How do you know if the shipping rate for construction equipment that you received is fair and accurate? Initially, you could spend vast amounts of time reaching out to every carrier who ships heavy machinery overseas and compare the prices and services that each carrier offers. Or, you could speak to a freight forwarder, who is experienced in shipping construction equipment, and they can give you the best rate offered by the carriers. This seems like the best option to make sure that you are not being swindled by carriers and victimized by practices such as price fixing.
Recently, ocean freight carrier Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, better known as K-Line, was recently found guilty of price fixing. They now have to pay a $67.7 million fine. The US Department of Justice found that K-Line violated the Sherman Antitrust Act by engaging in price fixing, rigging shipping bids and sharing customer pricing with partners. Reports say that K-Line conducted the price fixing at the Port of Baltimore during a 15-year period from February 1997 through September 2012. The pricing fixing involved the rates for construction and agricultural equipment through Roll-On/Roll-Off services. The Port of Baltimore is also the #1 US port for transporting cars and construction vehicles.
K-Line is now obeying the law and working with the authorities. Heavy machinery shippers should indeed be concerned that a carrier could use price fixing. That is why it is wise to work with a third-party logistics provider who compares pricing between carriers to give the shipper the best price possible.