The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) recently appreciated President Joe Biden for focusing on the shipping crisis and taking long-term action to prevent such crisis in future.
In a letter to the president, Steve Lamar, President and CEO, AAFA said, the government should include all stakeholders in its future actions, not just ports and carriers, but also terminal operators, truckers, port workers, chassis providers, and, of course, shippers.
Shipping rates, after a brief decline, are on the rise again, hitting new records. And even when AAFA members do get their cargo on ships, the line to get those ships into port keeps getting longer.
Ports have threatened to import fees on long-standing imports and empty containers on docks. While the ports have not yet imposed the fees, many terminals are imposing or intend to impose ‘temporary storage charges’ on carriers, Lamar added.
The government should provide immediate relief by removing temporary punitive tariff costs, such as the US government’s punitive Section 301 tariffs on China our industry, and every facet of the US economy, must still pay. Congress should also quickly and retroactively renew the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program and the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB), whose expiration over a year ago has imposed countless billions of dollars of additional unnecessary costs on the industry and the US economy, the AFFA letter concluded.