Peter Goodman reported this article from Los Angeles, New York and Washington.
“Like the rest of the e-commerce world, Jacob Weiss was contending with excruciating difficulties in getting his goods — mostly furniture — across the Pacific from factories in China.
It was April 2021, and the global supply chain was rife with dysfunction because of the pandemic. At ports in China, Mr. Weiss’s usual ocean carrier, Hamburg Süd, was refusing to accept some of his shipping containers at his contracted rates, saying it had no room on its vessels.
These sorts of complaints had become commonplace, given shortages of containers and crippling traffic jams at ports. Most importers avoided conflict, fearing reprisals from the carriers. But Mr. Weiss had his lawyer fire off a menacing letter, demanding that Hamburg Süd “immediately honor” his contract while threatening to file a complaint with the Federal Maritime Commission.
Here was a minnow picking a fight with a whale. Mr. Weiss’s company, OJ Commerce, is modest in size. Hamburg Süd is a subsidiary of Maersk, a publicly traded Danish conglomerate that is the second-largest container shipping company on earth, with annual revenues exceeding $61 billion.”
Great reporting, thank you Peter Goodman. Now I’d like a serious discussion or rounddtable about what can be done about this problem. It seems like many big problems return to, in part, a US Justice system that favors the rich over the poor, but then there is the fact that this was also an anomoly of the pandemic. How do we make the playing field more level. I wonder if the US government could use a part of the Justice Dept or some other agency to fast tract a decsion, and if they find the small American business has a claim, to fund its legal challenge against the giant corporation. David blogs at InconvenientNews.net.