THE CARGO LETTER 
Air & Ocean Freight Forwarder - Customs Broker News
30 June 1997
The Handover Of Hong Kong
Good Monday Morning from our Observation Deck...... overlooking the
officially designated "Cargo City" area and....... Runway 25-Right at
Los Angeles International Airport.
This edition of The Cargo Letter is being sent to your computer at the exact
moment of the "handover" (as the event is known) of the British Crown
Colony of Hong Kong to the People's Republic of China. A 156 year tradition has
ended and HMS Britania will now cast off on what is also her final voyage. It is
now midnight, 1 July 1997 in Hong Kong .......... the world's largest air &
ocean freight center .......... and 9 a.m., 30 June 1997 at LAX, the largest
Chinese center outside of China. With both anxiety and hope for the future, a
new period of history begins at this very moment! The reunification of China and
Today we limit our focus and much of our content to this historic event. We
have provided you with a wide variey of useful internet resources on the
subject. In our "Cyber Ports Of Call" you will find directions for
joining the handover cerimonies LIVE ! We encourage you to visit these areas
[Note: The full schedule of events is oulined below]
Contribute your knowledge & information ........ by e-mail to The
Cargo Letter. We strive to bring you useful information which is timely
Michael S. McDaniel, Editor
INDEX to The Cargo Letter:
- OUR Top Story
- Hong Kong Hand-Over Highlights
OUR "A" Section: Trade, Financial & Inland
- Freight Forwarder Trade Briefs
- The Cargo Letter Financial Page
OUR "B" Section: FF World Air News
- Freight Forwarder World Air Briefs
OUR "C" Section: FF World Ocean News
- FF World Ocean Briefs
OUR "D" Section: FF in Cyberspace
- The Cargo Letter "Cyber Ports Of Call"
- Special Hong Kong Sites
- See The Transfer LIVE !
- Biggest Internet Event
OUR Top Story
Live T.V. coverage began on all major networks @ 8:00 a.m. (ET) today in the
USA. Todays Schedule is (NOTE; all times listed below are U.S. Pacific Daylight
||Union Jack lowered at Governor'sresidence. Governor Chris Patten bids
farewell to staff. (Even Passed)
||Farewell Ceremony at East Tamar, H. M. Royal Naval Base.
||Reception at Convention Center (Event Passed)
||Fireworks (Event Passed)
||Banquet for 4000 at Convention Center (Event Passed)
||Official Hand-Over Ceremony, Prince Charles; Prime Minister Tony Blare;
Gov. Patten; PRC Pres. Jiang Zemin; PRC Premier Li Peng.
||Union Jack & Colonial Flag lowered.
||Chinese anthem played & New Flag of Hong Kong Special Admin.
Region raised for the first time. Prince Charles & royal yacht HMS
Britannia depart harbor for the last time.
||Hong Kong Democratic Party plans to lead a defiant rally.
||New Chinese Administrator takes oath of office. The rule of "One
Country - Two Systems" begins.
||At dawn 4,000 People's Liberation Army troops enter Hong Kong along with
naval, air & armored elements.
||Chinese hold celebration at Convention Center.
||10,000 pigeons are released.
||<Umbrellas are distributed.>
|[Note: All times are U.S. Pacific Time)
OUR "A" Section: Trade, Financial & Inland News
- Hong Kong Quote Of The Day .......... ``We cannot rule out things
happening in Hong Kong which Chinese officials would regard with a lot of
suspicion, with a lot of fear perhaps.'' Tsang Yok-sing, chairman of Hong
Kong's largest pro-China party, predicting conflicts between the territory
and its future sovereign.
- Hong Kong Also To Handover At LAX ........... as Hollywood Park
Race Track & Executive Center (casino) is hosting a day long event
"HONG KONG '97 - Witnessing the Transfer of Sovereignty" today.
Starting at 6:30 am visitors will enjoy the cerimonies in English, Mandarin
& Cantonese, live in three giant screen theaters. Other events of the
day will incude expert seminars, great food and a Trade Fair. For info call
213-673-3563. This could be your chance to share "The Moment". If
you are in the area .......... go now.
>>>>> Why observe the Hong Kong "handover" event in
Los Angeles? The two cities have much in common. One is the air & ocean
freight leader in the Western World, and the other in the East. Hollywood is
the world's movie capitol, while Hong Kong ranks #3 in films, behind New
Dehli. Los Angeles is THE trade & transport gateway to the Far East, and
proud home of the largeest Chinese community outside of China. There are
over 6,000 major Chinese owned companies in S. California.
