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LATEST: CBP Issues Marking Guidance for Goods Produced in Hong Kong

hong kong

LATEST: CBP Issues Marking Guidance for Goods Produced in Hong Kong

On August 10, 2020, U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP) issued a notice that goods produced in Hong Kong will need to be marked as a product of China starting on September 25, 2020. The marking changes are the result of the July 14, 2020 Executive Order on Hong Kong Normalization that ended Hong Kong’s special trade status.

CBP is allowing for a 45-day transition period after the date of publication in the Federal Register to implement the requirements due to the “commercial realities.” The notice does not specify how the changes affect tariff treatment of Hong Kong goods.

An administration official has stated that the Executive Order does not “provide for new U.S. tariffs on goods from Hong Kong”, but that the Administration is continuing to evaluate its policies. Therefore, at this time, it remains unclear whether goods originating in Hong Kong will be subject to the same tariffs as Chinese origin goods, including antidumping duties, countervailing duties and Section 301 duties.

Additional guidance from CBP, USTR and the U.S. Department of Commerce is expected.

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Stephen Brophy is an attorney in Husch Blackwell LLP’s Washington, D.C. office focusing on international trade.

Robert Stang is a Washington, D.C.-based partner with the law firm Husch Blackwell LLP. He leads the firm’s Customs group.

Turner Kim is an Assistant Trade Analyst in Husch Blackwell LLP’s Washington, D.C. office.

Camron Greer is an Assistant Trade Analyst in Husch Blackwell LLP’s Washington, D.C. office.

sanctions

Hong Kong Sanctions Bill Passes Congress

On July 2, 2020, Congress passed the Hong Kong Autonomy Act.  Once signed by President Trump into law, the Act will require the Secretaries of State and Treasury to designate certain persons and financial institutions deemed responsible for eroding Hong Kong’s autonomy and in turn require the President to sanction such designated parties.

The Act comes on the heels of Beijing’s passage of a national security law that critics claim undermines the “One Country, Two Systems” framework that has been in place since the British handover of its former colony in 1997. Under the 1984 Joint Declaration between the U.K. and Chinese governments governing the terms of the handover, certain guarantees were required to be written into the Hong Kong Basic Law (i.e., the de facto Hong Kong constitution) to ensure certain political rights and the semi-autonomy of the territory from mainland China through at least 2047. The recently passed national security law is the latest in a string of moves by Beijing to more closely integrate Hong Kong with the mainland.

Summary of the Legislation

The Hong Kong Autonomy Act would require the Secretary of State to identify and report to Congress within 90 days persons providing or attempting to provide a material contribution “to the failure of the Government of China to meet its obligations under the Joint Declaration or the Basic Law.” This is defined under the Act to include any person who “took action that resulted in the inability of the people of Hong Kong . . . to enjoy freedom of assembly, speech, press, or independent rule of law; or . . . to participate in democratic outcomes; or . . . otherwise took action that reduces the high degree of autonomy of Hong Kong.” Once a report is made to Congress, the President is required to impose property blocking sanctions and visa restrictions on the identified parties within one year. The Act requires that the Secretary of State provide an unclassified assessment for imposition of such sanctions “so as to permit a clear path for the removal of economic penalties if the sanctioned behavior is reversed and verified by the Secretary of State.”

Similarly, between 30 and 60 days from the Secretary of State’s report, the Secretary of the Treasury would be required to identify and report to Congress “any foreign financial institution that knowingly conducts a significant transaction” with a foreign person identified by the Secretary of State. Within one year, the President must impose at least five of ten possible “menu-based” sanctions on the financial institution, which include, for example, restrictions on loans from U.S. financial institutions, restrictions on bank transfers subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, and/or asset blocking sanctions. Within two years, the President must impose all ten of the sanctions on the financial institution.

Both reports by the Secretary of State and Secretary of the Treasury must be unclassified and available to the public, although certain provisions would allow for the omission of information that would compromise an intelligence operation or subvert law enforcement activities. The reports are required to be updated no less frequently than annually.

Although the sanctions provisions are characterized in the Act as “mandatory,” the Act also empowers the President with a high degree of discretion to remove identified persons or financial institutions or terminate existing sanctions under the Act if the President determines that the material contribution or significant transaction by the identified party:

— “does not have a significant and lasting negative effect that contravenes the obligations of China under the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law;”

— “is not likely to be repeated in the future;” and

— “has been reversed or otherwise mitigated through positive countermeasures taken by” the identified person or financial institution.

