Digital Edition

July 9 2018

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 40 of 55

Rob Ward Latin America Trade and Logistics Cover Story Special Report July 9 2018 | The Journal of Commerce 41 Striking lessons Though the truck strike has ended, Brazil's transportation bottlenecks need a bigger government and private sector fix By Rob Ward THE MORE THAN week-long, nation- wide Brazilian truck strike and blockade in late May laid bare the country's inability to shore up its containerized rail network, increas- ing shipper dependence on a trucker workforce too numerous and often hampered by the inefficiencies of marine terminals. Estimates of the strike's cost to shippers, from beef exporters to white goods importers, range from $5 billion to $15 billion. There was also the cost of pride, seeing the country's road and port networks clogged and the world taking note. "It is insane," a Sao Paulo-based auto parts shipper told The Journal of Commerce. "To be held to ransom like this by one truckers' union is not how a market economy is supposed to work, and successive governments have failed to address the imbalance between road, rail- road, and sea/navigable waterways. In Brazil, whoever screams loudest wins, [referring to the powerful trucking lobbyists]." The Brazilian truck strike was the latest in a series of blows to shippers' supply chain reliability. On May 17, the truck drivers serving the Port of Santos, South America's busiest container gateway, launched a one-day blockage. Since Novem- ber, shippers and Santos marine terminals have been grappling with strike and slowdown actions from the Receita Federal (customs office department).

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Digital Edition - July 9 2018