- First Sign Of HKG Trouble? ............. will be the Hong Kong
dollar, according to the Journal of Commerce. Analysts state that the first
sign of trouble in Hong Kong's economy after the territory's handover to
China on 1 July 1997 will show up in a speculative attack on the Hong Kong
- Hong Kong Joins .......... the World Trade Organization's (WTO's)
Procurement Code under which it agrees to treat foreign bidders for
government contracts the same as Hong Kong bidders. The commitments will not
be affected by HKGs reversion to Chinese control since it will maintain
separate legal & trade regimes
- Court Of Appeal Upholds End To Harbor Maint. Fee
...................... as the U.S. Court of Appeals has issued a 4 to 1
decision upholding the 1995 U.S. Court of International Trade ruling against
the Harbor Maintenance Fee (HMF) for U.S. Exports. This 3 June opinion in
the case of U.S. Shoe Vs. United States (CAFC-96-1210) holds that the fee
violated Article 1, 9, clause 5 of the United States Constitution which
reads: "No Tax or Duty shall be laid on articles exported from any
State." A part of the Water Resources Development Act, the 1986 fee/tax
created a trust fund to provide for up-keep & operation of commercial
Unfortunately, the new court decision leaves open a variety of questions
relating to refunds of past fees paid by exporters or what steps can/should
be taken to force such action. Still, at this point the big questions are
whether the Government will seek a next appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court,
and, if so, whether Customs will continue to collect the dreaded fee in the
meantime?. [A. Blaine Prentiss, The Cargo Letter]
- Make Your Mark in Hong Kong ............ as U.S. Customs states
that country of origin markings for Hong Kong produced goods will continue
as "Hong Kong" after 1 July 1997.
- US Customs Valuation Encyclopedia ........... has been posted on
the electronic bulletin board with relevant regulations, valuation codes,
judicial & Headquarters Rulings and notices concerning valuation for the
- Informal Entry Limit May Increase ......... as U.S. Customs
proposes the increase from the current limit of US$1,250 to US$2,000.00.
Written comments are due by August 8, 1997.
- AES Reporting to Expand ........... as this moth the Automated
Export System (AES) will begin accepting commodity data for exports via air,
truck or vessel. Until now only vessel data was accepted electronically.
However, software enabling all modes won't be available 1988.
The 1996 Fiscal Year Results
- Air France. UP with a net profit for airline operations of 211
million French francs in the fiscal year ending March 31, compared with a
loss of FF 2.87 billion for the year-earlier period. Note: Air France freigh
t ton kilometers (FTKs) worldwide for May increased 10.2% to 397 million.
- Japan Airlines. DOWN with a net loss of US$74.5 for the year ending
31 March, compared to a US$3.97M net profit for the previous fiscal year.
JAL showed gratifying operating revenues of US$9,639,790,000, 7.1% higher
than the previous year's. Operating expenses also increased, however, by
8.2% to $9,603,040,000, largely due to increased fuel costs.
OUR "B" Section: FF World Air News
- A Strike Looming For UPS? ............... as its pilots say they
are ready to walk after months of negotiations failed to resolve continuing
dispute over pay & pension (the two "P's"). A 5 May vote
conducted by the Independent Pilots Association (IPA) resulted in 94% of the
company's 2,100 pilots authorizing a strike against UPS if the issues aren't
- Virgin Continues Against AA-BA Alliance ............... as its
outspoken Chairman Richard Branson recently observed unless restrained by
suitable government action, Robert Ayling, CEO of British Airways, and Bob
Crandall, Chairman of American Airlines, would " ... swoop in like a
pair of international jewel thieves ... to snatch away the precious gem of
competition in trans Atlantic air services."
- Burlington Claims Top Indian Spot ........... with word it has
moved into the top revenue position among accredited cargo agents in India,
according to the just released figures from the International Air Transport
Association (IATA). Burlington Air Express (BAX) India is the first company
to reach the number one spot in freight forwarding after just 5 years of
operating in the country. In other news, Epson America has just appointed Bu
rlington its primary carrier for worldwide air & ocean freight. The
total contract is estimated to be worth US$3.5M covers air & ocean
- Emery Worldwide Plants New Flag ........... with wholly owned
company operations in Austria. Its first ever presence in Austria, the new
service center is in Vienna, offering air freight & logistics services.
