What does NVOCC mean?

Non Vessel Owning Common Carrier (NVOCC) refers to a transportation operator that does not own any ocean going vessel assets. The transport operator will take care of operations that include stuffing, un-stuffing, arranging for transportation, sales, Customs clearance and overseas distributions activities. NVOCCs will also issue bills of lading. The NVOCC is able to provide transportation by sub-contracting freight requirements to carriers.

Cost efficiency is attained by the NVOCC by pre-booking large freight volumes in advance. NVOCCs also consolidate operational resources that further reduce costs for pre voyage transportation and port operations.

Difference between a carrier and a NVOCC?

  • NVOCC will take up responsibility for the cargo, while not all direct carriers may do so
  • The NVOCC will not be able to issue you a Master Bill of Lading direct with the carrier
  • NVOCC will usually issue you only a House Bill of Lading
  • Many NVOCCs also handle transportation on either side of the ocean voyage
  • The NVOCC is treated as a shipper by the carrier
  • When required, the NVOCC will co-ordinate transhipment of cargo and containers

All reputable NVOCCs will have robust facilities in place to receive, process and consolidate cargo into LCL shipments. The reason for this is that NVOCCs prefer to publish fixed sailing schedules on routes that traders can book space on upon requirement. In order to support such a model, they have to able to process incoming cargo quickly in order to push them out within tight timelines. NVOCCs can own the containers used for freight movement.

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