A new executive order signed by President Donald Trump has put freight companies like Harbor Freight in the spotlight, and has been criticized by some as a huge mistake.
The executive order, which requires the Department of Transportation to approve all freight shipments and allow certain facilities to remain open, was signed Wednesday and sent to the president for his signature.
It includes a rule that directs federal agencies to “make reasonable efforts to ensure that all goods imported by U.S. freight companies are free of duties and taxes and that freight shipments to ports of entry and international ports are not subject to duties and/or taxes.”
In a statement released Wednesday evening, a spokesperson for the Department said the executive order was a “major milestone” in the fight against global freight trade and that “the president was clear in his initial order that the freight trade system should remain open.”
“The administration has made clear that the U.s. freight trade regime needs to be reformed, and that the Department will continue to work to achieve that goal, regardless of the result of this executive order,” the statement read.
Trump has promised to renegotiate and renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, and he signed an executive order last month that said he would renegotiate it, too.
The president has also promised to open up a new, more open trade system for goods and services from China.
The move could help U.K. exporters like Carnival and Royal Mail compete with companies like United Parcel Service, which have had their ports shuttered due to the Trump administration’s tariffs.
A new study by the National Bureau of Economic Research says that the shipping industry is the only sector that lost out in 2017 on imports from China, which is responsible for more than 70 percent of the nation’s total imports.
The report also says that as the Chinese economy grew, so did its demand for imported goods.
“We’re seeing a lot more of these import surges and the Chinese government is trying to take advantage of that,” said Scott Cunningham, CEO of The Merchant Marine Institute.
“They’re trying to get these goods into the U of A, which means they’re looking to ship them in from Hong Kong, Singapore, and the Philippines.”
But he says the industry is still a major player in the U: “We’re not going to get out of that as quickly as we thought.
We’re not getting out of the trade.
We can’t be out there and just buy our products from China.”
Cunningham is also critical of Trump’s order.
He says it could be a huge boon for U.N. companies that are already shipping goods across the Pacific and for the UAW, which was founded in the United States in 1902.
“If the president can open up ports to China that are currently closed to U.A. students, he can bring U.U. workers and their families back into our country,” Cunningham said.
“We need to see this president get rid of all tariffs, all tariffs on goods.
I don’t think he can do that.
He has the authority, but he has to make it happen.”
Trump’s order also opens up more shipping lanes in the Gulf of Mexico, allowing ships to get through some of the busiest areas in the region.
The U.F.C. estimates that the change could boost shipping costs by $1 billion a year.
Cunningamp says the order also creates a lot less opportunity for UBS to ship to the U, a move that Cunningham says could make UBS less competitive.
“They can’t compete on the international markets with us because of this order, and we have a lot to offer them in the global markets,” he said.
Cunningam says UBS is still looking to expand into new markets, like Asia, where the company is already working on its first-ever delivery of liquefied natural gas.
As of this week, Trump’s executive order has not been subject to any legal challenge.