19 Dec 2005

Head of Guam business group says nothing can be done about hikes in fuel surcharge

7:08 am on 19 December 2005

The head of the Guam chamber of commerce says it is a case of "grin and bear it" when it comes to the rise in shipping fuel surcharges.

The biggest US domestic shipping company, Horizon Lines, is increasing its fuel surcharge from 2-percent to 15-percent for containers from the continental US to Hawaii and Guam.

The Chamber of Commerce chair, Monty McDowell, says Guam is heavily reliant on shipping for its goods and there is little that can be done to mitigate the increase.

"On an island out on the Pacific like we are, everything comes through the port, so if the shipping costs 15% more, takes profit away and it's not reasonable to do business without raising the price."

So ultimately there's a very good chance that price could be passed on to the consumer.

The price hikes come into effect on the third of January.