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e-CFR data is current as of September 16, 2020

Title 46Chapter IVSubchapter BPart 535 → Subpart G


Title 46: Shipping
PART 535—OCEAN COMMON CARRIER AND MARINE TERMINAL OPERATOR AGREEMENTS SUBJECT TO THE SHIPPING ACT OF 1984


Subpart G—Reporting Requirements


Contents
§535.701   General requirements.
§535.702   Agreements subject to Monitoring Report and alternative periodic reporting requirements.
§535.703   Monitoring Report form.
§535.704   Filing of minutes.
§535.705   Application for waiver.

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§535.701   General requirements.

(a) Parties to agreements identified in §535.702(a) shall submit quarterly Monitoring Reports on an ongoing basis for as long as the agreement remains in effect, containing information and data on the agreement and the parties' authority under the agreement.

(b) Parties to agreements identified in §535.704 are required to submit minutes of their meetings for as long as their agreements remain in effect.

(c) If a joint service is a party to an agreement that is subject to the requirements of this subpart, the joint service shall be treated as one member of that agreement for purposes of that agreement's Monitoring Reports.

(d) Monitoring Reports and minutes required to be filed by this subpart should be submitted to: Director, Bureau of Trade Analysis, Federal Maritime Commission, Washington, DC 20573-0001. A copy of the Monitoring Report form in Microsoft Word and Excel format may be downloaded from the Commission's home page at http://www.fmc.gov, or a paper copy may be obtained from the Bureau of Trade Analysis. In lieu of submitting paper copies, parties may complete and submit their Monitoring Reports in the Commission's prescribed electronic format, either on diskette or CD-ROM.

(e)(1) The regulations in this paragraph (e) are stayed until further notice.

(2) Reports and minutes required to be filed by this subpart may be filed by direct electronic transmission in lieu of hard copy. Detailed information on electronic transmission is available from the Commission's Bureau of Trade Analysis. Certification and signature requirements of this subpart can be met on electronic transmissions through use of a pre-assigned Personal Identification Number (PIN) obtained from the Commission. PINs can be obtained by submission by an official of the filing party of a statement to the Commission agreeing that inclusion of the PIN in the transmission constitutes the signature of the official. Only one PIN will be issued for each agreement. Where a filing party has more than one official authorized to file minutes or reports, each additional official must submit such a statement countersigned by the principal official of the filing party. Each filing official will be issued a unique password. A PIN or designation of authorized filing officials may be canceled or changed at any time upon the written request of the principal official of the filing party. Direct electronic transmission filings may be made at any time except between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. Eastern time on Commission business days.

(f) Time for filing. Except as otherwise instructed, Monitoring Reports shall be filed within 75 days of the end of each calendar quarter. Minutes of meetings shall be filed within 21 days after the meeting. Other documents shall be filed within 15 days of the receipt of a request for documents.

(g) A complete response in accordance with the instructions on the Monitoring Report shall be supplied to each item. If a party to an agreement is unable to supply a complete response, that party shall provide either estimated data (with an explanation of why precise data are not available) or a detailed statement of reasons for noncompliance and the efforts made to obtain the required information.

(h) A Monitoring Report for a particular agreement may be supplemented with any other relevant information or documentary material.

(i) Confidentiality. (1) The Monitoring Reports, minutes, and any other additional information submitted by a particular agreement will be exempt from disclosure under 5 U.S.C. 552, except to the extent:

(i) It is relevant to an administrative or judicial action or proceeding; or

(ii) It is disclosed to either body of Congress or to a duly authorized committee or subcommittee of Congress.

(2) Parties may voluntarily disclose or make Monitoring Reports, minutes or any other additional information publicly available. The Commission must be promptly informed of any such voluntary disclosure.

(j) Monitoring Report or alternative periodic reporting requirements in this subpart shall not be construed to authorize the exchange or use by or among agreement members of information required to be submitted.

Effective Date Note: At 69 FR 64414, Nov. 4, 2004, paragraph (e) of §535.701 was stayed indefinitely.

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§535.702   Agreements subject to Monitoring Report and alternative periodic reporting requirements.

(a) Agreements subject to the Monitoring Report requirements of this subpart are:

(1) An agreement that contains the authority to discuss or agree on capacity rationalization; or

(2) Where the parties to an agreement hold a combined market share, based on cargo volume, of 35 percent or more in the entire U.S. inbound or outbound geographic scope of the agreement and the agreement contains any of the following authorities:

(i) The discussion of, or agreement upon, whether on a binding basis under a common tariff or a non-binding basis, any kind of rate or charge;

(ii) The establishment of a joint service;

(iii) The pooling or division of cargo traffic, earnings, or revenues and/or losses; or

(iv) The discussion of, or agreement on, any service contract matter.

(b) The determination of an agreement's reporting obligation under §535.702(a)(2) in the first instance shall be based on the market share data reported on the agreement's Information Form pursuant to §535.503. Thereafter, at the beginning of each calendar year, the Bureau of Trade Analysis will notify the agreement parties of any changes in its reporting requirements based on market share data reported on the agreement's quarterly Monitoring Report for the previous second quarter (April-June).

(c) The Commission may require, as necessary, that the parties to an agreement with market share below the 35 percent threshold, as identified and defined in §535.702(a)(2), submit Monitoring Reports pursuant to §535.703.

(d) In addition to or instead of the Monitoring Report in §535.703, the Commission may prescribe, as necessary, alternative periodic reporting requirements for parties to any agreement identified in §535.201.

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§535.703   Monitoring Report form.

