At least for now, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach will hold off their proposed “emergency storage fee” imposed on ocean carriers who leave cargo too long at their terminals.
The fee was to be assessed Monday, but officials announced they will delay consideration of the fee until November 22, citing cooperation among carriers to clear their cargo.
The new fee assessment was a way for the ports to coax carriers to pick up their containers faster and ease the extreme back log at each port.
Since the fee was announced the end of October, port officials have touted a 26% reduction in the number of long-dwelling containers. The sister ports, which process more than 40% of the nation’s containerized imports, have handled 17% more volume this year with no change in their land capacity.
The new fee policy, which was backed by the Biden administration, would have started charging $100 per day this past Monday for any cargo container dwelling at either port for nine or more days. The charge would continue to increase daily by $100 until the container left the port.
Despite the reduction in containers jamming up the ports, there is still a long way to go to clear the terminals. Today, the port of Los Angeles reported an 18% increase in the last few days despite the past daily levels decreasing. The total number of containers in LA currently is 76,613 which is higher than the reported number on November 4.
Cargo continues to flood into the two ports. On Friday and Monday, the number of container ships holding anchor off the ports hit 83 with an average wait time of 16.9 days.
We will continue to monitor the situation and communicate any changes in the scheduling of this fee. If you have any questions or need more details, please contact your Worldwide Logistics Group partner.