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HMM Listed as a Controlled Carrier After FMC Decision

South Korea-based Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) is now a controlled carrier, per the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC).

HMM is the latest shipping line to be added to the list. The FMC made the addition to its controlled carrier list due to HMM’s close connections and collaboration with the government of South Korea. Earlier this year, two state-owned banks in South Korea purchased ownership stakes in HMM.

Being named a “controlled carrier” means that the Federal Maritime Commission, which regulates the shipping industry as it pertains to the United States, has determined the carrier in question is foreign government-owned or affiliated. It is used to differentiate shipping lines owned by U.S.-based companies. The FMC maintains the list in order to foster competitiveness and prevent monopolistic practices or too much unchecked influence from companies that operate against U.S. interests.

For all intents and purposes, the U.S. government now views HMM as a foreign state-owned shipping line.

Earlier this year, we reported that a Chinese-owned shipping line was being designated a controlled carrier, the first update to the list of controlled carriers since 2019. With this update, HMM is the latest change to the controlled carrier list.

As a controlled carrier, HMM will now be the focus of intense regulatory practices and further scrutiny from the U.S. government. It should be noted that South Korea is allied with the United States, which means there is likely to be a level of leniency compared to the China-owned shipper designated as a controlled carrier earlier this year.

HMM now joins Cosco, OOCL, and Hede International Shipping Ltd. as the other three controlled carriers designated by the FMC.

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