The President is required to notify Congress and provide a rationale when exercising this discretion. Further, the Act authorizes the President to waive the application of sanctions if the President “determines that the waiver is in the national security interest of the United States” and notifies Congress of the waiver and the rationale for doing so.

Context

Hong Kong has been rocked by mass protests since last summer, which were first sparked by a bill proposed in April 2019 that would allow extraditions to mainland China. The proposed law drew significant protests from critics who claim the bill would be contrary to the Joint Declaration because, among other things, it could be used to target political dissidents. Ultimately, Beijing withdrew the extradition bill in September 2019. However, while protests have subsided somewhat in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, they have persisted more or less continuously.

Notably, the Basic Law required Hong Kong to pass legislation to address national security, which the city has never done, despite some unsuccessful attempts. Citing Hong Kong’s failure to enact its own national security legislation and the protestors’ “collu[sion] with external forces,” on June 30, 2020, Beijing enacted its own national security law applicable to Hong Kong which, inter alia, criminalizes “secessionist, subversive or terrorist” activities with penalties of up to life in prison; empowers Beijing to deploy mainland security forces; and overrides the ability of local Hong Kong courts to interpret the law.

Likely Practical Effect

The Hong Kong Autonomy Act represents an escalation in tensions between the United States and China. However, because of the wide discretion granted to the President under the Act, the actual effect of the legislation is unclear for the time being. In particular, the Trump Administration reportedly attempted to delay passage of the bill, and has thus far resisted imposing significant sanctions under a similar bill targeting China for alleged human rights abuses of minority Uighurs in order to salvage his trade deal with Beijing.

Because the Secretary of State must take the first action prior to set in motion any sanctions under the Act, the speed with which Secretary Pompeo makes the required designations will be a good indication of the Trump Administration’s intent. Parties interested in potential sanctions under the Act should monitor the State Department for developments.

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By Ryan Fayhee, Roy (Ruoweng) Liu and Tyler Grove at law firm Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP

vessel

HONG KONG SEAPORT ALLIANCE WELCOMES THE WORLD’S LARGEST CONTAINER VESSEL

Despite the political turmoil gripping Hong Kong, the Hong Kong Seaport Alliance (HKSPA) welcomed HMM GDANSK, the world’s largest container vessel, on its July 12 maiden call to Hong Kong at Kwai Tsing Container Terminal 7.

HMM GDANSK , which is one of the twelve 24,000-TEU class of mega vessels of HMM Co., Ltd., the vessel features a length of 1,312 feet, a width of nearly 201 feet and a maximum capacity of 23,964 TEU. Since June, the vessel has operated THE Alliance Far East Europe 3 service that connects major ports in China, Asia and Europe.

“We are excited to welcome the world’s biggest vessel on its maiden call at such challenging times,” said Leonard Fung, managing director of Hongkong International Terminals (HIT), upon the HMM GDANSK’s arrival.

“This is a momentous event for Hong Kong’s maritime industry and HIT, signifying a vote of confidence in our offering and allowing us to capture future opportunities.”

The vessel is billed as being equipped with the world’s most advanced DS4 (DSME Smart Ship Platform), ECDIS (Electronic Chart Display and Information System), monitoring system and smart navigation system. In response to the new International Maritime Organization’s environmental regulations, HMM GDANSK has installed scrubbers to reduce its sulfur emissions.

goat meat

The Asian-Pacific Goat Meat Market to Retain Robust Growth

IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘Asia-Pacific – Goat Meat – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

The Asia-Pacific goat meat market expanded rapidly to $30.1B in 2019, growing by 9.9% against the previous year. This figure reflects the total revenues of producers and importers (excluding logistics costs, retail marketing costs, and retailers’ margins, which will be included in the final consumer price). The total market indicated a prominent expansion from 2007 to 2019: its value increased at an average annual rate of +1.8% over the last twelve-year period. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2019 figures, consumption increased by +56.7% against 2014 indices. The level of consumption peaked in 2019 and is expected to retain growth in years to come.

Consumption by Country

The country with the largest volume of goat meat consumption was China (2.4M tonnes), comprising approx. 61% of total volume. Moreover, goat meat consumption in China exceeded the figures recorded by the second-largest consumer, India (502K tonnes), fivefold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by Pakistan (352K tonnes), with a 9.1% share.

