Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Import News from the Importers Institute

Import News from the Importers Institute

11 May 2000

Feedback on Shipping Collusion

All previous items from Import News are published on our website, http://www.silva.co.nz/institute/articles.asp. You can search for items by key words, and can give feedback on each one. We welcome your views and will publish them. This issue contains feedback from readers on recent topics.


[We complained about a price hike of more than $700 on each 20 ft container imported from the US, which several shipping companies have agreed to. The Government intends to review shipping exemptions under the Commerce Act, a decision we welcomed. Lindsay Perigo, editor of the excellent magazine The Free Radical (http://www.freeradical.co.nz) took us to task on this stance. We believed the need for regulations to control anti-competitive behaviour was self-evident, but Lindsay made us think again. Here are some excerpts from his emails.]

"The Importers Institute doesn't give a rat's arse about free enterprise and will go whining to the Government like any other pathetic bunch of socialist snivellers when it suits. The shipping companies should be free to charge what they damn well please. Don't like it, set up your own!...

"You might as well endorse the whining about the 'unfairness' of removing tariffs and exposing local manufacturers to foreigners 'abusing' their 'dominant market position'. Sickening stuff...

"One simple law of economics - if they charge too much, they undermine themselves. You can't pay the prices, they lose the revenue. Leave it to the market!...

"It's not competition that is the cornerstone of the market, it's freedom. That means freedom to 'collude' with a rival if both of you agree. In a laissez-faire situation, someone else will come in and undercut you though!...

"Monopoly status is ONLY ever acquired through the actions of the Government. Only the Government has the power to close off a given field to new entrants. So the answer is - get the Government out! You don't do that by running off to the Government when you think (mistakenly) that it suits."

Lindsay Perigo editor@freeradical.co.nz Auckland

[The Editor replies: I agree with your proposition that in a libertarian society there would be no need for restrictions on the behaviour of firms. As you pointed out, monopoly status can only ever be acquired through the actions of the Government. However, we are not running to politicians asking for favours; we merely demand that they abolish the favours given to shipping companies by their predecessors and treat them the same as other businesses. The Importers Institute will continue to demand that shipping companies should be subject to the same law as importers. That is our function.]

* * *

Sir - As a trade facilitator with clients who import used cars from Japan I have witnessed fluctuations in the freight rates for used cars from Japan this year, compared with other trade routes you have highlighted.

Earlier this year three out of five car carriers on this route imposed a NZ$100 per car bunker surcharge to cover the increased cost of fuel, as did all the non-vehicle, global, carriers. However, since then a cheaper source of fuel to power their car carriers has been sourced, as they have dropped the charge, unlike other global carriers.

Introduce competition to the market in the form of Eastern Car Lines - an independent, non-aligned, Japanese pure car carrier at $800 per car - and suddenly the rates tumble from $900 to $800, and, in the case of Mitsui OSK, to $700.

On this trade route prices have been slashed, fuel has become cheaper, all in four months. Why this route and not others? Perhaps your readers could provide the answer?

Ivan McNicholl Trade Facilitator Wellington ivan@cawl.co.nz

* * * Previous Import News items are published on our Internet site http://www.silva.co.nz. If you do not wish to be included in this mailing list, please reply to this message with the word REMOVE in the subject line. If you would like us to send Import News to friends or associates, please ask them to email info@importers.org.nz with the word SUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news