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More than a week-long, nationwide Brazilian truck strike and blockade in late May exposed imbalances between road, railroad, and sea/navigable waterways. Estimates of the strike’s cost to shippers, from beef exporters to white goods importers, ranges from $5 billion to $15 billion. Although tensions have reduced, there is fear of another flare as government conciliatory efforts – a 60-day diesel price reduction, creation of minimum freight rate (FRT) for truckers and all government-associated contracts, and a reduction in road tolls, are unworkable for shippers and ocean carriers. It is unlikely there will be another full-out blockade, but truckers could threaten minor stoppages intermittently. There are many agreements which need to be developed throughout all aspects of transportation and logistics in Brazil, but according to Joaõ EmilioFreire Filho, a Rio de Janeiro-based consultant, “At the time we do not have the leadership in our country, so the problems mount and the task of finding long-term solutions are always postponed. If we don’t resolve this, this could destroy our country.”

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