Asian shippers have objected to an emergency recovery levy by container lines on transpacific trade.

The Asian Shippers’ Council (ASC) described as ‘astounding’ the move by member lines of the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement to levy a charge of $320 per teu, $400 per feu, and $505 per 45ft box on container shipments from Asia to North America from 15 January, reports

The council said over 90% of shipments between Asia and North America are moved on 12-month contracts and because of the downturn some lines have agreed contract rates at below operating costs.

The ASC has called on Asian governments to act against anti-trust immunity for shipping lines.