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Eliminate duplication of effort in plan approvals and inspections. Differing requirements from locality to locality also contribute to greater costs, especially with respect to Maritime Administration, Coast Guard, and Public Health Service requirements.
(6) Reduce onerous contract administration which leads to extra costs for builders, operators, and the Government, and minimize interference of the Government in relations between shipyard and owner-operator.
(7) Encourage the award of building contracts in multiple units of greater numbers.
(8) Sponsorship of low-interest loans, accelerated depreciation, or tax advantage for shipyard improvements.
To repeat: the consensus of our industry is that the required incentive for further investment in "mechanizaton and automation" by the private shipyards lies in a shipbuilding program of greater magnitude than at present with assurance of continuity in the future.
We greatly appreciate this opportunity to provide our views on a very important aspect of our industry, and stand ready to furnish any additional comments you might desire. With warm personal regards always, I am, Cordially,
EDWIN M. HOOD, President. Mr. DREWRY. Well, if there were more work, then your costs would come down?
Mr. Hood. Yes, the overhead is spread and inevitably it is going to result in
Mr. DREWRY. Your productivity inevitably would increase ?
Mr. DREWRY. And, hopefully, in time the prices would begin to come down?
Mr. Hood. Yes.
So, from the Government's standpoint, in considering the narrowing of the gap, if they do not want to see but a handful of ships built each year then that program itself is keeping the gap wider?
Mr. Hood. That is correct.
Mr. DREWRY. So, the Government can be said to be a contributor to the width of the differential gap?
Mr. Hoop. I would interpret it that way, yes.
Mr. DREWRY. At least as far as the subsidized production is concerned ?
Mr. Hood. That is right.
Mr. DREWRY. Now, do you have any information on the comparative orderbook during almost any reasonable period like the last 2 or perhaps 3 years so one could see perhaps how much business the major shipyards of Europe had on hand compared with what we have or had on hand at the same time?
Mr. Hood. We have just finished a report, Mr. Drewry, as of January 1, 1964, which shows merchant shipbuilding in the principal countries of the world.
It is broken down by cargo, bulk, tanker, passenger-cargo, miscellaneous, total. We compare it with the previous reporting period of
july 1, 19e happy woul
I will be happy to make it available to you.
Merchant shipbuilding in principal countries of the world— New construction underway or on order (1,000 gross tons and over) - Jan. 1, 1964
14,400 *** 10,200
5,774, 920 30.6
369 11,602, 100
100.0 (1, 136 | 17,740,542
1 Remaining countries total approximately 0.1 percent. Includes 22,250 for China (Taiwan)
Source: Shipbuilders Council of America, American Bureau of Shipping, Shipbuilding Conference, and foreign magazines.
Mr. DREWRY. There again, my point is if you are comparing differentials you compare one ship at a time, but if you are comparing the cost of price of producing a ship in a U.S. yard that maybe has five ships this year and maybe only three the last year, and maybe seven the year before and none the year before that. Then you are not really comparing differentials, if you are comparing it with a shipyard that had its ways loaded during the entire period.
Mr. Hood. That is right. I believe that point was brought out yesterday in Mr. Nemec's testimony. Here on this tabulation the United States is the ninth country in the world in terms of merchant ship construction activity. Japan continues to lead the world, building 218 ships to our 45. Mr. DREWRY. Thank you.
The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Hood, we more or less suggested that this discussion of the Maritime Administration's idea of ascertaining foreign costs be deferred.
But do you have any observation that you might care to make now with respect to that?
Mr. Hood. We do not believe that the averaging system as proposed supports the doctrine of parity as prescribed in the act. We have so informed the Maritime Administration. We would hope that when you have your hearings on this subject, that we, too, would be invited to come in and present some backup to support that point.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you, Mr. Hood.:
The CHAIRMAN. Our next witness is our old friend, Mr. Hoyt Haddock over there.
STATEMENT OF HOYT HADDOCK, EXECUTIVE SECRETARY,
AFL-CIO MARITIME COMMITTEE
Mr. HADDOCK. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. My name is Hoyt S. Haddock. I am executive secretary of the AFL-ČIO Maritime Committee.
This legislation that is before you now, Mr. Chairman, is legislation or a subject on which a great deal of discussion took place prior to the enactments of this act.
There was considerable fear of shipyards at that time and I have been trying to find out why. I cannot remember why the committee wanted to protect themselves against the shipyards, and I have gone back through the hearings trying to find out why that was, and I have not been able to and I do not remember. But I do recall that considerable discussion was had on this subject and that the committee wanted to set a 331/3-percent differential which would permit the Commission to, if the differential reached that point, permit the building of ships in foreign yards and then if it went up to 50 percent to permit the shipowner to go to foreign yards without the permission of the Commission.
