The latest liner alliance, OCEAN Alliance has moved closer to fulfilment with news that the US Federal Maritime Commission offered final approval last Friday. The planned start-up for the alliance, which comprises, Orient Overseas Container Line, Evergreen, Cosco, CMA CGM and APL is next April. At which time the new alliance could be deploying close to 35% of the Asia-North America capacity and around 40% of the boxes transiting Asia-Europe trade lanes.
“The agreement going into force represents a consensus of what will allow OCEAN Alliance carriers to achieve efficiencies without harming the marketplace,” said FMC chairman, Mario Cordero. “The commission worked very hard to balance the needs of not only the OCEAN Alliance applicants, but all other parties involved in the intermodal supply chain, with the ultimate goal of safeguarding competition in international ocean-borne common carriage, with the American shipping public foremost in mind.”
Similar to the agreement struck between the FMC and the 2M alliance, the members of the OCEAN Alliance their will be limitations on the members’ ability to employ their collective power when bargaining contracts with terminal operators. Contracts with chassis providers, stevedores and tug and barge operators must be negotiated on an individual basis on the part of members.
OOCL spokesman Stephen Ng, director of Trades said: “OOCL is pleased to learn of the FMC’s approval of the Ocean Alliance, and we will continue to work closely with the alliance members and all the other competent regulatory authorities to ensure full compliance with applicable laws and regulations.”