In China, goat meat consumption increased at an average annual rate of +1.9% over the period from 2007-2019. In the other countries, the average annual rates were as follows: India (-0.5% per year) and Pakistan (+2.8% per year).

In value terms, China ($22.7B) led the market, alone. The second position in the ranking was occupied by India ($2.4B). It was followed by Pakistan.

The countries with the highest levels of goat meat per capita consumption in 2019 were Nepal (2.47 kg per person), Myanmar (1.89 kg per person) and Pakistan (1.72 kg per person).

Market Forecast 2019-2030

Driven by increasing demand for goat meat in Asia-Pacific, the market is expected to continue an upward consumption trend over the next decade. Market performance is forecast to retain its current trend pattern, expanding with an anticipated CAGR of +1.5% for the period from 2019 to 2030, which is projected to bring the market volume to 4.6M tonnes by the end of 2030.

Production in Asia-Pacific

In 2019, goat meat production in Asia-Pacific rose to 3.9M tonnes, with an increase of 2% on 2018 figures. The total output volume increased at an average annual rate of +1.8% from 2007 to 2019; the trend pattern remained consistent, with somewhat noticeable fluctuations being observed in certain years. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2016 with an increase of 3.4% y-o-y. Over the period under review, production reached the peak volume in 2019 and is likely to see gradual growth in the immediate term. The general positive trend in terms output was largely conditioned by a mild expansion of the number of producing animals and a relatively flat trend pattern in yield figures.

In value terms, goat meat production soared to $36.8B in 2019 estimated in export prices. Overall, production posted a remarkable increase. Over the period under review, production hit record highs in 2019 and is expected to retain growth in the immediate term.

Production by Country

China (2.4M tonnes) remains the largest goat meat producing country in Asia-Pacific, accounting for 61% of total volume. Moreover, goat meat production in China exceeded the figures recorded by the second-largest producer, India (502K tonnes), fivefold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by Pakistan (353K tonnes), with a 9.1% share.

In China, goat meat production increased at an average annual rate of +1.9% over the period from 2007-2019. In the other countries, the average annual rates were as follows: India (-0.5% per year) and Pakistan (+2.7% per year).

Producing Animals in Asia-Pacific

In 2019, the number of animals slaughtered for goat meat production in Asia-Pacific expanded to 291M heads, picking up by 1.6% compared with the previous year. This number increased at an average annual rate of +1.5% over the period from 2007 to 2019; the trend pattern remained relatively stable, with somewhat noticeable fluctuations in certain years. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2009 when the number of producing animals increased by 5.3% year-to-year. Over the period under review, this number hit record highs at 291M heads in 2016; however, from 2017 to 2019, producing animals failed to regain the momentum.

Yield in Asia-Pacific

The average goat meat yield amounted to 13 kg per head in 2019, leveling off at the year before. Over the period under review, the yield saw a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2017 with an increase of 5.1% y-o-y. Over the period under review, the goat meat yield hit record highs in 2019 and is likely to see steady growth in years to come.

Imports in Asia-Pacific

In 2019, the amount of goat meat imported in Asia-Pacific contracted to 8.8K tonnes, waning by -9.2% on 2018. The total import volume increased at an average annual rate of +1.2% from 2007 to 2019; however, the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2014 when imports increased by 25% against the previous year. As a result, imports reached the peak of 12K tonnes. From 2015 to 2019, the growth imports remained at a somewhat lower figure.

In value terms, goat meat imports declined to $43M (IndexBox estimates) in 2019. Overall, imports, however, recorded buoyant growth. The level of import peaked at $57M in 2017; however, from 2018 to 2019, imports yet failed to regain the momentum.

Imports by Country

The purchases of the four major importers of goat meat, namely Taiwan, Viet Nam, South Korea and Hong Kong SAR, represented more than two-thirds of total import. It was distantly followed by Japan (460 tonnes), making up a 5.2% share of total imports. China (317 tonnes), Macao SAR (292 tonnes), India (209 tonnes), Sri Lanka (185 tonnes), Malaysia (177 tonnes) and the Philippines (169 tonnes) followed a long way behind the leaders.

From 2007 to 2019, the most notable rate of growth in terms of purchases, amongst the key importing countries, was attained by India, while imports for the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, the largest goat meat importing markets in Asia-Pacific were Taiwan ($12M), South Korea ($9.4M) and Hong Kong SAR ($6.4M), together comprising 64% of total imports. These countries were followed by Japan, Viet Nam, Macao SAR, China, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, the Philippines and India, which together accounted for a further 32%.