(a) For agreements subject to the Monitoring Report requirements in §535.702(a), the Monitoring Report form, with instructions, is set forth in sections I through III of appendix B of this part. The instructions should be read in conjunction with the Act and this part.

(b) The Monitoring Report shall apply as follows:

(1) Section I shall be completed by parties to agreements identified in §535.702(a)(1);

(2) Section II shall be completed by parties to agreements identified in §535.702(a)(2); and

(3) Section III shall be completed by parties to all agreements identified in §535.702(a).

(c) In accordance with the requirements and instructions in appendix B of this part, parties to an agreement subject to part 2(C) of section I of the Monitoring Report shall submit a narrative statement on any significant reductions in vessel capacity that the parties will implement under the agreement. The term “a significant reduction” is defined in appendix B. The narrative statement shall be submitted to the Director, Bureau of Trade Analysis, no later than 15 days after a significant reduction in vessel capacity has been agreed upon by the parties but prior to the implementation of the actual reduction under the agreement.

(d)(1) The Commission may require, in its discretion, that the information on the top agreement commodities in part 4 of section II of the Monitoring Report be reported on a sub-trade basis, as defined in appendix B of this part, rather than on an agreement-wide basis. When commodity sub-trade information is required under this section, the Commission shall notify the parties to the agreement.

(2) For purposes of §535.703(d)(1), the top agreement commodities shall mean the top 10 liner commodities (including commodities not subject to tariff publication) carried by all the agreement parties in each sub-trade within the geographic scope of the agreement during the calendar quarter. Where the agreement covers both U.S. inbound and outbound liner movements, inbound and outbound sub-trades shall be stated separately. All other instructions, definitions, and terms shall apply as specified and required in appendix B of this part.

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§535.704   Filing of minutes.

(a) Agreements required to file minutes. (1) This section applies to agreements authorized to engage in any of the following activities: discussion or establishment of any type of rates or charges, whether in tariffs or service contracts; pooling or apportionment of cargo traffic; discussion of revenues, losses, or earnings; or discussion or agreement on service contract matters, including the establishment of voluntary service contract guidelines.

(2) Each agreement to which this section applies shall file with the Commission, through a designated official, minutes of all meetings defined in paragraph (b) of this section, except as provided in paragraph (d) of this section.

(b) Meetings. For purposes of this subpart, the term meeting shall include all discussions at which any agreement is reached among any number of the parties to an agreement relating to the business of the agreement, and all other discussions among three or more members of the agreement (or all members if fewer than three) relating to the business of the agreement. This includes, but is not limited to, meetings of the members' agents, principals, owners, officers, employees, representatives, committees, or subcommittees, and communications among members facilitated by agreement officials. Discussions conducted by telephone, electronic device, or other means are included.

(c) Content of minutes. Minutes shall include the following:

(1) The date, time, and place of the meeting;

(2) A list of participants and companies represented;

(3) A description of discussions detailed enough so that a non-participant reading the minutes could reasonably gain a clear understanding of the nature and extent of the discussions and, where applicable, any decisions reached. Such description need not disclose the identity of the parties that participated in the discussion or the votes taken; and

(4) Any report, circular, notice, statistical compilation, analytical study, survey, or other work distributed, discussed, or exchanged at the meeting, whether presented by oral, written, electronic, or other means. Where the aforementioned materials are reasonably available to the public, a citation to the work or relevant part thereof is acceptable in lieu of the actual work. Any documents submitted to the Commission pursuant to this section need not disclose the identity of the party or parties that circulated the document at the meeting.

(d) Exemption. For parties to agreements subject to this section, the following exemptions shall apply:

(1) Minutes of meetings between parties are not required to reflect discussions of matters set forth in §535.408(b)(2), (b)(3), (b)(4)(iii), (b)(4)(iv), (b)(4)(v), and (b)(4)(vi);

(2) Minutes of meetings between parties are not required to reflect discussion of matters set forth in §535.408(b)(5) to the extent that such discussions involve minor operational matters that have little or no impact on the frequency of vessel calls at ports or the amount of vessel capacity offered by the parties in the geographic scope of the agreement; and

(3) Minutes of meetings between parties are not required to reflect discussions of or actions taken with regard to rates that, if adopted, would be required to be published in an appropriate tariff. This exemption does not apply to discussions concerning general rate policy, general rate changes, the opening or closing of rates, service contracts, or time/volume rates.

(e) Serial numbers. Each set of minutes filed with the Commission shall include the agreement name and FMC number and a unique identification number indicating the sequence in which the meeting took place during the calendar year.

[69 FR 64414, Nov. 4, 2004, as amended at 70 FR 20303, Apr. 19, 2005]

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§535.705   Application for waiver.

(a) Upon a showing of good cause, the Commission may waive any requirement of this subpart.

(b) A request for such a waiver must be submitted and approved by the Commission in advance of the filing of the Monitoring Report or minutes to which the requested waiver would apply. Requests for a waiver shall be submitted in writing to the Director, Bureau of Trade Analysis, Federal Maritime Commission, Washington, DC 20573-0001, and shall state and provide the following:

(1) The specific requirements from which relief is sought;

(2) The special circumstances requiring the requested relief;

(3) Relevant trade and industry data and information to substantiate and support the special circumstances requiring the requested relief; and

(4) Why granting the requested waiver will not substantially impair effective monitoring of the agreement.

(c) The Commission may take into account the presence or absence of shipper complaints as well as the past compliance of the agreement parties with any reporting requirement under this part in considering an application for a waiver.

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