this is one of the common US customs clearance issues, but you want to avoid that. After all, this additional paperwork is there to protect the interests of the country’s residents and the economy. Thus, some commodities may be forbidden, while others are allowed, but only with special permits.

To give an example – auto-shipments are among those which require specific documentation. Before the shipping is done, have a look at the HS Code of the cargo that you’re transporting. You may encounter extra taxes and duties in order to clear your shipment. So, if you want your shipment to go through smoothly, be certain that you have all of the particular documentation that all the different ports require.

Cargo Damage

Unfortunately, cargo damage is something that happens often in the world of shipping. That’s why you want to make sure your cargo is safely secured in its container at the port of origin. Statistics show that 90% of cargo damage actually happens due to improper storage and packing. Plus, bear in mind that the loading process in your origin point should be perfect. Take care of all the details, like remembering how many pallets you can actually fit into the container.

Because in reality, cargo damage rarely happens due to terminal or carrier mishandling. But if that does happen, do not forgo filing an insurance claim. And while doing that, take great care to go through all the proper procedures step by step, if you want to be certain that you will be compensated for the losses. Still, though; we recommend safely securing your cargo, and you won’t have to go through any of this.

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Nathan Smith is a freelance author, mostly writing analyses of the maritime and air shipping industries. When he’s not writing about moving companies like Four Winds Saudi Arabia, he likes reading crime fiction and watching science fiction movies.

pyle

Duie Pyle Partners with Oak Harbor Freight Lines to Expand Service to West Coast

West Chester, Pennsylvania-based A. Duie Pyle, a premier provider of asset and non-asset based transportation and supply chain solutions in the Northeast, recently partnered with Oak Harbor Freight Lines to expand its coverage area to the West Coast for the first time.

Founded in 1916, Oak Harbor has a footprint covering Washington, Oregon, Idaho, California and Nevada and just celebrated its 103rd year anniversary, while Pyle just celebrated its 95th anniversary. This is Pyle’s first foray into providing West Coast service and will improve transit times while reducing dock congestion and cost impacts upon customers, as the partnership opens up new opportunities to reduce service providers. Both companies share similar core values and are family-owned and operated, making the move an ideal match for providing coast-to-coast service.

“Being able to work with another family-owned and operated company who shares similar core values and service standards is something that is important to all of us at Pyle,” said John Luciani, COO of LTL Solutions at A. Duie Pyle. “With our similar business model and combined strength in the market, we are confident adding Oak Harbor Freight Lines to our elite partnership network is going to prove valuable for customers across the U.S.”

“At Oak Harbor Freight, we strive to invest in valued relationships that will continue to meet our customers’ needs,” says David Vander Pol, co-president and co-owner of Oak Harbor Freight. “This partnership with A. Duie Pyle reflects our company goals by gaining strategic partnerships that will allow our customer base to have a simple and uniform source for their transportation needs. We are excited to expand our services coast-to-coast and provide the best customer service possible.”

St. Lawrence Seaway

TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY CHAO COMMEMORATES ST. LAWRENCE SEAWAY’S 60TH ANNIVERSARY

U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao marked the 60th anniversary of the St. Lawrence Seaway, the U.S.-Canadian waterway, at a Sept. 24 ceremony at the Eisenhower Lock in Massena, New York. 

“For 60 years, the St. Lawrence Seaway has been a safe and reliable gateway for global commerce, further demonstrating our nation’s strong and strategic partnership with Canada,” Chao said.

She was joined by Transport Canada Director General of Marine Policy Marc-Yves Bertin, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-New York), U.S. Seaway Deputy Administrator Craig Middlebrook, Canadian Seaway President and CEO Terence Bowles and U.S. and Canadian government and transportation officials.

 Chao and Representative Stefanik also used the event to announce $6 million in funding for the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp. to construct a new Visitors’ Center at the U.S. Eisenhower Lock. This new center will welcome the tens of thousands of people from around the world who come to watch ships transit the lock each year, and serve as a cornerstone for tourism in the North Country region of New York.