- UPS Will "Challenge" South America ............ with a
new service agreement whereby UPS will lease planes to Challenge Air Cargo
for operation between Miami and El Salvador, Honduras and with continued
service to Sao Paulo via Bogota.
- Fuel Surcharge Dropped ......... as UA & Airborne now dropped
the US$0.10 a kilo surcharge following competitors such as Delta, FedEx
& Virgin Atlantic. For FedEx "International Priority"
shipments originating in the U.S., the surcharge is scheduled to be lifted
on August 1.
- Pan Am & Carnival Move Closer ............. in the process of
their consolidation with code-sharing on all Carnival flight by 1 July.
- China Air Expands Dedicated ........... as it will add one Boeing
747-40OF in 1996, and one Boeing 747-200F next year. Starting 1 October,
another freighter flight per week will be added on both Taipei- Luxembourg
and Taipei-San Francisco-Dallas routes.
- AIC Expands South Pacific ............ as American International
Cargo has begun B-727F service with flights from Honolulu to Christmas
Island, Kireibati; PagoPago, American Samoa & Apia, Western Samoa.
- Hawaiian Air Cargo Figures Up ........... as cargo ton miles (CTMs)
flown in May 1997 were 5,525,000, an increase of 15.5% from May 1996.
Through May CTMs were 24,384,000, an increase of 18.0% for the first five
months of 1996.
- DHL Lays Down Cyber Gauntlet ............. as the the carrier
claims to have hundreds of programmers working on a Web-based software
tracking & service program it hopes will soon out class the offerings of
rivals FedEx & UPS. DHL's Web-based tracking service has thus far been
the weakest. Stand by!
OUR "C" Section: FF World Ocean News
Container Traffic Port Reports
- Hong Kong. UP 9.1% over 1996 with 3.16 million teu in the first 3
months of 1997. Singapore handled slightly more containers in the 1st
quarter, 3.26 million teu. However, the first 3 months are usually the
slowest period of the year for Hong Kong and thus it will likely remain THE
#1 container port in the world.
- Canada. DOWN as its ports handled less cargo last year.
International traffic rose by just 0.2%, to 260.3M tons, while domestic
declined by 3% to 97.7 million tons. Vancouver was busiest, handling 71.3
million tons, up 2.5% despite a 25% per cent decline in domestic cargo.
Montreal was again the top container port.
- India. UP at a continuing rate of 20% a year. It is said that rates
are already so low that newcomers to the trade are unlikely to have much
effect and cargo volumes are continuing to grow strongly. South Korea's Oram
Shipping has started a Singapore-Calcutta lane while Singapore-based Inter
Pacific Shipping has begun weekly fixed day service calling Singapore-Port
Klang-Tuticorin. APL has beefed up its services with a fixed-day service
calling at Singapore and Calcutta, Haldia, Vishakhapatnam and Madras.
- Manila. UP both in general and also for its International Container
Terminal Services Inc (ICTSI) where April & May handling level of more
than 75,000 20-teu in both months put the terminal in line to reach1 million
- European Union. UP as volumes at European ports are predicted to
grow at about 8%-10% a year into the next decade, according to a report by
London's Ocean Shipping Consultants which indicates that while the European
OECD economy has grown by nearly 41% since 1980, container port demand has
grown by 216%, to 36.26M teu. From 1985 to 1996 the proportion of feeder
traffic rose from 12% to 23% and the consultants expect this trend to
continue with the mega-ships of about 8,000 teu making very few calls in the
- APL Continues China Intermodal Growth ............ with a new
"Nanjing Intermodal Service", providing container service to/from
Shanghai via the newly completed Shanghai-Nanjing (Hu Ning) Highway. Nanjing
is the capital of Jiangsu province in central China, located 300 kilometers
west of Shanghai with a population of 5.2 million. One more for the
- Mitsui O.S.K Expands China Consolidation .......... with a new
Shanghai LCL weekly service to the US & Canada through use of a 6,400
sq. meter CFS operated by Shanghai Golden Ocean Warehouse &
Transportation. Another for the intergraters.
- Maersk Now Has 12 U.S. Flags .......... as Mediterranean & S.
American service has now begun with 4 ships now flying the U.S. flag. Maersk
already has 8 U.S. flagged ships, but that they are dedicated to to U. S.
military assignments. The 4 newly reflagged ships are what Maersk calls its
- Crowley Increases Central America ............ with addition of a
third weekly sailing to Guatemala, Honduras , Nicaragua and El Salvador.
