Shipping vessels docked at The Port of Los Angeles, in Long Beach, Calif., on Jan. 12, 2021. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)
By Jack Phillips
Several industry groups have warned world leaders of a worldwide supply-chain “system collapse” due to pandemic restrictions, coming as Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell suggested that the current period of higher inflation will last until 2022.
The International Chamber of Shipping, a coalition of truck drivers, seafarers, and airline workers, has warned in a letter to heads of state attending the United Nations General Assembly that governments need to restore freedom of movement to transportation workers amid persistent COVID-19 restrictions and quarantines.
If nothing is done, they warned of a “global transport system collapse” and suggested that “global supply chains are beginning to buckle as two years’ worth of strain on transport workers take their toll,” according to the letter. It was signed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the International Road Transport Union (IRU), and the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), which represent some 65 million transport workers around the world.
“All transport sectors are also seeing a shortage of workers, and expect more to leave as a result of the poor treatment millions have faced during the pandemic, putting the supply chain under greater threat,” the letter said. “We also ask that WHO and the ILO raise this at the U.N. General Assembly and call on heads of government to take meaningful and swift action to resolve this crisis now,” they wrote.
Meanwhile, retailer Costco said it’s chartering its own container ships between Asia and North America amid supply chain issues worldwide, Chief Financial Officer Richard Galanti said in a recent conference call.
Costco, he said, is dealing with “port delays, container shortages, COVID disruptions, shortages on various components, raw materials and ingredients, labor cost pressures” along with “trucks and driver shortages,” Fox News reported.
“International Chamber of Shipping, a coalition of truck drivers, seafarers, and airline workers,”
This open letter does indeed sound like it is speaking for workers. But Epoch Times is mistaken in identifying the group as a workers’ group. ICS is not a coalition of drivers, seafarers, and air workers.
ICS is an international trade association, based in London, which represents the OWNERS of shipping corporations. One discovers this at the linked ICS website, where the Open Letter is posted. The headline at the ICS site: “Transport Heads Call on World Leaders…” As that headline emphasizes, it is all happening far above the paygrade of mere worker bees. Did author Jack Phillips fail to check his primary source?
How to judge a letter from Owners written as if in the voice of Workers?
That’s really weird. The article suggests the letter was sign by the shipowners group and 3 transport unions. That’s unusual but not impossible.
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