Among the main importing countries, India recorded the highest growth rate of the value of imports, over the period under review, while purchases for the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Import Prices by Country

In 2019, the goat meat import price in Asia-Pacific amounted to $4,887 per tonne, waning by -2.2% against the previous year. Import price indicated a perceptible increase from 2007 to 2019: its price increased at an average annual rate of +4.5% over the last twelve years. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2019 figures, goat meat import price decreased by -15.8% against 2017 indices. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2016 when the import price increased by 22% year-to-year. Over the period under review, import prices reached the peak figure at $5,802 per tonne in 2017; however, from 2018 to 2019, import prices failed to regain the momentum.

There were significant differences in the average prices amongst the major importing countries. In 2019, the country with the highest price was Macao SAR ($7,657 per tonne), while Viet Nam ($1,613 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2019, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Macao SAR, while the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

Ports America

Ports America Announces New Leadership for 2020

Modern Terminals Hong Kong managing director and CEO Peter Levesque was confirmed this week as the newly appointed president for the largest North American marine terminal and stevedore, Ports America. Mr. Levesque will step into the role starting in February 2020 bringing decades of experience and a proven track record of success.

“I am thrilled to have Peter be part of our leadership team of the Ports America platform. Ports America remains focused on providing best-in-class service to many of the world’s leading shipping lines as well as the work we have completed in improving workflow solutions to beneficial cargo owners to drive dramatic growth for the company,” said Ports America CEO Mark Montgomery.

Mr. Levesque brings more than 30 years of experience in maritime business, with nine years of leadership with Modern Terminals and spearheading the Public Private Partnership (PPP) for the company.

“Having Peter Levesque join Mark Montgomery, Rick Surett and Jim Pelliccio as a core part of the management team is central to the strategic growth plan for Ports America,” said Dave Starling,  company board chairman.

“Peter’s strong leadership, experience and success in building superior organizations gives the board the utmost confidence that this team will drive the continued success of the company.”

Global Beef Market 2019 – Rising Demand In China Boosts Imports Up, Securing New Opportunities For Foreign Suppliers

IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘World – Beef (Cattle Meat) – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

The global beef market revenue amounted to $385.7B in 2018, growing by 5.1% against the previous year. This figure reflects the total revenues of producers and importers (excluding logistics costs, retail marketing costs, and retailers’ margins, which will be included in the final consumer price). The market value increased at an average annual rate of +3.2% over the period from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern remained consistent, with somewhat noticeable fluctuations throughout the analyzed period. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2008 with an increase of 11% year-to-year. Global beef consumption peaked in 2018 and is expected to retain its growth in the near future.

Production 2007-2018

In 2018, approx. 70M tonnes of beef (cattle meat) were produced worldwide; flattening at the previous year. In general, beef production continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2013 when Production Volume increased by 1.8% against the previous year. Over the period under review, global beef production reached its peak figure volume in 2018 and is likely to continue its growth in the immediate term. The general positive trend in terms of beef output was largely conditioned by a relatively flat trend pattern of the number of producing animals and a relatively flat trend pattern in yield figures.

In value terms, beef production stood at $392.3B in 2018 estimated in export prices. The total output value increased at an average annual rate of +4.3% over the period from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2008 with an increase of 19% y-o-y. Global beef production peaked in 2018 and is likely to see steady growth in the immediate term.

Exports 2007-2018

In 2018, approx. 8.1M tonnes of beef (cattle meat) were exported worldwide; approximately equating the previous year. The total export volume increased at an average annual rate of +1.6% over the period from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern remained consistent, with only minor fluctuations being observed throughout the analyzed period. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 with an increase of 10% against the previous year. Over the period under review, global beef exports attained their peak figure at 8.2M tonnes in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, exports failed to regain their momentum.

