The US Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) has created the Bureau of Enforcement, Investigations and Compliance (BEIC), which has been tasked with investigative and prosecution responsibilities.

The newly established bureau will be headed by an attorney in the senior executive service with regulatory, prosecutorial, and investigatory experience. The FMC’s managing director, Lucille M. Marvin, will serve as acting director until a permanent director is hired.

“Robust enforcement of the Shipping Act is absolutely key to the effectiveness of the FMC. This reorganisation has the support of all five commissioners and creates a structure better suited to meeting the mandate the President and Congress have given this agency to prioritise enforcement. Specifically, it enhances FMC’s capacity to closely scrutinise the conduct of the ocean carrier companies and marine terminal operators to ensure compliance with the law and fairness for American importers and exporters,” said FMC chairman Daniel B. Maffei.

HLPFI reported in June that US President Joe Biden signed the bipartisan Ocean Reform Act – a significant revision to address the high detention and demurrage charged by ocean carriers and terminals. The act has come in for criticism from carriers.