Press Releases

Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today applauded the House of Representatives for passing the Ocean Shipping Reform Act, a bill unanimously approved by the Senate in March. President Biden is expected to sign the bill into law later this week.

The legislation will help address supply chain problems and reduce shipping backlogs in ports by making it more difficult for ocean carriers to refuse American export shipments at ports, an issue that has exacerbated backlogs at California ports through much of the pandemic. California agricultural exports decreased by $2.1 billion between May and September 2021 due to the inability to get products to overseas markets.

“This bill has been a major focus for U.S. producers, particularly California farmers. American exports flow through California ports, and when shipping companies refuse to ship those goods to foreign markets, it causes an enormous burden on exporters and importers and can significantly increase the cost of products for consumers,” Senator Feinstein said.

“We’ve seen the price of shipping containers surge over the past two years, which has hurt U.S. businesses and consumers. At the same time, ocean carriers are reporting record profits. By leveling the playing field, this bill will help ensure that American companies are able to sell their products and that costs for American consumers go down.”