In value terms, beef exports amounted to $40.7B in 2018. In general, the total exports indicated a resilient increase from 2007 to 2018: its value increased at an average annual rate of +1.6% over the last eleven year period. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2018 figures, the beef exports increased by +6.0% against 2016 indices. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2008 with an increase of 18% against the previous year. Over the period under review, global beef exports attained their maximum at $44.1B in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, exports stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Exports by Country

In 2018, Brazil (1.3M tonnes), followed by Australia (857K tonnes), the U.S. (691K tonnes), New Zealand (436K tonnes), Ireland (410K tonnes), the Netherlands (383K tonnes) and Argentina (367K tonnes) were the major exporters of beef (cattle meat), together mixing up 55% of total exports. Canada (345K tonnes), India (337K tonnes), Poland (325K tonnes), Uruguay (283K tonnes) and Germany (266K tonnes) took a relatively small share of total exports.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of exports, amongst the main exporting countries, was attained by Poland, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, the largest beef markets worldwide were Brazil ($5.3B), the U.S. ($4.8B) and Australia ($4.7B), together comprising 36% of global exports. Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Argentina, Canada, Uruguay, Poland, Germany and India lagged somewhat behind, together comprising a further 40%.

In terms of the main exporting countries, Poland experienced the highest rates of growth with regard to exports, over the last eleven year period, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Export Prices by Country

In 2018, the average beef export price amounted to $5,052 per tonne, leveling off at the previous year. Over the period from 2007 to 2018, it increased at an average annual rate of +2.3%. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2008 when the average export price increased by 20% year-to-year. Over the period under review, the average export prices for beef (cattle meat) attained their maximum at $5,370 per tonne in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, export prices remained at a lower figure.

There were significant differences in the average Export Price prices amongst the major exporting countries. In 2018, the country with the highest Export Price price was the U.S. ($6,894 per tonne), while India ($3,448 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of Export Price prices was attained by India, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Imports 2007-2018

In 2018, the global imports of beef (cattle meat) stood at 9.5M tonnes, increasing by 4.3% against the previous year. The total import volume increased at an average annual rate of +2.3% over the period from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern remained consistent, with only minor fluctuations being recorded in certain years. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 with an increase of 7.4% year-to-year. Global imports peaked in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the near future.

In value terms, beef imports totaled $47.3B in 2018. Overall, the total imports indicated a remarkable increase from 2007 to 2018: its value increased at an average annual rate of +2.3% over the last eleven year period. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2018 figures, the beef imports increased by +15.4% against 2016 indices. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2011 when Imports increased by 16% year-to-year. Over the period under review, global beef imports reached their maximum in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the immediate term.

Imports by Country

In 2018, China (1M tonnes), the U.S. (912K tonnes), Viet Nam (619K tonnes), Japan (610K tonnes), South Korea (442K tonnes), China, Hong Kong SAR (439K tonnes), Italy (386K tonnes), Germany (367K tonnes), Russia (359K tonnes), the Netherlands (356K tonnes), the UK (294K tonnes) and France (247K tonnes) represented the largest importers of beef (cattle meat) in the world, mixing up 64% of total import.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of imports, amongst the main importing countries, was attained by China, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, the largest beef importing markets worldwide were the U.S. ($5B), China ($4.7B) and Japan ($3.5B), together accounting for 28% of global imports.

China recorded the highest growth rate of imports, in terms of the main importing countries over the last eleven years, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Import Prices by Country

In 2018, the average beef import price amounted to $4,996 per tonne, increasing by 2.2% against the previous year. Over the period from 2007 to 2018, it increased at an average annual rate of +2.3%. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2008 an increase of 18% year-to-year. Global import price peaked at $5,104 per tonne in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, import prices failed to regain their momentum.

There were significant differences in the average Import Price prices amongst the major importing countries. In 2018, the country with the highest Import Price price was South Korea ($6,415 per tonne), while Viet Nam ($3,258 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of Import Price prices was attained by the U.S., while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

HKSPA

World’s Largest Container Vessels Arrive at HKSPA Terminal

Hong Kong Seaport Alliance announced the successful arrival of the OOCL Hong Kong and ten additional OOCL and Cosco Shipping Lines Ltd. mega vessels at the HKSPA Terminal 8 facility this week, just six months following the alliance’s formation. OOCL Hong Kong- known as one of the largest container vessels in the world, deployed along with the other mega vessels at the end of June for the OCEAN Alliance’s Asia-North Europe Service, which included Hong Kong as a port of call.

Hong Kong, despite being small in size, has been in the league of the world’s top ten ports for the past 30 years or so. This is an enviable achievement not easy to accomplish. Credits must go to our port operators for the provision of highly efficient and professional services to the international shipping community,” said Angela Lee, Commissioner for Maritime and Port Development and Deputy Secretary for Transport and Housing (Transport).

“Coupled with our sound fundamentals built over the years, including our free port status, strong international connectivity, trusted common law system, and a level playing field for business, I am confident that our port would be able to further leverage on new opportunities presented by the Greater Bay Area Development, the Belt and Road Initiative and the New Land-Sea Corridor, and continue to thrive as a regional transshipment hub,” Lee added.

