Conference Carrier

A conference carrier is a type of ocean carrier who is a member of an association known as a “conference.” The purpose of the conference is to standardize shipping practices, eliminate freight rate competition, and provide regularly scheduled service between specific ports.

Conference carriers typically have a more stable pricing structure and higher quality service than non-conference carriers.

The conferences were originally formed in the 1800s, and their membership has dwindled in recent years as containerization has replaced break bulk cargo shipping. However, there are still several conferences operating today, including the Atlantic Marine Conference (AMC), the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA), and the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC).