“Container Dwell Fees” Delayed at Ports of LA and Long Beach

portoflaNovember 16, 2021 | The Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach have announced that they will delay consideration of the “Container Dwell Fee” directed at ocean carriers until November 22.

This is welcome news for The Toy Association and several other associations representing importers, exporters and supply chain stakeholders, which recently sent a coalition letter to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) expressing concerns about the new container dwell fees because they would “add substantial costs to the supply chain.”

“While the ports and terminals have indicated that the fee is to be paid by the carrier for loaded containers that have excessive dwell time beyond the allotted periods for truck or rail movement, the carriers have indicated that they will pass along the new fee to cargo owners,” wrote the coalition.

Under the temporary policy approved October 29 by the Harbor Commissions of both ports, ocean carriers will be charged for every container dwelling nine days or more (in the case of containers scheduled to move by truck), or for every container dwelling six days or more (for containers moving by rail). The ports will charge ocean carriers in these two categories $100 per container, increasing in $100 increments per container per day until the container leaves the terminal.

However, since the fee was announced on October 25, the twin ports have seen a decline of 26% combined in aging cargo on the docks.

“There’s been significant improvement in clearing import containers from our docks in recent weeks,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka in a press release. “I’m grateful to the many nodes of the supply chain, from shipping lines, marine terminals, trucks and cargo owners, for their increased collaborative efforts. We will continue to closely monitor the data as we approach November 22.”

The Toy Association will keep members apprised of developments.