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Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Services Surveys: BE-29, Annual Survey of Foreign Ocean Carriers' Expenses in the United States

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Bureau of Economic Analysis, Department of Commerce.




The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.


Written comments must be submitted on or before September 4, 2018.


Direct all written comments to Jennifer Jessup, Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer, Department of Commerce, Room 6616, 14th and Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20230, or via email at

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Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument and instructions should be directed to Christopher Stein, Chief, Services Surveys Branch (SSB) BE-50, Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce, Washington, DC 20233; phone: (301) 278-9189; fax: (301) 278-9507; or via email at:

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I. Abstract

The Annual Survey of Foreign Ocean Carriers' Expenses in the United States (BE-29) is a survey that collects data from U.S. agents of foreign ocean carriers who handle 40 or more foreign ocean port calls in the reporting period, or report total covered expenses of $250,000 or more in the reporting period for all foreign ocean vessels handled by the U.S. agent. The covered expenses are: (1) Port call services such as pilotage, towing and tugboat services, harbor fees, and berth fees; (2) cargo-related services such as loading, unloading, and storing cargo at U.S. ports; (3) fuels and oils (bunkers) purchased in U.S. ports; (4) other vessel operating expenses such as stores and supplies, vessel repairs, and personnel expenses in the United States; and (5) other expenses such as U.S. agents' and brokers' fees and commissions and expenses related to maintaining U.S. offices, such as rent, advertising, and wages.

The data collected on the survey are needed to monitor U.S. trade in transport services to analyze the impact of U.S. trade on the U.S. and foreign economies, to compile and improve the U.S. economic accounts, to support U.S. commercial policy on trade in transport services, to conduct trade promotion, and to improve the ability of U.S. businesses to identify and evaluate market opportunities. The data are used in estimating the transport component of the U.S. international transactions accounts (ITAs) and national income and product accounts (NIPAs).

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) is proposing no additions or modifications to the current BE-29 survey. The effort to keep current reporting requirements unchanged is intended to minimize respondent burden while considering the needs of data users. Existing language in the instructions and definitions will be reviewed and adjusted as necessary to clarify survey requirements.

II. Method of Collection

BEA contacts potential respondents by mail in January of each year. Respondents must file the completed BE-29 forms within 90 days after the Start Printed Page 31362end of each calendar year. Reports are required from U.S. agents of foreign ocean carriers who handle 40 or more foreign ocean port calls in the reporting period, or report total covered expenses of $250,000 or more in the reporting period for all foreign ocean vessels handled by the U.S. agent. Entities required to report will be contacted individually by BEA. Entities not contacted by BEA have no reporting responsibilities.

BEA offers electronic filing through its eFile system for use in reporting on the BE-29 annual survey form. For information about eFile, go to​efile. In addition, BEA posts all its survey forms and reporting instructions on its website,​ssb. These may be downloaded, completed, printed, and submitted via fax or mail.

III. Data

OMB Control Number: 0608-0012.

Form Number: BE-29.

Type of Review: Regular submission.

Affected Public: Business or other for-profit organizations.

Estimated Number of Responses: 80 annually (70 reporting mandatory data and 10 filing exemption claims).

Estimated Time per Response: 3 hours is the average for those reporting data. One hour is the average for those filing an exemption claim. Hours may vary considerably among respondents because of differences in the volume and complexity of information on the foreign ocean carriers represented by the reporter.

Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 220.

Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $0.

Respondent's Obligation: Mandatory.

Legal Authority: International Investment and Trade in Services Survey Act (Pub. L. 94-472, 22 U.S.C. 3101-3108, as amended).

IV. Request for Comments

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval of this information collection; they also will become a matter of public record.

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Sheleen Dumas,

Departmental Lead PRA Officer, Office of Chief Information Officer.

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[FR Doc. 2018-14421 Filed 7-3-18; 8:45 am]