The massive OOCL Hong Kong container vessel boasts 21,413 TEU capacity and holds the title as the first in the world to exceed the 21,000 TEU capacity threshold. There are currently only 12 container vessels that can boast capacity of this size, and eight of them are among the mega vessels deployed during the OCEAN Alliance’s Asia-North Europe Service, including Cosco Shipping’s GALAXY. 

“As a Hong Kong company deeply rooted in the city, OOCL HONG KONG’s maiden call has a very special place in many of our hearts, said Andy Tung, Co-Chief Executive Officer of OOCL. “Containerships like the OOCL HONG KONG are important ambassadors of world trade and as a home carrier, we are very proud to have this vessel carry the name of Hong Kong, flying the flag of Hong Kong, and continue serving the industries of Hong Kong. OOCL is very blessed to call Hong Kong our home and being an integral part of the city’s vibrant business community over the last 50 years, providing a vital link to global trade. We like to thank the HKSPA for the wonderful hospitality and celebrating this milestone event together with us.” 

“We are proud of being ranked as the World’s Best Transshipment Port by COSCO SHIPPING this year,” said Hanliang Zhu, Managing Director of the Asia Container Terminals Limited (ACT) during the welcoming reception. “We will keep on working closely with the carriers as well as the shippers and other logistics providers to maintain Hong Kong as a reliable transshipment hub in the region.”

 

 

United Cargo Earns “Best Air Cargo Carrier – North America” Award

During this year’s annual Asian Freight, Logistics and Supply Chain (AFLAS) Awards in Hong Kong, United Cargo was recognized as the “Best Air Cargo Carrier” for the North American region.

Hosted annually by Asia Cargo News, selected nominees and winners are determined through a different approach with the help of more than 15,000 reader and e-subscriber votes. Consistency in service, innovation, customer relations, and management are all taken into consideration when vetting winners for the annual awards.

“United Cargo’s primary goal is to build and sustain long-term relationships of mutual benefit with our customer partners,” said United Cargo President Jan Krems. “Our team is especially proud to again receive this award representing the voice of our customers, because it confirms we are delivering a consistently excellent level of service worldwide and enhancing our partners’ success. I salute United Cargo team members in more than 300 locations around the globe for their commitment to quality.”

This news follows an announcement made earlier this month confirming the carrier will begin transporting and leasing Swiss-based temperature-controlled containers provided by SkyCell. United Cargo will be the first U.S. carrier of SkyCell’s containers, enabling safe and effective logistics for biopharmaceuticals and temperature-sensitive items.

“TempControl’s transport of vaccines and other high-value biopharmaceutical shipments is increasing rapidly,” said Jan Krems, President of United Cargo. “Extremely precise, long-duration temperature control is required for the safe transport of these highly-sensitive shipments. 

“SkyCell is excited to partner with United to increase the availability of SkyCell containers for the U.S. pharma industry,” said Richard Ettl, CEO of SkyCell. “United and SkyCell share the goal of eliminating temperature excursions and reducing the CO2 footprint in global pharma transportation.” 

Source: United Cargo

Report Shows Counterfeit Trade Increase in 2019

A report released by OECD and the EU’s Intellectual Property Office confirmed that counterfeit and pirated goods in trade reached 3.3 percent this year. With the majority of the counterfeit goods being picked up in China and Hong Kong, the spotlight is focused on concerns surrounding consumer health and safety with fake goods such as medical supplies, car parts, toys, food and cosmetics brands and electrical goods.

Excluding domestic produced and consumed fake goods, the customs data seizure reports state the overall value of global fake goods at $509 billion, with the European Union representing 6.8 percent of counterfeit trade from non EU countries. Items such as footwear, clothing, leather goods, electrical equipment, watches, medical equipment, perfumes, toys, jewelry and pharmaceuticals were the top goods that made the list.

“Counterfeit trade takes away revenues from firms and governments and feeds other criminal activities. It can also jeopardize consumers’ health and safety,” said OECD Public Governance Director Marcos Bonturi, launching the report with the Director of the EU Observatory on IPR infringements at the EUIPO, Paul Maier, and the EU Ambassador to the OECD Rupert Schlegelmilch. “Counterfeiters thrive where there is poor governance. It is vital that we do more to protect intellectual property and address corruption.”

