American Maritime Officer: September 2020

Jones Act ensures dedicated, reliable cargo service for Hawaii without impacting cost of living in Aloha State

A comprehensive report released in July by economists from Boston based Reeve & Associates and Hawaii-based TZ Economics documents the role of the Jones Act in ensuring dedicated, reliable and expanding ocean freight service without impacting the cost of living in the Aloha State. Jones Act carriers are dedicated to Hawaii's specific needs for high frequency and fast transit to deliver consumer goods to the Hawaiian Islands. Eliminating the Jones Act could undermine priority, frequency, and speed. Three U.S.-flag carriers with a combined fleet of twenty vessels, specifically designed to accommodate the needs of Hawaii transportation commerce, currently provide regular scheduled shipping services between the U.S. mainland and Hawaii. Due to intense and healthy competition, freight rates have declined in real terms while carriers have increased capacity with modern, custom-designed vessels. In fact, Jones Act carriers have increased capacity by 22% since 2015. The complete report is available online.