Competitive Edge

July, 19th 2023

IMPORT: Asia to North America (TPEB)

Recent Developments:

  • Canadian port labor strike is back on after ILWU Canada “rejected” the tentative agreement that was reached last Thursday. Read more about this in our freight news section below.

Rates: Select carriers have implemented general rate increases (GRIs) for the second half of July. Overall, rate increases have had more staying power than compared to the beginning of 2023.
Space: Space is open.
Capacity: Capacity is open, with more expected in August and September as carriers receive and deploy new vessels they ordered.
Equipment: Available at virtually all inland and coastal points.

  • Keep a pulse on inventory and establish concrete timelines with ordering. Will you be importing before the holidays and peak season? Are you holding off until 2024?
  • Hold your logistics partners accountable for frequent updates regarding blank sailings, rate increases, or any other forms of market maintenance.

IMPORT: Europe to North America (TAWB)

Rates: Rates continue to steadily fall.
Space: Space is open, except for a few pockets.
Capacity: Capacity is open.
Equipment: Availability on both origin and destination sides, unless advised otherwise.

  • Book at least three weeks prior to ready date.
  • Rates, while falling, are still high compared to other trades. Carriers still possess a degree of power in the transatlantic over the shipper.
  • Premium add-ons (i.e., no-roll options and improved cargo reliability) remain assurances shippers should consider with transatlantic service.

EXPORT: North America to Asia

Rates: Rates are low and level. 
Space: Space is open but tighter on U.S. Gulf Coast 
Capacity: Capacity is widely available for all services.
Equipment: Availability at virtually all inland points and seaports. However, chassis access remains a wildcard against fluid intermodal movement.

  • Book at least two weeks prior to the time of departure.
  • Shippers with high volume projects should take advantage of the carriers’ receptiveness to take on these opportunities. Space is wide open with a high acceptance rate.

Freight News

Port of Los Angeles Sees June Cargo Volumes at Their Strongest in a Year

The month of June was a great month for the Port of Los Angeles, as they saw their best performance since this time last year.

In a media briefing last Wednesday, Port of LA Executive Director Gene Seroka said the port saw “cargo volume increase by a remarkable 70 percent since February with four months of consecutive gains.”

Some other key points from the briefing:

  • June loaded exports came in at 108,050 TEUs, which was a 15 percent increase compared to last year.
  • June loaded imports were 435,307 TEUs, down 2 percent compared to last year.
  • Empty containers were 289,679 TEUs, down 14 percent year-over-year.

Throughout the first six months of this year, the Port of LA has handled 4,137,379 TEUs, a 24 percent decline compared to the same time last year.

Canadian Strike Is Back on After Port Labor “Tentative” Deal Crumbles

UPDATE: Early Wednesday afternoon, the dockworkers were ordered back to work due to not providing a 72-hour notice before going on strike. An expected strike is set for this Saturday morning, per the JOC.

Not so fast… the tentative agreement that was reached last week between the ILWU Canada and the British Columbia Maritime Employers Association has crumbled.

Now a dockworkers union strike that ended late last week is back on.

What do we know so far:

  • The BCMEA ratified their end of the agreement last Thursday.
  • However, yesterday, per Freightwaves the BCMEA said the ILWU Canada rejected the agreement prior to a vote by the full union membership. The BCMEA was informed that ILWU strike activity would begin again later on Tuesday.
  • ILWU Canada states, its caucus “does not believe the recommendations had the ability to protect our jobs now or into the future,” and “members will be back on the picket line.”


  • Around 15% of container trade that moves through the Port of Vancouver is destined for the U.S. via rail
  • We will start to see more vessels waiting off the two ports (Vancouver and Prince Rupert) in the next couple of days.
  • Unsure on how long this strike will go on… could be days/weeks, or longer. 

Watch Today's Webinar!

Topics: July/August GRIs, peak season, update on blank sailings. What’s the latest on the Canadian Labor Strike? Plus, current events!

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Did You Know: Progress Has Been Made on the Hudson River Tunnel Project

The Hudson River Tunnel Project has received approval to enter the engineering phase of the FTA Capital Investment Grants (CIG) program – which is set to create around 72,000 American jobs in the area.

This tunnel project is part of the Gateway Program, which is a set of strategic infrastructure projects to help improve rail service in New York and New Jersey.

Additionally, this project will create a new two-track rail tunnel from the Bergen Palisades in New Jersey to Manhattan

Read more on the project progress, here.

Blogs of the Week

FreightFM - EP10 - YT Thumbnail

A Podcast by InterlogUSA: FreightFM Episode 10

Check out our latest episode on all things U.S. and Canadian West Coast! Note: This was recorded last Thursday morning, hours before news came out that ILWU Canada and BCMEA reached a tentative agreement (which put an end to the strike) — UPDATE: As of 7/18/2023, the tentative agreement was broken off and a strike is back on!

Listen Today!

FreightFM features short-form video interviews with InterlogUSA’s industry experts offering insights into breaking news, market trends, our company’s history, and more!

Browse Past Episodes

Interlog Insights

In last week’s insights, we discuss the aftermath of the ILWU Canada strike and any impacts it has had. Plus, we discuss the El Niño phenomenon and how it can impact the Panama Canal.

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