Industry Issues


Transportation Infrastructure

Sufficient land-side capacity to keep cargo moving is essential for liner vessels to maintain their schedules. Supply chains served by liner vessels in 21st century are no longer port-to-port. All cargo carried on liner ships must be able to discharge the vessel in a timely manner at port facilities around the world.

In late 2014, and in early 2015 port congestion, particularly on the U.S. West Coast received significant attention and concerns mounted about the potential economic impact of congestion issues that went unaddressed. In May 2015, the World Shipping Council issued a paper to help inform that dialogue.

This cargo will also have to move via truck or rail on its journey from origin to destination. An intermodal network is comprised of ships, trains, planes and trucks, including the surface over which they move and the connections or transfer points between the modes, often referred to as intermodal connectors. Service disruption or insufficient capacity anywhere in the network could result in shipment delays and increased cost.


U.S. Intermodal Network

The U.S. is the largest trading nation in the world and as such represents one of the largest markets for liner shipping companies. The Council works with the government and interested stakeholders in the private sector to ensure that the U.S. intermodal transportation system can effectively keep trade moving. Learn more


Europe Intermodal Network

The Europe intermodal network poses unique challenges because many countries are land-locked, or they do not have deep-water ports that can accommodate liner vessels. This means cargo often must transit long distances by truck, rail or barge, often through several countries, between the actual origin or destination and the port served by the liner vessel. Learn more