President Joe Biden has issued Executive Order 14036 “Promoting Competition in the American Economy” (“the EO”) which was signed on 9 July 2021. The EO has the goal to promote competition within the U.S. economy to lower prices for families, increase wages for workers, promote innovation and foster economic growth.
The EO puts forward 72 initiatives for multiple federal agencies. While it does not establish new requirements, it is a call to action for federal agencies to establish policies in order to address the harmful trends associated with corporate consolidation, decreased competition and the ultimate harm they cause to America’s consumers, workers, farmers and small businesses.
Joe Biden is attempting to enforce competition compliance more vigorously than his predecessor. As illustrated by the EO, ship owners, carriers and airlines need to ensure that their competition compliance programmes are up to date. Some shipping companies do not have compliance programmes in place as they are advisory, rather than compulsory. As can be seen in the EO, rather than make it compulsory, Biden’s administration directs the Department of Transportation to consider issuing clear rules and encourages both the Surface Transportation Board and the Federal Maritime Commission to establish certain rules in relation to the shipping industry, air travel and rail travel.
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