- Nedlloyd Adds 5 Ships .............. for delivery in 1988 &
1999. The new vessels will have speeds of 22.5 knots, 2900 TEU slots with a
maximum capacity of 2,015 TEU. Given such considerations quicker turn around
times for these medium size vessels, bigger is not always better.
- IMB Demands Action For M/V Anna Sierra ............... as the
International Maritime Bureau has seeks word from China's Public Security
Ministry at Beijing, amid reports that Public Security Bureau (PSB)
officials have attempting to sell cargo from the M/V Anna Sierra which was
taken by pirates in 1995 as reported at the time in The Cargo Letter. All
the pirates were released by Chinese officials without trial earlier this
year. The IMB is attempting to recover the US$5M sugar cargo on behalf of
its owner, an Indian government agency. PSB officials in Beihai, where the
vessel is located, have defied an order of the Guangzhou Maritime Court and
refuse to hand over the cargo. It is understood that plans for an auction
may be in progress.
OUR "D" Section: FF in Cyberspace
- Special Hong Kong Sites
- See The Transfer LIVE !
Today's Historic End To British Rule In Hong Kong.
The Official Hong Kong Site'
Hong Kong Handover Live !! on the Net .......... says you can be there
when Britain hands over control of Hong Kong to China. Radio Television Hong
Kong, the service covering the official handover ceremonies will cybercast live
on the net 48 hours of webcam coverage. Hong Kong's Chinese University will
co-sponsor the netcast.
Fox News' Hong Kong Package .......... to be continually updated with
the latest news through July 1 and beyond, including live video feed from Hong
Kong during the handover.
Hong Kong's Channel "A" .........with live audio & video
coverage of transfer, daily copies of the South China Morning Post, live Hong
Kong radio stations & more.
The South China Morning Post Handover Site ........ with 24 hour live
camera, interactive tours, virtual Hong Kong fly over, films of air & ocean
cargo handling, maps, etc.
Video Webcasts Of Hong Kong Transfer ........... by RTHK TV, The South
China Morning Post, ITN, and the BBC.
Index Of Hong Kong Transfer Links ........... as Newsbytes News
Network has created a thoroughly well-rounded set of links (complete with
reviews) of sites covering the handover.
Hong Kong Voice Of Democracy ................ is an electronic weekly
founded by the Hong Kong Democratic Party on the premise that accurate
information is absolutely critical to monitoring the way of life & the
rights of the Hong Kong people after transition to Chinese rule. Features
include a glossary, chronology, interviews, profiles, news & related links.
The group plans to lead a defiant rally at midnight June 30, 1997.
Hong Kong 1997 .......... as Reuters News Service & and Hong Kong's
"The Corner" team up to provide the latest news on the handover.
Includes updates, features, past issues and more.
Hong Kong 1997: Lives in Transition .......... as PBS features news
& views regarding the end of British rule. The centerpiece is "Hong
Kong Diaries", which features diaries chronicling how these momentous
changes impact on the day-to-day lives of a diverse group of Hong Kong
Hong Kong: 1997 and Beyond ............. as the Hong Kong Tourist
Association has prepared a status report on "handover events", status,
visas, language, currency, hotels, finance, administration, law and security
........ featuring links to 8 web sites, with different political stands on the
"handover, reunification & transition.
Chinese Embassy .......... in Washington, DC, has launched its
official site. It's abundant with information on China's political, economic,
and cultural affairs. Included are a calendar of upcoming events, the latest
news, diplomacy information and more.
Hong Kong 1997 ......The Return To China ________
A bilingual site from China Internet Corp. (CIC), to celebrate Hong Kong's
return of sovereignty to China, with a pictorial history, background, archives,
events, & an online encyclopedia.
Hong Kong Stock Market
Special Report on the Chinese Capitalist Army ....... is a 3-part
Special Report on the Chinese Capitalist Army, brought to you by ABC News.
Asian Venture Capital Journal ............ is a monthly source of
news, data, trends, and analysis of the Asian private equity. Also includes
Asian Venture Forum (AVF), the leading conference on Asian direct investment and
private equity and an online Guide to Venture Capital in Asia.
Our Memorial to The Death Of Capt. Cousteau
The Ocean Pioneer
Tribute to Jacques-Yves Cousteau .......... features links to Cousteau
web sites and lists of his natural history documentaries.
Calypso II Project ......... details the tragic sinking of Cousteau's
vessel, the Calypso and the building of Calypso II.
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