Shipping Association Head Offers Perspective on Supply Chain Woes

John McLaurin, president of the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, outlines for the CalChamber Board of Directors on December 10 his views on the supply chain crisis and its impact on ocean carriers and marine terminal operators. Supply chain congestion is an international, not just a West Coast problem, he says, and there doesn’t appear to be any slack in the system, which involves container ships, railcars, chassis, warehouse space and personnel — from truckers to dock workers and warehouse persons. To deal with the surge in cargo volume (the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are processing 20% more cargo now than in 2019, before the pandemic), the industry has begun a multi-year process of acquiring more ships, containers, land on which to park the containers, chassis and other equipment.