Shipping lines to Add More Charges

As the world economy begins to slowly bounce back, we can see that there are some changes that shipping lines are making to balance their own budgets. The question that comes to mind is: are these new charges going to hurt the businesses that are also trying to recover from the economic downturn. Recently it was reported in the Journal of Commerce that the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement shipping lines are going to start charging a peak season surcharge for shipments coming east from Asia and it will be starting this summer and into the fall. The charge will be an additional USD 600 per 40'standard container. Is it fair that they add this additional surcharge when retail and wholesale companies are just getting back on their feet? While an increase can be justified by them needing to hire more personnel and increase their times at the port, is this much really warranted? It is impossible to predict the exact s ramifications of this type of surcharge, but for sure it will be a great imposition on shippers. In many cases, it may create more trust and boundary issues for companies on both sides of the shipping industry making import companies wonder what other charges they may be in for and cut back as a result. Other charges have also been announced lately and most of them are increases for their customers. While their customers are no doubt charging these new amounts to their own customers, it is the end user that is ultimately affected the most. This type of chain reaction is how we ended up crashing so hard in the first place. Hopefully the shipping lines will remember these already added charges when they look again at the prices they are charging for shipping.