Indian Transport & Logistics

LA/LB Ports to end container dwell fee programme on Jan 24

"Since the programme was announced on Oct 25, 2021, the two ports have seen a combined decline of 92% in ageing cargo."

LA/LB Ports to end container dwell fee programme on Jan 24

Photo Credit: Port of Los Angeles

The San Pedro Bay ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles will phase out the option to collect a "Container Dwell Fee" on January 24, 2023.

"Since the programme was announced on October 25, 2021, the two ports have seen a combined decline of 92 percent in ageing cargo on the docks. While the executive directors of both ports have had the authority from their respective harbour commissions to implement the fee, it was never activated because cargo owners were able to clear their long-dwelling cargo off terminals," says a release from Los Angeles Port.

Gene Seroka, Executive Director, Port of Los Angeles says: "I said when we launched this programme that I hoped we would never collect a dime because that would mean that containers were moving off our docks. And that's exactly what occurred. I'm grateful to the cargo owners and all our waterfront workers for all their successful efforts to improve the efficiency of our operations."

Mario Cordero, Executive Director, Port of Long Beach adds: "This fee was conceived as an incentive to ease congestion, keeping imported goods flowing to stores across America. Measured by this standard, we can all appreciate the policy's success, and best of all, the fee was never implemented. We thank cargo owners and terminal operators for working with us to make operations more efficient, and of course dockworkers for their dedicated labour."

Port of Long Beach Dwell Time

Under the proposed policy, ocean carriers could be charged for each import container dwelling nine days or more at the terminal. "Fee implementation has been postponed by both ports since the start of the programme. The Long Beach and Los Angeles Boards of Harbor Commissioners both extended the fee programme through January 24, 2023. Neither port plans to extend the programme beyond that date."

Volume declines in Nov
Cargo volume remained soft at the Port of Los Angeles in November as the port handled 639,344 TEUs, a 21 percent decline from November 2021. Overall, the port has handled 7 percent less cargo in the first 11 months of 2022 compared to last year's all-time record.

Long Beach also saw volume decline 21 percent to 588,742 TEUs last month, and down marginally for the first 11 months.

No backup continues at LA/LB ports
No backup of container ships at LA/LB continues since the backup ended three weeks ago on November 22, according to the latest update from Captain J. Kipling (Kip) Louttit, Executive Director, Marine Exchange of Southern California & Vessel Traffic Service Los Angeles and Long Beach San Pedro, CA. "There is ample labour and there are open berths."

The backup was 94 and rising a year ago December 16 2021, Capt Louttit added "but thankfully, we were down to 29 container ships anchored or loitering within 25-40 miles of LA/LB, down from the 86 at the start of the new system for labour due to the rest voluntarily waiting or slow-speed-streaming outside the Safety and Air Quality Area."

The peak was on January 9, 2022 when 109 container ships were backed up across LA/LB ports.

Jyothi Shankaran

Jyothi Shankaran

Associate Editor, STAT Media Group. He has worked with IndiaSpend, Bloomberg TV, Business Standard and Indian Express Group. Jyothi can be reached at

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