Friday, February 2, 2024
On Thursday, members of the U.S Department of Transportation’s Office of Multimodal Freight held a call with stakeholders across the United States supply chain on issues and disruptions stemming from the ongoing situation in the Red Sea. The Maritime Administration emphasized its continued commitment to keeping mariners safe and stakeholders up to date.
While industry participants shared that they are beginning to see isolated challenges and expect increased congestion at some U.S. container ports, including the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, in the next four to six weeks as shippers re-route cargo to avoid the Red Sea, they and federal government representatives noted that lessons learned from handling supply chain bottlenecks brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic are already helping inform the response to the these challenges. Participants expressed appreciation for the Department’s efforts to bring people together and prepare for potential congestion before it occurs.
The meeting took place in the context of a comprehensive U.S. government effort to protect freedom of navigation and ensure resilient global supply chains by responding decisively to Houthi rebels’ escalating attacks against commercial vessels. President Biden has made clear that he will not hesitate to direct further measures to protect mariners and the free flow of international commerce as necessary.