Hey, we know you are busy. We also know you want to want to be aware of everything happening in the supply chain industry. This is the spot for you. A weekly roundup so you are quickly updated.

1. U.S. and China Restart Trade Talks Ahead of March Deadline

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross expressed optimism on Monday, telling CNBC that “there’s a very good chance that we’ll get a reasonable settlement.” Since the two presidents met on Dec. 1, China has made a number of concessions to U.S. demands, including temporarily cutting punitive tariffs on U.S.-made cars, resuming soybean purchases, promising to open up its markets for more foreign investment, and drafting a law to prevent forced technology transfers.

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2. 2018 SCS Chain of Excellence Recipients

Jim Ward, President, and Les Brand, CEO, were pleased to announce recipients of the 2018 Chain of Excellence Award. The award began in 2016, and has been previously awarded to one associate that  “demonstrates SCS’ core values in their daily behavior and positive performance, both personally and professionally.” This year has been an exceptional year for two of our team members: Terry McCracken, Vice President of Customs, HQ and Michelle Sneden, Holland Warehouse Operations Manager.

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3. New rail facility at New York-New Jersey port

The ExpressRail Port Jersey intermodal facility connects the GCT Bayonne Terminal with CSX's and Norfolk Southern's networks, opening up New England and offering shippers a new option for moving goods from New Jersey to Chicago, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Columbus and Detroit, according to Railway Age. The Port Authority expects the new facility to reduce carbon dioxide emissions at the port by 18,300 tons annually. Currently, 85% of containers leave the port by truck.

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4. Italian ATC strike to ground airfreight

The first national Italian ATC strike of the year is set to take place tomorrow afternoon (January 11). Airlines are being forced to cancel hundreds of flights in advance as controllers at Air Traffic Control centres in Rome, Milan, and Brindisi go on strike, affecting both domestic and intra-European flights to and from Italy. Intercontinental flights as well as over-flights are not expected to be impacted.

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5. 2019 Rates

In 2019, the world economy will enter a third straight year of broad-based growth, but many economists feel that a combination of rising interest rates and ongoing trade protectionism will continue to create unexpected turbulence—and lead to even higher freight rates. 

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