Container shipping lines operating from Asia to the U.S. are continuing their efforts to restore baseline freight rates for holiday shipments and the 2014 contract negotiating season beyond.

Member carriers in the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (TSA) are recommending a guideline US$400 per 40-foot container (FEU) general rate increase covering all origins and destinations, effective November 15, 2013. The move follows individual actions by several lines in the trade to raise their rates during October.

“The trade is seeing modest but healthy cargo growth over 2012, while cargo handling, equipment and other costs continue to rise and most carriers are operating at a loss,” said TSA executive administrator Brian Conrad. “It makes no sense for rates to be at current levels, and it threatens the ability of individual carriers to maintain service levels heading into 2014.” Conrad noted that cargo volumes have risen steadily since mid-August and are expected to remain strong through mid-November when typical seasonal easing begins.

TSA is a research and discussion forum of major container shipping lines serving the trade from Asia to ports and inland points in the U.S. TSA members include:

APL Ltd.

Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. (K Line)

China Shipping Container Lines

Maersk Line


Mediterranean Shipping Co.

COSCO Container Lines, Ltd.

Nippon Yusen Kaisha (N.Y.K. Line)

Evergreen Line

Orient Overseas Container Line, Ltd.

Hanjin Shipping Co., Ltd.

Yangming Marine Transport Corp.

Hapag-Lloyd AG

Zim Integrated Shipping Services

Hyundai Merchant Marine Co., Ltd.