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World - US businesses, trade groups endorse Ocean Shipping Reform Act

The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) recently welcomed the introduction of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2021 (OSRA 21) in the House of Representatives.

The act addresses issues that have been ‘a thorn in the side of American business for years’, and comes when a shipping crisis is stymieing US economic recovery,” said AAFA chief executive officer and president Steve Lamar.

A coalition of 152 companies and trade associations representing US importers, exporters, transportation providers and other supply chain stakeholders have submitted a letter of support to Congress endorsing the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2021.

The bipartisan legislation was introduced last month by Congressmen John Garamendi and Dusty Johnson.

The legislation would update the Shipping Act to recognise the significant changes to the international maritime transportation system of the past two decades. US companies, their workers and consumers rely on a global maritime transportation system to support their businesses and move goods through the supply chain. The proposed legislation is essential to bring critically needed system improvements that have been further highlighted during the global pandemic, the National Retail Federation (NRF) said in a media release.

Congressman Dusty Johnson (R-SD) said: “Foreign ocean carriers aren’t playing fair, and American producers are paying the price. It’s time for updated rules of the road. That’s what our bill does.”

Congressman John Garamendi (D-CA) commented: “Foreign businesses’ access to the American market and its consumers is a privilege, not a right. California’s agricultural exporters and other businesses are willing to pay to ensure that American-made products reach key markets in the Asia-Pacific. In turn, companies looking to offload foreign-made products at West Coast ports must provide opportunities for American exports. Even during a global pandemic, trade must be mutually beneficial, and that is exactly what our bipartisan bill ensures.”

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