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Chairman Maffei’s action establishing an audit program to assess the carriers’ compliance with the FMC’s detention and demurrage rule is a needed step forward. Now more than ever, it is vitally important that our nation’s commerce moves efficiently, safely, and fairly on our supply chain. The maritime intermodal supply chain is integral to the overall strength of our Nation’s economy. Manufacturers, retailers, and U.S. exporters rely on industry services, and while the industry has accomplished huge achievements in the carriage of cargo, we are going to need to do better. We have to move forward aggressively to apply and enforce the Shipping Act.

While the audit program will serve as an important tool, by analyzing the top nine carriers by market share for compliance, I want to assure supply chain stakeholders that we will continue to work with shipper and other impacted supply chain stakeholders to provide a transparent supply chain that meets the needs and demands of today’s cargo surges. It is important that we continue the dialogue with the industry as we work through these cargo bottlenecks, whether they be administrative or physical. There is much work still to be done.

Carl W. Bentzel is a Commissioner with the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission. The thoughts and comments expressed here are his own and do not necessarily represent the position of the Commission.

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