Other countries impacted the most in 2016 include the United States, France, Italy, Switzerland, and Germany.

To read the full report, please visit: OECD.org

The Trade War Continues and Businesses are Responding

The trade war raging between the U.S. and China, which seemed headed toward a resolution before President Donald Trump in May accused the Chinese of reneging on commitments they made, is obviously the talk of the global trade-o-sphere.

Trump on May 9 announced tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports would go from 10 percent to 25 percent. China fired back by announcing it would hit $60 billion worth of U.S. imports with tariffs ranging from 5 percent to 25 percent on June 1. So, the Trump administration countered by saying it would impose 25 percent tariffs on all remaining Chinese imports—or about $300 billion worth of goods—“shortly.”

The president beat back the backlash by saying U.S. tariffs would be paid “largely” by the Chinese, but even members of his own political party argue that the tariffs have been and will be paid almost entirely by American businesses and consumers. “There will be some sacrifice on the part of Americans, I grant you that,” said U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) to CBS News.

Obviously, not everyone (including Trump supporters) agree with the president’s March 2018 proclamation, “Trade wars are good, and easy to win.”

-Vijay Eswaran, entrepreneur, speaker, philanthropist and founder and executive chairman of the Hong Kong-based multi-business conglomerate QI Group of Companies: “Trade wars are never good, and certainly not easy to win. The main victims of this tariff war are the American consumers. Tesla had to raise the price of two of its cars by $20,000 last year after a new round of Chinese tariffs. Walmart and Target have already warned the government about an increase in prices on many everyday essentials. It’s just going to get worse.”

-Nelson Dong, senior partner at the international law firm Dorsey & Whitne, where he is co-head of their Asia group, as well as a current member of the boards of directors of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations and the Washington State China Relations Council: “As has already been evident since mid-2018, the Administration’s Section 301 tariffs and China’s retaliatory tariffs will now further disrupt—or even break—many thousands of supply chains in both countries as local consumers either turn away from buying affected imports or are just forced to pay the resulting higher prices. Inevitably, suppliers in third countries will also be eyeing this U.S.-China trade war and looking to take advantage of the situation to replace either Chinese or American sources of supply as many importers look for ways to avoid these punitive tariffs.”

-Americans for Prosperity President Tim Phillips: “This White House has accomplished many significant economic and regulatory reforms that have reduced unemployment, lowered taxes and removed barriers to opportunity for millions of Americans. Our economy is thriving despite these tariffs, not because of them. We strongly encourage the administration to listen to America’s job creators who need trade barriers reduced, not expanded.”

-Scott Wine, chairman & CEO OF Polaris Industries: “Ultimately, if this was not resolved, we would have no choice but to move production to Mexico. … This would essentially be forcing me to push jobs outside the U.S.”

-Tiffany Zarfas Williams, owner of the Luggage Shop of Lubbock in Texas: “I definitely want China to be held accountable, but I don’t know why we are punishing consumers in our own country. That’s the part that’s hard to understand as a small business owner in Texas.”

-Rick Helfenbein, president & CEO of American Apparel & Footwear Association, to CNN: “This confirms our worst fears. There are those of us who are optimists and thought it would go away and those who say it could come back at any time—and this points to the latter;” and to Fox Business: “Two-thirds of the GDP is consumer based. Ten percent of the jobs in America are retail, and in the first four months of this year, more stores have announced closings than all of last year.”

-John Bozzella, president of Global Automakers, which represents international car companies: “Our concern is, as we go back into a phase of tit-for-tat tariffs, that the auto industry would face some significant pain.”

-Cal Dooley, president of the American Chemistry Council: “The risks of continuing to use tariffs as a negotiating tactic with China are simply too high—and any potential benefits still unclear.”

-David French, senior vice president of government relations for the National Retail Federation: “American consumers will face higher prices, and U.S. jobs will be lost.”

-Lisa Hu, founder of the handbag company Lux & Nyx: “You start a business thinking you know how much things are going to cost, and then something like this comes along and changes everything. … Are these tariffs going to happen? Are they not? I’m having to make long-term decisions based on the little information I have now.”

-American International Automobile Dealers Association CEO Cody Lusk: “If President Trump follows through on his threat to place 25 percent tariffs on imported autos and auto parts, he will be directly responsible for a drastic tax increase on American consumers, which could result in a loss of 2 million vehicle sales and jeopardize up to 700,000 American jobs.”