By  on May 13, 2008

Retailers and vendors importing goods through West Coast ports have cause for concern, as ocean freight carriers seek to recoup skyrocketing fuel prices and the deadline for a new labor contract with the dockworkers' union approaches.

Negotiations between importers and ocean freight carriers over freight rates for goods originating from Asian ports kicked off in March and are likely to be concluded this month. Traditionally, the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement, or TSA, a collective of 15 major container shipping lines, issues guidance outlining the fee increases they will seek in the contract negotiations several months in advance.

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