We said at the time that it was a mistake to set a percentage on shipbuilding, that what really ought to be done was to permit the steamship company construct their ships and let the Government pay for them as though they were being built in a foreign yard chosen by the steamship company. We said at the time that Congress would
be faced with this percentage question on a number of occasions and that there would be considerable difficulty with it if it was not set in the act in basically the same way that the operating differential subsidy was.
Now, last year, in the Senate when this question was considered, there was great discussion on it and this bill only got through the Senate by the skin of its teeth, the 55 percent provision.
Senator Lausche attacked it vigorously, pointed out that this question had come up a number of times and that this was not going to be the end of it, that the Senate would have a bill before it just as soon as it appeared that this one was going to expire, and the same question would be before the Senate again.
Well, this is certainly true, and the thing that I would like to urge most strongly again is that the percentage be cut out of this bill, that the shipyards be reimbursed in an amount equal to whatever the differential is determined to be by the agency, and it be put on that basis so that we will not have this question coming up from time to time but it will be there and I think we can look for protection from the agency.
If there is still any fear, and I cannot see any reason for there being any fear, of the shipyards, they certainly have shown that they are as competitive as any other type of American industry with foreign industry, and certainly there have been no scandals to indicate that we need to fear them in any way.
I think we have outgrown that period in 1936, and for the life of me I cannot remember why they were so suspect at that time and I do not find anything in the hearing to indicate why they were, but I think we should get rid of this question once and for all and have the shipyards reimbursed to the percentage that they should be for the particular ship that is being built at the particular time.
And that is my only recommendation. The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Tollefson? Mr. TOLLEFSON. I agree with you. We discussed this same subject at some earlier hearing right here and I think the only reason for the ceiling is there was a fear on the part of some Members of Congress that the differential might grow too large, but the Maritime Administration in its testimony in the earlier hearings said that they fixed the CDS—the construction differential subsidy-at whatever the differential actually was. This has been the case all through the years, even when the ceiling was 331/2, they did not automatically fix the subsidy at 331/3, they fixed it at what the facts showed it to be.
I certainly agree with you, I would like to see the percentage figure stricken and some other language substituted as you have indicated perhaps similar to the language dealing with the operating differential subsidy.
There will always be those people in Congress, they are the ones that we have to be concerned about, who just do not seem to understand this merchant marine problem. They will not listen; they do not want to know.
Mr. HADDOCK. Well, and there are those who are basically opposed to subsidies under any condition.
Mr. TOLLEFSON. That is right.
Mr. HADDOCK. And you just cannot overcome those people because they have a blind spot on subsidy and that is all there is to it, and as long as you have to come back with this request from time to time you are going to have these people to face each time, and to me it really makes no sense to put this committee and the leadership on this question through this steambath every few years.
Mr. TOLLEFSON. Another thought that occurred to me at some other time at one of the other hearings, that if they are fearful that CDS might go to the ceiling because that is what the law allows, it is not just as likely that the reverse might be true? In other words, if you do not have any percentage figure then they might be very careful to keep it down?
Mr. HADDOCK. That is true, and even if it does go through the ceiling, you are going to have legislation to raise the ceiling because you are not going to have the industry operating and picking up the extra cost, if there is an extra cost, in construction, because it simply will not be able to operate and do it, and they are going to be in here, if there is an increase in CDS and if there is any truth in the thought that maximums become minimums becomes maximums, then certainly the setting of a maximum ceiling would tend to become a minimum, and if it is gotten out just as you indicated, there may be the possibility that they will get away from this that there is a 55 percent we have to reach and competition may make it come back down. I do not know this will happen, but there is certainly that possibility.
Certainly your committee and the Congress will not be faced with this question year after year. What are you going to do after 3 years? You have this question again. You are faced with it again. Mr. TOLLEFSON. Yes.
Well, I think this is about the best we can do this time in view of one or two things you said about the other side.
Mr. HADDOCK. My own feeling is on the other side that if it were eliminated completely you would have a much easier chance to get it through, because Senator Lausche was really the only opposition to it.
Mr. Pelly. Will the gentleman yield ? Mr. TOLLEFSON. Yes. Mr. PELLY. I would think that those Members of Congress who oppose subsidy in principle would make no distinction in their opposition between a third or 55 percent or any percentage, because they are just opposed to subsidy.
Mr. HADDOCK. I cannot see that they would have any because they are just opposed to subsidy, period. It does not make any difference what it is.
Mr. PELLY. I certainly think you were right originally, and have been proved right. I must say the easier way would be to support a simple extension as Congress has passed on it before, and therefore the average member would just say, well, we are not changing policy, therefore, I will support it, or will not raise any strong objection.
But I agree with you, that probably if we could take away the maximum altogether, once we got the law that way we would be facing up to the basic issue of the matter. Once we made that change our main problem would be over.
The thing that bothers me about the present limit of 55 percent when the costs run over 55 percent, in such a case some ship operator would be discriminated against.
Mr. HADDOCK. That is right.