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LA/LB ports container dwell fee still not implemented one year on

Port of Los Angeles LA_Pier-300-channel-aerial.jpg
A year on from its announcement a container dwell fee by the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach (LA/LB) has yet to be implemented.

One year ago, on 25 October 2021, the Southern California gateway ports of LA/LB announced plans for a $100 per container, per day, charge for boxes left on the terminal for more than nine days, in a bid to reduce record levels of congestion that were being experienced at the ports at the time.

The charge was due to be implemented on 15 November 2021, but a significant improvement in the volume of aging cargoes left on the docks resulted in the first of many postponements to the charge being levied on shipping lines.

On 25 October 2022 the latest postponement of the dwell fee was announced for a four-week period until 18 November, meaning the earliest the charge could be introduced is now a year after its original date.

Since the container dwell fee was announced congestion has improved dramatically from over 100 ships queued outside of the ports of LA/LB for weeks on end to the terminals having spare capacity. The volume of aging cargo the docks has reduced by 69% compared to the same time a year earlier.

The executive directors of both ports will reassess fee implementation after monitoring data over the next month. Fee implementation has been postponed by both ports since the start of the program,” a statement from the Port of LA said.

Despite the significant improvement in conditions and the fee not having been implemented at any time in the last year Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners have extended the fee programme through to 24 January 2023.

In September combined volumes at LA/LB were down 13.2% compared to last year according to the McCown Report.

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