The bi-national waterway was officially opened in 1959 by Queen Elizabeth II and President Dwight D. Eisenhower. It has been proclaimed as one of the 10 most outstanding engineering achievements of the past 100 years. Since its inception, nearly 3 billion tons of cargo, valued at over $450 billion, have been transported via the Seaway

BluJay

BluJay and Damco Take Partnership to the Cloud

Global freight forwarding provider, Damco announced the extension of its partnership with supply chain software and services provider, BluJay Solution this week through a multi-year agreement. The agreement enables the ongoing usage of the Transportation Management for Forwarders platform, now on the cloud through an anticipated upgrade.

“We’ve seen the capabilities added in the past few years – the game has really been upped, and it’s critical in our industry to keep moving forward with technology to stay ahead,” said Martin Ring, Global Chief Operations Officer at Damco. “Damco will take advantage of the continually enhanced functionality available from BluJay to run our business as efficiently as possible.”

Increased efficiencies, productivity, and streamlined customer communications are a few of the named benefits to come through the extended partnership, adding to the eight years between the two companies. File management remains the top priority for Damco and will continue focusing on the accurate and timely solutions benefiting its customer base such as integrated customer solutions.

“BluJay is delighted to continue our partnership with Damco. This relationship evolution is truly indicative of the value customers realize with greater solution adoption over time, supported by people who are committed to their success,” said Chris Timmer, Chief Revenue Officer for BluJay.

“We value the history of our partnership with BluJay,” added Ring.  “Damco has appreciated working with BluJay’s experts for so many years, and they will take us from today to tomorrow to support our business objectives.”

EFL Selects Pittsburgh Airport for Cargo Distribution Point

Pittsburgh International Airport has been confirmed as the airport of choice by EFL – a Sri Lanka freight forwarder and Qatar Airways customer. EFL announced the utilization of Qatar Airways Cargo’s nonstop service, specifically through one of the two weekly Boeing 777 freighters Qatar currently operates, following its first successful 90-ton shipment in May.

“Today’s announcement continues moving the airport corridor forward as a manufacturing and distribution hub. Congratulations to Christina and her team for this huge success for our region. As Pittsburgh strives to make additional connections to the global marketplace, this is a big step along that path,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald.

“The success of Qatar Airways, and the partnership with EFL, strengthens our ability to attract manufacturing and distribution to the airport. We are planting the seeds for manufacturing, distribution, logistics and connectivity in the global marketplace. We are excited to see it bear much fruit in the years to come, and to see the growth of jobs in these areas continue.”

A combination of proximity to major air cargo markets and cities positions Pittsburgh International Airport as an ideal choice for global freight forwarders. The Qatar Airways Cargo flights to Pittsburgh contribute to a total of 265 jobs and $42.8 million of economic output. Qatar Airways’ Pittsburgh-based flights represent the first scheduled international freighter route for the airport.

“Our goal is to build Pittsburgh into an international logistics center and with great partners like Qatar Airways Cargo and EFL, that goal is becoming a reality,” Pittsburgh International Airport CEO Christina Cassotis said. “This is cargo that used to enter into the U.S. through major airports such as New York and Chicago but instead they’re choosing to use our region as a gateway. That means jobs and business for our region.”

The addition of EFL serves as another example of how the airport’s gateway maintains competitive advantage through efficient and reliable global supply chain solutions in combination with the exemplary operations of Qatar Airways Cargo, including a 72-hour transit time from the Asia-Pacific region to U.S. regional and distribution centers.

“At EFL, it has been a constant pursuit to find efficient and innovative solutions for our customers, which has led us to this initiative with Qatar Airways Cargo, with who we have a relationship for over a decade,” added EFL’s Group Chief Executive Officer Senthil Shanmugam. “Considering EFL’s spread of seven offices in the USA, (with) five of them in (the) East Coast and Midwest, having a gateway that is accessible to these regions was important. Pittsburgh is a logical location for this operation as it allows us to have a fast turnover of cargo in comparison to more traditional and congested gateways. We’re grateful to the Allegheny County Airport Authority for assisting us with facilitating this effort.”