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MTD Exec Sec-Treas Daniel Duncan (right) and AFL-CIO Metal Trades Dept Pres James Hart (left) thank US Rep Joe Courtney (D-CT) for his longstanding support of the Jones Act.

Support for the nation’s freight cabotage law remains strong in the wake of a congressional hearing in Washington on March 11.

During a joint meeting of House Armed Services Subcommittees on Readiness and Seapower and Projection Forces, one of its witnesses was U.S. Maritime Administrator Mark Buzby, who reaffirmed the government’s support for the Jones Act, which requires cargo moved between two domestic ports must be carried on U.S.-crewed, U.S.-built, U.S.-flagged and U.S.-owned vessels.

“We also remain committed to our domestic Jones Act fleet,” Buzby said. “Jones Act requirements support U.S. shipyards and repair facilities, sustain supply chains that produce and repair American-built ships and the employment of U.S. citizen mariners.

“It is the indispensable foundation of the U.S. maritime industry and our economic and national security,” he added.

U.S. Representative Joe Courtney (D-CT) reminded all during the Sealift and Mobility Requirements and the National Defense Strategy hearing that this year is the 100th anniversary of the Jones Act, the nation’s freight cabotage law.

“For a century, the Jones Act has helped promote a robust domestic maritime industry while preserving our nation’s security,” stated Courtney, who chairs the House Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee. “We are a maritime nation and the Jones Act is one of the foundation pillars of a strong maritime policy now and in the future.”

The Jones Act supports approximately 650,000 jobs around the country. The United States is one of more than 90 countries that have cabotage laws.