Japan calls for wider scope
By K K CHADHA
JAPANESE shipping companies have asked Chinese authorities to raise the limit on the number of subsidiaries they can set up in China.
At present, the number is limited to two or three.
At recent industrial-level talks between the two countries, the Japanese side said Tokyo placed no limit on the number of Chinese shipping companies' subsidiaries in Japan.
The Chinese side promised to convey the Japanese request to the Chinese Government, Japanese sources said.
The Chinese delegation pointed out the matter was the kind of issue that should be resolved by the two governments.
The Japanese side also asked for the abolition of restrictions on the scope of business for Japanese shipping companies' subsidiaries in China.
The operations of Japanese subsidiaries are limited to cargo canvassing and booking, preparation and issuing of bills of lading, collection and remittance of freight charges and other fees and conclusion of service contracts.
The Chinese said the restrictions on subsidiaries in China represented Beijing's unified foreign policy, which was equally applied to all countries.
Container shipping services between the two countries have so far been carried out under different rules.
Containerised exports from Japan to China totalled 14,752 TEUs (20-foot equivalent units) in February, up 0.6 per cent from a year earlier.
Imports from China to Japan posted a sizeable rise of 14.6 per cent to 35,296 TEUs, according to the Japan China Marine Transportation Council.
The volume of containerised exports from Japan flattened following a month's suspension of Kobe port's container handling functions in the aftermath of the January earthquake.
Shipments to Shanghai rose 11.6 per cent to 5,757 TEUs, those to Tianjin by 55.2 per cent to 2,334 TEUs and those to Qingdao by 5.3 per cent to 1,421 TEUs.
Shipments to Dalian fell by 13 per cent to 1,809 TEUs and those to other Chinese ports by 25 per cent to 3,431 TEUs.
Local cargo liftings from Japan to China gained 12.1 per cent to 10,688 TEUs but feeder cargo transshipments in Japan fell by 20.8 per cent to 4,064 TEUs. Shipments from Shanghai to Japan came to 10,254 TEUs (up 16 per cent); those from Tianjin to 5,446 TEUs (up 25.5 per cent); from Qingdao to 4,284 TEUs (up 21.4 per cent) and from Dalian to 4,785 TEUs (up 43.7 per cent).
Shipments from other Chinese ports to Japan totalled 10,527 TEUs (up 14.6 per cent) for a total of 35,296 TEUs (up 14.6 per cent).
Local cargo liftings from China to Japan amounted to 31,410 TEUs (up 19.1 per cent) but feeder cargo transshipments in China totalled only 3,886 TEUs (down 12.3 per cent).
Japanese ships hauled 5,912 TEUs (up 20.7 per cent) resulting in a loading share of 11.8 per cent while Chinese vessels transported 44,136 TEUs (up 8.8 per cent) with a loading share of 88.2 per cent.